SANTA ROSA – When it comes to installing new roofs, many homeowners fail to fully understand their warranties. Most roofing product manufacturers provide a “lifetime warranty,” which seemingly indicates the roof is fully covered throughout its expected lifespan. Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple—most lifetime warranties only offer about 10 years of complete coverage for labor and materials, after which point coverage substantially decreases. By the time the roof is 15 years old, the warranty no longer covers labor or materials for replacement, and the cost of the shingles is prorated.
To avoid being misled, make sure you inquire about warranty terms before choosing a roofing product. Even better, consider getting an extended warranty. To do this, you’ll need to hire a contractor that has undergone a certification process with a particular roofing manufacturer. When you hire a certified contractor, the manufacturer has confidence that the materials will be installed correctly, which means you’ll get a better warranty.
Typically, an extended warranty will provide everything that a “lifetime” warranty should: 100 percent coverage of labor and materials for up to 50 years. Plus, extended warranties are usually transferable, so even if you sell your home, the roof will still be covered. Furthermore, an extended warranty isn’t much more expensive than a regular warranty—depending on the job, it may be a $300 to $500 increase, which is a small price to pay for the considerable increase in coverage.