Category

Emergency Repair Service

Clean Out Your Gutters – Not Your Wallet

By Cost vs. Value, Edgewater Roofing, Emergency Repair Service, Gutter Guards, Gutters, Roof Repair, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Contractor Annapolis, Roofing Services, Winterize your home Annapolis No Comments

Problems Caused by Clogged Gutters

Cleaning the gutters is an oft-overlooked item on many a ‘Honey-Do’ list—let Fichtner Services make sure it actually gets done this year. You’ll save yourself some back-breaking, and potentially dangerous work and avoid paying thousands of dollars in damages by trusting our trained professionals to do what they do best: making sure your roof is in tip-top shape.

Why is cleaning out your gutters such an important task? Dry leaves, tree branches, and other debris can accumulate in your gutters both during the dry summer months and when the leaves start to turn in the fall season. You likely won’t notice the problem until your gutters start overflowing during the first major downpour of the season, and by that point, it’ll be too late to prevent lasting damage to your roof and home.

In addition to debris concerns, it’s also a good idea to periodically have your gutters inspected for any damage. Whether it’s a particularly strong gust of wind or a stray football that causes it, a dented or loose gutter can pose serious issues down the road if it isn’t correctly and promptly repaired.

Obstructed or damaged gutters can lead to standing water, which can be filled with harmful mold from decomposing leaves and insects. Mold is common in wet climates and can cause a wide range of health complications if it finds its way inside your home—plus it’s tricky (not to mention expensive) to thoroughly clean up, so it’s best to prevent mold altogether

The overflow can also result in a leaky roof. Water that doesn’t drain to the ground will gather on the roof, soaking through the shingles and causing substantial damage inside. The same threat applies to your basement as well. If your gutter’s downspouts aren’t adequately cleared, water can seep into your basement. This can lead to potential damage to your foundation as well as your furnace, circuit breakers, and other utilities/belongings located in your basement. A cracked foundation is a big headache for any homeowner and is very expensive to resolve.

So exactly how often should you clean your gutters? The answer is: it depends. We would advise consulting our specialists routinely throughout the year—but there are a couple additional factors that could mean you need your gutters cleaned more often. If you have pine trees growing around your house, it is advisable to get your gutters cleaned more often. The pine needles shed year-round and can quickly lead to clogged-up gutters. If you are located at higher elevations or cold climate, you have to consider the threat posed by ice. Ensuring that your gutters are clear during the cold winter months can prevent significant roof damage caused by freezing.

As the old saying goes: ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’ The experts at Fichtner Services can ensure that your home is protected from the potential side effects of clogged gutters and prevent future damage to your roof. Call today to get a free estimate and put your mind at ease.

To help maintain your gutters and lessen the need to clean, take advantage of our 10% off on Leaf Relief Gutter Protection Special!

Roof Repair or Roof Replacement – What to Consider

By Articles, Emergency Repair Service, Hiring a Contractor, Hurricane Damage, Roof Repair, Roof Repair vs Replacement, Roof Replacement, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Services

If you own a home, you know that ongoing maintenance is a reality in keeping your home in the best condition possible. Though many people don’t even think about their roof, it is one of the key components protecting your home from the elements. Ignoring your roof and the maintenance it requires can lead to huge problems down the road.

How Long Does a Roof Last?

A roof life expectancy varies based on the roofing materials used and quality of installation. Here are some average roof life expectancies:

  • Asphalt shingles: 15-40 years, based on shingle type
  • Metal roofs: 100 years or more
  • Slate roofs: up to 100 years or more
  • Cedar roofs: 30- 40 years

You Have a Roof Leak – Now What!

Perhaps you’ve noticed a water stain in the bathroom ceiling. How do you know whether the best course of action is a roof repair or roof replacement? There are several factors to consider:

Age of the roof: This is the most important clue when trying to determine roof repair vs. replacement. If your roof is close to its life expectancy, a roof replacement may be the best option.

Condition of the roof: If the asphalt shingles are curling, cracking, or missing, a roof replacement is probably the best decision. Longer lasting materials, such as slate roofs, cedar roofs and metal roofs, may simply require some maintenance.

Damage sustained to the roof: What type of damage did the roof sustain? How extensive is the damage? Roof repair vs. replacement depends upon the severity of the damage to the roof.

Installation techniques of current roof: Was the roof installed correctly to start with? Did the roofing contractor or installer follow code for the product and area you live in? If not, a roof replacement may be required to bring your home up to the best standards.

Didn’t I Just Have the Roof Repaired?

If you find yourself spending a lot of money on roof repairs and maintenance, it may make better economical sense to proceed with a roof replacement.

The best way to determine whether roof repair or roof replacement is right for you is to hire a trusted roofing contractor. Annapolis roofing contractor, Fichtner Services, offers expert advice and guidance for the best course of action to help you get the most for your money and longevity of your roof.

Roof Maintenance
Regardless of the roofing material, roof maintenance is always recommended every few years. Routine roof maintenance can increase the longevity of your roof and protect the inside from water penetration. Fichtner Services offers roof maintenance and roof inspection to find and repair damage. Common roof maintenance problems include cracked caulk around pipes and flashing, loose shingles and ridge vents, and cracked or broken collars around the plumbing pipes.

Free Maryland Roof Inspection

Annapolis based roofing contractor, Fichtner Services offers FREE roof evaluation and consultation for homeowner throughout the Annapolis Baltimore region. Call us at 866-591-1900 or schedule a consultation online.

Hurricane Season: Plan, Prepare & Protect

By Articles, Emergency Repair Service, Hurricane Damage, Hurricane Season Begins

Tree Damaged Roof Repaired By Fichtner ServicesJune 1st marked the official start of Hurricane Season and forecasters say to prepare for a more active than usual storm season this year due to warmer temperatures of oceanic waters.

The beginning of hurricane season is a good time for homeowners to review their insurance policies for adequate coverage on their property. Hurricane season starts June 1st and runs through the end of November. Policyholders should consult with their agent and develop a complete understanding of the coverages they have purchased.

In addition to reviewing insurance policies, Fichtner Services wants to share with you the three things families should keep in mind leading into hurricane season – planning, preparing and protecting.

Plan

It’s always important for a family to have a plan for emergencies, whether it be a fire, earthquake or hurricane. Every family member must know what to do to stay safe.

When a hurricane threatens, decide if your family will move to a safer place inland, go to a designated shelter or ride out the storm in your home. Make sure you stay in touch with local authorities to know the severity of the hurricane. You should also plan an escape route in case your family needs to evacuate.

Prepare

Your home should have a survival kit prepared for an emergency. It should include:

  • Non-perishable food items
  • Drinking water
  • First aid kit
  • Battery-operated radio
  • Flashlight
  • Fresh batteries
  • Personal necessities such as medication, prescription glasses and insurance information

As a roofing contractor in Annapolis, Fichtner Services knows first hand that damage that can be caused by hurricanes and other storms. There are several steps you can take as a homeowner to make sure your home is prepared:

  • Cover up windows and doors using hurricane shutters
  • If you don’t have the shutters, cover your windows and doors with ¾-inch plywood
  • Make sure your garage door is closed and anchored

Remember that serious hurricane damage can occur when wind and debris get into your house through a broken door or window. When storm damage happens, you can count on Fichtner Services to be there for emergency repairs including roof repair, siding repair and with replacement windows and doors.

Protect

Whether you stay at home or evacuate be sure that you protect yourself and your family.

If you don’t need to evacuate the area, stay indoors away from windows or glass doors. Put as many walls between you and the storm as possible. If you don’t have a basement, go to a closet or a bathroom.

If you need to leave the area, make sure you go directly to the shelter. Take your survival kit and lock all doors and windows before you go. Let your relatives or friends know where you plan to be.

Remember the 3 P’s: Plan, Prepare, Protect

Those who have a hurricane plan do much better than those who don’t. Taking a moment to plan today may help you avoid last-minute panic. It could save your home and your family.

Courtesy : Marc Carella, State Farm Insurance

Emergency Services… After The Storm

By Emergency Repair Service, Hiring a Contractor, Hurricane Damage, Roof Repair, Roof Replacement, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Services, Siding Contractors, Uncategorized

The East Coast has been battered with severe storms over the last several years including deadly Super Storm Sandy that caused millions of dollars in damage to New York and New Jersey. While we were very lucky in Maryland not to suffer major widespread damage, we were not unaffected.

This winter is projected to have severe winter storms and snow. Last month, we offered tips on increasing your home’s energy efficiency. Now, we want to focus on the steps you should take after a weather emergency.

Storm Damage Home Hurricane Irene

Fichtner Services worked to repair this damaged home after last year’s Hurricane Irene

Steps to Take After the Storm

“First and foremost, make sure your home is safe for your family,” says Tom Fichtner of Fichtner Services. Many major storms can produce damage to a home that makes it unlivable. Fichtner Services offers prompt response for storm damage emergencies to assess your home’s condition and get started on the needed repairs so you can get back into your home as quickly as possible.

1. Report Damage To Insurance Company
Once your family is safe, the first step is to contact your insurance company and let them know you have storm damage. Keep detailed notes about your conversation. If you don’t know already, ask about your deductible and to be walked through the claims process.

2. Choose A Reputable Contractor
Choosing the right contractor is the next step and it should be someone you can trust. You want to find a contractor who is established, licensed and bonded. Ask to see certificates of insurance and insist on a clear, detailed estimate that lists the materials, cost and estimated start and completion dates.

One of the best ways to find a qualified contractor is to get a referral from family, friends and neighbors. You can also check out contractor ratings on Angie’s List and the Better Business Bureau.

Read what our customers say about us

3. Document Storm Damage
Be sure you make an inventory of damaged property and personal belongings. Take photographs of fallen trees and other damage for your records. Do not discard damaged property until after the insurance adjuster has had an opportunity to review. Be present when your adjuster is inspecting damage to your home.

Fichtner Services Is Here For Emergency Service

Fichtner Services has been serving the Annapolis / Baltimore region for nearly 20 years, providing prompt and reliable service for businesses and homeowners. We are especially sensitive to the needs of individuals during an emergency or following a storm. We increase our response rates to these individuals to ensure the safety of their home and family.

If you suffered storm damage or experience emergency damage to your home, contact Fichtner Services at 888.785.7649 or schedule an appointment online.

Inspect for Hurricane and Earthquake Damage

By Earthquake Damage, Emergency Repair Service, Gutters, Hurricane Damage, Hurricane Season Begins, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Services, Siding

It’s been over two weeks since Maryland was affected by the Earthquake and Hurricane Irene. Now that all of the power has been restored to our area, major debris has been cleared away, and everyone is getting back to “normal”, it is important for homeowners to take a close look at their homes to inspect for hurricane and earthquake damage that might have been overlooked.

 

Hurricane and Earthquake Damage – What to Look For:

• Missing Shingles or Ridge Vent
• Missing or Loose Siding or Trim
• Overflowing or Loose Gutters
• Wet Spots or Sagging Ceilings or Walls Inside Home
• Debris Embedded Through Roof or Siding
• Blown Off Chimney Caps
• Cracked Windows
• Cracked Foundation or Brick Chimney

Some of the damage from the earthquake or hurricane may seem insignificant, but even the tiniest problems can lead to big trouble if left unfixed. With the winter months coming, rain, snow and cold air can enter your home through small holes in the roof or siding, potentially causing major damage. Also, water can seep into cracks in the foundation or brick and freeze in cold months, worsening the damage.

Fichtner Services has been working with homeowners throughout Annapolis and Baltimore, providing emergency repair service for those affected by the earthquake and hurricane. Some repairs may be covered by your homeowners insurance.
If you think that your home has damage from the earthquake or hurricane, contact us to schedule an appointment for a consultation and inspection.