Need help with my roof and ceiling on 1955 California Ranch
March 25, 2013 in Design Dilemma
Before I even bought the house a roofing company would not certify the roof over my garage and patio because it is flat. Then when I bought homeowner's insurance, I paid extra to insure a flat roof. Finally, some of the homes with the same design in my neighborhood still have glass all the way to the roof line on the main house. My house has a drop ceiling which covers fiberglass batting and central heat and air ducts. I could fix the ducts, but what kind of roof can I put on that will insulate and allow me to get back my pitched wood ceilings? What kind of roof will satisfy the roofing inspector and insurance company on my flat top roof?
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
You need to talk to the roofing inspector and the insurance company to see what they really want and an experienced contractor to deal with the main house, as well.
March 25, 2013 at 10:57am   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
There are certainly a lot of flat roofs around the country, but if they are not properly installed and maintained they can become problems. I wonder why you are having issues with the flat roof. Are you in an area of California that is likely to get a foot or more of snow? Are the joists conforming to code?

I once owned a cathedral style home, where the roof structure started to rot because of poor ventilation. So in addition to making sure the roof is properly insulated, you HAVE to make sure that there is good air flow.

Are you looking to make a sizable investment in remodeling or looking to just spruce it up?
March 25, 2013 at 11:17am     
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
To houssaon, The house is located in Sacramento. No measurable snow ever. A couple of times in last 30 years, a light dusting that melted almost as soon as it hit.
Right now, I just want to fix what should be fixed, but long term I would like to stay here and ditch the drop ceilings.
March 25, 2013 at 11:55am   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
apple_pie_order So far the Roof inspector / contractor and Insurance agents I have talked to recommend adding pitch to roof, This will be a problem unless I change the roof of the entire house. This is not out of the question, but there are flat top houses and a lot on flat top commercial buildings in Sacramento, so hope to connect with the right architect / roofer / insurance company to get the right answers.
March 25, 2013 at 12:01pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
You might try driving around the neighborhood to see if you find a house like yours that has been rebuilt in a similar way. Ask about their experience and if they'd recommend their contractors.
March 25, 2013 at 12:08pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
That's kind of weird, last year I bought a Mid-Century Modern house in SF Bay Area that is very similar to yours - low slope house with flat roof garage with zero problems with house insurance (I use geico btw). My house is post and beam with the tar and gravel directly above, so it's a little different than yours but the inspector did say the roof would need some repairs very soon. We are hoping to do spray foam or something similar that will add insulation to the roof since there's no attic crawlspace in our situation. For the flat roof, there is IB membrane and sometimes they can build a pitch with the foam as well. Make sure that the underlying roof structure is sound though, and not damaged by water ponding. When we save enough for the new roof, we were going to look around since there are a lot of new technologies. The eichler network is a good resource for low slope/flat roof issues, I really recommend the forum there. Oh and I would recommend a white-colored roof being you're in the valley as cooling is going to be your major issue aside from moisture.

P.S. Your new house is adorable!
March 25, 2013 at 1:40pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
Thanks for all of the great suggestions, hazeldazel! I visited the eichler pages and will go back and spend more time. My neighbor has Geico and is happy with it. When I checked they were not offering new policies in our area. I'm paid up on insurance for the year, so will shop again next year. I am just starting to shop for roofs. I am planning an addition, so would like to roof the new and old at the same time. I loved the Cliff May on houzz and would love to expose my ceilings like that, but it may be too hot in the valley, even with a white foam roof. I will check all the possibilities out, though! Thanks again and thanks for liking my adorable house!
March 26, 2013 at 9:30pm   
Thank you for reporting this. Undo
One roofer has proposed 3" thick foam panels with R19 insulation value for my roof. Expensive, but is it worth it?
April 13, 2013 at 10:31pm   
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Great room is dark - should I paint ceiling?
My great room is large 15 X 20 but dark. My husband...
Which shades make you pale?
The colour of spaces you inhabit can make or break...
Furniture, white it mocha?
I have a nursery that I couldn't finish because surprise,...
Help with sunroom off of kitchen
Hey guys!! We just bought a new house and I love the...
© 2014 Houzz Inc.
Houzz® The new way to design your home™