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Anyone have any input on Modified Bitamen?

3 replies [Last post]
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Joined: Sep 25 2003

We are trying to decide between a Modified Bitamen or T&G roof. After the rain all weekend, we now know we need a new roof! Pronto! Anyone have any input? I will appreciate all responses.

Thanks

Jen in Palo Alto

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Joined: Jul 1 2003

As a recent wood-frame homeowner, I have little experience. You should be getting quite a lot of feedback.
Here are my thoughts.
(1) Cathye S. wrote an artcle on roofing about 3 issues of Eichler Network ago; I don't know if it is available on this site. I think that like most articles on comlex matters, the answer is "it depends."
(2) From a cost-efficiency standpoint, I would want to know that if I pay 10% more for one material, will I get 10% more in useful life. Without re-reading the article, I can't say any more about the issues. To me, a roof is a functional choice -- I don't care whether it's T&G, Bitamen or Foam (we have foam), which will last longer and at what cost.
(3) There are several postings on "what else should I do" while re-roofing (electrical, plumbing, skylights, etc.) - - they add to initial cost but is cheaper if you have to do those projects later.
(4) Lastly, you need a contractor with Eichler experience and several advertise on this site -- get ready for sticker shock -- about $90-$110 per sq. ft.
I don't know if it is customary to remove the old roof before re-roofing - - the audience should know.
In the case of Foam, I think most contractors require a re-application 3-5 years after (plus $3K) to honor the 10 (??) year warranty.

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Joined: Mar 22 2003

Hi Jen:

There is a brief version of my roofing article posted on this site. However, you can see the full version in the Summer 2003 of the printed newsletter. It has a detailed comparison of the 5 primary types of roofing options, include T&G, foam, and modified. It sounds like you are in a hurry, so if you don't have a copy handy, you might check with some of your neighbors. Otherwise, you can order it from this site.

Take care,

Cathye

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Joined: Oct 10 2003

I just compared modified bitumen versus foam for a complete new roof. The bitumen (not a vendor from this site BTW) quoted at 18K, with like a 15 yr warranty, + 2K extra to add solid foam insulation panels under the bitumen, only above the living areas. Interestingly, the roofer didnt offer the foams, I asked if he could do it and he thought about it and said yes. This tells me that adding the foams isnt commonly done. To install the new roofing he said he would have to remove the old T&G. sounded messy

The foam (durafoam) quoted at about 15K with a 10 year warranty, and 5K in 5 - 10 yrs for recoating. Insulation is a property of the roof. They clean the loose gravel off the roof but otherwise leave the existing T&G in place.

So cost wise, the two seemed pretty comparable near term and medium term. installation headache wise, the bitumen seemed more involved.

The foam guy extolled the virtues of the insulating properties of his roof, and talked about how bitumen is sketchy because they blowtorch it right on your roof. The bitumen guy talked about how fragile foam was compared to the sturdyness of his material. I think both were of course in extra dramatic sales mode.

I went with the foam because of the insulation. Hope that helps a bit....

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