Most weather related issues for a home begin – or end – with the roof. So, it’s no exaggeration to state that the single most important physical characteristic of a house may be its roof. Trouble areas or a poor quality roof can result in expensive water damage within the house so it’s vital to catch these problems before any damage can be done. As homeowners it’s important for us to inspect and maintain the quality of the roof and consistently ensure the integrity of the roof.
Some important factors to keep in mind are:
Multiple-layer roofs (shingles laid over shingles) will have a shorter lifespan.
An unventilated or poorly ventilated attic reduces roof lifespan.
Tree branches rubbing on a roof or the accumulation of leaf debris on a roof can shorten the life of roof shingles.
Severe weather such as hot summers and harsh winters can affect your roof. Weather fronts that introduce dramatic temperature swings within a 24-hour period can also shorten lifespan because of the rapid expansion and contraction of the roof materials.
What’s the Best Way to Heat My Roof?
Warmzone offers several options when it comes to heating your roof. And each system can be customized to further meet your specific needs.
One of the most popular systems for heating roof edges is the RoofHeat STEP system. This system features thin, low-voltage heating element that is installed directly under the roof shingle. (The system is also safe to install under metal roofs.)
The semi-conductive polyethylene heating element comes in 12-inch wide rolls and can even be nailed or stapled through and cut on site. Other widths are available for heating gutters and downspouts. The heating element is polypropylene fused during fabrication to achieve water proofing and protection from alkaline or salt damage.
Heating Gutters and Downspouts
The ideal solution for heating gutters and downspouts is self-regulating heat cable. The heat cable is effective for heating roof edges, gutters and drainpipes to help prevent costly ice and water damage, frost erosion and dangerous falling ice.
The self-regulating roof and gutter heating cable is extremely effective and energy efficient. The UL listed cable meets the requirements of the NEC (National Electric Code) Section 426. The durable cable features an irradiated conductive core that increases the heat output as the outside temperature falls and decreases the heat output as the temperature rises. This proven construction makes it tough, safe, and extremely energy efficient.
Most residential automated self-regulating heat trace systems consist of the heating element and a thermostat or snow sensor (activation device). (Larger systems may require another contactor, depending upon the power requirements. Heat trace systems rely on the thermostat to activate and keep the gutters and downspouts clear of ice.
Warmzoneroof heating systems are fully automated and maintenance free. Warmzone roof deicing systems have been installed in Denver and most other cold regions around the country and are still the most effective and discreet for roof deicing and gutter trace applications.
Roof heating systems can be customized to accommodate just about any roof type and configuration. Warmzone self-reg roof and gutter heating cable may also be combined with other recommended roof heating systems, such as the RoofHeat STEP deicing system to create an optimal solution for you. We’ll work with you to create a customized system to best accommodate your specific snow melting needs as well as your budget. For more information, call 888.488.9276 today.
Nowadays consumers are not only concerned with saving money, but about doing their part to minimize their carbon footprint and help protect the environment. Perhaps it is these factors that have contributed to the steady growth of radiant heat – in addition to the luxurious warmth that it offers.
Radiant heat systems provide the most efficient way to heat homes and businesses. Unlike forced air systems, radiant heated floors have virtually no heat loss, so there’s no wasted energy. And the systems operate on renewable energy. (Hydronic floor heating systems are also available. These systems utilize a boiler to heat the specially treated water that is pumped through a series of PEX tubing.)
Traditional home heating systems use a series of vents and a blower. While standing over a vent in the winter time can be a nice way to warm up, unfortunately that comfort doesn’t spread evenly across the whole room or last very long. Most of the room can warm quickly, but it cools equally fast. The heated air blown from the vents rises to the ceiling and dissipates, abandoning the floors and lower levels of the home. This is known as stratification – a situation where the top levels of a room are warm and the lower levels are colder, oftentimes by as much as 10 degrees. The cooler temperatures at “knee level” are especially uncomfortable for children who spend a lot of time playing on the floor.
Most forced air heating systems use natural gas to produce a flame that heats air. The warm air is then distributed throughout the house through a series of conduits. Some ducts may run through cold basements, causing heat loss in the air being blown from the furnace. In addition to the air cooling slightly as it travels through the house, warm air can also escape wherever there are small openings in the ducts and closed vents. When combined with stratification the inefficiency of forced air heating systems becomes glaringly apparent. Simply put, transferring heat through the air is not an energy efficient solution.
Recognizing the lack of sustained warmth and cooler temperatures at lower levels in the rooms, most parents frequently bump up the thermostat to blow more warm air from the vents. This eventually raises the temperature, but significantly raises the monthly heating bill as well. There’s no escaping the fact that a great deal of heat loss occurs with traditional blower systems. And though vents in some rooms can be closed in an effort to drive more heat to occupied rooms, hot air continues to escape, whistling from the closed vents. When the thermostat is cranked high enough the environment can be warmed, but forced air systems are notorious for heat loss and wasted energy.
Unlike transferring heat through the air, radiant heat warms a surface directly by expanding out from the heat source. This is the most efficient form of energy transfer. Heat radiates through objects via infrared radiation, warming objects and people in the room.
Radiant heat systems offer a significantly more efficient means for heating homes and businesses. In addition to being at least 30 percent more efficient, the floor heating systems provide an even, continuous level of warmth. And since radiant heat originates at the floor, you’ll enjoy the natural benefits of heat rising, minimizing heat loss due to dissipation.
Hydronic floor heating systems with RAUPANELs utilize an efficient boiler to heat specially treated water that is then circulated through a closed loop of PEX tubing by a series of pumps. Hydronic systems require a special ‘mechanical room’ for the equipment. Because hydronicradiant heat systems can operate on natural gas or other fuel, the operational costs may be lower than those of its electric counterpart. But both electric and hydronic systems offer the luxurious and energy efficient benefits of radiant heat.
Radiant heat has recently come into the spotlight as an efficient and cost friendly method to heat almost any area. It is a product for both businesses and consumers that allows safety, flexibility, and comfort. From interior applications like heated floors to snow melting systems like Warmzone’s industry leading ClearZone snow melting system, there are many ways a radiant heat system can improve your home or business in the cold winter months. Knowing how a radiant heat system works and what components are needed are some of the first steps in purchasing a system, but the most important aspect of the process is installation. That’s why Warmzone offers free installation training for installers.
Proper installation is crucial to ensure a radiant system functions safely and as intended. Proper installation also ensures the longevity and optimum performance of the system. Since the correct installation is so important, get started here with some information from the experts at Warmzone to help assure your installation goes smoothly.
A properly installed radiant heat system begins with the components. When installing radiant heat under flooring, a heating element is the first component needed. Warmzone’s ComfortTile heat cable is perfect for custom floor heating projects. The heat cable is available on spools or pre-spaced in easy-to-roll-out mats. These mats are simply rolled out and laid over the subflooring. Keep in mind that when installing the cable/mats, it is important that the cable is never cut or damaged.
Radiant floor heating systems are then controlled with programmable thermostats and a sensor for temperature control. After cables or mats have been laid out and secured, a licensed electrician must connect the wiring and complete your installation. (This is to ensure that your warranty remains valid.)
With Warmzone’s ComfortTile floor heating systems, superior components are standard. ComfortTile cable and mats are suitable for almost any flooring, and Warmzone’s programmable thermostats are designed specifically for radiant heat systems. They are simple to use and include an installation wizard for a quick and painless installation. A thermostat from Warmzone also allows for troubleshooting by exporting your information to the web for technical support.
Automated snow melting systems require heating cable, a contactor panel, and an aerial or in-ground sensor. These systems use the aerial or in-ground sensor to detect precipitation and temperature. When weather conditions warrant, the sensor triggers the system and power is sent to the heat cables. The system runs until the area is clear and then automatically shuts down. Aerial sensors are used for most home installations, while in-ground sensors are more often used for commercial applications. This makes an automated system a great way to save time, increase safety, and keep power costs low.
An automated snow meting system can require extra consideration when installing, so it is important to work with a provider that includes complete system design and layout services. This includes the proper materials and information necessary for the electrician, such as load calculations, breaker sizes and number of breakers. By working with Warmzone you’ll be completely prepared before any installation takes place.
The ClearZone snow melting system is a proven industry leader, and includes unrivaled installation support from Warmzone. These systems can be put into driveways, sidewalks, steps, loading ramps, or just about any area that needs to be heated. When choosing and installing a snow melting system, it is important to make certain that you are using high quality, versatile, and sturdy components. At Warmzone, ClearZone snow melting heat cable is also available on spools for custom configurations, or mats for larger areas.
Great products will only work if an installation is done completely and properly. When laying out the cable for your system, it should be done carefully. Installers should be careful with the use of items such as metal rakes that may damage your cable. It is important once again to be sure you do not cut the cable, that the cables are not touching and spaced properly. (Generally, cables should be 3-4 inches apart, depending on your system.) The cables must be properly secured to the remesh as well.
To keep the cable from resting on the ground, place MeshUps plastic chairs under the remesh. These supports keep the cable off the ground during concrete pours and ideally, keeps the cable 2 inches from the surface being heated. This step prevents suboptimal performance and will help maintain the soundness of the cable in your snow melting system. If your cables are touching or not installed appropriately it can ruin the cable and make your system inoperable. Another important way to avoid an inoperable system is to test your cables when you receive them, as well as throughout installation.
When installing your aerial sensor, it is important for proper functioning that the sensor is unobstructed from the weather, so it can accurately detect temperature and precipitation. After installing your snow melting system or any radiant heat system purchased from Warmzone, fill out your warranty card. This is a step that many customers forget.
A snowmelt system can be installed by anyone, but the value of installation training and support is immeasurable in helping to avoid confusion and mistakes while installing. Warmzone is the industry leader in installation support. Not only can you or your installer contact a Warmzone professional at 888-488-9276 at anytime, you will also have access to other industry leading installation help that can make your installation quick and simple. With Warmzone’s professional design services, you can receive a detailed AutoCAD, which includes all the details of your system, from layout, to the power requirements, and all of the technical specs. It helps to ensure the proper installation of your system.
If you have questions about your components or system layout, Warmzone has technical support experts on staff ready to help. Warmzone also has videos and general installation overviews available. Technical guides and installation manuals are also available online.
If you are more interested in training prior to installation, check out Warmzone University. Warmzone university is completely free and has personal installation training that you can complete online with your instructor. You can also take the training in person at Warmzone’s office in Salt Lake City, Utah. An installation expert is also available to speak to at anytime at Warmzone, or if you need an electrician or contractor to help with installation, Warmzone can connect you with one in your area.
Warmzone understands the importance of installation and has the options to make sure your system is installed correctly. Check out Warmzone’s industry leading services. If you’re interested in a free quote or have other questions, contact a professional today at 888-488-9276.
Purchasing a snow melting system for your personal or commercial property is an important investment that can increase your property value. Radiant heat systems are versatile and easy to customize so they can be installed in most mediums, including concrete, asphalt and brick or stone pavers. Snow melting systems are fully automated, and can add a level of safety and convenience to your property during cold winter months.
When considering a snow melting system, the process of purchasing and installing begins with the design. This is where working with experienced professionals pays off. Warmzone’s design and engineering services are second to none, which is one more reason why construction professionals regularly turn to Warmzone when it comes to installing radiant heat.
While designing a snow melting system may seem like a simple matter of using the proper components, the fact is that quality components are only a small part of the process. Radiant heating systems are only as good as their installations, so proper design is crucial. Successful installations are made easier with well thought out and planned designs, which are key to the system’s proper performance.
There are important factors that must be taken into consideration when designing a snow melting system. Some of the initial factors that should be considered are the available power and the square footage of the area to be heated. These factors can help determine the operating cost of the system, which is usually less than hiring a professional snow removal service. (A simple formula to determine operating cost has been included below.)
In regards to the power requirements, homeowners should be familiar with the following basic guidelines. One 30-amp breaker supplies enough power to heat a 170-square foot area. To heat a driveway of 350-square feet, two 30-amp breakers (or one 60-amp breaker) would be needed. Homeowners can check their home’s main breaker panel to see the power coming into the house. (Typical homes feature either two 100 amp panels or two 200 amp breakers. These are located at the top of the main breaker box above the main breaker panel.) But when looking to install radiant heat, the bottom line when it comes to power requirements is that an electrician is ultimately the one to address all the power issues. If you have questions about available power, contact Warmzone and we’ll be happy to assist you.
After you have measured the area that needs to be heated and evaluated your power availability, it’s time to consider the system’s location and weather conditions. This includes altitude, average snowfall, and average winter temperature. Using these factors will help determine what layout and components will be best suited to your project. The basic components needed for an automated snow melting system include an aerial- or pavement-mount snow sensor, a heating element, and master controller. A good design will also include all the breaker and power-related information for the system.
The design process can be daunting, but not for the professionals at Warmzone who have years of experience designing custom radiant heat systems for all types of applications. At Warmzone, a snow melting system can be designed and installed on virtually any property. And Warmzone offers a variety of the industry’s most proven and trusted products. Each system at Warmzone is carefully custom designed, and includes a detailed CAD that includes layout, load calculations, breaker sizes, number of breakers, and system performance expectations. Having a system designed by professionals at Warmzone also gives you options when it comes to your budget. if you don’t want to heat an entire area, the system can be designed to heat any size or shape of area. A few options include:
Heating two 24-inch wide tire tracks
Heating only the high traffic areas
Heating the trouble spots, such as the incline of a property
Heating an 8-foot strip down the center of the driveway
At Warmzone, industry leading products like ClearZone heat cable can be easily laid out in custom configurations to meet the specific needs of your project.
All in all, working with professionals who include system design and layout services will minimize issues that may occur with installation, and can save you money and time. With Warmzone’s unparalleled customer service and installation support, there is help available at anytime. If you have further questions or are interested in a free quote, please visit our website or contact a trusted professional at 888-488-9276.
Determining the Operating Cost of a Heated Driveway
Determine the total square footage of the area that will be heated. (The average American home has an 800-square foot driveway.)
Multiply the square footage by the heat required (37 watts per sq. ft. for residential). This will give you a total for the watts per square footage required.
Divide this number by 1,000 to convert to kilowatts.
Look up the kilowatts-per-hour rate from the local power utility company.
Multiply the total watts-per-square footage by the watts-per-hour. This gives you the cost-per-hour of usage for the snow melting system.
EXAMPLE (for an 800-square foot driveway): 800 (sq.ft.) x 37 (watts) = 29,600 (total watts).
29,600 divided by 1,000 = 29.6 kw per hour (This is what the power company will charge you per one hour of operation.) The average utility rate is .12 cents, therefore: 29.6 x .12 = $3.55. The cost of operation would be $3.55 per hour.
NOTE: Heating cables and mats are rated in total watts. If the snowmelt system is intended for a commercial application, then you would multiply the total square footage by 50 watts to determine the total wattage required.
Even though spring is just rubbing its eyes and beginning to stir, this is actually a great time to prepare for the next winter by installing a radiant heat system. Early bird discounts may apply to self-regulating roof deicing systems as well as ClearZone snow melting systems.
Installing a heated driveway or snow melting system in early spring puts you at a distinct advantage versus installing one later in the year. During the summer “construction season”, contractors are often unable to complete all of their projects. So, when fall comes, builders compete to purchase the necessary products to complete as many projects as possible – and the availability of dependable contractors may be limited. However, finding a contractor before the fall rush allows you to take your time interviewing and selecting the professional you deem best for your project.
In terms of finding the best installer for your radiant heat system, Warmzone also keeps track of experienced installers who have installed radiant heat systems successfully. And keep in mind, radiant heat applications are extremely flexible and adaptable, offering homeowners many options to achieve their goals, so don’t be fooled by expensive quotes with limited options.
Whether you’re pouring new concrete or repairing existing pavement, radiant heat installation is an excellent home investment that not only preserves and protects your property, but also helps to prevent slip and fall accidents, as well as injuries from shoveling. Snow melting systems can also save you the time, and eliminates the added expense of hiring a snow removal professional to plow your driveway. With radiant heated driveways and walkways, you get fully automated snow removal, and the opportunity to experience dry pavement all year round. And the fully automated systems operate silently on renewable energy.
In addition to providing industry leading snow melting, roof deicing and floor heating solutions, Warmzone’s customer services are unmatched. Each and every radiant heat solution you purchase from Warmzone comes with a professional consultation, including an AutoCAD system design, so you’ll know the proper layout and materials, proper load calculations, breaker sizes, number of breakers, and performance expectations for your project prior to installation.
Advances in tile manufacturing in the past few decades have improved the quality and choices available to consumers. New colors, new materials, larger format, thinner tiles and digital printing have all contributed to a steady growth of the use of tile as a surface. When compared to other flooring options such as carpeting and wood floors, ceramic tiles are normally preferred because they are easy to clean, resilient, and hygienic. Unfortunately ceramic tile and natural stone, if not installed properly, are subject to cracking, delaminating, and are cold to the touch. Use of electrical floor heating can minimize the cold, but can submit the tile assembly to additional stress that can lead to cracking and delaminating.
Traditionally most electric floor heating, and anti-fracturing membrane manufacturers have recommended covering the electrical heating cables with a self-leveling cement layer or a thin-set layer followed by an uncoupling crack isolating membrane and then finally installing the tiles. This process needlessly increases time, difficulty, thickness, height differentials, weight, and cost of the overall installation.
The heat membrane features a polypropylene thermo welded woven underneath to increase the bond between the subfloor and the membrane, and comes in rolls that can be laid out directly over the subfloor prior to the ceramic tile or other floor surface being installed. The design of the membrane provides an innovative uncoupling and waterproofing system for heating floors and other surfaces without movement or expansion joints in the screed.
Simplifying the installation process, the uncoupling membrane is laid directly over the entire surface intended for the installation. The electric heating cable can then be installed in the channels formed between the rounded square reliefs of the patented membrane, resulting in quick, easy, and accurate cable placement. It is NOT necessary to use self-leveling cement to cover and protect the heat cable before starting a tile installation. This results in significant savings of material, time, cost and overall weight. The floor surface can be immediately installed over the membrane and cable.
The membrane is versatile and can be used on all types of indoor and outdoor applications. And the Prodeso system is safe under all conditions and weather, and can be used to heat a wide variety of floor surfaces. It even waterproofs the substrate in the case of overlaying on cracked or imperfectly cured floors with a risk of vapor stress.
Warmzone’s Prodeso® Heat System combines the benefit of an underlayment membrane with the comfort and convenience of electrical floor heating.
The Prodeso Heat Membrane can be installed over the entire subfloor as an uncoupling, crack isolating and waterproofing membrane.
The innovative and patented Prodeso® heat system is a time saving, cost effective system to install a warm and comforting floor.
The floor heating cable is then installed in the channels of the membrane, ensuring quick and accurate cable placement.
Once the heat cable is installed you can begin installing the flooring immediately; no waiting is necessary. This allows you to install an underlayment membrane, the floor heat and tile (or other surface) all in the same day.
The Prodeso heat system will add only 5.5mm to your overall installation. That’s less than a ¼ inch, which is considerably less than many other leading systems.
There is virtually no heat loss, making this floor heating system extremely effective and energy efficient.
The patented Prodeso heat system allows you to have the comfort and convenience of under floor electrical radiant heating at an affordable cost.
Prodeso heat system thermostat allows you to program and control your floor heat cycles to accommodate your schedule, optimizing comfort and minimizing operating costs. The system gives you the pleasure of under floor heat where you want it, when you want it.
The Prodeso heat system is an easy to install floor heating solution, and comes with a 10-year limited warranty.
To ensure the maximum benefit from your Prodeso floor heating membrane, it is recommended to use ComfortTile floor heating cable. ComfortTile heat cable is a premium, proven heat cable that is used for a wide range of radiant floor heating applications. The quality manufacturing is evidenced by the twin conductor heating cable that is matched with premium materials, enabling the ComfortTile heat cable to withstand the harshest conditions while providing superior floor heating performance and fast response times. The heat cable is only about 1/8 of an inch in diameter, and can be quickly and easily placed in the channels of the Prodeso membrane.
Today a growing number of homeowners are investing in radiant heat to warm their homes. Indoors or outdoors, radiant heat is an efficient, environmentally friendly, versatile solution for your home heating and snow melting needs.
As you might expect, radiant heat works exactly as it sounds—it radiates through surfaces (think sidewalks, driveways and wood floors) to warm a specific area of your home. Warmzone offers several choices for radiant heat systems; the two most popular being:
Hydronicradiant heat—relies on specially treated hot water delivered through a network of pipes underneath an indoor or outdoor surface
Warmzoneradiant heat systems are designed to deliver consistent, evenly spread heat throughout your home, according to your specific preferences. Radiant heat generates a feeling comparable to the warm, enveloping heat you would experience sitting on warm sand at the beach. That’s because these systems depend largely on heat transfer from one object to another. The science behind radiant heat systems effectively eliminates the draftiness and heat loss associated with traditional forced air, making them much more comfortable and much more efficient.
A switch from forced air to radiant heat can also improve the air quality of your home, which is especially important if you suffer from hay fever or equally unforgiving allergic conditions. Forced air systems force, or blow air into your living space, along with dirt, dust and allergens that can compromise your environment. With radiant heat, there’s no duct cleaning or dust to contend with. They’re also very green systems. Inside, radiant heat can be programmed to heat your entire home, or timed to heat specific areas as you move from your kitchen, to your living room and then bedroom to retire, conserving energy for pennies on the dollar.
This same science works wonders outside to keep snow and ice away from your home. An outdoor radiant heat system (snow melting system) involves the laying of pipes or electric cable just below the surface of a driveway or walkway. Their flexibility makes them effective under brick pavers, concrete or asphalt pours and are easily configured to accommodate odd-shaped or hard-to-reach areas. Warmzone sensor-activated radiant heat systems are designed to anticipate snowy conditions to heat walkways, driveways and other areas without resorting to harsh snow melting chemicals; chemicals that can kill vegetation, irritate puppy paws and contaminate ground water. They also eliminate the pain of shoveling and, over time, the expense of snow removal services.
Fortunately, whatever your needs are, Warmzone takes a top-down approach to radiant heat system delivery, and it begins with a phone call. When you call Warmzone, you can to talk to radiant heat professionals with years of experience, free of charge to discuss your radiant heat needs. Based on your input, we can determine what system is right for you.
Warmzone offers a vast selection of products and years of industry experience. We can put together the perfect radiant heat system to meet your needs and your budget. And if you are a die-hard do-it-yourselfer, you’ll appreciate not only access to the pros, but our vast library of materials, including articles and schematics to help you along the way. For more information you can reach our radiant heat professionals at 1-888-488-9276.
Each spring, it’s a good idea for homeowners to check their roofs and make sure they survived winter’s icy barrage intact. Look for damaged, loose and missing shingles, loss of granules on asphalt shingles, deterioration of the sleeves and flashing at vent pipes, and corrosion or damage of other roof flashing. (“Flashing” helps direct the flow of water around openings.) Also, take a look after any severe weather event.
Most roofs are designed to take the beating delivered by Mother Nature, but like everything else, roofs have an effective lifespan, so to prevent possible leaks and costly water damage it is recommended to inspect your roof twice a year. (Ideally, homeowners should inspect their roofs in the fall as well as in springtime.)
Roofs in cold climate areas are susceptible to gradual deterioration over the years as a result of repeated freezing and thawing of snow in areas where pockets of ice accumulates. Roof damage can be very subtle, but tiny problems can grow into large, costly problems that not only affect the roof, but the inside of the home as well. That’s why careful inspection of the roof is so important.
The origins of roof problems and likely “leak points” are at its flashings (such as the drip edge, valleys, and wall-to-roof flashing). Penetrations such as plumbing vent pipes, chimneys and skylights are also more vulnerable to leaking. This means that a home with an elegant roof line that has multiple intersecting planes, a chimney and maybe a couple of dormer windows is more likely to leak than a simple gable roof on a rectangular-shaped house.
Most roof leaking is the result of an event, such as a strong storm followed by a threshold of deterioration after which the material begins to fail. Failure points can also be a result of manufacturing or installation defects. Also, ice dams are a common culprit when it comes to roof damage and water intrusion.
Snow and ice buildup occurs when runoff reaches the colder roof eaves and refreezes. Over time, the buildup increases, resulting in large rims of ice near the roof’s edge that cause water to pool behind it. The pooled water seeps under the shingles and refreezes at night, which can threaten the roof’s integrity and eventually lead to costly water damage inside the home.
Self-regulating heat cable and low-voltage RoofHeat STEP systems are two leading solutions for heating roof edges and preventing ice dams. These automated systems keep roof edges clear of snow and ice, and the heating elements can also be installed in the roof gutters to further facilitate runoff. Ensuring that water and ice are never trapped on your roof offers peace of mind, knowing that ice dams are not threatening your home. View more information and options for heating your roof.
The Importance of Taking Care of Your Roof
Helpful Roof Information
A quality roof is the key protective element of your home. A poor quality roof can wreak havoc with the interior once it starts to leak. Staining, mold, and rot can be the results of water intrusion. So when it comes to installing your home’s roof, keep these factors in mind:
Multiple-layer roof – A roof installed over an existing roof will have a shorter life.
Quality of roofing material – You get what you pay for. “Economy” roof materials have a shorter life
Installation – Sloppy or improper installation shortens roof life
Attic ventilation – An unventilated or poorly ventilated attic reduces roof lifespan.
Trees near the roof – Tree branches rubbing on a roof or the acidity from the accumulation of leaf debris on a roof can shorten the life of roof shingles.
Harsh climate – Severe weather, including hot summers as well as harsh winters. Dramatic temperature swings within a 24-hour period also shorten lifespan because of the rapid expansion and contraction of the roof materials.
The life expectancy of a roof varies, depending on the type of roofing material, the weather, and quality of the installation. With this is mind, here are some lifespan averages for the different types of roofs (based on “average” conditions).
Three-tab Asphalt Shingles: approximately 15 years
Finding the Right Snowmelt System Components and Services
Winter can be a treacherous time for business and homeowners when it comes to navigating the icy driveway, parking areas, and sidewalks. The best way to ensure safety around your house or business is by installing an automated snow melting system. These systems are reliable, easy to install and provide peace of mind for your home or workplace. When you work with trusted industry leader Warmzone, the systems include premier components, superior customer service, installation support, backed by years of radiant heat expertise.
Expertise and customer service is key when making such a significant investment, and at Warmzone, full design services are available to get you started off on the right foot. After discussing the project needs with you, a radiant heat expert will design a comprehensive radiant heat solution that is customized specifically for your property. The system layout includes a detailed CAD that outlines your system’s layout and materials, power needs, proper load calculations, breaker sizes, number of breakers, and performance expectations. After you have worked with an expert to design your system, it’s time to start your system installation.
Proper installation is essential to radiant heat systems; that’s why Warmzone offers free installation training and support. Whether you are a professional or a homeowner doing a DIY installation, installation training is available in person or online. Installers can also call our installation experts at 888.488.9276 if they have any questions.
Using Warmzone’s proven UL listed Clearzone heating cable, snow melting systems can be installed in almost any medium, including concrete, asphalt, and pavers. ClearZone is a high quality twin-conductor, single-point connection cable that can withstand the stress of fresh concrete pours and heat of hot asphalt. Warmzone’s standard CZ cable is rated at 220 degrees Fahrenheit and is designed to produce 30-50 watts per square foot. (For asphalt installations, a special ClearZone cable rated up to 460 degrees for up to 10 minutes is available.)
The durable and versatile heat cable is available off spools or in mats that can be easily rolled out for quick installation. Installation for your project begins with this heating cable being laid out and secured to a re-mesh. This re-mesh is supported by plastic Mesh-Ups that keep the heat cable elevated during the concrete pour. (It is important that the cable does not rest on the ground.) After the cable is laid out and secured, the concrete or asphalt is applied.
The next essential piece of an automated snow melting system is the automatic sensor (activation device). These temperature and moisture sensors can be pavement mounted or aerial-mounted. Aerial sensors are typically used for residential applications, while pavement mounted sensors are generally used for commercial snow melting projects. When the temperature reaches a set point (usually set at 39°F) and moisture is present, the sensor signals the master controller / contactor panel to send power to the snow melting system’s heat cable. There are benefits to both sensors, and each are well suited for particular projects.
To continue learning about how Warmzone’s snow melting systems, check out Part II of Snow Melting System Details below.
Snow Melting System Details (Part II)
Finding the Right Snowmelt System Components and Services
Aerial sensors are typically used for residential snow melting systems (and roof deicing systems). Warmzone’s WS-2C aerial sensor sets the industry standard with new enhancements that make it the most popular and trusted. The activation device has a universal power supply allowing it to auto select input voltage, a redesigned case, and increased moisture control sensitivity. This sensor detects moisture through an interleaved grid at the top of the unit, and temperature is detected by a sensor at the bottom of the unit.
The WS-2C is compact and easy to install, features an adjustable set point and has manual, automatic and standby capability. Another bonus of Warmzone’s aerial mounted sensor is its smart system compatibility. When you purchase the optional WS-AUX and CS-1 cable, you can control your system from remote locations through your telephone.
Pavement mounted sensors are generally used for commercial projects. The ground-mount sensor is directly mounted in the surface of the area to be heated, which allows for increased energy efficiency without sacrificing effectiveness. When the set point is reached and moisture is detected, the sensor signals the master controller, which activates the ClearZone snow melting system. This unit is only used with a pavement mounted sensor, and is a small NEMA 1 wall mounted control panel. The panel s designed so it can be controlled from an external signal. It can be in standby mode to activate when needed, or can be turned on manually to melt snow drifts or ice that may have formed in shaded areas. Warmzone’s master controller is not only technologically advanced, but is also very affordable. The Warmzone controller provides maintenance free, UL listed, under pavement heating. After the storm, to ensure that the heated area is completely dry, the pavement mounted sensor is equipped with an “after-run” function to ensure complete dryness and no ice formation.
Still have questions about ClearZone snow melting systems? Check out this snow melting system overview and other documentation, or contact an experienced representative who can provide sincere, non biased recommendations based on your needs at 888.488.9276.
Radiant heat systems work. It’s a proven technology that produces impressive results. But like most technology related products, if a radiant heat system isn’t installed correctly, the results can be equally disappointing. Installing a radiant heat system is not difficult, but it does need to be done properly. You can buy the best snow melting system components on the market, but unless they’re installed correctly, you won’t see the results you’re expecting.
Recently named “Vendor of the Year” by the National Association of Custom Home Builders, Warmzone is a proven and trusted industry-leading provider of radiant heated driveways, heated floors and roof deicing systems. The company achieved its position by not only offering superior products, but by including the industry’s most comprehensive customer support services, including free installation training, technical support, and system design. These unparalleled services distinguish Warmzone from the competition, and have set the gold standard for all radiant heat providers.
“Our products not only work, but they’re among the industry’s best,” stated Bryan Morris, Director of National Sales for Warmzone. “But unless installers follow a few simple guidelines and install these systems correctly, the quality of the materials will make little difference.”
Some of the most common installation mistakes include:
IMPROPER CABLE SPACING. Too often, installers neglect to follow the cable spacing rules: Keep the cable at a minimum spacing of 2 inches and a maximum of 4 inches (center-to-center). Make sure the cable in adjacent mats is at least 2 inches apart.
IMPROPER CABLE DEPTH. In concrete applications, many times installers allow the heat cable to rest on the dirt prior to the concrete pour. (Invest in Mesh-Ups. These plastic support ‘chairs’ are extremely affordable, and they can make all the difference in the world between a successful and an unsuccessful installation.) Mesh-Ups elevate the re-mesh (and heat cable) so that it is not resting on the ground when the concrete is poured. It’s a simple, affordable solution to prevent poor snow melting system performance, not to mention unhappy customers.
NEGLECTED WARRANTY CARD. Too many installers forget to fill out the warranty card and mail it to the manufacturer. Don’t let this happen.
FORGETTING TO TEST THE CABLE. Too many installers forget to test the cable during all phases of the installation. Start by testing the cable out of the box and then throughout the installation.
COMPROMISED HEAT CABLE. Maintain the cable integrity by never cutting the cable, and take extreme caution when using shovels and rakes during concrete pours.
One way to limit mistakes during an installation is not only to avoid the above errors, but to follow the handy checklist below, put together by Warmzone’s experienced support staff:
Before buying and installing a radiant heat system, review the checklist below.
Verify the correct voltage of your home or business (220/240 or 110/120).
Verify the available amperage. Don’t guess or assume. You’ll need to be certain, so we recommend having an electrician come to your location to measure the amperage.
Do your homework before hiring an electrician. Let’s face it, not everyone is competent or ethical. Preferably, find one who has been in business for several years. Ask around and talk with those who have personal experience with electricians.
Keep in mind that the National Electric Code (NEC) requires that the system has 30mA GFEP (30mA trip protection).
Make sure the installer has completed Warmzone’s free installation training course.
Perhaps the most overlooked tip – and one that can eliminate installation mistakes and unhappy customers – is to take advantage of the free training!Call 801.948.7577 or 888.488.9276 to sign up or learn more.
Part II: Stories from the Support Desk
Learn From Your Mistakes
Installation Support Experts Reveal Some Unfortunate Installer Mistakes
While most mistakes can be remedied, it is – of course – much easier to simply do the job right the first time. Here are some stories of past installation blunders that could have easily been avoided:
Installation #1: DON’T CUT THE CORD!
“Instead of starting the cable installation as close as possible to the electrical source, one installer began running the cable from the terminated end. After laying out the cable, he discovered that he had about 60 extra feet of heat cable – including the splice to the cold lead. He cut the excess cable and then ran the heat cable (from the terminated end) directly into the ETO2 control unit!
Needless to say, this presented a significant fire hazard, not to mention that the entire system was now inoperable. This disaster could have been easily prevented with a few minutes of consulting with one of our support staff, or by completing one of our installation training courses.”
Installation #2:SPACED OUT
“Many installation problems are a result of improper spacing of the heat cable. And while mats come with the cable pre-spaced, the adjacent mats still must be spaced no less than 2 inches apart. The photo below shows how one installer laid out the cable and then applied the concrete pour. Instead of cutting the white binding tape to make turns with the mats, the cable was simply ‘serpentined’ all across the driveway; overlapping and bunching up and so on.
Again, this could have been avoided by making a simple call to Warmzone, viewing one of our installation videos online, or completing an installation training course. Instead, the concrete had to be dug up and the system replaced. Don’t have time to take the 45-minute installation training course? Think again.”
“Mistakes like these shouldn’t happen,” Morris emphasized. “Installers can complete a simple installation training course prior to installing the system, and they can always call a member of our support staff if they have any questions during the installation. If they do either of these things, then they’re likely to save themselves a lot of stress.”
Test the heat cable during the installation and record the readings in the fields provided on the warranty card. After installing your radiant heat system, complete and mail your warranty card.
Double check your cable spacing. (Minimum spacing of 2 inches and a maximum spacing of 4 inches.)
Perhaps the tip that can most effectively eliminate installation mistakes and unhappy customers is this: Take advantage of the free training!