In light of the recent warranty changes in the roofing industry I thought our home owners could use a little help understanding the new warranty system. Pre 2011 we used to refer to shingles as 30, 40 or 50 year (lifetime) shingles. As of 2011 the entire roofing industry shifted to a new warranty system called limited lifetime shingles. Now all laminated asphalt shingles are covered by a limited 50 year warranty.
Its important to understand what this warranty means for you the consumer, and just as important to know what it does not mean. When the change was first made many roofing contractors were out selling the new lifetime warranty, “a supposed 50 year warranty” that would cover your roof forever. Unfortunately there are going to be many disappointed home owners that realize the falsehood of those claims if they try to process a warranty claim 20 years into the roofs life. They will discover that their warranties value began to depreciate 10 years after the roof was installed. Let’s take a look at what roofing warranties do and do not include so you can make an informed choice on the coverage of your roof.
There are a few things you need to consider when choosing a roofing warranty.
1) How long does the warranty cover my roof
2) What is the time period the warranty covers my roof with 100% (non-prorated) coverage
3) What components of the roofing system does the warranty cover?
4) Is the warranty transferable if you decide to sell your home and if so is there a fee involved?
In the warranty world there are two categories
1) The manufacturer’s warranty
2) The workmanship warranty.
The Workmanship Warranty: This warranty is provided by the roofing contractor you have hired and guarantees proper installation of the roofing system. Every roofing contractor can offer different types of workmanship warranties ranging from 5-50 years depending on the type of material they install on your roof. The longer the workmanship warranty the longer your roof is protected from workmanship errors that might occur during installation. In the state of Washington every roofing contractor is held by state law to guarantee their work with a 5 year labor/workmanship warranty. That is important for homeowners to know. Some roofers offer extended workmanship warranties at an additional cost. Discuss with your potential roofing contractor what type of labor warranties they offer. Be sure to check how long the contractor has been in business, so you know they have been around long enough to have a history of honoring their warranties.
Standard Material Warranty: A standard material warranty is basic protection for your roofing system provided by the manufacturer.
-10 years of 100% non-pro-rated coverage/50 year limited lifetime shingle on material and manufacturing defects.
– A GAF certified contractor is not required to install your roof to obtain this warranty.
-The cost of labor to replace shingles.
-Does not include: tear-off costs, roof accessories, dump fees, does provide a manufacturer labor warranty, factory inspection.
Systems Plus Warranty: The Systems Plus Weather Stopper Warranty is a “complete roofing system” upgraded warranty provided by the manufacturer.
50 years of 100% non pro-rated coverage on material and manufacturing defects.
– 2 year manufacturer backed workmanship warranty guaranteeing proper installation.
– tear-off & labor to replace shingles.
– Requires the use of GAF shingles and 3 GAF system components.
– A GAF certified roofing contractor must perform the installation to qualify for this warranty.
Does not include: dump fees, factory inspection.
Golden Pledge Warranty: This is the highest level of roofing warranty available in the industry today.
- 50 years of 100% non pro-rated coverage on material and manufacturing defects.
– 25 year manufacturer backed workmanship warranty guaranteeing proper installation.
– tear-off, dump fees, and labor to replace shingles.
– Requires the use of GAF shingles and all GAF roofing system components.
– Requires special application and extra materials.
A GAF certified Master Elite contractor must perform the installation to qualify for this warranty
Exclusive 40 point factory inspection by GAF representative.
Other roofing manufacturers have very similar warranty programs, but this will give you an idea of the choices you have when deciding on the type of warranty you choose to protect your investment of a new roof system.
From a contractor and homeowners’ perspective I highly recommend investing a little more money up front, and saving thousands of dollars in the years to come by upgrading your roof warranty.
What kind of roofing warranty did you choose when you roofed your home? I would love to get your feedback.