Contractor Offers "Start-to-Finish" Roofing Project Overview

KANSAS CITY, KAN. - When contractor Rob Fanjoy moved into his home in northern Maine, he knew the roof would be the first thing that needed replacing. It was an old asphalt shingle roof that was failing badly. Despite being in place less than 15 years, the shingles were curling, crumbling and cracking. Plus they were growing moss, staining and releasing asphalt granules in a constant shower on his deck.

Fanjoy's solution? Installation of polymer multi-width slate roofing tiles from DaVinci Roofscapes®.

Selecting a Roof Product

"I'm a big supporter of man-made products that replicate Mother Nature but offer more long-term benefits than natural products," says Fanjoy. "When researching our roofing options, we determined that the DaVinci synthetic tiles resist insects, fungus, algae, mold, cracking, fading and curling. And, they're backed by a 50-year warranty that we can really depend on."

The contemporary Colonial design of Fanjoy's house, plus the roof overhang covering the front porch and bay window, suggest visual interest for the rural home. Because his house is located in an area where architectural authenticity is important, Fanjoy decided to use multi-width slate for a staggered, historical look on his roof.

"We felt that this faux-slate roof would be a huge improvement in our area over the old asphalt shingle roof," says Fanjoy. "This roof truly replicates natural slate, and it definitely lends an air of authenticity to a somewhat contemporary home design."

Choosing a Roof Color

After selecting the roofing product, Fanjoy's next challenge was choosing a color. DaVinci offered him 49 colors and 28 standard color blends to select from, plus the option of creating a custom color blend. Looking for a strong visual interest to accent the home, he and his wife selected the Vineyard blend, a combination of eight roofing colors that include dark and medium tan, light and medium gray, dark stone, light and dark violet, and dark amber.

Before selecting the Vineyard blend, the Fanjoys reviewed the "FRESH Home Exterior Colors" guide (located at to learn about how to select the best color for their roof. "We went with the Vineyard blend because the reds were a little brighter than in the European blend, and there's more brown and tan in this blend that gives the entire roof a little more 'pop' in appearance," says Fanjoy.

"Another consideration was the large, uninterrupted section of the front roof design. With the help of the Color Guide, we felt that a colorful blend would be very dramatic as people came up our driveway — and we were correct. We've received glowing complements and lots of interest in our roof!"

Installing the Roof

While Fanjoy, a contractor with more than a decade of experience, had never worked with polymer roofing tiles before, he felt confident about the ease of installation after reviewing DaVinci's how-to video and installation instructions.

"My roofing experience before this had been limited to asphalt shingles," says Fanjoy. "I very much prefer working with these polymer tiles since they're cleaner to handle and easier on your hands. No dirty grit to scrape your knuckles or tar melting and sticking to everything. Cutting and nailing these synthetic tiles was also simple. A sharp utility knife and standard nail gun was all that was needed for this project."

As Fanjoy moved through the project he became comfortable with the installation process and passes on these tips to other contractors:

Tip #1 - Adhere to the "pyramid" approach of installation for multi-width tiles as recommended by the manufacturer. Install four or five courses in a step fashion and use only one bundle at a time, as the company advises. This definitely results in a better blend and less moving around on the roof.

Tip #2 - To achieve a seamless look between the ridge of the dormer and the slope of the main roof, carefully place self-adhering underlayment and flashing metal under the dormer ridge tiles (extending up the main roof a short distance). Then get a clean cut on the main roof tiles at the meeting of the ridge to achieve a clean look.

Tip #3 - If you get into a situation where you're installing the ridge tiles over a rigid ridge vent, consider using 3-1/2 inch cabinet screws, which are self-tapping. This made it easier to drive the screws to the proper depth, keeping the shingles flat and eliminating the "cupping" when nails would go in too deep. The large, low-profile washer head assured us of excellent holding power and allowed the overlapping shingles to lay flat.

Adding Snow Guards

The area in Maine where Fanjoy resides receives about 60 inches of snow annually — sometimes much more. This year the snow started falling in late October, just weeks after he finished the reroofing project.

"Anyone living in an area with potential for snow should definitely install snow guards on their roof," says Fanjoy. "By using the nail placement markings on the DaVinci tiles, we were able to install our snow guards with the proper spacing of every 16 to 20 inches. This helped us keep a perfectly straight line and avoid worrying about the gap between tiles on the next course falling on a snow guard. These snow guards will help prevent us from getting an "avalanche" of melting snow, so they're definitely worth the investment.

"Overall, I think from start-to-finish that this job went smoothly. We made the right decision and investment with this polymer roof, plus it gave me the opportunity to expand my installation experience. I've already recommended the DaVinci product to my neighbors and others who are considering new roofs."

DaVinci Roofscapes has manufactured award-winning polymer slate and shake roofing since 1999. The roofing tiles are virtually maintenance free and far more cost effective than the natural product. DaVinci leads the industry in tile thickness, the tile width variety and the greatest selection of subtle earth-toned colors. Company products have a 50-year warranty and are 100 percent recyclable. DaVinci proudly makes its products in America and is a member of the National Association of Home Builders, the Cool Roof Rating Council and the U.S. Green Building Council. For additional information call 1-800-328-4624 or visit our website.

To see more images from this project click here.


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