Roofing FAQ

when should I replace my roof?

When you start to notice these issues with your roof it may be time to take action.

Asphalt Shingles

  • Missing granules on shingles
  • Exposed asphalt on shingles
  • Curling shingles
  • Finding loose shingle pieces
  • Discolored shingles
  • Algae and moss

In the early stages of roof failure you will start to notice granules coming off the shingles and filling up your gutter. You may notice patches of asphalt are exposed to the elements where sections of granules are missing. You may find pieces of shingles on the ground or in your gutter. The shingles may appear to be discoloured. Algae and moss will start to collect after five years on a new roof. If you notice patches of moss and algae this can greatly speed up the deterioration process on your shingles.

Cedar Shakes/Shingles

  • Bottoms of shakes/shingles are starting to rot
  • Cedar is starting to split or crack
  • Cedar is showing signs of curling
  • Shakes/Shingle appear to be brittle and worn
  • Flashing is rusted


  • Membrane is cracking
  • There are noticeable blisters and bubbles in the system
  • Patches of asphalt are exposed
  • Membrane is not fully adhered (You can lift up the membrane at the seams with your hand)
  • There is noticeable rust on the hardware especially at the base

If you see any of these signs and or unsure about the condition of your roof, please call us for a free inspection. 604-674-0319

What products should I install on my roof?

It would depend on a few factors:

  • Budget
  • Expected lifetime for roof
  • Roof Type (Flat or Sloped)
  • Aesthetics ( Style/Appearance)

For sloped roof you have wide range to choose from including cedar shakes, asphalt shingles, clay/concrete tiles, and metal.

If 20-30 years is a sufficient lifetime for a roof there are a variety of asphalt shingles to choose from in different shapes, styles, thicknesses and colour. They are cost effective as well.

Cedar shakes are the more luxurious choice costing 1.5-2.5 times the cost compared to asphalt. Many homeowners are now converting from cedar to asphalt but if you choose to remain with cedar you will stand out as the unique household on the block.

For a longer roof life of 30+ years metal and concrete tile roofs are the route to go. They may be more expensive than your conventional roof but if you are looking for a lifetime roof, go with metal or concrete tiles.

For flat roofs you can choose from EDPM rubber, TPO, PVC and torch-on SBS.

Torch-on SBS is the standard product used in the Canadian marketplace for flat commercial and residential roofs. It’s a cost-effective system, easy to repair and usually lasts good number of years between 15-25 years.

PVC is a more environmentally friendly product than SBS. The life expectancy of a PVC roof is longer than most torch-on SBS roofs. The material and labor coverage ranges from 15-25 years. PVC is more expensive than an SBS roof but comes with added value in lifetime and warranty.

How much does the average roof replacement cost?

For the average 1800 sq ft home:

  • Asphalt shingle — asphalt shingle – $6000 – $10,000
  • Cedar shake — asphalt shingle – $9,000 – $15,000
  • Cedar shake — cedar shake – $20,000 – $30,000
  • Torch-on — torch-on – $14,000 – $19,000
  • Tar and gravel — torch-on – $15,000 – $20,000
  • Metal – $20,000 – $30,000

These are general prices to help with budgeting for your roofing project. Prices may vary depending on factors involved.

What factors are involved when calculating the price for my roof?

  • Access – (Can the material be loaded on the roof? Can the bin be placed close to the roof?)
  • Difficulty (How many sections are on this roof? Are they at different levels?)
  • Slope (Steep or low slope?)
  • Obstacles (How many protrusions are there? Are there trees in the way?)
  • Layers (Are there multiple layers of shingles, cedar, torch-on, or tar and gravel?)

How do I choose a roofing company?

Each person will do their due diligence differently. I think these are some of the things that should be considered when hiring a roofing company:

  • Do they have WCB coverage? If someone get hurts on your property, you want to make sure you aren’t held liable.
  • Do they have liability insurance? At least $1 million dollar liability insurance is recommended. What happens if your house becomes flooded or is burnt down because of mishandling a torch or not performing a four-hour fire watch?
  • Are they reputable? Ask to see references and testimonials. Homestars, Google Plus and Yelp are usually good indicators of a company’s reputation.
  • Do you trust them? Trust is huge — if you feel uncomfortable in any way, there is probably a reason for it.
  • Are all agreements in writing? Make sure everything agreed upon is included in a signed agreement/contract with you and the contractor.
  • Ask about the installer’s experience. The crew leader should have at least five years experience working with your type of roof to ensure quality.
  • Are there inspections being performed throughout the job and at the end? Quality inspections should be done midway through the job and at the end. This ensures peace of mind for the future knowing your roof was properly installed and inspected.

What potential issues may come up during a roofing project?

Water damage and rot are probably the biggest concerns with re-roofing especially if the roof has been leaking for a long period of time. Woodwork may need to occur if any plywood, trusses, rafters or any other wood is damaged. Make sure there is a section in the contract explaining the costs for any woodwork.

Does my roof need maintenance?

Yes! Every roof needs maintenance especially cedar shakes, asphalt shingles and torch-on SBS roofs.

How long will a new roof last?

  • Asphalt shingles: 15-30 years
  • Cedar shakes: 20-30 years
  • Torch-on SBS: 15-25 years
  • Metal: 25-40 years
  • Tile: 30-50 years

These estimated life spans are based on properly installed roofs. The years vary depending on products used, slope of the roof and weather conditions.

Is roof ventilation important?

Yes, very important. Having sufficient intake and exhaust ventilation is critical for the lifespan of your roof. Without proper ventilation the attic has the potential to overheat and hold moisture. This will accelerate the deterorationdeterioration process on your roofs and potentially cause mildew and mold to grow in your attic.

frequently asked questions

Should I repair my roof, do a roof-over or roof replacement?

Ask yourself these questions:

  • How long do I plan to stay in this home?
  • What’s my budget?
  • Is my roof beyond repair?
  • Is my house a tear-down?
  • How old is the roof?

The best thing to do if you are unsure of a course of action, contact your local roofing contractor who can help ask the right questions for your situation and provide the best solution for your scenario.​

Why are there white spots on the underside of my plywood?

This mold build-up from an improperly ventilated attic. The heat cannot escape from the attic and is causing damage to your plywood.

How long does a roofing project take?

The average sized home takes about 2-4 days to replace the roof. Larger homes and commercial projects can take anywhere from a week to six months of good weather.

Should I repair or replace my gutters?

If you notice your gutters are leaking from the seams, collecting rust and are not fully attached to the fascia boards, they may need to be replaced.

How does roof ventilation work?

Roofs need sufficient intake ventilation through the intake vents at the eaves for air to enter into the attic and exhaust through exhaust vents or ridge venting at or near the ridge of the roof.

Here are a couple of diagrams showing the difference between a ventilated and unventilated attic space.​

frequently asked questions

Does the colour of the shingle affect the temperature in the attic?

Ventilated Roof = 1-2 degrees higher for a dark colored VS light colored shingle

Unventilated Roof = 20+ degrees higher for a dark colored VS light colored shingle​

What's the differences between tar paper and synthetic underlayment?

Tar/Felt Paper


  • Cost-effective
  • Provides a protective layers underneath the shingles
  • Fastened with staples


  • Low-quality product
  • Tendency to tear when walked on or applied in valleys
  • Staples create a hole for water to penetrate
  • Can potentially “telegraph” (wrinkle) underneath the shingles

Synthetic Underlayerment


  • High-quality product
  • Lighter and stronger than tar paper
  • Provides a protective water-proof layer if applied using the proper fasteners
  • Easier to install


  • Higher cost product

Can my roof be replaced in the winter?

Yes! We work year-round.

Is there an alternative to those ugly box vents on my roof?

Instead of using exhaust vents, ridge venting can be used which is a type of ventilation which is concealed by the ridge capping.

When's the best time to have my roof replaced?

Basically when the weather becomes consistently good which is usually at the end of spring to the early fall. Make sure you get signed up in the winter time to secure your spot!

My roof is leaking, is it covered by warranty or insurance?

Potentially. If it is a workmanship issue and you have documentation from your previous roof installer and the warranty has not expired you could potentially have them come do a repair, free of charge. If it is a material issue you may be able to contact the manufacturer and receive a rebate if you have up to date documentation and the warranty is under your name.

Insurance usually won’t cover any issues from material or workmanship defects. If your roof is damaged from a falling tree, fire, vandalism or other causes you may be covered under your home insurance.

Where are the most vulnerable areas on my roof?

Skylights, chimneys, valleys and any penetrations on your roofs. These areas should have an Ice and Water Shield/ Peel N Stick underlayment installed around them for extra protection.

Velux or Columbia skylights?

Columbia skylights are the more cost effective option that will give a decent amount of life. Velux are well built high quality skylights. If you are looking for a skylight to last 20+ years and you have the budget, I would recommend Velux.

What are some important roofing terms I should know?

Deck: Also known as the substrate, this is the support underneath your roof which will usually be shiplap boards, plywood or OSB.
Drip Edge Metal: The flashing installed along the perimeters of your roof which covers the fascia boards.
Underlayment: A protection membrane installed underneath your shakes, shingles or metal.
Flashing: The metal component installed around your roofs perimeter, walls, chimneys, skylights, and valleys.
Shingles: An asphalt, wood, and rubber based product used to waterproof roofs and walls.
Soffit: the underside of the overhang on your roof. Usually extending out 1.5-2 feet.
Fascia: Combed and primed wood boards on your gables and eaves (behind gutters) of your roof.
Vents: Assist in exhausting or intaking air from various sources such as chimneys, bathrooms, stoves and general attic ventilation.