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cottonmather0

roof debris in the attic

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We're getting our new post-Ike roof installed this week, courtesy of the insurance company in San Antonio. Still mad at them about the flood damage that wasn't caused by a flood, but they have been pretty accommodating since we determined that our roof was more badly damaged from Ike that originally thought. They are replacing our old 25 year old aluminum shingle roof with a brand new aluminum shingle roof worth about $40,000 and did not once try and get us to downgrade or otherwise play games with the numbers.

Anyway, the point of this post is this:

The original metal roof was installed back in 1983 directly on top of the old cedar shakes, which themselves were attached to wooden lathe with no solid decking (you could go up in the attic and see the old shakes before this week). The insurance company required that the old shakes be removed and new plywood decking be installed. They are doing it the right way.

Tonight my wife and I thought we smelled smoke so we got to looking and eventually decided it was coming from a recessed light in the kitchen. I thought I would go up in the attic and take a look and when I opened the attic stairs dirty crap rained from above: old tar paper, wood chips, nails, dust, you name it. So when they were removing the old roof from the wood lathe, naturally a lot of debris fell into the attic since there was no solid decking beneath it all.

I knew it was going to be a mess, but I didn't picture the mess being not only all over the yard, which they cleaned up, but also all inside the attic and the garage (which has no ceiling). I guess I wasn't thinking.

I didn't see any smoke in the attic when I went up there, but nonetheless we turned off the light and the smell went away. I am afraid that some of this stuff fell onto a light and started to smolder.

I am going to raise the issue with the crew tomorrow when they are here and I'm going to call the owner of the company, but I am curious if it's that big of a deal. His contract says they will "clean up all debris" - I'm wondering if he's going to tell me I am SOL in expecting them to clean the attic, though.

Most of the roofer websites out there don't have much to say on the subject except to move valuables in the attic if we don't want them to get dirty. Nonetheless, our furnace and A/C are up there as are the aforementioned can lights and it seems like a fire hazard to me. Is it?

FWIW: pictures are here.

EDIT: added pictures

Edited by cottonmather0

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If the contract says that they will clean up all debris, make them clean up all debris to your satisfaction. Otherwise, refuse to pay them the final amount and keep enough photographic evidence to prove that you are well within your right to refuse payment.

Don't be afraid to be an asshole. They obviously aren't.

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Change out the incandescent can lights with the low energy flourescents. They produce much less heat and will likely prevent the problem you had.

A shop vac and an hour of time is probably less work than the many hours of arguements, headaches, letters, and phone calls that will be required before a roofer steps foot in an attic.

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We're getting our new post-Ike roof installed this week, courtesy of the insurance company in San Antonio. Still mad at them about the flood damage that wasn't caused by a flood, but they have been pretty accommodating since we determined that our roof was more badly damaged from Ike that originally thought. They are replacing our old 25 year old aluminum shingle roof with a brand new aluminum shingle roof worth about $40,000 and did not once try and get us to downgrade or otherwise play games with the numbers.

what type of damage didn't you see before?

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We had a complete tear off with the shakes and no underlayment as well but my roofer cleaned up the attic. It was a mess and they didn't get it all but they did a pretty good job. We made no mention of it beforehand--he just did it. Definitely talk to the roofing company about it. They are contractors and should clean up after themselves.

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what type of damage didn't you see before?

Many of the old aluminum shingles were damaged at the seams and were leaking underneath. The original inspector didn't catch the damage and was reluctant to go up and look and risk further damaging it since it looked OK from the ground. We just assumed that the limited leaking we saw during the storm was a function of wind-driven sideways rain blowing through the seams.

Since we had that long dry spell with no significant rain right after the storm, we didn't know there was any damage for a few months until there was finally a big downpour last month that caused leaking again. The next day we called the roofing contractor and he came up and immediately noticed the damage and helped us work with a new insurance adjustor. It was actually leaking all over apparently and just running down the tarpaper on the underside of the aluminum - we would have never caught it except that the one spot what was leaking there was a puncture in the tarpaper.

The good news is that the insurance company is paying for everything (we had already used up our deductible) and the roofer is going to leave the lifetime warranty open until the house is sold and is going to put that into our new buyer's name whenever we finally find one. Hopefully a "free" brand new $40,000 roof with a lifetime warranty will help us finally get the house sold.

Anyway, selling the house with a bunch of flurf in the attic might be tough, so I have to get this taken care of.

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We've bought and sold plenty of houses with cedar shingle debris in the attic. Just get it away from the can lights and put the house up for sale!

flipper

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We've bought and sold plenty of houses with cedar shingle debris in the attic. Just get it away from the can lights and put the house up for sale!

flipper

Really? That makes me feel better. It seems kind of sloppy that it's now all mixed in with the insulation and covering everything up there, but if you say it's OK I will not press the issue if they so decline.

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Really? That makes me feel better. It seems kind of sloppy that it's now all mixed in with the insulation and covering everything up there, but if you say it's OK I will not press the issue if they so decline.

If you have plywood over the ceiling joists near the attic stairs, that will be enough to excite most buyers.

flipper

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If you have plywood over the ceiling joists near the attic stairs, that will be enough to excite most buyers.

flipper

LOL - I know exactly what you mean. I am more concerned about getting a bad inspection report, but you do speak the truth about the buyer mentality.

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LOL - I know exactly what you mean. I am more concerned about getting a bad inspection report, but you do speak the truth about the buyer mentality.

I have had inspectors say that the attic had debris in it. But I've never had a buyer ask me to remove it.

flipper

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Well, the good news today is that I mentioned it to the foreman today and he immediately started apologizing for it. He said it is always the last thing that they do and that they will do a thorough policing of the entire property when they finished next week. I actually kind of felt bad for even asking about it, he was so nice and apologetic. So that's good.

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can anyone recommed a reputable roofer. our house is having leaks and so far no one has been able to resolve the problem. Each time water comes in a new place so they seal around the jacks. it will hold up for a few rain events and then it trickles in through another area. we do not have a traditional roof so we need someone that can identify potential problems.

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you may need to have the insulation removed and have new insulation installed.  when we had ours done, the guy reminded us that cable contractors, plumbers, and others trample thru the insulation over the years making it loose its r value.  I used Avalanche Contractors after Ike for replacing my roof.  I don't know if they do repairs but I'm sure they know someone that does if by chance they don't.

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