InspectAPedia®

Photograph of GAF shingles improperly applied on a domed roof Choosing a GAF Master EliteTM Roofing Contractor

  • CERTIFICATIONS for ROOFING CONTRACTORS - CONTENTS: Roofing contractor certifications & warranties: choosing a GAF Master EliteTM Roofing Contractor. Roof shingle manufacturer certification programs for roofing contractors. How to get the best roofing job on your home
  • POST a QUESTION or READ FAQs about choosing a roofing contractor and the GAF Master Elite roofing contractor certification & warranty program
  • REFERENCES
InspectAPedia tolerates no conflicts of interest. We have no relationship with advertisers, products, or services discussed at this website.

This website discusses how to get the best roofing job.

We give an example of a "bad" roofing contractor, discuss roofing contractor certifications such as the GAF Master Elite roofing contractor certification program, and we give some simple tips on how to get a good roofing job.



Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2017 InspectApedia.com, All Rights Reserved.

Choosing a Reliable, Qualified, Good Roofing Contractor

Photograph of GAF shingles lost from a steep roofThe photograph at page top shows a laminate-type roof shingle installed improperly on an irregular dome-shaped roof. (This was job was not done by a GAF Master EliteTM or Other Certified Roofing Contractor.

The roofer who put these shingles in place probably lacked proper training - something which some roof contractor certification programs are trying to address. But don't assume that every "certified" roofer is one you want to do business with.

Questions and Answers about GAF Master Elite Roofers or Other Roofing Contractor Certification Programs - How to Get a Good Roofing Job

The following opinion based on both having worked as a roofing installer as well as having inspected more than 5,000 residential & commercial roofs for defects. Additional comments and opinions from readers about roofing warranties, contractors, and the GAF Master Elite or similar programs may be posted below.

OPINION: The roofing contractor training requirement and contractor certification is a great idea and we applaud the example set by the apparent intent of this program.

Watch out: remember that there can certainly be fully competent roofers who can do a great job but who do not have that title, and a roofer who is NOT a GAF Master EliteTM contractor may prefer to use a different and equally good or even better roofing product.

And conversely, there are contractors in and outside certification programs whose work has been the subject of reader complaints. The GAF Master EliteTM roofing contractor designation seems to be a marketing program that recommends a specific GAF roof shingle product line and which features the requirement for some training by GAF.

Terms & Provisions of The GAF Master EliteTM Roofing Contractor Certification

The GAF Master EliteTM roofing program and what it means to consumers

The following opinion based on both having worked as a roofing installer as well as having inspected more than 5,000 residential & commercial roofs for defects.

The GAF Master EliteTM roofing contractor designation looks to me like a combination of a marketing program that recommends a specific GAF roof shingle product line and which features the requirement for some training by GAF.

The training requirement is a great idea, but remember that there can certainly be fully competent roofers who can do a great job but who do not have that title, and a roofer who is NOT a GAF Master EliteTM contractor may prefer to use a different and equally good or even better roofing product.

Shingle quality and roofing warranties

GAF and all of the other shingle manufacturers have occasional problems with products due to the variations during manufacture even when the shingle specifications are stable.

But in the case of thermal splitting, all of the manufacturers have understood the problem and changed their shingle specifications accordingly. we have read that Bird/CertainTeed shingles typically performed better in industry standard tests for strength and durability than the GAF products performed by an independent laboratory.

While the conventional 3-tab roofing shingles are less costly than the "architectural shingles" that do not have those cutouts between the shingle tabs, laminated architectural shingles, by eliminating the cutout between the tabs, provide a continuous double layer of roofing material over the entire roof and in that regard might be expected to have a better life (all other conditions of roof slope, sun exposure, ventilation, surface deck preparation, proper nailing, shingle color, etc. being the same).

What's the Value of Roof Shingle Warranties

I consider most roofing warranties close to worthless. The typical roof shingle warranty is for the PRODUCT not the INSTALLATION. This means that IF your roof wears out and leaks from a product defect before the end of the warranty period, the manufacturer will pay a pro-rated portion of the original product cost.

If your shingles had a 20 year warranty and they fail in the 19th year, you can expect to collect 1/20th of the cost of the shingles, NOT the cost of the roof replacement. Since most of the cost of a roof on a home is wrapped up in the labor and overhead and not the cost of the actual shingle product, unless the warranty covered the labor, it's pretty much worthless.

What remains then is to see if GAF has a better or worse reputation than its competitors in responding to warranty claims. That's a question we are monitoring But we don't currently have an answer for it.

Choosing a GAF Master EliteTM or Other Certified Roofing Contractor - reader OPINION

In response to the homeowner question just below, we reply with comments about roofer "certification programs" offered by GAF or other roof shingle manufacturers, about shingle life, about shingle warranties, and about how to get the best roofing job for your home.

As a homeowner here in Michigan, my home now needs a new roof. Well after searching the internet for different brands of shingles we have found that GAF had a class action lawsuit against them for a long period of time involving almost all of their product line. We are in this early failure period.

We had GAF Timberline 30 laminated shingles installed on my roof back in 1994. The cause, premature thermal splitting that was determined in the court of law. Well at this point there is nothing we can do to correct the problem. So much for this part!

Our main concern is that we are currently working with a roofing company on an estimate for a replacement roof.

They are a certified Master Elite roofing contractor through GAF. Home building talk show hosts such as Tom Silva, Joanne Liebeler and Ron Hazelton all talked about the quality of GAF products and the importance of having a Master Elite contractor installing them.

Our question is this: To your knowledge, would you possibly choose GAF as a shingle of choice for your home? Have they worked out the problem from the past? What is your opinion on GAF products? If you could please email me back with a personal opinion, It would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

...


Continue reading at ROOFING CONTRACTOR, FIND & CHOOSE or select a topic from closely-related articles below, or see our complete INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES below.

Or see BEST ROOFING PRACTICES

Or see these

Roofing Contractor Articles

Suggested citation for this web page

ROOFING CONTRACTOR CERTIFICATIONS at InspectApedia.com - online encyclopedia of building & environmental inspection, testing, diagnosis, repair, & problem prevention advice.

INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES: ARTICLE INDEX to BUILDING ROOFING

Or use the SEARCH BOX found below to Ask a Question or Search InspectApedia


...

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Click to Show or Hide FAQs

Ask a Question or Search InspectApedia

Use the "Click to Show or Hide FAQs" link just above to see recently-posted questions, comments, replies, try the search box just below, or if you prefer, post a question or comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly.

Search the InspectApedia website

Comment Box is loading comments...

Technical Reviewers & References

Click to Show or Hide Citations & References

Publisher's Google+ Page by Daniel Friedman