Shingles on a rood and a picture a a house with the text: Your Residential Roof Warranty: How to Properly Understand What it Covers

Your Residential Roof Warranty: How to Properly Understand What it Covers

As you prepare for your roof replacement, you will wonder about fallback options if your new roof develops unexpected problems. That’s where the topic of roof warranties comes in. Understanding your warranty options and what they cover can help you protect your investment in the future. 

What is a Roof Warranty?

A roofing warranty refers to a service contract that pays for repairs for damage that happen after installation. The agreement stipulates the types of items covered should a homeowner experience a problem.

Usually, homeowners insurance covers anything caused by acts of nature. Anything else is the responsibility of the homeowner. Service contracts are critical in filling the gap and covering the costs of repairing your roof.

Understanding the Different Types of Roof Warranties

There are three main types of warranties offered on roofing: 

1. Standard manufacturer’s Warranties 

Most roofing manufacturers offer a basic limited lifetime warranty for their products, which is the industry standard. Standard manufacturer’s warranties cover materials against manufacturing defects or failure for the first 5 years and then offer prorated coverage. 

A lifetime warranty typically provides protection as long as you own the house. If your roofing materials fail during the initial period, the manufacturer will give you new replacement materials at no cost. 

Some manufacturer warranties cover labor costs for installing replacement materials for defects found during the initial period. Others strictly cover the cost of defective materials. If a hidden problem occurs, you’re responsible for labor costs to tear off and dispose of the faulty materials and install the replacements. 

Industry-wide, basic limited lifetime warranties only cover factory defects. Failure caused by poor installation or other components issues is not covered. 

2. Workmanship Warranties 

If you want your roof to reach its expected lifespan, it must be installed appropriately. Poor installation could cause failure in as little as two years. That’s why working with a roofing contractor who offers a workmanship warranty is essential.

Workmanship warranty provides coverage against contractor installation errors that could attract costly repairs if not full replacement. It is standard for all reputable roofing contractors who care about their clients and are focused on their reputation as quality contractors.

If your roof fails due to installation problems, the roofing company that issued the warranty will cover the cost of labor and materials needed to make the repairs. 

Workmanship warranties can look different from one contractor to the other, so you must ensure your contractor has it all in writing before installing your roof. While some roofers offer lifetime warranties, most workmanship warranties range between 2 and 25 years. 

3. Extended manufacturer’s warranty 

Typically, roofing materials come with the standard manufacturer’s warranty. However, the warranty you should consider having is an extended manufacturer’s warranty. 

With an extended manufacturer’s warranty, the manufacturer will pay to replace your entire roof if just one of their components fails. This warranty is designed to provide comprehensive repair coverage for a lengthy, non-prorated period. 

To qualify for an extended manufacturer’s warranty, you should source all your roofing components from the same manufacturer. These include underlayment, ice and water barrier, vents, and shingles. Also, your roof has to be installed by a licensed contractor with a proven track record of installing a roofing system based on the manufacturer’s installation requirements. 

What Isn’t Covered by a Roof Warranty?

Like homeowner’s insurance policies, roof warranties have limitations and exclusions. Here are some of the things that are not covered by roofing warranties:

  • Fire damage
  • Subsidiary damage to the structure or property inside your home
  • Improperly installed solar systems and satellite dishes 
  • Negligence or poor maintenance
  • Damage caused by standing water
  • Acts of God, including tornadoes, earthquakes, and lightning strikes
  • Improper attic ventilation 

How to Get the Most Out of Your Roof Warranty

A roof replacement is one of the most expensive home improvement projects you’ll have to deal with as a homeowner. So, you want to make sure your roof is protected against frequent repairs or premature replacement. This is why a roof warranty is important. 

Here are four ways to get the most out of your roofing warranty. 

Carefully Read Your Warranty: Make sure you read through the contract to understand what the warranty covers and what it excludes. Also, read the information regarding the coverage period.

Schedule Regular Roof Maintenance: Regular maintenance will counteract the effects of wear and tear caused by exposure to the elements. This will boost your roof’s durability and lifespan. Remember that failure to maintain your roof properly can void your warranty. 

Register Your Warranty: Be sure to submit your warranty registration to the manufacturer. If you don’t, you run the risk of voiding the warranty. Speak with your contractor about the process of warranty registration. 

Work with One Certified Contractor 

Most contracts include a clause that voids the workmanship warranty when a different contractor is hired to work on the roof. Continuity helps your original roofer correct their own mistakes. Staying with your actual contractor will help protect your investment and maintain warranty coverage.

If you live in the Twin Cities, you can rely on Midwest Roofing Siding & Windows for all your residential roofing needs. We are a GAF Master Elite Contractor and an Owens Corning Platinum Preferred Contractor. This means that we’re in these manufacturers’ top-tier network due to our high professionalism, workmanship, reliability, and consistency standards. The elite status allows us to provide our customers with the best warranties in the industry. Contact us today to learn more about our services and warranty options.

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