Update! Appliance Research: Chest Freezers
March 9, 2010 – 9:48 am | Comments Off on Update! Appliance Research: Chest Freezers

The decision (and purchase) has been made! In an earlier post (“Appliance Upgrade Research: Chest Freezers”), I checked to see if the chest freezers listed on the EnergyStar site were still offered by each of the manufacturers

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Home » Contractors, Improvements

NYC Contractors: White Roof Heat Island Reduction (RoofMaster)

Submitted by on May 28, 2007 – 12:39 pmNo Comment
NYC Contractors: White Roof Heat Island Reduction (RoofMaster)

Off and on for the past month, the New York metro area has had its share of rain/thunder storms. Visually, these storms can be impressive, however when heavy rain is combined with high wind, problems are bound to surface.

During one such heavy rainstorm, we had two small leaks surface which instantly conjures up the text of dozen or so articles on mold, water damage and, of course, the “Flood Smart” Insurance commercials (can you actually flood “smart”?).

After finding the two areas affected and doing a bit of damage control (drying out a slim strip with a hair dryer and cutting the power to a section of halogen lighting), it was off to AngiesList to find a roofing contractor and get some estimates.

After pre-screening, checking license numbers, references and insurance, I had narrowed down the list to three contracting companies that specialized in roof repair and roof reconstruction.

Information presented to each contractor via phone and on-site:

  • The roof was leaking immediately below the downspoint of a yankee gutter. The building has a flat roof and a yankee gutter is essentially a hole punched in a part of the roof that leads roof water into a gutter system.
  • If this cannot be fixed by patching the affected area, what would be your recommendation?

Experience with Contractor #1:

The first contractor stopped by to give an estimate, which included ripping the roof off completely and reconstructing. I was told that this would not only improve home insulation but also they could pitch the roof in a way that would prevent pooling… If I wanted to keep the Yankee gutter of course (which of course was followed by a sales pitch on seamless gutter systems and how the aluminum siding could also be replaced to improve insulation, weather resistance etc..). If I did both projects together I would get a “discounted” rate work on fixing up the siding and gutters. This discounted (and unneccesary) work had the estimate ballon from $9,500 (for just the roof) to over $20,000. Contractor #1, skipped (screening companies won’t shield you against shady salesmen).

Experience with Contractor #2:

While the company reputation was exceptional, over the phone I was told that I was probably looking at having a new roof installed over the existing one, depending on the condition. However they couldn’t get someone out to give an estimate. Two time no-show – Contractor #2, skipped.

Experience with Contractor #3 (RoofMaster)

After spending a considerable amount of time answering questions while up on the roof (Niffly’s) and on the ground (mine – heights and I don’t get along) their recommendation was to add a layer of Cold Applied SBS (Torch Applied is illegal in NYC) to the existing roof. In addition, they would re-paint & seal two antique skylights, copper flash the chimney, remove an unused vent, reconstruct the yankee gutter (which was the primary source of the leak), and raise portions of the roof to prevent pooling in the future. Total estimate $5,300.

It took Niffly and I about 30 minutes after the Roofmaster rep left before calling them back and making an appointment. We settled on White SBS to reduce the amount of heat absorbed during the summer (hopefully reducing cooling bills).

It took four days (rained once) for the work to be completed, but the end result (and, yeah, I know I’m saying this about a roof), was beautiful. Additional details can be seen on the “Apartments at 31-81” website.

Old Roof:

Old Roof

New Roof:

New Roof

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