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kghastie 06-09-2011 10:40 AM

GAF-certified but I'd prefer Certainteed - smart decision?

So I have a roofing company I'd like to work with that has a very good reputation. He does almost all GAF roofs, and is a Master Elite or whatever the GAF certification is. But he is not a Select ShingleMaster with Certainteed.

From everything I've read, Certainteed is the better shingle by about a 4-to-1 margin (of opinions). But I think I can only get a limited warranty for like 25 yrs with those shingles. Would I be making a mistake?

It sounds to me like it's more important to have a good installer and good shingle - I don't think many people actually need to (or are able to) cash in on the warranty when they do that.

Would I be making the right decision? Should I go with that contractor I've been recommended to several times (Neighborhood Roofing) with Certainteed or change to GAF, or should I use a more expensive bid from another fairly reputable ShingleMaster contractor (Sun Home Improvement)?

Followup question: which out of the Landmarks would be best to go with? I'm in Michigan and plan on living in the house for 30+ years..


Grumpy 06-09-2011 11:49 AM

I wouldn't necessarily exclude him because he's not certainteed certified unless you want the certainteed surestart extended warranty. Afterall the shingles install basically the same. The fact that he is certified tells you that he probably installs only or mostly roofing.

Here are a few articles on my website worth reading for someone in your perdiciment... Choosing a Shingle
Hire your Contractor

I want to ask why the GAF roofer is your favorite? Is it because he's cheaper? I'm not saying he's not the right choice. What I am saying is:

You probably shouldn't pick your roofer based solely on price. What all is being offered? How much ice shield and where is it being installed? What kind of felt is being used? Are the flashings being replaced? What is being done about the ventilation? Who is getting the permit? All these things should be factored into your decision to make an apples to apples comparison. The roof is a system more than just shingles, and the very best shingle is worthless if not properly installed.

IMO choose landmark or landmark premium, but only premium if you like the max def look. Your roof will be replaced before 30 years no matter what shingle you install IMO. There are so many factors other than simple shingle failure that will lead you to repalce your roof before 30 years.

Full disclosure: I am a CertainTeed shingle master company and I personally do not like GAF shingles at all. FWIW GAF shingles cost less than CertainTeed in my area, though this does vary from location to location.

kghastie 06-09-2011 02:10 PM

Thanks, Grump. Good point on the fact that there are many other factors besides an actual shingle defect that will kill the roof first.

I'll paste in the quote, by the way. The decking is being replaced by my request due to severe mold that would cost more to clean adequately than to replace. He mentioned using OSB but I have requested that he use plywood instead. He will switched to the Certainteed Landmark at no additional cost.

The Quote:

Tear-off and haul away existing roofing on house and roof decking on upper section.

Provide and install:

New roof decking (upper section) with ply clips and insulation baffles.
Timberline HD: GAF Deck Armor Underlayment.
1 1/2 aluminum drip edge on all roof edges.
Ice and water shield at eaves (6 ft.), valleys and flashings.
Flashings- pipe collar, end wall and chimney (cut and anchor to brick).
Replace roof vents, bathroom vents and more soffit vents as needed for 1 to 300 ventilation.
Insulate ductwork for all bathroom vents.

Job includes complete cleanup and building permit.
10 year Transferable warranty on labor and workmanship.
$1,000.00 in advance, balances upon completion.

Grumpy 06-09-2011 06:58 PM

Ask for your pipes, walls and chimneys to be preflashed with ice shield IMO. Maybe another $75-$100 well spent. (Though it looks like maybe he is doing that, the scope is very basic). What kind of metal is he installing at your pipe, walls and chimney? I'm not a fan of the cheap neoprene pipe flashing at all. Lead should be used IMO.

Cut an anchor to brick? Is the flashing to be raggled with the mortar joint? That means the flashing will step and follow the brick mortar joint, the metal will insert into the chimney, usually with a reglet, and then be sealed. Either mortar or polyurethane sealant should be used.

Ask for definition on the 10 year warranty? WHo is honoring that warranty, contractor or GAF? Does that cover defect in workmanship?

Other than that, seems fair.

Roofster 06-10-2011 06:27 PM

GAF is still a good shingle IMO. You will not go wrong with your selection either. If they are not certified by that company they will not be able to offer the best possible warranties, but your basic manufactures warranties will still be available. Take a look at this article to help with choosing a contractor;

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