Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Do you offer free estimates?
A.

Yes, we do provide free estimates. We charge an hourly rate to provide comprehensive roof condition reports or consulting work. We charge $150 for estimates associated with real estate deals. This fee is reimbursed if the work is completed after the real estate transaction is completed.

Q. My slate roof is very old, should I be concerned?
A.

Slate roofs are designed to last a century or more so an old slate roof should not concern you. In fact, many of the slate roofs found in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky are original to their structures. There are many different kinds of slate and it’s important to properly identify the type of slate on your roof. While many of the Pennsylvania slate roofs are reaching the end of their lives, the Vermont, Buckingham, VA, Peach Bottom, and Maine quarried slate is still performing beautifully. It is important that the roof is inspected by a roofing professional who understands slate roofs and the many nuances they hold. At HKC Roofing, we are very passionate about slate roofs and we work with owners to maintain their integrity. After all, many of the men who installed these roofs have passed away and with them the industry has lost generations of knowledge. Be extremely diligent when selecting a contractor to work on your slate roof. There are only a handful that should be trusted. Refer to the slate industries authoritative text, The Slate Roof Bible by Joe Jenkins for information regarding your slate roof. 

Q. What causes ice damming and how do I fix it?
A.

Ice damming is relatively simple to understand but the repairs associated with correcting the issue can be more complicated. Ice damming occurs only above heated areas, during the winter months and when snow is present. Typically the attic is under insulated and/or under ventilated. When the attic space is under insulated the hot air from the building will easily rise into the unheated attic space. If the attic space is under ventilated then the hot air will not be removed from the attic. This accumulation of hot air heats up the underside of the roof, causing the snow to melt. The snow melt runs down the roof until it reaches the eaves (gutters line) and it refreezes. The eaves of the building are not above a heated space so they remain frozen. This cycle of snow melting and refreezing at the eaves of the house causes a build-up of ice, hence the phrase “Ice Damming”. The ice dam builds up large enough to where it holds water on the roof and causes it to back up. In general, steep slope roof systems are not designed to hold water but only to shed water. This water back up at the eave will eventually cause the roof to leak, the results varying from building to building. It’s important to note that not all buildings experience the issue year after year. In many cases, roofs in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky only experience the ice damming issues when it’s very cold for prolonged periods of time and snow is present. We recommend evaluating your attic’s insulation and ventilation. Another option is to add heated cable to the eave of the building and run it through the gutter system. This will prevent the ice from building up and allow the snow and ice melt to be better managed. It’s been our experience that buildings typically only experience the effects of ice damming on certain areas of the building, not everywhere. So it may be easiest and most cost effective to install the heated cable only in the area having the issue.  

Q. How do I find a reliable Roofing Company?
A.

There are both, fly-by-night roofers and “Storm Chasers” preying on homeowners. Many Storm Chasers go door to door and advertise as though they are local and reputable companies. After the storm business is over they are long gone! Still other “Roofing Companies” go in business after a storm to make a quick dollar then are out of business afterwards. If someone knocks on your door to ask about a roof repair ask for and check the following:

  • Check with the Better Business Bureau at www.bbb.org
  • Check Angie’s list at www.angieslist.com
  • Check on the Secretary of State’s Web site to see if they are a registered business
  • Make sure any roofing company you use presents you with current proof of Liability and Workman’s Compensation Insurance
  • Ask for multiple references and follow up on those references
Q. My asphalt shingle roof is not that old but it looks bad and is worn out. It was supposed to be a 25-30 year shingle when I bought it, but it has only been on for 10-15 years?
A.

A shingle’s useful life expectancy is determined by a number of factors. A manufacturer’s designation of a “25 year warranty shingle” is a guideline and a roof may or may not last that long depending on weather, roof ventilation and a number of other naturally occurring factors.  In Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, asphalt shingle roofs last between 15-18 years depending on the type and quality of shingle installed. Many times the asphalt shingles develop “Black Streaking” caused by blue-green algae. The manufacturers have introduced copper coated granules to combat the blue-algae but this only provides limited protection, and eventually the copper no longer oxidizes to kill the algae. 

Q. How much will my roof cost me?
A.

The average roof in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky generally costs somewhere in the range of $7,000-$10,000. Of course, there will be variations in pricing due to the square footage of the roof, flashing details, and overall complexity of the job. It is important that you compare “apples to apples” when receiving estimates for your roof. The quality of the roofing materials and experience of the installation crew will certainly play a factor in determining the price of a quality installation. HKC Roofing prides itself only employing experienced roofing crews that have been properly trained and are lead by an experienced job foreman. We conduct classes weekly to make sure our crews install our roofs according to manufacturer’s specifications and follow all safety guidelines. We use premium materials and offer our customers extended warranties for peace of mind. 

Q. How long will my roofing install take?
A.

It can take anywhere from a 1 day to 3 – 4 days. Many factors affect the time it takes to install a new roof. In the end, it’s important that the job is not rushed. While we don’t want to be a burden by taking too much time, it’s important that we provide a thorough installation so that the roof can perform trouble-free for many years to come.