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New method for venting wood shakes


Bain
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I'd never seen this kind of venting before, but apparently it works really well. There were very few signs of moisture problems in the attic.

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Looks like shingles to me; not shakes. To thin and too consistent in thickness. The lack of underlayment woven into those courses is a dead giveaway. As for the venting method, most squirrels and rats would call those grand entrances and most crows would call them deposit boxes.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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There aren't a lot of wooden roofs in my area; I look at maybe one a year. When I scheduled this building last week, knowing it had a wooden roof, I fully anticipated posting scads of photos so youse guys could tell me what was going on with it.

But then I arrived at the site yesterday, saw the condition of the shakes shingles, and it became a no-brainer.

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I should have commented on the condition.

Shingles can easily last at least two or three times as long as a shake roof that received the same amount (or sees the same lack of) maintenance.

Some idjit's been on that roof blasting away with a pressure washer and had stripped a lot of those shingles so badly that they're now paper thin below the butts. That roof is a good example why I think we home inspectors should be issued hunting licenses and be allowed to bag our limit of folks using pressure washers to clean roofs.

I can see Les now, careening down the street on the way to the taxidermist with some Larry the Cable Guy type strapped across the hood of his truck. [;)]

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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But don't think my possession of the manual gets you off the hook for answering questions next time I find myself looking at a wooden roof.

Fire away. Just so you know, if you don't see felt paper (interlayment) with no cedar showing from the attic side, you can pretty much bet on the fact that it is a shingle roof or a very messed up shake one.

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One of my first rural inspections was on a 1930's farm house. With the original wood shingle roof. To steep for me to walk on. I got in the attic saw day light every were I looked stepped out of the attic. Said to the Realtor that thing has got to leak!! A new roof is needed. The Realtor was and old man been a carpenter before I was born walked up my ladder told me those shingles swell when they get wet care to put a wadger on that? So I made a stupid bet. It rained two days later like you would not believe. I meet him over there. what do you know there were small spots of moisture on the insulation but you couldn't see day light.

He replied we put steep pitches back then to remove the water fast. And that's why the roof has lasted that long! I no longer base shingle life on it's age but its condition and how it was installed.

Good news is I still get referrals from him even though he doesn't sell real estate. But he can bet I don't make any Assumptions unless I'm for sure.

I inspected that house back in 2000 and that roof lasted until this year only because it was hit by Baseball size hail. Home owner still remembered me and called before it was. Just so I could stop by for a cold one and say good by to part of that homes history. As he was going back with Fiberglass.

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More than a couple decades ago, I was asked to build a small reproduction timber-frame structure at an historic site. The challenge was the $0.00 budget, but we were able to gather enough salvaged materials.

For the roof, I installed salvaged, hand-dressed cedar shingles documented to have been on another building for almost 40 years. I had an apprentice trim only about 1" of soft wood from each butt. Not a single one was cupped or curled. Those shingles have now been in service for about 60 years.

The wood for the shingles was obviously good quality. Today's #1 Blue Label won't make it to half that life. It was installed on spaced battens with proper spacing, headlap and sidelap. The shingles still swelled when whet, but dried quickly and evenly, which is the biggest factor in the extended life.

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That roof "has reached the end of it's useful life" as we say here in Oregon. If the RE agent wants to guarantee it let him put it in writing, otherwise stick to your guns and fail it. This roof was a replacement item years ago - missing shingles, etc. There will always be damage to the bottom butt ends after a few years (this is normal aging) but when you can lift up the butt end and break the shingle at the overlap they are done. Looks like a ----- shingle to start. FYI - I have been in many attics where you could read a book from the amount of light coming thru the shingles (they leaked) but the old timer mentioned had it right - the shingles swell after the first rains and do a pretty good job of being weatherproof - as long as they are in reasonably good condition. This roof is not! I wouldn't have even walked it due to the visible damage that you can see.

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