Understanding Roof Warranties: Different Types of Roof Coverage Explained

December 10 2019 0comment

Understanding Roof Warranties: Different Types of Roof Coverage Explained

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Roofs are an essential part of our home and commercial buildings. However, there are quite a number of problems that could cause your roof to fail: leaks, foot traffic, natural disasters, and damage by third parties, among other issues. Manufacturers and contractors offer different warranties to cover the costs of repairing or replacing some of the roof parts. But no one cover will protect you from all the issues affecting your roof. And the more aspects you’re covered against, the higher the cost you’ll incur. This text contains everything you need to know about the different types of roof warranties available. 

Contractor Roof Warranty
This is basically a warranty stating the obligations of the roofing company installing your roof. It comes from the roofing contractor and typically covers the workmanship and not materials. It’s important to look for a certified, reputable contractor to install your roof. Ensure to also provide relevant free-standing demarcation for enhanced safety when working at such heights.  

Manufacturer Roof Warranty
Manufacturers’ warranties can be labour-only, material-only, or system warranty and generally cover for 10-30 years. However, you’ll hardly find a warranty that covers your roof against all damages, especially those of non-manufacturer produced parts of the roof. The warranties are also not equal, which is why it’s important to understand what type(s) covers the damage you’re interested in protecting. There might be a difference between what’s covered in theory and what gets covered in practice.  

Roof Workmanship Warranty
This type of warranty is usually issued by the contractor installing your roof. It can be of the labour-only, material-only, installation-only, or system variety. These warranties are generally shorter (1-5 years) than those issued by the manufacturer. But unlike the manufacturer’s warranties, workmanship warranties are usually more consumer-friendly as seen from its relation to warranty applicability. 

Labour Warranty
A labour warranty is often confused with a roof workmanship warranty, but there’s a notable difference between them. A labour warranty typically covers the expenses incurred when repairing a defective roof provided the cause is within the limits of the roof system coverage. For instance, the costs incurred for repairs associated with installation failures are not covered, which makes it necessary to have a proper installation the first time. This type of coverage is usually included in most full system warranties.    

Material-Only Warranty
This type covers premature deterioration and manufacturing defects for an agreed-upon timeframe. They only protect against damages to the roof membrane and not other accessories like metal edge, adhesives, and flashings. They also don’t provide coverage for leak repair, installation errors, or any labour.   

Full System (Labour and Material) Warranty
These warranties typically cover the materials and manufacturer-approved accessories, flashings, and metalwork utilised in the original installation. They cover the full cost, including labour, for leak repairs within the limits of the warranty. However, installation errors and damage due to lack of maintenance are not covered. 

The Bottom Line
When choosing your next roofing warranty, it’s important to not only focus on the timeframe but also the ins and outs of the aspects covered and not covered. This will prevent unnecessary surprises later on when it’s too late. Ask your manufacturer or contractor to explain everything to you before signing the warranty form. 

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