Roofing Warranties: Are You Covered?

Should I buy 30-year or 50-year shingles? What’s a “Limited Lifetime Warranty”? What should I look for in a contractor’s warranty? How much should the available warranty affect my purchasing decision?

These are some of the questions you may be asking yourself if you are considering a new roof for your home. The language used in roofing warranties changes with time, as do the materials covered. Here’s a run-down of what you need to know to make smart choices.

There are two types of roofing warranties to consider: one by the contractor, which covers installation and workmanship, and another by the shingle manufacturer which covers the roofing materials themselves.

Duval Roofing offers a 10-year warranty on workmanship, one of the longest contractor warranties in the industry. The warranty covers any defects in workmanship and excludes problems caused by weather events or materials.

Defective Shingle

Cracked Shingles Caused By a Manufacturing Defect

Manufacturers’ warranties depend on the type of shingles used. The two most common types of shingles are 3-tab and architectural. However, on the North Shore of Massachusetts only architectural shingles are up to code, largely because they offer greater wind protection.

Most manufacturer warranties cover architectural shingles for 30 years. These warranties typically cover materials only and are pro-rated, so if you discover a problem at year 15 that the manufacturer agrees is a material defect, you could expect to recover only part of the material cost and nothing for the installation and labor.

Manufacturers also know that proper installation prevents many problems, so they often offer longer warranties through contractors whom they certify. Duval Roofing is certified by both TAMKO and IKO, and therefore can offer longer and more inclusive warranties for products from those manufacturers.

For example Duval can offer a warranty extension on TAMKO products:

With the introduction of the Mastercraft Limited Warranty Enhancement, the TAMKO Pro Certified Contractor will be able to offer the Limited Warranty Enhancement at no additional cost to property owners on qualified purchases from their professional distributor. This Limited Warranty Enhancement doubles the length of the full start period on the Heritage Woodgate from 15 to 30 years and increases the full start period from 20 to 30 years on the Heritage Vintage providing even more upfront protection.

As a certified IKO contractor, Duval can offer a similar warranty extension on most IKO products.

defective shingles

Defective Shingles

Manufacturers also offer a deluxe “50-year” shingle that is thicker than the standard. The 50-year shingles may also offer colors and designs not available in the 30-year shingles. Pricing differences are less than you might imagine. Duval is happy to quote pricing on whatever shingles you are considering.

The “Limited Lifetime Warranty” usually refers to a 30-year warranty on architectural shingles. It is typically limited to the current homeowner, applies only to materials and not to workmanship, and does not cover damage due to extreme weather or to construction factors such as inadequate insulation or ventilation.

So how do you choose? First, pick the style and color that fits your home and your design ideals most closely. Then consider how long you are likely to remain in the home. Most warranties are not transferrable to new owners.

One of the most important considerations when evaluating roofing warranties is the ability to deliver on them. Duval has been in business for more than 20 years, has installed more than 5,000 roofs, and has hundreds of references from satisfied customers. You can count on Duval Roofing to stand behind their work. On the other hand, a roofing contractor with only a couple years in business offering a 10-year warranty may not provide the same security.

Duval only works with leading shingle manufacturers who have been in operation for decades. In most cases, a homeowner’s first line of inquiry will be with the roofing contractor if they suspect a problem with materials. Occasional batches of defective shingles have been produced by even the most reputable of manufacturers. Unfortunately roofing contractors are no more able than the homeowner to tell whether a batch of shingles is defective.

But Ken Duval has been in business long enough that he can spot whether a problem might be due to a materials issue or some other roof problem. For example, Duval recently re-roofed a church in Peabody where cracked shingles indicated that the prior roof had been installed in the late 80s with GAF shingles that were later found to be defective. While the warranty did not apply in this case, a knowledgeable contractor can be your best source of information and advice if you suspect a problem with purchased roofing materials.

Warranties are best when they never need to be invoked. Duval Roofing’s long experience in the industry, dedication to the highest standards of workmanship, and open communication with customers help increase the chances that your new roof will offer your home trouble-free protection for decades to come.