Roofer: Metal works well in Basin region


It may not be a problem every year or every day, but when it comes time for a new roof or roof replacement, it’s hard for homeowners to ignore. Finding the right roof for your home is essential.

David Serrato, business partner of Guardian Roofing & Exteriors, at 805 S. Penn Ivy St. in Moses Lake, discussed what customers choose for a new roof and some of the different factors to consider. Serrato said his company deals with siding, windows and, of course, roofing.

The most popular choice among homeowners is the classic asphalt shingle roof or composite asphalt. Asphalt shingle roofs typically have a 40-year limited lifetime warranty, but Serrato said they will often fail closer to the late 20’s or early 30’s range.

He said the company is purchasing a rubber composite asphalt shingle from Portland, Oregon, which are highly flexible shingles.

In terms of color, he said most people stick to the standard, neutral colors. Many homeowners opt for gray and black when renovating their home, with darker gray being a popular choice. Some homeowners are concerned about using dark colors for their clapboards, which can help trap and absorb heat in the attic and upstairs.

“There was a time when people chose green shingles or blue shingles, but that kind of died away,” Serrato said. “Now everything is kind of the same whether it’s brown, black or gray.”

With shingle roofs, Serrato said one problem he often encounters is simply an installation error and often finds himself and his company redoing shingles.

The winds that often blow into the Columbia Basin can also harm shingle roofs, and Serrato said there are always a handful of insurance claims where people lose shingles to the wind.

Serrato said that when a homeowner starts to see loose shingles in their yard, blemishes getting into the gutters and driveway, or can clearly see the shine from the fiberglass on their roof, it usually means it’s time for a new roof.

With regard to differences between build-quality shingles and slightly more expensive mid-level options, Serrato said the difference isn’t that exaggerated.

“I’d say you’re investing in something for 20, 30 years, so you want something that will last that long,” Serrato said. “Building shingles tend to wear away much faster and much faster.”

He said there are certain brands of shingles on people’s homes that he didn’t replace until about 12 years after the roof was installed. Serrato said there is no reason why anyone should have to replace the roofing material after such a short time.

When it comes to canopies, where a new roof is simply placed over the old one, he said those tend to fail much faster.

One option that has become more popular in recent years is metal roofs, which can handle the high winds of the area well. Metal roofs are what Serrano said he would call “true 40-50 year roofs.”

The big setback with metal roofs is cost for most customers, with metal roofs about two or two and a half times the cost of an asphalt shingle roof. Customers also often choose neutral colors for metal roofs, with the exception of some people who prefer more metallic colors, such as copper. Some homeowners don’t want metal roofs because they don’t want their home to look like a shop, but Serrato said there are seamless metal roofs that give a much more modern look.

The only concern Serrato said he’s seen with metal roofs is an undulating distortion that can occur in the metal called “oil canning.” He said it is much more noticeable in darker roofs and is most often seen in the wider areas of the roof.

In addition to working with houses, Serrato said he does a lot of work around the Potholes Reservoir area on shops and barns. More often than not, he said customers don’t overspend and opt for an asphalt shingle roof on their store. But if the store doesn’t have metal sheets or is an open-frame building, he recommends going with a metal roof if possible.

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