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‘Roofing’ Category Archive

How To Identify Good Cedar Roofing

Friday, October 13th, 2017

Tips on grading the cedar roofing material that shows up at your home for your roofing job. Introduction, by Steve Kuhl There are many variables that factor into the quality and character of cedar shake and shingle roofing including the age of the tree when logged, the region the tree came from, the thickness of […]

Flat Roof Leak Repair

Friday, September 22nd, 2017

Flat Roof In Minneapolis Leaked for Years and Copper Was the Answer The Problem: Perhaps you have heard it before. There are two types of at roofs: Those that are leaking and those that are about to leak. In fairness to flat roofs, the reality is that there is no truly permanent roof. When at […]

Minneapolis Cedar Roof Comparisons

Friday, September 8th, 2017

Here is a basic description of the most common cedar roofs installed in Minnesota. We offer much deeper info on each in other Kuhl Case Studies. Four Most Common Cedar Roofs Installed in Minneapolis. Cedar shingles are used for both roof and side wall applications and offer a lighter, more refined appearance than hand-split shakes. […]

What Really Kills Most Cedar Shake Roofs

Friday, August 18th, 2017

Forget hail damage, animals, moss, rot, ice and wind. The sun is your roof’s main enemy. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times, the purpose of all of the wood on your roof IS NOT to keep water out of your home. Its’ purpose is to protect the tar paper below, […]

Lifespans of Cedar Roofs

Friday, August 4th, 2017

How long should cedar roofs last?  

Solving Ice Dams in Minneapolis

Friday, July 21st, 2017

Science + Common Sense + Insulation & Ventilation = No Ice Dams Frost Melt Patterns At their most fundamental level, ice dams are the result of the interaction of heat loss and snow on your roof. An experienced Kuhl Thermographer can use photos like these in conjunction with infrared imaging to see the weak points […]

Pressure Washing Damage on Cedar Roof

Friday, July 7th, 2017

Thoughts from an Honest Roofer on Washing Cedar Shake Roofs, Part One. Why Equipment Matters: If your roof is in good enough condition to wash, congratulations. You have the opportunity to add years to its remaining life through occasional maintenance. But it is important to understand that a cedar roof should only be washed using […]

Low Bidding Minneapolis Contractor Wins Again

Friday, June 30th, 2017

Kuhl’s Contracting Six Examples of How the Cheapest Company Costs the Most After being in business this long we have countless examples of crappy work done by other contractors here in the Twin Cities. Sometimes it’s a matter of inexperience while others it is a question of ethics. Either way, it’s a giant buzz kill […]

Permanent Squirrel Damage Solution

Friday, June 16th, 2017

How to replace a tasty lead cap with galvanized steel The Problem: What is it with squirrels and roofs? They can’t seem to keep their teeth off them. We inspect hundreds of cedar roofs in the Twin Cities area each year. Time after time we find the same types of damage. Lead cap plumbing vent […]

List of Common Ice Dam Locations on Minneapolis Homes

Friday, June 2nd, 2017

What is an Ice Dam? An ice dam is the ridge of ice that forms at the edge of a roof which prevents melting snow from draining as it should. The water that backs up behind the ice dam can leak into the home and cause damage to walls, doors, ceilings, insulation, and other areas. […]

Minneapolis Ice Dams Warning Signs

Friday, May 26th, 2017

How to Spot Ice Dams on Homes in Minneapolis and Surrounding Areas Thoughts on Ice Dams by Steve Kuhl: Think of it this way. Ice dams normally migrate over time from the the outer most edge of your eave in towards your home. If you have gutters, the ice dam will form there first and […]

Minneapolis Roof Leaks Part One

Friday, May 19th, 2017

Expert Advice on Common Roof Leaks in Minnesota Often times the most difficult thing in resolving a roof leak is to find it in the first place. Roof leaks in Minneapolis present some extra challenges because of the added influence that snow and ice buildup can play. This case study will examine the most common causes […]

Minneapolis Kickout Flashing Warning

Friday, May 5th, 2017

Kick Out Flashing Contractor Gives Advice on Right Versus Wrong The Problem: Undoubtedly installing kick out flashings here in the Twin Cities isn’t always as easy as it looks. It’s just a simple piece of sheet metal, after all. To the misfortune of many area homeowners, their contractors, handy-guys and husbands frequently underestimate the complexity […]

Kickout Flashing Installation in Minneapolis

Friday, April 28th, 2017

What is a Kickout Flashing and Why Do I Need One? The Problem: For example you have just had your home inspected and someone says you need kickout flashings. With this in mind what exactly is a kickout flashing and what does it do? Kickout flashings: Required by Minnesota Building Code, the purpose of a kickout […]

Faulty Flashing Above Lake Harriet Bay Window

Friday, April 14th, 2017

The Addition of Flashing to the Edge of This Roof Saved This Lake Harriet Homeowner Serious Money The original builder of this beautiful home near Lake Harriet in Minneapolis spared no expense when it came to quality in design and materials. But nobody is perfect. The original roofer installed the cedar shingles with an inadequate […]

Leaking Stucco Chimney Solution

Friday, March 31st, 2017

Stucco Home in Eden Prairie Has Damage That Needed Fixing The Problem:A leaking stucco chimney. The cap of the original chimney had a sloped mortar core with a top coat of stucco (portland cement). Bad idea. We don’t like stucco to be used on horizontal surfaces unless particular steps are taken. Water was leaking down into the […]

What Does Hail Damage Look Like, Part One

Friday, March 17th, 2017

Minneapolis hail storms leaves clear evidence behind  This is an impact mark from a .75” hail stone on a 3 year old medium hand-split cedar shake roof in Edina, Minnesota. Such hail frequently causes severe damage to cedar shake and shingle roofs. In this case the wood was resilient enough to escape with only a […]

Minneapolis Gutter and Roof Cleaning

Monday, February 27th, 2017

No matter how long winter is, spring is sure to come. And if you’ve been around the Twin Cities last week, it feels like it’s already here. It’s hard to imagine it’s still February, but it’s never too early to start thinking about your home maintenance needs. If you live in Minneapolis, we want to […]

Ice Dam Puzzle

Friday, February 24th, 2017

Minneapolis Homeowner Struggled to Find Educated Perspective on Ice Dam Mystery The Problem: Our client had been plagued by ice dams and cold-room-syndrome for many years. Ice dams are a roof problem, so why not call a roofer? The fact is, ice dams are not a roof problem and while one can limit the damage […]

Solve the Mystery Leak

Friday, February 10th, 2017

A Leaking Home Gets Fixed for Good The Backstory: Our clients, homeowners in Eden Prairie, had a mysterious water spot on the ceiling of their dining room. It clearly was related to rain because there was no plumbing in the vicinity and the damage appeared after one of those long, soaking storms. Their original builder […]

But I just need my roof washed…

Friday, January 27th, 2017

Cedar Roof Cleaning Expert Rescues Excelsior Homeowner from Other ‘Expert’ The Backstory: Upon the advice of her realtor, our client hired a roof washing franchise to wash her cedar shake roof. She was about to put her house on the market and a moss-free roof would be a nice touch. The company she hired specialized […]

Classic Flashing Failure

Friday, January 20th, 2017

A Leaking Home Gets Fixed for Good The Problem: We’ve seen this over and over on Twin Cities’ homes, in particular homes built in the last 30 years in Eden Prairie, Minnetonka, Edina, Plymouth, Wayzata, and Bloomington. A bottleneck created by the intersection of the garage roof and the wall of the home. The result […]

Leaf Guard, Gutter Guard, Gutter Helmet

Friday, January 6th, 2017

Gutter Contractor Installed $32,000 of Worthless Copper Gutters… Then Laughed All The Way To The Bank The Problem: Our client had gone ten rounds with the company that installed this gutter debris management system (A). Next stop, lawyers and courts. They decided to cut their losses and hire Kuhl to replace all of their gutters. The […]

Putting the K Back in Copper

Friday, December 23rd, 2016

Fixing a Leaking Chimney, Replacing a Cedar Roof The Problem: This is the community building owned by an exclusive neighborhood association in Orono. For years different roofers were hired to address the leaking chimney (A), only to ultimately fail in their attempts. Their answer, caulk and tar (B). Here is the pesky leak as seen […]

Creativity Matters

Friday, December 9th, 2016

Remodeling a Bumpout Window With a Bad Leak in Minnetonka The Problem: Imagine you have a window bumpout like the one here (below). The builder was running a little thin on his margin so he skimped on a few details. Now 13 years later, you have rotten siding, soggy millwork, and a roof that leaks. […]

[email protected]%&#! Storm Chasers!

Sunday, December 4th, 2016

One Edina Man’s Story of Dealing with Storm Chasers and His Cedar Shake Roof The Problem: Jerry’s roof was replaced by some storm chasers after a hail storm in 2006. His insurance company agreed to replace the skylight units (1) but refused to pay for the replacement of the curbs and curb flashing (2) because […]

Ugly Chimneys in Eden Prairie

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Clients Chimneys Were Leaking, But at Least They Were Super Ugly The Problem: Our Eden Prairie homeowner needed a new cedar shake roof and two chimneys rebuilt. More than a simple chimney rebuild, these babies needed a redesign (thank you 1970’s). The 12” thick lump of concrete originally installed on top just wasn’t going to […]

Roofing + Design + Carpentry = Happy Client

Friday, October 28th, 2016

Roofing Contractor Uses Designers and Carpenters to Help Wayzata Commercial Roofing Client The Problem: We had worked on Craig’s residence a few times over the past fifteen years. He invited us to give him a bid on one of his commercial properties. It had a tired cedar shingle roof with dated treatments around each window. […]

Upgrading a Chimney

Friday, October 7th, 2016

Repair Your Chimney or Enhance the Look of Your Exterior The Problem Your chimney is failing, it looks like this, and someone wants $3,200 to fix it. Ouch. The Solution Hire someone with experienced designers on staff who know the difference between concepts like Cotswold and Tudor. It would have been easy enough to simply […]

Slouching tree, Hidden Challenge

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

Creative Remodeling Contractor Finds Solution to Odd Problem The Problem: A cedar roof restoration client of ours had an old oak tree that added tremendous character to her property. The problem was that over years the heavy limb (right) sank lower and lower and our client kept buying higher and higher vehicles. She couldn’t stand the […]

Keeping Squirrels Out of Your Roof

Friday, September 2nd, 2016

Animal Damage to Roofs in the Minneapolis Area The Problem: Red Squirrel Scientific Name – Sciurus Vulgaris Unscientific Name – Bastardus Rodentae Size – Body length of about 4 inchs (not including tail) Diet – Nuts, acorns, seeds, and your cedar roof Preferred habitat – Mainly a tree dweller, occasionally a roof dweller This guy […]

Chimney Caps and Frost Wedging

Friday, August 12th, 2016

Minneapolis Chimneys Need Caps No Matter What…Here’s Why. The Problem: Is Mother Nature giving your chimney a frost wedgie? We’ve seen it hundreds of times around the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. A masonry chimney with one damaged clay flue and one pristine flue. Most people might assume that the flue that gets used frequently might fail sooner […]

Hear. See. Speak. We’ll Tell You What We Find.

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

Minnetonka Homeowner Hears the Truth from Roof Cleaning Contractor with Integrity The Backstory: It’s not considered bad-mouthing your competition when you don’t name names, right? We were the third company to review this 13 year old cedar shingle roof and provide a cedar cleaning and sealing estimate. By the time I arrived, the client was […]

Animals in Minneapolis Roof Vents, Part One

Friday, July 29th, 2016

How to Keep Birds, Bats, Mice and Squirrels Out of Your Home The Problem: If you have lousy roof vents, don’t feed bad. About 60% of the roofs in Minneapolis that we inspect do. There are three common types of crappy roof vents in Minnesota: Plastic turtle-style (A) Plastic louvered (B) Non-louvered metal vents (C) […]

Roof Snow Removal in Minneapolis

Friday, July 15th, 2016

How Using a Roof Rake Can Make Ice Dam Problems Much, Much Worse The Problem: You learned your lesson in the winter of 2011 with the epic ice dam outbreak that hit Minnesota. You read up that removing snow from your roof will prevent ice dams. Ice dams get their fuel (i.e., water) from the […]

Blending New Cedar Shakes With Old

Friday, June 24th, 2016

Minneapolis Cedar Roof Expert Gives Examples of Cedar Roof Repairs We are often asked about how cedar shake repairs will look compared to the surrounding roof. Here are a bunch of examples of projects where we repaired cedar shake roofs and the differing degrees color variation between new and old cedar materials. If a near […]

Does Sun Cause Ice Dams?

Friday, June 3rd, 2016

Observations From the Experts on the Relationship Between Sun and Ice Dams Experience tells us that all ice dams are created when there is an area of the roof that is above 32 degrees that creates snowmelt which then runs down to an area of the roof that is below 32 degrees. Seems logical enough. […]

Minneapolis Ice Dam Prevention

Friday, May 27th, 2016

Using Insulation and Roofing to Address Chronic Ice Dam Issues in Minnesota How to Prevent Ice Dams In Minnesota Ice dam prevention in Minnesota is a tricky business. So much so that we hesitate to say any home is truly ice dam proof. It’s true that homes built after roof trusses became popular are far […]

Who to Call With a Roof in Limbo?

Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

Repair or Replace Your Roof…Start First with an Honest Roofing Contractor The Problem: At some point in the life of your roof, regardless what type it is, there will be a time when fixing a few problematic spots will stretch out its remaining life by a few years. You can call a standard roofer, but […]

Why Orange You Going to Stain Your Roof?

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

Staining Your Cedar Shake Roof is Not a Great Idea…Here is Why The Problem: Your neighbor just had some stuff sprayed on his roof and it looks pretty spiffy. It looks almost like a new roof! But here is the problem with pigmented products when applied to cedar shakes: they fade in irregular patterns after […]

Minneapolis Hail Damage Map

Saturday, August 22nd, 2015

Minneapolis area home owners are often surprised at how quickly storm chasers arrive at their door steps after the storm itself has subsided. It’s a safe assumption that strangers will be knocking at your door within an hour after a hail storm passes through your neighborhood. We have to admire the efficiency with which these […]

Cooling Tower Ice Removal – Minneapolis

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

Ice dam removal in the Twin Cities has been all but non-existent this season. That’s good news for most homeowners! Ice removal on the commercial side of the universe seems to be a more consistent problem year to year and this season was no exception. The calls we typically get involve removing ice from around […]

What causes ice dams: Answer #93

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

What causes ice dams? Google that question and you will get a lot of answers, the most common of which will be something about heat escaping into the attic, which in turn causes snow to melt on the roof and refreeze on a lower area. Standard stuff. In a broader sense, ice dams are caused […]

How to deal with water leaking into your home

Monday, January 12th, 2015

I’ve been asked many times over the years about how to deal with water leaking into a home. It’s obviously a super stressful situation, so having a few pointers can help. Here is a PDF that shows one technique for managing water leaks into your home (Ice Dam Leaks Minneapoils Water leaking down walls Minnesota […]

Ice Dam Prevention in Minneapolis and St. Paul

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

Ice dam prevention is a bit of a misnomer. Technically, it’s almost impossible to fully prevent ice dams if the conditions are right. Those conditions are: lots of snow, temperatures fluctuating between 10-20 degrees, inadequate insulation and ventilation and air leaks. Let’s not forget about air leaks. We are in fact the only company in […]

Minneapolis ice dam prevention

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

The best solution to ice dams in Minnesota is holistic. Because ice dams in Minneapolis are the result of a complex interaction among many variables, including insulation, ventilation, roofing, home architecture, climate and homeowner lifestyle, the answer to each ice dam problem is always unique to the case. Some ice dam prevention is as simple […]

Chimney leaks in Minneapolis; Part One

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Chimney leaks in Minneapolis are very, very common. Unlike many areas of the country we deal with the affects of ice and snow, in addition to the normal forces that affect chimney performance such as wind, rain and the sun. I will be writing a few posts about common chimney damage in the coming weeks. […]

Cedar roof types in Minneapolis

Friday, December 12th, 2014

In the past twenty five years I have inspected over 9000 cedar roofs in the Minneapolis-St.Paul area. That’s a lot of climbing. In that time I’ve seen just about every type of cedar roof imaginable as well as all manor of defect and curiosity imaginable. That timeframe has allowed me to observe a number of […]

Roofing prices are on the rise in Minneapolis

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

The primary challenge in working with insurance companies in terms of the replacement of roofs damaged by the August 6th hail storm isn’t so much in defining an accurate scope for the work but in getting paid fairly for that work. Insurance companies have an immense apparatus in place to depress pricing. It’s based on […]

Insurance companies pay differently

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

Okay, I should be moving on to part 2 of my last post “How to Fight Your Insurance Company” but this info just came in and I couldn’t resist. Something that civilians don’t see in the midst of all of this hail storm madness is that the quality of the work that will be performed […]

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