GAF New Roof Bid Questions

Hi all. Hope you can offer some guidance.

Received a couple of bids from very reputable companies - good reputations from friends and neighbors. No subs, in business a long time, etc.

Trying to decide -

Master Gaf installer is $500 more than Certified installer including system plus. He is using felt paper and decent ice shield brand. Otherwise the same.

Certified GAF installer - system plus using gaf tiger paw and weather watch.

I guess I’m going with cheaper, but are those gaf materials better than usual generic materials? Do I really need synthetic?

I know it’s confusing why would I look back at saving $500, but was thinking of going for silver or gold pledge warranty and certified installer cannot offer that.

Is a master really that much better than a certified?

Anything you guys can add would be appreciated.

All smoke and mirrors. GAF has degraded a horrible shingle and created a shiny unrealistic warranty. Do you buy extended warranties on your tv, car, vacuum cleaner? Whether it is clear or not you are buying that phony warranty. Better check all your baffles, eave vents, dormer overbuilds, etc.


Appreciate the point about warranty and other items being more important. Would love to know some other things to be looking out for.

Are you suggesting I forgo anything but the standard warranty because it’s all nonsense up sell anyway?

I am ok with the price and shingle brand…

Yes I am. Choose your contractor based on his reputation. A warranty is only as good as the person who writes it and GAF is not a company I would trust.

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Sorry I wasn’t clear. I was listing the potential loopholes that manufacturers will use to get out of paying out on warranties.

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Read the fine print on the warranty. In my experience over 11 years in this business, Manufacturer Warranty claims are about 1 in 400 jobs. So you have a 0.25% chance statistically of having a warranty claim. Then you add on the statistical probability that you would still own the house 5 years, 10 years, 30 years down the road. Now throw in the challenge and difficulty of getting any of the manufacturers to honor their warranty and pay out. When you put that all together, the roof manufacturer’s warranties are mostly useless. Were I purchasing a roof, it certainly wouldn’t be in my top 10 metrics for choosing the Roofer or the Manufacturer.

Like Tileman said, GAF does not make a superior product. Go to one of the roofing supply stores and ask to simply hold their laminated shingle and also to hold several others. You don’t need to be an expert roofer to see/feel the difference.

I’d recommend Owens Corning Duration or Atlas Pinnacle Pristine laminated shingles. If these “reputable” contractors don’t wish to install those products, find other reputable contractors in your area who will. Or do whatever you wish.

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Thank you! I’m not offended by your take on the actual shingle…I don’t take it personally :slight_smile: I understand it’s a basic shingle but they are really big in my area, so installers are plentiful and pricing is right.

Great takes on the warranty. Seems like problems aren’t common with good roofers, and even if there were a problem GAF will come up with ways to avoid covering…

Any other common dumb things I should be asking them. I have the basics down by comparing the quotes and seeing what they are including.

One roofer said standard felt paper is perfectly good and not to spend on synthetic. Thoughts?

I really appreciate your comments. Since you aren’t selling me a roof…I feel like they are more valuable than from the salesperson.

If the roof is installed correctly, you really don’t need any underlayment. My company installs synthetic felt on every roof for safety reasons (will not tear out from under a roofer walking on it) and it is superior if a storm blows in. Aside from that, it doesn’t matter.

I’d ask if they are going to make certain the roof will comply with all local codes after the install. If a permit is required by your local municipality, make certain they pull one properly. Check to make certain they have valid General Liability and Workman’s Comp insurance. Check Google Reviews and Angie’s List, those are mostly entered by Customers and therefore have more meaning than the BBB which gives almost everyone an A+ if they pay the BBB Fee.

Without seeing photos of your roof, cannot say what things are important to be considered. It isn’t rocket science though. Find a reputable local Contractor that will provide 5 local references for work performed in the past 6 months to year. Call the references.

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Awesome. Thank you!

Don’t need a permit in our town good to know about the felt. Funny about rocket science - it’s just such a big amount and nothing I’ve done before so it’s a bit daunting.

Good idea to get his references. His insurance etc is good. No subs, local in town roofer. Been around 30+ years. All online reviews are good.

Loving these replies. Really appreciate them.

Silly question - but is there a better day of the week to schedule installation? Is Monday better than Friday because of rest? Any thoughts? Don’t want to overthink but also don’t want them having to finish up on a Friday night …

If you hire someone who’s quality of install depends on the day of the week then it isn’t someone I would ever trust to do a decent job in the first place.

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Also, I would shy away from anyone who used the speed of instillation as one of their selling points. While there is nothing wrong with finishing a job in one day but rushing to make a 2 day job into a 1 day job is not the way to insure quality.

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Nah. I am going with amazing contractor. No worries there and they are set for two days. I just know human nature and people rushing to be done at the end of the week…

I encourage my guys NOT to push a completion to 4:00 on a hot day. Our cleanups are much better when they’re not hot and tired. I would rather a couple guys show up for an hour in the morning to fine tune yard, gutters etc.


NEVER finish a job in the dark.

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What state do you live in? The part of the country you are in matters when it comes to underlayment options. I own a Roofing Company in Texas. We choose to not use felt. We are in San Antonio, not close to coast line. Our standard Install is synthetic underlayment. Will they provide a workmanship warranty against leaks using felt??

Hi. Thanks! 10 year workmanship warranty … I live in the northeast and am being told it’s pretty standard to use felt as long as its not going to be inclement weather during install. Hope that’s true.

Of course it is ok. If it will be covered promptly good felt is better than synthetic. Synthetics main advantage is UV resistance if it is left exposed to the sun for any length of time. I would NEVER install synthetic under a tile roof so that should tell you something.

10 years ago or more roofing felt was made differently than it is today.

Back then a good felt job would hold up for at least 2 weeks and likely twice that.

The felt of that time was thicker and had more asphalt saturated into it, many affixed it with staples and some used cap nails.

Nowadays most felt is complete garbage even the 30#.

When exposed to the sun the stuff shrinks and pulls away from the staples so now it’s not affixed very well anymore and there are holes in it.

This only takes a couple days.

Most of the felt made today doesn’t meet the D226 standard that felt is supposed to meet to be suitable for rooftop use.

The last time I used a Premium 15# (Certainteed roofer select) felt it rained for 2 days and the crap got saturated and water went right through it, it was on a new build but it still made me look bad.

I’m sure there is still good felt made but it is not available to me unless I special order it a pallet at a time.

I have had many houses facing West on lake Michigan felted in for a month or more hold up to wind & rain with just felt and no leaks in the past so it’s not that felt is not good.

The synthetics cost 3x-5x as much as felt when the cost of the cap nails is factored in, so synthetic is far from inexpensive for what it does.

If the building is going to be shingled the same day it doesn’t matter at all which underlayment is used and in fact felt is better because it breaths while most synthetics do not.

For a long term temporary roof type dry in the synthetics can’t be beat, they need to be properly affixed with the right fasteners though.

There are a lot of people that affix the synthetic with standard staples, this negates any advantages of using synthetic in the first place but if shingled the same day does not matter at all.

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Hi. Great reply on felt! I’ve never seen it explained in such detail. Thank you.

Will be shingled the same day - so looks like felt is good for my job.

Appreciate the time!!