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Archive for August, 2015

Why zinc roofs are the way forward

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

Zinc is just one of the many roofing material options that we are proud to offer here at ELC Roofing Ltd., and indeed, metal roofs have long been a specialism of ours. You might also enquire to us about copper roofs, for example – so why is zinc arguably the way forward as a roof material?

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While zinc shares with other metal roofing options an extremely high level of corrosion resistance, it also distinguishes itself in its ability to self-heal, with scratches tending to diminish over time. Zinc is the ideal roofing material for those who wish to install it and then think little more of it, with its required maintenance being very low compared to many of the alternatives.

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Zinc’s weatherproof qualities and resistance to UV degradation help to make it exceptionally long-lived, as demonstrated by many century-old roofs in Belgium and the Netherlands. It is partly for these reasons of longevity that zinc also makes a lot of economic sense for roof rebuilds. However, it can also be more affordable to purchase from the outset than other metal options, with its complete recyclability even giving it stronger eco-friendly credentials than you might think.

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However, there’s a certain other very powerful reason to choose zinc roofing… it so often simply looks better than any of the alternatives. Real metal roofs tend to incorporate crisp, clean lines that catch the eye and flatter a building. Here at ELC Roofing Ltd, we can further enhance that visual impact with a wide choice of finishes for your zinc roofing, from blue/grey or quartz to natural grey, graphite or anthracite.

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Nor should you ever underestimate zinc’s versatility as a roofing material, as the ELC Roofing Ltd. team knows well, given the wide range of shapes that we can adapt it to and the strips in which it is applied. Zinc can even provide a great foundation for finer detailing on your home’s roof. Many of the most ingenuous roofing designs in modern buildings, incorporating the most spectacular swooping curves, are made possible by zinc, which is suitable for pitches from 5 to 90 degrees and is thin enough to follow all manner of angles and curves.

All of these factors in favour of zinc roofs make it unsurprising that it can also add significant long-term value to your home. When you are seeking a great roofing material that makes a big visual impact right now while also making practical sense for the long term, you simply can’t beat zinc – and here at ELC Roofing Ltd., we are only too happy to carry out the highest quality zinc roof rebuilds for your own home.

What are the different types of roofs for homes?

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

Whether you are carrying out extension work to your home, replacing an existing roof or simply having more minor repairs carried out, it pays to develop a good knowledge of the different types of roofs that are available for homes.

While, here at ELC Roofing Ltd., we cater for a broad range of roof types from copper roofs to zinc roofs, our emphasis in this piece is on some of the different shapes of roofs, rather than materials, that are possible.

Mansard roof

Four slopes make up this roofing – two on each of the building’s sides, with the lower slope being steeper and more vertical than the upper slope. This is the type of roof that you may choose if you wish to accommodate further living or storage space at the top of your property.

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Gambrel roof

This type of roof has much in common with the mansard option, mainly differing in the inclusion of vertical gable ends and the overhang of the roof over the home’s facade. This type of roof is thought to hail from the Netherlands, as opposed to the French origins of the mansard roof.

Pyramid roof

A fairly self-explanatory roofing option, a pyramid roof has the classic pyramid shape leading up to a single point. It tends to be used on more modest structures like garages, or for smaller portions of a grander property.

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Flat roof

It’s much easier to build a flat roof than many of the alternative types cited here, while you can also stand on it much more safely. Such benefits do come with the cost, however, of a greater need for maintenance given how quickly debris can accumulate on it with nowhere to slide off.

Cross gabled roof

Gabled roofs resemble triangles when the property is viewed from the front, while cross gabled roofs are popular in homes that have additional wings, which can each have triangular gabled roofing of their own.

Arched roof

Another roofing option that only generally sees use on one part of the home, an arched roof nonetheless provides a nice visual focal point when positioned among more conventional sloped roofs as part of a larger property.

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Skillion roof

A single sloping roof surface is known as a skillion roof. These slightly inclined flat roofs can make a big impression when incorporated into more contemporary abodes, helping to create some potentially very interesting shapes and patterns in combination with other roofing types.

The above isn’t an absolutely exhaustive guide to the different types of roof that are possible for your home, but is nonetheless a good starting point for roof rebuilds and other work that you may undertake to this important part of your property.

5 great roof maintenance tips

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

Roofing is one of those parts of the house that can be so easily overlooked, but which can present problems if you don’t have some kind of maintenance regime ongoing. Here are five of our favourite tips for ensuring the suitable maintenance of your roof.

  1. Inspect your roof twice a year

This frequency should be a minimum requirement, and it is recommended that you check your roofing from both the outside and inside of your loft. The former is ideally done with binoculars, from ground level and possibly from a neighbouring property if possible, as this may provide a better vantage point.

When inspecting inside the loft, any visible daylight is a sure sign that something is missing on the outside. Water staining in the loft is another telltale indication of trouble.

 

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  1. Look at other parts of the roof

It isn’t just the roofing tiles that you should be scrutinising – also pay close attention to the guttering, flashing and chimney stacks and pots.

  1. Bear your type of roof in mind

The given type of roof makes all of the difference – zinc roofs are not subject to the exact same maintenance requirements as copper roofs, for instance, but our own expertise here at ELC Roofing Ltd. goes much further than just these roofing types.

 

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Thatched roofs, for instance, are surprisingly maintenance-free, save for the occasional redoing of the ridge – lifespans of as long as 70 years are far from unheard-of. However, thatch is costly and also poses a fire risk, which can be minimised by such practices as having any working chimney swept at least twice a year, getting a qualified electrician to check the wiring every five years and keeping the chimney stacks in the best possible condition.

If you have a flat roof, meanwhile, leaks are the big hazard rather than fires, due to their often overly shallow gradients that allow the pooling of rainwater and its eventual entrance into the room below.

Such flat roof leaks can also arise if the structure or materials beneath the roof covering are inadequate, so you should keep a close eye on the covering’s condition even if the roof’s gradient is sufficiently steep.

  1. Seek clues on the ground

A problem with your roof can also be indicated by debris on the ground from shingles or broken slate tiles. If either of these do turn out to be missing from your roof, you should have them swiftly reinstated before damage can be caused to roof timbers or plaster ceilings.

  1. Get a trusted roofing company to undertake repairs

There’s only so much that you can do to maintain and repair your own roofing, which is why you are strongly advised to contact a reputable specialist in roof rebuilds, repairs and maintenance to undertake any more specialised work. Get in touch with ELC Roofing Ltd., and you’ll discover that with us, there really is no job too big or small.

What you need to know about roof insulation

Friday, August 14th, 2015

There can be few better ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency than roofing insulation.

As much as 25% of an uninsulated home’s heat is said to escape through its roof, and by installing insulation, you can introduce a barrier that not only prevents heat leaving your property during the winter, but also stops too much heat getting into the property at warmer times of year.

Whether you call it roof insulation, loft insulation or attic insulation, these basic principles are much the same, and it’s also a much easier and potentially more affordable DIY job to undertake than you might expect.

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Deciding between ‘warm’ and ‘cold’ loft insulation

The choice between ‘warm loft’ and ‘cold loft’ insulation needs to be made right at the start of the process. The former involves the implementation of insulation immediately beneath the roof, keeping the actual loft space warm as well as the wider house.

‘Cold loft’ insulation, meanwhile, is placed right above the ceiling of the building’s top storey, with an emphasis on preventing heat from your home reaching your loft.

If you are one of the majority of people who only use their loft space for storage, ‘cold loft’ insulation will more than suffice. However, some people do use their loft as a living space such as a home study or games room, thereby often necessitating the installation of ‘warm loft’ insulation.

What else should I be aware of?

The ‘cold loft’ insulation option is the simplest and most affordable option of the two. It involves the installation of insulation between and over the wooden joists right above your top floor ceiling, and is also generally the only option for which you can hope to receive an energy-efficiency grant.

You’ll probably be paying more for a warm roof solution. However, you shouldn’t necessarily dismiss it out of hand, as this option can give better heat retention while also being more suitable if you wish to store more temperature-sensitive items, given how hot ‘cold roofs’ can become at warmer times of year.

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Recommended depths for roofing insulation

It is recommended to install 250 to 270mm of blanket style insulation in your roof. This is somewhat higher than previous recommended depths of 200mm and (before then) 100mm, and back in the 1970s, as little as 25mm of insulation was often installed.

It is for these reasons that you are always advised to check the depth of your existing insulation prior to having any new insulation installed – indeed, you are likely to need to dispose of any current insulation that is less than 100mm anyway.

Are you considering the options for insulating your own home in Cambridge, Colchester, Ipswich or elsewhere in the local area? If so, feel free to get in touch with our roof insulation experts here at ELC Roofing Ltd., as we can give you advice on precisely what those options are, in addition to providing a competitive quote.