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Old 07-04-2012, 07:24 AM   #1
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


Hey folks!

My dad has gotten 3 roofing quotes from small and med size roofing companies. He is going from "no tab" single layer shingles to architectural shingles on his chalet style home. The no tab shingles have a 5" exposure and the new ones will have a 5 5/8" exposure. Each roofing company told him they would reuse the heavy gauge galvanized step flashing as it is in good condition.

Now even if the old step flashing was in perfect condition and was not damaged during tear-off, is this really possible or advisable? I've done several roofs myself and it is clear to me that the old stepflashing will quickly become misalligned with the new courses of shingles. Within 8 courses the step flashing will be out of alignment by a full 5". Is there a trick they use to remedy this? Or are they all crazy?

Thanks!

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Old 07-04-2012, 10:31 AM   #2
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


I'd replace the step flashing with new alumium flashing.
That way there would be no way for it to rust up later on.

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Old 07-04-2012, 10:35 AM   #3
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


In most cases the step flashing is fine to reuse. Quite often the step flashing is only fastened to the roof so you can move the step flashing up or down. Want to say it's recomended to only fasten step flashing to the roof and not the siding for movement of the house/roof.

If the step flashing is fastened to the side wall you can still run a laminate shingle up a coarse that originaly had a 3 tab shingle. Every 7-8 courses you will have to fasten two step flashing tins down over the shingle. You see some amatures who don't do this and you see the bottom of tins.

If we redo the siding on a home we typicaly yank off the siding and replace all flashing.

With three roofing companies all saying the same thing you gotta figure they may know what they are talking about?
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Old 07-04-2012, 10:38 AM   #4
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


I never use aluminum step flashing or any other roof to wall flashings for that matter due to it being so easy to rip/tear. We get a lot of hail and do the same roofs more than once so we always think about roofing the house again.

In some cases we are forced to replace the flashing due it being aluminum and overnailed which can and will destroy the flashing.
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Old 07-05-2012, 04:48 PM   #5
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


I am a 3rd generation roofer and I can tell you how I have always done this. I never reuse step-flashings. JoeCaption is correct.

I don't think all three roofing companies know what they are talking about. They just know they are competing with each other and it will greatly affect their price to change it out. Your Dad should also realize this as well. It can be a big deal to change this stuff out depending on the type of wall you have.

The reasons I don't reuse. "The devil is in the details" The flashings are where the roof leaks. Why spend all this money to change the looks of the roof and leave all the potential leaks from before.

Dougger is talking about the crappy thin step flashing they sell at the box stores and the supply houses. He is right, it is so thin you can tear it by hand. It is normally 7" long and up the walls no more than 3". This is absolutely not big enough for a shingle 5 5/8" . Aluminum, (or copper) should be used for apron and step flashings as it will not rust and later stain the shingles. But it must be minimum 0.032 aluminum, (or 16 oz copper). The size should be minimum 8 inches long and 4" on the roof and minimum 4" up the wall. I end up making all my own and my family has as long as I can remember.

Why 4" up the wall? - Siding does not belong installed on the roof surface. Vinyl should be off the roof minimum 1", Hardie Siding and Cedar or other wood sidings requires 2" off the roof. When you count the thickness of the shingles, then allow the necessary gap you are left with no metal behind the siding.

Yes I know siding contractors are installing siding down on the shingles. One reason they are is to cover up the crappy looking metal that amateur roofers are installing. Coil stock flashings around dormers and chimneys look terrible. The proper metal installed with siding installed right looks great and assures your roof will not leak and your siding will not wick water.
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:23 PM   #6
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


Thanks for the replys guys. Can any one tell me the "trick" they intend to use to get a 5" exposure step flashing to line up with a 5 5/8 exposure shingle? The one explanation I saw above was unclear to me. Thanks again!
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:31 AM   #7
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


Ya, third generation here too.

Run three roofing crews done THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS of roofs never had an issue reusing step flashing.

Only put down copper step flashing a couple times BIG BUCKS. Never seen aluminum step flashing that has any weight to it it's all been the super thin stuff.

So let me get this right for a minute,

On every roof you replace the step flashing which includes homes with steel, aluminum, and wood siding? So you detach and reset all metal siding along a roof line to replace step flashing and replace all wood siding above a step flashing detail???

We do a lot of hail damaged roofs many of them on homes less than 15 years old. More often than not the step flashing was never nailed to the roof so in theory it's never been compromised by fastners into the roof area. We install ice and water shield factory cut under the tins, problem solved.

Going to go on a limb here and say my family has replaced roofs on about 3,000-4,000 homes and reused the step flashing and never had one issue.

When ever we do a redeck we replace all flashings. When we do homes 75-125 years old we replace the flashings.

We do mostly insurance work and if we popped off siding on every house or replaced siding on every house to replace flashings we'd be doing a lot of free work!!!

Again, every 5-7 courses you simply nail down two tins so you don't have tins exposed, pretty darn simple...

How could ALL 3 contractors be wrong???

BTW, if you want all flashings replaced you better plan on adding a few grand to the job, that's what we charge if we replace all flashings. If it's wood siding it's several thousand more.

Ya, we do siding too...

Last edited by dougger222; 07-06-2012 at 04:34 AM.
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Old 07-06-2012, 06:21 AM   #8
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


dougger222 - sorry if I'm slow to pick up what you are saying by "nail down two tins", I'm an amateur...

If the first shingle lines up perfectly with the first step flashing, won't the next course after that have 5/8" of tin sticking out, overlaping the first course. Then the third course would have 1 1/4" of tin sticking out over the second course shingle, and so on? Where do you put the two tins to prevent seeing this?

I'm slow on the uptake, I know! Thanks dougger222.

Last edited by Dave V; 07-06-2012 at 06:24 AM.
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Old 07-06-2012, 07:47 AM   #9
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


Quote:
How could ALL 3 contractors be wrong???
Because 3 out of 4 contractors are competing on price and economics instead of doing the best job.

DaveV if the tins are in good shape and long enough for proper headlap, and not nailed to the side walls, you can remove their nails and slide them up or down to fit the new shingles. You will need to add a tin here or there to make up for shortage.

Depending on the original installation, it may be faster/easier/more economical to just replace the flashings.
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Old 07-06-2012, 08:32 AM   #10
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


This is subjective based on the experience of each roofer. Take note that dimensionals use 8" steps, 3-tab use 7".
I'd replace, but I'm sure that some old can be reused.
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Old 07-06-2012, 03:27 PM   #11
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave V View Post
dougger222 - sorry if I'm slow to pick up what you are saying by "nail down two tins", I'm an amateur...

If the first shingle lines up perfectly with the first step flashing, won't the next course after that have 5/8" of tin sticking out, overlaping the first course. Then the third course would have 1 1/4" of tin sticking out over the second course shingle, and so on? Where do you put the two tins to prevent seeing this?

I'm slow on the uptake, I know! Thanks dougger222.
Like others mentioned if the tins are are not fastened to the side wall you can move them were you need them. If the tins are in deed fastened to the side wall you will have to work with them if you decide not to replace them. If you nail them down in a fashion you don't have any exposed on the bottom edge of the shingle you will every now and then have to nail two tins over a course of shingle. In othe rwords if you didn't double up two tins you would have more and more tins exposed under the shingle course as you move up the step flashing detail.

I hope this makes more sense???

Quite often when we do tear offs the previous roofers nailed the tins high on every course which makes doubling up two tins less common along the step flashing detail.

We do some jobs were they used continuous flashing for side walls which my father confirms was accepted as code for a couple years in the 80's. This is not code now however and of course in these very rare cases step flashing must be installed.

Oh,
If your research on the three estimate (good number to get btw) all pan out more than likely they know what they are doing. If your worried about step flashing detail find out what the warranty is if they replace the tins and if they keep the tins.

Just so you know the Certainteed 5 Star warranty requires all flashings to be replaced. We meet this spec on some jobs but not all.
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:29 AM   #12
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


Quote:
Originally Posted by dougger222 View Post
So let me get this right for a minute,

On every roof you replace the step flashing which includes homes with steel, aluminum, and wood siding? So you detach and reset all metal siding along a roof line to replace step flashing and replace all wood siding above a step flashing detail???
Quote:
Originally Posted by dougger222 View Post
Just so you know the Certainteed 5 Star warranty requires all flashings to be replaced. We meet this spec on some jobs but not all.
+1

Try explaining that to the customer when you bid is already in the middle-high side of their quotes that you will need to charge several thousand more to replace the step flashing.

Consider the job lost at that point.

All flashings are on a case by case basis but you are 100% right about the 5 star requiring it all to come out.
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:58 AM   #13
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


All of this should be explained at the qualification/ inspection process. Way before numbers are even brought up. If you are explaining anything after you give your price you deserve to lose the job. It would be very rare for replacing step flashings to cost several thousands of dollars. Actually I can't even imaging it, unless we are talking about a pretty large house. But if it sold properly, you will have no trouble standing out and closing the job.

Places where we are talking about:

Vinyl siding - very easy to replace, put new behind the tyvek, (probably existing is not)
Brick walls and Chimneys - easy to replace and way to much liability to trust someone else's work (new step and counter) This is probably an opportunity to sell yourself as the existing probably looks like crap.
Wood Lap Siding, Cedar, Cement Board, - Harder - cut the siding so you have a 2 inch clearance (as required) from the final roof surface, loosen the boards with a flat bar, new ones go right in
Asbestos - Very difficult (I say remove and up sell new siding if we are talking about a small dormer) We are probably talking about step flashing way old to reuse anyway.
Aluminum Siding - I am guessing the one the scares roofers the most. Give the homeowner the facts and together choose the best way to handle.

I understand there are customers that are looking for the cheapest price, period. I am okay with that. But I consider it immoral for a contractor to not explain these details up front. When a contractor leaves the flashings in place they are leaving all the original leak points in place.

This thread started out as "Are contractors doing right by my father by not replacing the step-flashings?" For installing what they are probably selling as a "Lifetime" shingle I say no, unless they have explained things well to his Dad and he understands their is a liability there by leaving flashings that someone has to be responsible for. (The manufacturer's FOR ANY WARRANTY say they will not be liable for left flashings)

Now the OP appears to be installing the roof for his DAD. I say great. I would be glad to give any advice to help out. This is a DIY forum. If he is not going to replace them, I say inspect the existing flashings well. If they are galvanized make sure they are not rusting in the crease. Replace as needed.
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:31 PM   #14
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Reusing stepflashing when switching shingle type


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Originally Posted by roofnron View Post
All of this should be explained at the qualification/ inspection process. Way before numbers are even brought up. If you are explaining anything after you give your price you deserve to lose the job. It would be very rare for replacing step flashings to cost several thousands of dollars. Actually I can't even imaging it, unless we are talking about a pretty large house. But if it sold properly, you will have no trouble standing out and closing the job.

Places where we are talking about:

Vinyl siding - very easy to replace, put new behind the tyvek, (probably existing is not)
Brick walls and Chimneys - easy to replace and way to much liability to trust someone else's work (new step and counter) This is probably an opportunity to sell yourself as the existing probably looks like crap.
Wood Lap Siding, Cedar, Cement Board, - Harder - cut the siding so you have a 2 inch clearance (as required) from the final roof surface, loosen the boards with a flat bar, new ones go right in
Asbestos - Very difficult (I say remove and up sell new siding if we are talking about a small dormer) We are probably talking about step flashing way old to reuse anyway.
Aluminum Siding - I am guessing the one the scares roofers the most. Give the homeowner the facts and together choose the best way to handle.

I understand there are customers that are looking for the cheapest price, period. I am okay with that. But I consider it immoral for a contractor to not explain these details up front. When a contractor leaves the flashings in place they are leaving all the original leak points in place.

This thread started out as "Are contractors doing right by my father by not replacing the step-flashings?" For installing what they are probably selling as a "Lifetime" shingle I say no, unless they have explained things well to his Dad and he understands their is a liability there by leaving flashings that someone has to be responsible for. (The manufacturer's FOR ANY WARRANTY say they will not be liable for left flashings)

Now the OP appears to be installing the roof for his DAD. I say great. I would be glad to give any advice to help out. This is a DIY forum. If he is not going to replace them, I say inspect the existing flashings well. If they are galvanized make sure they are not rusting in the crease. Replace as needed.
I agree with the rationale 1000% and we try to stress the importance of that fact, however, saying that just the explanation of the process and proper aspect of it is enough to overcome the considerable price delta does not accurately represent most roofing consumers.

Around a dormer here and there, no brainer.

Along an intersecting wall with a garage roof where there is potentially 5 squares of aluminum siding...not so easy.

Most of them can be done pretty effectively and painlessly. Obviously more and more of the homes are specifying vinyl and if done in the warm months, its a no brainer. Most of the homes have the siding cut to tight to begin with and should be adjusted.

At the end of the day, I agree with you but if customers always chose the "best" install, 90% of them would be dealing with other contractors.

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