Roof over our heads

The new roof has been finished for over a week but we had trouble finding the camera charger after moving back. We found it now, and will hopefully start posting more frequently again.

We re-roofed because the existing roof was starting to look pretty rough and would likely be leaking in the next few years. No sense remodeling the inside of a house if the outside is failing.

We originally wanted to go with a metal roof, but costs and other considerations pushed this off the table. I talked about that in the comments of this post. Ultimately we went with Owens Corning Duration Premium Shingles with “lifetime” warranty in the Driftwood color. They are a very heavy shingle, lots of raised character, and not likely to end up in the landfill any time soon. The original house had a wood shake roof, so we wanted something that would keep the look. The next photo is a close up of the new roof. Although your computer monitor may show it differently, the shingles are a gray-brown color. They get darker and more shake-like when it rains.

If the roof portion of this project had been a simple tear-off and nail-on it would have been quite a bit cheaper. Unfortunately, the original shake roof was still there under the composite, along with the original skip sheathing. That had to get torn off. Also, quite a few of the rafter tails were rotted, the varge rafters (wooden overhang in the gable ends) were failing, and the whole roof had some serious dips and rises. Translation: our new roof was basically an all new roof. The original rafters were still good, but everything else was replaced. We went with A/C plywood in the eaves for appearance. If we run out of things to spend money on some day, we might come back and add bead board to the front gable to restore the tongue & grove overhang appearance. All the gables have a neat new trim detail on the varge rafter face, and we added fascia boards since we’ll be adding rain gutters pretty soon. Exposed rafter tails would be truer to the craftsman roots of this house, but aren’t practical in an area with 51 inches of rain a year.

From that last photo you can see we went with ridge vents to keep the back of the roof cleaner. Also, the corbels (decorative angle brackets) were destroyed when the overhangs came off. We’ll be building new ones to restore the look.

We are very happy with how this project turned out. Our contractor was very detail oriented and honest. Robin now speaks in glowing tones of the joy of hiring out home improvement. Yes, yes, as soon as we win the lottery. I hear your chances of winning are slightly better if you actually play.

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3 Responses to Roof over our heads

  1. Leigh says:

    *LOL. Sounds like your chances of winning the lottery are as good as ours. The roof looks great and I’m so glad you had a good experience with your contractor. We had nothing but problems (and from a supposedly reputable company) so that there are still some glaring problems. Dan wishes now that we had done it ourselves. It’s encouraging to hear good experiences.

  2. lee says:

    Our contractor was a friend and relative, so I was confident it would turn out fine. I’m glad it did.

    I prefer to do most jobs myself though as well. It’s not just the cost, but I like to learn things and I’m pretty confident that given time and a couple decent books I can do a better job than most people I might hire. When I read advice online, 50% of which just says “go hire a pro,” I just feel more stubborn.

    However, when it comes to roofs … the combination of ladders and time constraints made it an easy decision.

  3. Pingback: Three new windows and a roof | Farm Folly

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