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as for when i stop,

i've found that it just ain't worth it when the high temp for the day don't get to 20 (F). when it's that cold, it just ain't productive enough for me.

sure, you can fight it. do things like run the power cord into the van, keep the van running in order to keep the compresser from freezing up, rotate the guns thru the van to keep them thawed, tarp the roof the day before expected snow fall ( pull off the tarp, and the roof is clear), shovel the snow off to do the tear off, shovel the yard before tearing off in order to the clean up, extra clothes that rob "flexability" slowing ya down even more, going back in the spring to re-rake and run the magnet. not to mention the safety factor. all of it slowing ya down (thus costing time/money) and all done to work on a day that it gets dark at 5:00?

just can't make money that way. i don't know 'bout ya'll, but if i can't make money, i don't want to go.
 

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i should add that back when i was just a hourly employee, a little cold/snow never even caused a moments hesitation. may not have cared for it, but ya gotta do what it takes to keep the kids fed.
 

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I have a new school project that has a sloped shingle roof due to the restrictions in the subdivision it is being built in. Architect/ Manufacturers rep are require that the shingle be stored in a heated container and not installed unless temps above 40. Kinda tough this time of year, even in the south.
 

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I have a new school project that has a sloped shingle roof due to the restrictions in the subdivision it is being built in. Architect/ Manufacturers rep are require that the shingle be stored in a heated container and not installed unless temps above 40. Kinda tough this time of year, even in the south.
I will say it first, they are complete nuts!!!!:no::w00t:
 

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Search the form and you will see this asked and answered every year. Alot of people disagree with me, but I choose quality over quantity since fixing mistakes comes out of my pocket.

We do not shingle below freezing. The shingles won't stick for quite some time and the risk of blow offs goes up exponentially, since the seal strips can become contaminated. In addition the fiberglass becomes very brittle and the shingles are not very flexible and the nails can blow right throug, even more so than during the warmer months.

Builders typically can care less so what little new construction we do, which was 1 job in 2009, we'll roof in freezing on new construction. Builders care more about schedule and budget than quality. Further more we will roof below freezing if the customer is in an emergency situation, however I do write a waiver into the contract stating that it is advised they wait until spring and I cite the reasons I posted above. I believe you simply can't install a good shingle roof most winter months (in the Chicago area anyways).

Ok let the bickering and arguing begin.
 

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We work all year if possible just to make ends meet. Prices really suck around here lately and getting by is getting even harder. With very few people working with us, we don't have as much trouble with quality control. Winter is just fine for construction if done right.
 

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So you just lay everyone off??
That's what unemployment insurance is for. But no, not everyone. We still do repairs.

The guys really appreciate having a paid 2 month vacation. Plus from my point of view it's better to do it right the first time than have to deal with so many more potential problems that arise from winter time roofing. Brittle shingles, icy ground and unsafe ladder placement, frequent breaks to warm up, unsealed sealing strips on shingles.

We can do torch applied modified on flat roofs, although I prefer not to. I wouldn't do any single ply, but hey again I am the exception to the rule. Most people don't give a chit and never bother to read the directions saying that the adhesives shouldn't be applied below 40 degrees. Same chitty attitude, just slap some squares up there and let's get paid. Bah humbug!

Oh but wait, since most companies pay their guys 1099 they can't put their workers on unemployemnt. So the customer has to suffer with a chitty job as they slap down crap in the cold just to pay their bills.

For the record I fired all my employees this year and went back to my roots of subbing everything out to legitimate licensed and insured companies. So in theory my guys have been on unemployment since November and they'll stay like that until it runs out or they find another job, when I just had enough and got fed up with it all. I can't deal with baby sitting 5 grown men. However, I still do not allow winter time roofing from my subs for the quality control issues. Some of them want to work and I tell them to call me in March. I also tell my customers that we're not doing any new roofs until then and I state all the reasons. If they choose to hire someone else, so be it, I don't need those problems. Let someone else deal with the inherent mistakes that are inevitable from winter time roofing.


I don't care what anyone else says. Based on the roofs I have installed during winter and based on the roofs others have installed during winter, and I have fixed: I guarantee a chitty roof if it's installed below freezing.
 

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Grumpy there are many times when the air temp is below freezing, but the shingles are well above that temp.

I still think there is more possibility of damage in the hot summer months. These new shingles are soft and they adhere at much lower temps than before. It also makes them mushy in the summer.
 

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Summer is a whole other story. I really don't want the guys on the roof above 90-95 either. Not only for safety (dehydration) reasons, but scuffing and shingle tears are also a problem.
So now we are down to appling shingles from March to June, then 2 months off, then lay shingles from Sept till end of Oct!

Not bad, 5 months of work. You must charge a bundle to be able to do this!:no:
 

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Summer is hit or miss just like winter. However we can accomplish alot more during summer than we can during winter since we can work half days in summer, start extra early like 6 am and be off the job before it gets too hot to work... and we're really only talking about a few weeks out of the year where we have our summer slow down.

You can find many many posts where I spell out how I try to earn 12 months of overhead in 10 months. I plan on a 10 month year every year. Yeah still winter does sting, but it'd sting more to have to fix all those winter time mistakes, mistakes costing profit, when we should spend the profitable months putting down profitable roofing, not fixing mistakes.

And yes I have been told I charge too much by many many people. I charge about 20% more than the "going rate" for my area. I've seen guys charging 50% less than me for seemingly the same work (on paper).



People, Stop for a minute and think to yourselves, if you need to subject yourselves to the hashest weather and conditions just to pay the bills; you're probably doing something wrong. We need not be slaves to this trade. That's the problem, too many tradesmen without the forethought or business sense to think about saving for the down time. Then we are forced to slave away and take risks not only to our workmanship but also to our own selves. Bah humbug I say! It should not be like that!

We shouldn't need to work 60 hour weeks 50 weeks out of the year to pay our bills. Why do you think consumers typically have such a low opinion of contractors? On the surface it appears we don't even respect ourselves, they way we make ourselves suffer. What's that called? Sado Masachism? Self induced pain.
 

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Summer is hit or miss just like winter. However we can accomplish alot more during summer than we can during winter since we can work half days in summer, start extra early like 6 am and be off the job before it gets too hot to work... and we're really only talking about a few weeks out of the year where we have our summer slow down.

You can find many many posts where I spell out how I try to earn 12 months of overhead in 10 months. I plan on a 10 month year every year. Yeah still winter does sting, but it'd sting more to have to fix all those winter time mistakes, mistakes costing profit, when we should spend the profitable months putting down profitable roofing, not fixing mistakes.

And yes I have been told I charge too much by many many people. I charge about 20% more than the "going rate" for my area. I've seen guys charging 50% less than me for seemingly the same work (on paper).



People, Stop for a minute and think to yourselves, if you need to subject yourselves to the hashest weather and conditions just to pay the bills; you're probably doing something wrong. We need not be slaves to this trade. That's the problem, too many tradesmen without the forethought or business sense to think about saving for the down time. Then we are forced to slave away and take risks not only to our workmanship but also to our own selves. Bah humbug I say! It should not be like that!

We shouldn't need to work 60 hour weeks 50 weeks out of the year to pay our bills. Why do you think consumers typically have such a low opinion of contractors? On the surface it appears we don't even respect ourselves, they way we make ourselves suffer. What's that called? Sado Masachism? Self induced pain.
i whole heartedly agree with everything you say here. that is exactly how it should be in a perfect world. unfortunatly, we don't live in a perfect world.

everybodys situation is bit different, and for most folks, it comes down to where you reside in the food chain. took me about 15 years of hard labor to get there.

rome wasn't built in a day.

in the winter i do go out a work ice dam removals though. pretty good money in it. not great on the ice removal itself. more so on the follow up in the spring time.

but that's a whole other thread.
 

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I understand where Grumpy is coming from. Until two years ago we would work in the winter. This ended up costing as much as it made since in summer we usually had to go back and clean the ground for any small debris that may have been covered for snow, make sure caulk and everything else is also properly intact. In summer, there comes a point where it is too hot to walk on shingles without scaring and tearing them. Start early, quit at 11, back at 3 and work until 7.

When winter time comes, a couple guys get laid off for the winter (laborers) and I try to do siding and window jobs on days where its not too cold. I think 20 degrees and under is the cut off point otherwise production just isnt there. Also, me and a few other guys plow.

We do small roofing repairs and things that can easily get done in the winter, but we arent going to tear off a whole roof and reshingle when its 10 degrees out.
 

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Bottom Line:

There is no good day to be a roofer.

We do roofs occasionally (when really hungry!) I would never want to do one in cold temps. Bad enough sheathing roofs during the cold, windy, snowy days.
 

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i whole heartedly agree with everything you say here. that is exactly how it should be in a perfect world. unfortunatly, we don't live in a perfect world.

everybodys situation is bit different, and for most folks, it comes down to where you reside in the food chain. took me about 15 years of hard labor to get there.

rome wasn't built in a day.

in the winter i do go out a work ice dam removals though. pretty good money in it. not great on the ice removal itself. more so on the follow up in the spring time.

but that's a whole other thread.
I agree also, which is why I (a one crew, mom&pop company) can not even remember the last time someone told me they were hiring me because I was the low bid, or even the middle bid.
I consistently am having to reassure home owners and contractors why they should hire me instead of the other guy/s offering the same service at lower cost.
We seldom do re-roofs any later than November or earlier than March.
Those are strictly new construction months, if they build them, we will come and roof them.
My winter roofs do not blow off thus do not require me coming back in the spring to fix them. Just gotta "plan" your daily production on a smaller scale.
 

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Don't Eat Yellow Snow!
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When i first started roofing 30yrs ago, the new build sites would shut down over the winter period, but that hasnt happened for along time now(not that there much new build going on!) i work right through but we dont have the snow you guys get, its more of a wet climite here, we still lose work days through too much rain and when when its frosty but can get by.
Cheers
Dave
 
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