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3 Reasons You Shouldn’t Use the Cheapest Roofing contractor

3 Reasons You Shouldn’t Use the Cheapest Roofing contractor

When it comes time for a roof replacement, the number one thing most homeowners are concerned about is price. While you may be tempted to choose the lowest-priced roof system you can find, we’d like to caution you otherwise.

In our 30 years of roofing experience, we’ve seen too many roofs fail well before their time just because they were originally installed with cheap methods and materials. Your roof is a big investment. Don’t put it in jeopardy just because you’re offered what seems like a good deal.

A cheap roof system affects the quality of your roof, the lifespan of your roof, and your warranty options. By the end of this article, you’ll know what a “cheap” roof system is and the three different risks that come with choosing one. Let’s get started.

What Makes a Roofing System "Cheap"

If you want a quality roof to last the full length of its advertised lifespan, you need to invest in a manufacturer’s full roof system. This system consists of components that all come from a specific and trusted manufacturer. It also must be installed following the manufacturer’s installation instructions, which helps to ensure that your roof is up to their standard.

On the other hand, a cheap roof consists of components that come from different manufacturers at the cheapest price point available. They are mixed and matched together to create a "complete," yet unreliable, roof system. Contractors that are certified by a manufacturer will not cut costs by doing this, as they would risk losing their certification.

The type of system you choose can greatly affect the end product of your roof. While choosing a manufacturer’s full system is more expensive, it’ll give you a higher-quality, longer-lasting roof that is designed to work, and will likely save you more money in the long run.

3 Risks That Come With a Cheap Roof System

1. You Get What You Pay For

To get a roof system that lasts, you need to invest in quality materials and labor. Working with low-quality materials or a cheap contractor will likely set your roof up for premature failure.

If you decide to choose a system based on price instead of quality, you’ll likely get a roof made out of mix-and-match parts instead of a complete system. While you’ll save money with a cheaper roof, you’ll get a longer-lasting bang for your buck with a manufacturer’s system.

warped shingle installations

The cost difference between a cheap roofing system and a manufacturer’s roof system also comes down to the quality of labor. It's important to remember that the contractor you hire is just as important as the products they use. While a cheap roofer might say they install the same materials as their more expensive competitors, it doesn’t necessarily mean they provide the same quality of work.

When you choose a cheap roof, you’re most likely going to get the cheapest labor and installation methods possible. These cheap methods include reusing old flashing, installing too few nails per shingle, and switching out premium shingles for a lower-grade product.

2. Your Roof's Lifespan is Shortened

A long-lasting roof is an investment that requires high-quality labor and roofing materials. While these things cost more, cheap materials and labor will negatively affect the lifespan of your roof.

For example, cheap shingles won’t stand up against severe storms. Poorly installed roof decking won’t provide long-lasting support for the weight of materials placed on top of it. These problems might not show up right away, but you’ll end up spending more money to repair them in the future.

patched and damaged shingles

Cheap labor can also take a toll on the life of your roof. Low-quality contractors might leave out vital roofing components during installation. If they fail to install something as important as an ice & water shield, your roof will be left extremely vulnerable to leaks and possibly premature failure.

On the other hand, as long as your roof system is installed with high-quality materials and labor, it should live up to the manufacturer’s estimated lifespan. Depending on what kind of materials you choose, this could be 20, 30, or even 50 years.

3. You Have Limited Warranty Options

When you use all of a manufacturer’s roofing components, you can register your roof with the manufacturer to receive an extended warranty. To qualify, your roof also has to be installed by a certified contractor with a proven track record of installing a roofing system according to the manufacturer’s installation requirements.

With this warranty, the manufacturer will pay to replace your entire roof if just one of their components fails. This means that they will cover the cost of labor, materials, and dump fees if there is a defect in the materials for up to 50 years.

Depending on the manufacturer, extended warranties may also be transferrable for 12 to 15 years. The only things that could void the warranty on a manufacturer’s roof system are improper ventilation and installation.

roof warranty_WebP

With a cheap roofing system, you’ll likely only be able to rely on your contractor’s workmanship warranty. This type of warranty provides homeowners with coverage against contractor installation errors. If your roof fails because of improper installation, the company that issued the workmanship warranty will cover the cost of labor and any materials needed to make necessary repairs.

However, the quality of a contractor’s workmanship warranty depends on the contractor who’s offering it. If you hire a low-quality contractor who does a poor job on your roof, it’s unlikely they’ll give you a warranty that lasts more than two years. They know it won’t be long before a cheap roof needs repairs, so they avoid providing extended coverage that requires them to come back and fix the roof for no additional cost.

How to Avoid Getting a Cheap Roof

Now that we’ve gone over the risks of using a cheap roofing system, you’re probably wondering how you can make sure you get the high-quality, long-lasting roof you’ve been looking for.

Here’s our answer: hire a seasoned contractor! They have the experience–and warranties–you’ll need to get a quality roof that lasts a lifetime. To help you on your search, we put together a checklist of five tips you can follow to find the best contractor for your repair or replacement.

If you live in Raleigh and need help with your roof, consider On Tops Roofing! On average, we work with over 900 homeowners a year who are looking for a high-quality roofing experience, just like you. If you want a free estimate or to learn more about our process, don’t hesitate to fill out the form below. We’re happy to help.

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