Common Rooftop Solar Panel Installation Problems To Avoid | Pacific West Roofing

While most homeowners aim to repair their leaky roofs during the summer, winter roof repair is always available when you need it. Aside from some material limitations, installing a roof in the winter is just as simple as it is in the summer.

And it’s worth it to repairing or replacing a roof work when it’s raining or snowing outside. Even with small leaks, the consistent rainfall and moisture in Oregon can cause major damage to the structural integrity of the roof as whole. For example, if your roof has a leak, the expansion and contraction of roofing materials that occurs due to freezing and thawing can worsen it, and even more leaks may appear.


Here’s the short answer: Yes! While you may be wondering if it’s dangerous for roofers to be toiling away atop your home in icy conditions, rest easy. Roofing contractors need to work in the winter months just like anyone else, and some roofers actually prefer cold conditions to the summer time when they get cooked up there. Most of the time, if it’s 90 degrees outside, its 120 on your roof. Talk about miserable. If your roof is packed with snow, it should only take 30 minutes to an hour to shovel it off, depending on the size of your roof.


Now lets get to the heart of the issue. Roofing materials all behave differently in conditions below 40 degrees. There are types of materials that should not be installed in these conditions and some that can be installed any time of year, regardless of the weather.

Here’s what to do, depending on your home’s roofing material:

epdm-rubber-flat-roof. Flat roofs in the winter are more difficult to repair usually.FLAT ROOFS

There are pretty much only two flat roof systems that can be properly installed in the winter – PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) and TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin). These thermoplastic single ply flat roofing products are mechanically installed and seams are hot air welded instead of using adhesives.

Rubber roofs, the alternative to these systems, should not be installed in temperatures below 40 degrees because the adhesives that seal it will freeze and not bond. Contractors who say they can and will conduct rubber roof projects are ignoring manufacturer suggestions and proceeding with this project can result in roof leaks and voided warranties. So, it’s a good idea to hold off on winter roof replacement if you’re looking at rubber roofs until it gets a bit warmer. The same goes for peel-and-stick materials, as adhesives won’t bond, creating leaks. This material can actually blow off your roof.

Winter roof inspection with some snow on the shingles.SLOPED ROOFS

Asphalt shingles are the most commonly used material for sloped roofs and can be installed in the winter, but caution must be taken by roofers installing it. They must be careful not to bend and crack the shingle. Also, because asphalt shingles are dependent on a proper seal between the overlapping shingles, which requires heat from the sun to bond, these materials often do not seal properly until warm weather rolls around. This can cause them to blow off or leak.

Although our winter temperatures are generally mild in the Pacific Northwest, asphalt shingles are also susceptible to ice dams – large ice formations along the eaves of roofs caused by poor ventilation or inadequate insulation in the attic. Ice and water shield membrane is a great method to prevent ice dam leaks, but it also requires the sun’s heat to properly adhere to the roof deck, so some of the same shortcomings may apply.

Metal Roof in the winterMETAL ROOFS

Metal roofs, can be installed in the winter without compromising quality. Cold conditions do not affect metal roofs since they won’t crack due to improper handling. They are designed to allow for expansion and contraction, so the outside temperatures won’t make a difference. Just be sure to use a premium breathable synthetic underlayment to combat moisture caused by poor ventilation and always upgrade intake and output ventilation whenever possible. Whether you need winter roof repair or replacement, mental roofs are safe during any season.


With all that said, roofing projects in any season should be discussed at length with a trusted contractor to prevent common issues and the premature failure of your roof. Contact Pacific West Roofing for roof repairs or replacement during the winter months, or for any roofing services you need.



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Roofing Tips for a Leak-Free Winter | Pacific West Roofing

The weather outside is frightful—so don’t let it get inside. Leaks might seem like a minor inconvenience during the summer months, but come winter they can wreak havoc on your family and property. Even small leaks can lead to damage that’s eventually irreparable and can cause black mold, damage more than just the roof, and let pests inside. Add in the fact that when battling rain, snow and freezing temperatures, winter repair projects can take a bit longer to complete.

There are a few things you can do to enjoy a leak-free winter and it’s never too late to get started. First, remember that leaks might be the symptom of a bigger problem (like a generally weak roof that’s ready to be replaced or a pest that’s digging at your shingles). If you want to enjoy this winter in a warm, dry home, make sure you have all your bases covered and don’t procrastinate when it comes to routine inspections.

  1. Get rid of aggressive tree branches

You mean you have to call a roofer and an arborist? Yes, because this dynamic duo often goes hand in hand. It’s very dangerous to trim high tree branches yourself, and arborists are skilled at knowing exactly which limbs to cut (and where) so that your roof doesn’t get damaged and your tree continues to thrive. They’ll also spot any tree rot or diseases before they get out of control.

  1. Get better insulation

Can’t remember the last time your attic was inspected, or did you buy your house new and have no idea what kind of insulation was used? It’s pretty easy for builders to cut corners with subpar insulation, so you may not be getting the benefits you need. An attic with proper insulation can stop leaks by preventing heat transfer and slowing or stopping snow and ice from melting on your roof.

  1. Keep it clean

A clean roof is a healthy roof—and one that’s much less likely to leak. Surprisingly, leaks are most often caused by debris, and that can include leaves, twigs or just about anything else. It’s tough to keep a roof clean and lots of homeowners put it off, but regular inspections and maintenance are key. If you’re not up for the job of climbing a ladder to sweep it clean, let a professional do it for you.

  1. Check your gutters

Ice dams are most often caused by clogged up gutters, which can also seriously damage your attic and the top floor of your house. It’s common to find leaves in gutters, especially at the start of Winter, which is why this time of year is the perfect time to make sure they’re clear. Otherwise the extra weight can cause them to pull away and potentially fall off the house.

Now that the colder months have arrived, the best thing you can do for your roof is to keep it clean and watch out for weather damage.

Contact Pacific West Roofing today about your next roof/gutter inspeection, repair or replacement. Call 503-635-8706 



New Year’s Resolutions for a Healthy Roof | Pacific West Roofing

Happy New Year 2015As 2014 comes to a close you may find yourself contemplating a few goals for the upcoming year. If you find any of the following three resolutions on this year’s list of personal projects, it may be time you called Pacific West Roofing to get a head start on accomplishing the objectives you have in mind for yourself and your family.

Save Money

With the holidays behind you and the bills beginning to appear in the mail, you may be one of the many Oregon residents who is determined to be more frugal in the upcoming year. Saving money by setting aside spare cash or reducing monthly spending may be difficult if you are already on a tight budget. Rather than focusing on your daily spending, look at where you can save in the long run. This is where making a few home improvements can help. A metal roof may be a considerable upfront investment, but the effect it can have on your home’s energy efficiency, paired with the fact that it will last decades longer, will reduce many of your expenses in the future.

Protect Your Investments

As you reflect on all that you have achieved at this point in your life, it is likely that one of your most prized possessions is your home. Whether you live in the brand new home of your dreams, or an old fixer upper, make it a priority to protect your investment during the new year.  Pacific West Roofing offers full service maintenance for both residential and commercial buildings. By staying on top of the regular maintenance and inspection your roof needs, you can better protect your investment. Regular maintenance may help to:

Spend More Time with Loved Ones

With each passing year, it seems that more and more time is being spent away from home and loved ones. This year, resolve to build your relationships and spend more time with those you love by allowing us to care for your maintenance and repair needs. While it may be tempting to inspect, patch, or repair damaged roofing on your own, we suggest leaving this meticulous work to our team of skilled professionals. We can safely and efficiently inspect, maintain, repair, or replace your roof without taking away from the precious time you have to spend with family and friends.

As you and your loved ones celebrate the end of a great year, Pacific West Roofing invites you to stay safe, set new goals, and resolve to have a healthier roof as you ring in the New Year.

Call us about our roof maintenance, repair, and replacement services today at 503-635-8706. Questions? Just Ask Stan.



Inspecting for Roof Damage After a Storm Portland OR

Inspecting your roof for storm damageFall came in with a bang this year, didn’t it? After the storm we just had, homeowners should be concerned about their roofs. Those brutal, 90 mph winds and heavy rains caused a ton of damage to many roofs in the area, from a few missing shingles to gaping holes caused by broken tree branches.

After a severe storm hits, it is crucial that you inspect your roof for even the slightest signs of damage, and here’s why: You can…


If when inspecting your roof you do find damage, act fast to arrange repairs. A storm-damaged roof is vulnerable to leaks, and with the rainy season now fully upon us you could be dealing with serious moisture issues. So, take care of the small problems you have now before they become big problems later. If you catch it early enough you may prevent a leak altogether– that’s money in your pocket.


If your home suffers damage from a storm, the sooner you inspect the roof, the better chances you have of establishing the evidence you need to file a claim with your insurance company. In fact, most insurers have a time limit on making claims like this, so don’t wait. Once you talk to your claims adjuster, we will work with them to put your roof back together and give you peace of mind.


thorough roof inspection is the best way to avoid expensive repairs, but we know there’s never a good time for unforeseen costs. In times like these it’s understandable why fixing a seemingly small roof problem may not be a top priority, but it should be. That’s why we’re offering our blog readers a free roof inspection (a $200 value), which includes checking for:

  • Missing shingles or flashing
  • Debris clogged valleys and gutters
  • Flashing around chimneys, skylights and siding
  • Attic ventilation
  • General repair needs

It is good homeowner practice to personally inspect your roof at least once per year, which can easily be done from the ground with binoculars. Getting familiar with your roof, tree locations and wind direction will give you a baseline for evaluating any damage that may occur in the future. So, put an inspection on your calendar as a repeating annual event so you’ll be quick to notice damaged flashing or missing shingles.

Call us today at 503-635-8706 or use our contact form to schedule an appointment. Don’t forget to mention you read this blog post!

At Pacific West Roofing, we get the job done right the first time!


How To: Deck The Halls Without Damaging Your Roof | Pacific West Roofing

The holidays are fast approaching, which for many of us means it’s time to decorate the exterior of our homes with sparkling lights by the hundreds! If you are planning on adorning your home with festive lights this year, we have some tips to help you prevent mistakes that could seriously damage your roofing system.


Protect yourself and your family from injury when decorating the exterior of your home. Make sure your ladders are firmly planted on level ground, leaning at an adequate angle, and secured to your roof to prevent shifting. It’s tempting, but try not to reach more than an arms length away when standing on any ladder. Do not hang lights in any tree that comes into contact with power lines, and make sure your lights, extension cords, and outlets are rated for outdoor use. And, to keep from overloading your circuits, never chain more than three strings of lights together. Read our blog post with 35 safety tips here.


Along The Eaves:

Hanging lights from the eaves of the roof is the easiest and most common way to decorate a home. When affixing lights here, never use nails or staples to hang or secure the strand to the roof or gutter system. This will create holes that will, without question, allow water to penetrate your roof and cause serious problems. There are clips and hangers available at any home improvement or hardware store that you can pick up for a relatively low price. You can use these to safely mount all types of bulbs to gutters, shingles, brick and more.


Some homeowners choose to put lights, inflatables, and other structural decorations on their roof for the holidays. If you are one such homeowner, these fixtures should be secured to your roof in a way that does not penetrate and subsequently jeopardize the roofing system. Properly securing your rooftop decorations will prevent them from coming loose during a storm and potentially landing on a vehicle or holiday guest..


Plug in each strand of lights individually to verify that they are in working order before hanging them. This could save you a lot of time and a major headache if one light or an entire strand doesn’t work.  Any strand that isn’t working properly should not be used as an electrical short is generally a fire hazard.


While you work your way around your home hanging lights and decorations, it should be rather convenient to take a moment to inspect your roof, gutters, siding and windows. Look for possible air leaks and any signs of moisture, damage, deterioration, and/or pests. Spotting an issue that demands your attention now will save you from having to deal with a bigger problem at a less convenient time down the road.


The holidays are always a time to reflect on your blessings. So, remember to be safe and protect your biggest investment.

If you notice a problem with your roof or gutter system, contact Pacific West Roofing today.



How Do I Prep My Roof for Fall? | Pacific West Roofing

It’s time to start preparing for the upcoming rainy months that will be here before we know it. Fall weatherization for your roof is important, especially when the rain and cooler weather starts. Are you wondering how to prep your roof for fall? Here are some helpful ways to get your roof ready so you’re not left with a leaking roof and an unexpected big repair bill.

Step #1: Inspect the roof.

During the hot days of summer, it’s common for the roof materials to absorb the heat and swell, which means there may be some shifting and/or cracks in certain areas of the roof. This may not be an issue during the summer, but once the cold and wet weather returns, this could cause some significant water damage issues. So, get up on your roof and inspect it to be sure that all the shingles are in place and look good. If you’re not sure what to look for, have a professional roof inspector come out and take a look at it. They will know exactly what to look for an identify any problem spots that could lead to an issue later down the road.

Step #2: Get the gutters clean.

The gutters are connected to the overall function of your roof and before the wind and rain picks up, make sure your gutters are cleaned. If they’re clogged or blocked, they cannot do their job and this could cause serious backup that leads to water damage. And once water damage occurs, you’ve got a potentially expensive problem on your hands that needs to be addressed. Talk with your roofing professional if you believe you need your gutters replaced or rerouted to divert water to the right direction.

In addition, be sure to check any chimneys, skylights, and any other vents on your roof that need to stay secure and tight so water cannot penetrate them.

Keeping your roof maintained means that you’ll have less chance later down the road of having to cover costly repairs or even a full roof replacement. If you’re not sure where to start when it comes to prepping your roof for the autumn months, contact our experienced and professional team at Pacific West Roofing for an appointment. We will make sure that your roof and other materials up there are up to code and ready to keep you and your family safe, dry, and warm this autumn.

Portland Residential Roofing Services - Pacific West Roofing

Exterior Home Maintenance Tips for Fall | Pacific West Roofing

We’re in the home stretch of summer, and fall will be here in just a few short days. That means you want to make sure the exterior of your home, including your roof, is ready for the cold months ahead. Here are a few things you should get done as soon as possible:


Start your pre-fall roof inspection by checking on the state of your gutters. You already know that fall means more debris (leaves, branches, etc.) will make its way into your gutters. So, make it easier to keep up with by clearing them prior to the season and maybe including some gutter screen systems of fillers that really work.

The repercussions of debris in your gutters can be multifaceted. Water can get dammed up and drip over the gutter’s edge, causing ground erosion below. Pooling water and wet debris can also damage your roof.


Cold weather is coming, and while you want your home to be well insulated in both hot and cold months, you will likely notice the problem more in the winter. If your windows look the least bit compromised, caulking them is a super affordable way to ensure better home insulation.


Look for any wear and tear that may exist on your roof. This can include missing or cracked shingles, pipe flashing rubber boots cracked open, skylights and chimney flashings needing a fresh re-sealing at the corners, or uneven roof surface areas. If you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, consider hiring a professional roofer to conduct a roof inspection. If there are serious problems, it’s much better to deal with them in the fall than in the harsher winter months. Plus, it can save you in utility costs.


If you have a wood-burning fireplace, now’s the time to have it inspected and cleaned before it gets put to heavy use. Excessive soot and other debris built up in the chimney can create a fire hazard.


Cracks in your driveway or sidewalks can get worse if expanding water (in the form of ice) has its way. Use a filler followed by a coat of sealant to extend the life of your asphalt.


Most stuff, like your lawn mower and leaf blower, will be stored away for months. Make sure they are cleaned first to keep them in good working condition when you need them again.

While you’re not exactly hibernating for the winter, there are certain home tasks that need to get done, since much of your home exterior tasks will go into hibernation until spring.

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Seasonal Uncategorized

6 Common Winter Roofing Issues

Winter weather is especially hard on your roof. The snow and ice and the freezing and thawing can create several problems that may lead to costly roofing repairs if not adequately addressed.

Here are six common problems your roof may face over the winter season.


When warm air meets a cold surface, condensation will occur. Unfortunately, an improperly insulated attic is a prime candidate for the formation of condensation, which can lead to mold and mildew, damaging the interior structure of your home. To prevent condensation, ensure your attic is properly ventilated. Inadequate ventilation can damage your roof, the decking and encourage ice dams and shorten your roof’s overall lifespan by half.


If you have a sloped roof like most of us do, you may be no stranger to leaky flashings. Flashings are the strips of metal that are placed along the front edge, corners and ridges of your roof and around your chimney and skylights. If not installed properly, or during a violent storm, they can start to pull away from your roofing material and lead to water leaks. Inspect your flashings about every six months to help prevent this from becoming a problem.


Wind storms aren’t super common in our region, but they do happen and we’ve had one this year already. When wind speeds pick up enough they can start to loosen up shake and asphalt shingles. If you notice shingles or other parts of your roof on the ground, contact us as soon as possible to have those shingles replaced before more damage occurs.


If you have lots of trees in your yard you’ve been blessed with beautiful, year-round scenery. But, this means you’re also privy to some of the dangers large trees can impose. Sometimes overhanging tree limbs can scrape the surface of your roof and damage its protective top layer. And, if branches end up falling into your roof that can cause problems too. So, to protect your home and family, make sure to trim any branches that come within six feet of your roof. It will also keep the critters from scampering across the roof and trying to enter the roof for Spring nesting.


Ice dams are uncommon in the Willamette Valley, but they’ve been known to occur every 15 to 30 years or so. They result when the upper areas of an icy roof begin to thaw, and the lower perimeter areas are still frozen. Melting ice and snow from the warmer sections of the roof flows down and re-freezes on the lower sections and gutters, creating an ice dam. As water pools behind the dam, it’s likely to leak into your home through cracks and joints in the roofing material, causing damage.

There isn’t any way to eliminate the possibility of ice dams completely. Although, with proper insulation and a good attic ventilation system they can be minimized. There are some modified rubber underlayments like Ice and Watershield that are also recommended for areas with this possible scenario.


Icicles are also typically formed by sunny days and sub-freezing temperatures. They may look neat, but they can pose a real danger to people and pets.  Often the result of clogged gutters and downspouts, their excessive weight can cause roofing and gutter damage. To discourage icicles from forming, keep your gutters clear of leaves, needles, and other debris. When the warmer weather arrives, attend to gutter maintenance swiftly to avoid leaking and other problems during spring rains.

Not sure how your roof is handling the Winter weather? Contact the professionals at Pacific West Roofing today. Our dedicated team of roofing experts will be happy to talk you through your roof’s potential problems and suggest the appropriate preventative repairs.




Residential Roof Repair Seasonal

5 Roofing Tips For Summer

Ah, summer. Balmy weather, picnics, and vacations. It’s no surprise that we’ve already felt the temperatures rising, and had brief snippets of our fantastic summer weather already.

As the heat continues to rise, there are a few things we can do to prepare our homes for the season, specifically overhead. These tips will help you keep your cool, as the temperature rises.

Prep Your Attic

You attic is largely overlooked, but is a focal point for keeping your home cool during these summer months. Did you know your attic can reach up to 150 degrees during the summer? Yep. And, that heat above you can rob your of your cool air conditioning if it’s not properly insulated and maintained up there. It’s a must to inspect things like moisture in the plywood in your attic. As we know in the northwest; moisture can lead to mold. How about those exhaust fans from your kitchen and bathrooms? These, if improperly installed, can be a big contributor to the moisture buildup in your attic, ultimately causing costly repairs.

Correcting improperly-installed vent pipes can not only reduce moisture, it can also reduce heat build-up in your attic. Rerouting pipes or ductwork are fairly easy fixes for this issue. However, improper ventilation isn’t the only issue. Here are some tips to help make sure your attic and roof are ready for the summer season:

  1. Check to make sure those exhaust fans are working well and are vented properly.
  2. Make sure those drains and gutters on the roof are clean and clear of debris. This will help prevent an overflow and damage during a storm.
  3. Make sure you check the attic and the roof for small signs of damage, and note them. These small spots can turn into large repairs if not attended to and monitored. Schedule a free roof inspection to catch anything before it gets out of hand.
  4. Make sure there are no missing, damaged, or loose tiles or shingles.
  5. Check your attic for any signs of pests. This (as we know) can turn into a major problem quickly. If you spot any signs, make sure to schedule an appointment with a pest elimination company as soon as you can.

As a note, make sure you have someone with you during your attic and roof check for safety. Feel free to schedule your inspection with us to identify and repair problems before they become major concerns. Small issues we find today don’t just go away, but become larger and more problematic if left unattended.

We are happy to schedule a free roof inspection to make sure your summer is a great one! Contact us today!

Seasonal Uncategorized

4 Steps To Preparing Your Roof For Fall And Winter

The summer days are cooling off, the kids are starting a new school year and we are reminded that the long rainy season is about to return. Fall is a magical season, and it’s the time of year when we should button up our homes as well as our jackets. Between now and the first freeze of winter, there are four things you can do to prepare your roof for bad weather.


When leaves and debris collect in your gutter system, eventually, it will create a clog in the downspouts. Rain water will overflow the gutters, damaging your roof, trim and siding. The added weight of the wet leaves and water could also cause your gutters to pull loose from the anchor point or collapse.

To prevent these problems and unforeseen roof repair costs, make sure to keep your gutters relatively clear through the fall. And, once the trees around your home are bare, do a thorough cleaning. You can also get out ahead of the fall season and have gutter screens or guards installed to prevent the collection of debris in the first place. We recommend Master Shield gutter protection system.

Clear Off Debris

It’s important to remove leaves, pine needles, and other debris from the surface of your roof as well as your gutters. Even small bits of debris will hold moisture and possibly rot or mold, which will break down your roofing material.

If you’re confident and experienced in walking on your roof, get up there and broom or blow off the debris that has collected on your roof, paying special attention to the valleys, which are most vulnerable to water damage. Make sure they are free and clear of debris so as to allow water to flow.

As part of our roof evaluation and maintenance services, we also treat roofs for moss, which is certainly not a bad idea in our moist climate.


With a clean roof, scan the surface for missing shingles or ones that have cracked curled or frayed edges. You can use binoculars to inspect from the ground or climb up to the roof to have a look.

Also check for damaged flashing around vent stacks, chimneys, and skylights. These areas are the usual suspects when you have a leak. Repairing flashing yourself may not always provide the results you expect, so give us a call and we’ll make sure everything is sealed properly before the rain hits.


Without adequate airflow in your attic, you could be looking at higher-that-necessary energy bills and roof leaks emerging in a snowstorm. During the day, sunlight hits your roof and heats up the air in your attic. Without vents located at the soffits, ridges, and/or gables of your roof, the hot air condensates, causing moisture damage and possible mold or rot in your roof’s supports.

This heat can also cause ice dams in higher elevations, inviting leaks when snow accumulates on your roof.

Additionally, when that hot air has nowhere else to go, it will seep into and overheat your living space, asking you to use your AC more than you have to. This is one of the reasons why insulation is so critical to an energy efficient home.

To evaluate your attic insulation and ventilation, you can hire an energy auditor or weatherization contractor to do an inspection and make modifications. And, if you make these changes before the end of 2013, you could be eligible for an energy efficiency tax credit.

Need a roofing evaluation or repair? Contact Pacific West Roofing today for a free* estimate! Call us at 503-635-8706

*Commercial and Residential properties on the Real Estate market are charged a $250 estimate fee. This fee will be credited to your invoice when work is complete.



Portland Roofing Contractor Since 1980

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