Metal Roof on an A-Frame House

Laura Ford
8/27/2013
Hi Everyone, My husband and I purchase a wonderful A-Frame home about 6 months ago and we are in the process of having the roof replaced. The house was built in 1976 and the current roof was Cedar Shake. After much time and consideration we have decided to go with a Metal Roof as first it will make our property have the Modern look we want and Second we like the idea of not having to worry much about replacing it in 20-30 years. We picked out a 26 Gauge Standing Seam Metal Roof (Sound-Lok 12" Wide Panel, Kynar Coating). The Roofing company came out last Friday to start the work and I noticed while they removed our old Cedar Shake roof they also removed the foam insulation. This was a concern to us as they started to put down the HT 300 Ice/Water Shield directly over our Cedar planks which happen to be our ceiling in the A-Frame as well (considering we don't have any Drywall). I called the project manager as it seemed odd to my husband and I that they were not putting down any addition layers between our interior wood planks and the Ice/Water Shield. After a few days I was finally able to get ahold of the project manager and he was surprised to find out that I could literally see outside from inside my house do to the Knots in the wood. He was under the impression we had another layer or maybe Drywall inside. Anyways, I brought up to him my concern of the house not having ANY insulation as his guys removed what was there with the Cedar Shake and there were no intentions on putting any on the house. This seemed odd to me as the thought of the Ice/water Shield then the metal (Only) ON Top of my roof sounds like it will be freezing in the Winter and possibly even loud when it rains (which we get a lot of). Now the roofer is recommending another type of Insulation on top of the Ice/Water Shield which would have some sort of ridges to it (Sorry I don't know the name of it but I will double check in the morning). I am a little ticked off about this recommendation now as it would have been nice to know this before we even started the job as I am not sure we would have went with a Metal roof. This additional insulation is going to cost us another $6k making the grand total for this roof $28k! Considering this is a HUGE expense I am freaking out a bit! Help Please! I don't know much about roofing (which is obviously apparent in this message) but I am trying to figure out is the additional insulation is even worth the $6k. We have 30ft tall ceilings in part of the house which in the Winter time makes the home chilly as all of our heat rises. However, most of the rest of the house is 2 levels which is a bit easier to eat as the rooms can retain the heat better. We did have an awfully cold Winter and our heat bill was a bit high so the idea of this lowering is appealing. What I want to know is if we spend the extra $6k are we really going to notice a difference in the warmth in the Winter and Sound of rain?? The roofer mentioned something about the previous foam was rated a 1.2 and the insulation they are recommending is rated a 6.1. No clue what any of that means but it sounds like it would be a lot better but again I don't know what any of this means. Any advise or input on this would be highly appreciated as I am stressing out about keeping my baby warm in the winter but also would like to keep the money in our bank to pay for his college in 18 years ;). Thanks in advance!
Todd Miller
Isaiah Industries, Inc.
8/27/2013
Thanks for choosing a metal roof though I am sorry for all you've encountered. I do think you need the insulation. Whether that is a fair price is hard for me to judge. I would suggest insisting on talking to the owner of the roofing company and making sure they are pricing this as l;ow as possible. They really should have picked up on this and discussed it before the original contract was signed.
Eric Novotny
An informed customer is the Best Customer!
8/27/2013
I am not sure the rain noise would have been problematic in the first place but the lack of insulation certainly would have been. You absolutely need the (or at minimum...some) insulation in that assembly as well as an air barrier.
Laura Ford
8/28/2013
Thank you so much for your advice Todd and Erik! I got a little more details today from my roofer and now the plan is to do the Ice/Water Shield on top of my Cedar Planks then they will put a Polyiso insulation on top of that which is rated a R-6 (I think he said) Then the Metal would go on top of that. According to him this will keep the house well insulated and resolve my concerns for the cold winters. On the other hand, I am not quite sure why this was NOT brought up in the original bid when I made it very clear that we wanted to ensure our house stayed warm in the Winter time. Who comes out to bid a roof job and NOT add in the cost of insulation! Our original bid was $17k our New bid is $26k due to now adding in the cost of insulation, replacing a few rotted 2x4s, & the extra cost for the crew needing an extra 2 days to remove the nails from the Cedar plank which they claim were much longer than expected or what was typical!! I am certainly going to have a discussion with the owner but I cant help but feel I am getting ripped off when I am in a position where I cant say no as half of my roof is ripped off. I should also mention, I am a successful and very busy real estate agent in this area who recommends roofing companies at least a couple times a year. If you want me to recommend your company you should be showing me why with outstanding service! I am not impressed at this point. Thanks again for your advice and also thank you both for being so quick to respond! I so appreciate it
Eric Novotny
An informed customer is the Best Customer!
8/28/2013
Sounds like exactly what I would do and have specified in similar situations. The Ice/Water will help with the air seal of the boards and keep the conditioned air inside the home and away from the condensing surfaces. While I certainly understand your frustration with the additional expense, unless a core sample or some system exploration was done, it would not be easy to identify the exact structure and system. Make no mistake, the roofer should have qualified his quote based on an understood system or recommended that there be some selected demo. PolyIso is very expensive so he is likely (at that number) doing the revision at very near his cost.
Laura Ford
8/29/2013
Ok so you guys have been so helpful thus far I wanted to share with you the newest issue to get your advice on how to proceed. We live in Seattle, WA so as you might have heard we get a lot of rain. My roofers have completely torn off our entire Cedar Shake roof and put down the Ice/Water Shield. Well the crew left our house around 7pm and my husband and I noticed the Polyiso insulation was left out not covered at all which seemed odd as we knew it was going to rain. I did some research on what recommended for this insulation and everything I found mentioned to NOT have it in any type of moisture or direct Sunlight. The insulation is now soaking as it poured down rain last night which is a little concerning to me being that they plan to sandwich that between the water/ice shield & the metal. On another note which is the main reason for my message is I was woken up last night around 3am to hear not only the rain pouring outside but also inside my house. Directly outside my sons bedroom the water was literally pouring in to the point we had to put a bucket down and many towels. As we started to walk around the house we noticed there were at least 10 other leaks with standing water all over our house and directly on our wood floors, cedar planks, the carpet upstairs is saturated in water which is now dripping down to our Kitchen below! I of course called the project manager at 3am to let him know about the issue as well as his office and of course no one picked up so my husband and I took turns of cleaning up the water until about 630am when I was finally able to get ahold of someone. They came back out to the house to put tarps everywhere to help prevent any further moisture but at this point it has been leaking into our house for over 5 hours (as the rain didn't stop)!! I just got off the phone with owner of the company who assured me the water is nothing to be concerned about as it will dry up but lets keep in mind I am a real estate agent and I am well aware of what trapped in moisture can do to a home. I have a 1 year old son and the thought of mold or mildew accumulating due to this mistake makes me sick! Not to mention my Cedar planks are now stained with water stains, my carpet is soaking wet so is the pad, my hardwoods appear to have a water stain from standing water & who knows what is behind the Drywall upstairs as that is the area the water was pouring inside! (the other areas it was more of a heavy leak). What the heck do I do at this point??? I wanted to fire these guys and start all over but once I calmed down I realized I should probably give them a chance to remedy the situation. I have lost all of my confidence in this crew and I am exhausted just thinking about all of my concerns now. Help!!
Dick Bus
8/29/2013
I am not sure what we, as an association, can do to help at this point. You may want to contact your insurance agent. Since you are a Real Estate agent I would assume you know some other local people that you could contact for assistance. We do appreciate that you selected a metal roof.
Todd Miller
Isaiah Industries, Inc.
8/29/2013
Laura, feel free to email me direct. I guess I'd prefer to take this conversation off line if that's okay. Just drop me an email reminding me who you are and I will respond. My email is [email protected] Thanks.
Guest User
1/7/2018
Hello, We are thinking of building an A-Frame house with a metal roof. Does the steep pitch of an A-Frame significantly increase the cost of installation? Thank you!
Todd Miller
Isaiah Industries, Inc.
1/7/2018
It should not make a dramatic difference.

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