Why We Don’t Do Roof Repairs

Why We Don’t Do Roof Repairs

Why We Won’t Waste Your Time With Roof Repairs

Because Chicagoland Homeowners Deserve Better From Our Industry

Close up view on Asphalt Roofing Shingles Background. Roof Shingles - Roofing. Shingles roof damage covered with frost

A Chicagoland roofing contractor can make good money doing nothing but repair work all Spring, Summer, and Fall. Then, they can rest up through the winter and start it all back up in the spring. So why don’t we do roof repairs? Well, we’ll tell you all about it.

Anatomy Of A Roof Repair

Homeowners call in for roof repairs for one of two reasons: either there’s a leak, or there’s storm damage. Pretty much anything else that goes on with a roof will pass under most homeowner’s radar. If circumstances don’t force your hand, it’s a safe bet you never think about your roof.

So, if someone calls about their roof, it’s guaranteed that they have a real problem that needs attention. We understand that; we just don’t think repairs are cost-effective.

How Roofs Fail

Roof failures can show themselves in many different ways, but the symptom is always the same. “Hey, there’s a leak over here,” is the clarion call to all roof repair contractors. It’s exceedingly rare to get called for any other issue.

Leaks can occur from leaky flashing, opened seams, lifted shingles, structural weakening, and so on. You can list 100 different sources, but if your roof is younger than 15 years, they all come down to one cause – shoddy installation practices.

The original installer could have mixed brands, gone cheap on the materials, cut corners on the underlayment, or just plain didn’t use enough nails. It doesn’t matter what he did; it matters that he did something he shouldn’t have. And now your roof is leaking long before it should be showing any problems.

And that’s the thing; the younger the roof is, the more interested homeowners are in finding a way to repair it. But, with roofs, that’s skewed logic.

Earlier Fails = Bigger Problems

Consider what should happen with a properly installed roof system. It sits there for 15-30+ years, depending on the quality, and protects your home until you notice it’s looking worn down and you have it replaced. Notice, the word leak wasn’t in there at all, not even at the end. A properly installed and maintained roof should NEVER leak, even when its time is over.

So when a 12-year-old roof starts leaking, it’s guaranteed that somebody messed up something during the installation. So when an 8-year-old roof starts leaking, it means the installation process was exceptionally poor.

If you give it some thought, you’ll realize that the younger a roof is when it fails, the more important it is to rip it off and start over. Early failures mean big problems, and repairing a poorly installed roof (and that’s every non-storm-related failure) is a lot like a combover when you’re 20. It might make you feel better, but it doesn’t fix the problem.

How Poor Roof Installation Will Haunt You

There’s a lot more to your roof than the shingles sitting on top. There are multiple layers of underlayment (unless there aren’t) to help prevent leaks and water damage to the roof system. There is meticulously laid flashing (unless it wasn’t) anywhere the plane of your roof meets an obstacle. And there are drip edges (or maybe not) installed at the gutters to keep water from backing up under the shingles.

There’s a long list of roofing materials that are rarely discussed but are part of every installation (unless they were left out to save on cost) that can’t be installed after the fact. Unfortunately, these are also the items that unscrupulous roofing contractors will either go cheap on or leave out in order to save a buck.

Besides, when your roof fails in 7 years, they’ll be operating under a new name and impossible to find. So you call someone else, and they agree to repair your roof. But how do you fix the fact that the entire roof was built with substandard practices? It can’t be done. So you have to call them again next year. And the next. Until you’ve spent enough to have replaced the roof in the first place.

Living Up To Our Word

Every roof we build comes with a workmanship warranty that lasts as long as the warranty on the product. If you buy a 30-year roof, get a 30-year workmanship guarantee, too. Since the industry standard for workmanship warranties is anywhere between five minutes and two years, we’re proud of our willingness to stand behind our work.

But having these lengthy warranties has instilled in us an inability to do things halfway. After all, we don’t treat our warranties as a dare; they’re our promise to you that we do things the right way. With that in mind, we have no interest in stringing along some poor homeowner with repair after repair when what they really need is a new roof.

Now, if we come out and see that your roof is fine, we’ll tell you that, too. We don’t sell roofs to people who don’t need them. But we also won’t sell repairs when we know they won’t solve the real problem, and piecemeal repairs will never solve the real problem.

If you are going to give us your hard-earned money, then we want to give you back something that we can promise will work for you for the next 15-30 years. Anything else just feels wrong.

If you suspect there’s something wrong with your roof, contact us at Krumwiede Home Pros for a free quote.

Kitchen Remodeling vs Refacing

Kitchen Remodeling vs Refacing: Which Makes More Sense For Chicagoland Homeowners?

And What Is Refacing,


Refaced kitchen with white cabinets and dark counters

Many Chicagoland homeowners are, right this second, looking at their kitchens and thinking, “Meh.” They’re unhappy with the tired, drab look of the room and really wouldn’t mind a more modern feel to the space. Most would make the mistake of thinking that only a full remodel will give them the kitchen they want, and most would be wrong. You actually have two choices: a full remodel or just refacing the kitchen.

The Full Kitchen Remodel

A full kitchen remodel is an extensive reimagining of your cooking space from the ground up. Your kitchen is stripped down to the subfloor, and all new cabinetry, plumbing, electrical, and appliances are installed in a new, modern floor plan for maximum efficiency. The process can take over a month, during which you won’t have access to your kitchen.

Kitchen Refacing

Refacing is about a lot more than just your cabinet doors. When your kitchen is refaced, you keep the shells of your cabinetry and give them a new look with modern DuraCore doors, fresh hardware, and new features like soft-close rails or slide-out shelving. You can also rearrange your cabinetry to create a better flow to your kitchen and even install new counter space and new countertops. This process can be accomplished in as little as three days.

Comparing Kitchen Remodeling With Refacing

We’re the first to acknowledge that a full kitchen remodel can yield amazingly beautiful results, but so can refacing your kitchen. In terms of practical, day-to-day usage, most homeowners wouldn’t notice much difference between the two methods.

Before we get into the differences, let’s talk about what’s the same with either option. In either kitchen remodeling or kitchen refacing, you can:

  • Pick from a wide array of colors and styles
  • Replace the flooring
  • Add modern conveniences like a lazy susan or slide-out shelves
  • Rearrange the cabinetry
  • Change the location and type of appliances
  • Add an island
  • Replace the countertops
  • Improve the flow

All of the above changes are possible no matter which method you choose to update your kitchen. Now, let’s look at some of the differences between remodeling and refacing.

Kitchen Remodeling

With a full kitchen remodel, you may have to live without your kitchen for up to a month or even longer, and the cost is up to twice the cost of refacing your kitchen. There is also a good chance that you will have to deal with multiple contractors throughout the process with such a major undertaking.

Also, the cabinet materials, unless you have them custom-made, will almost always be of a lower quality than what you had removed. New cabinets just aren’t as durable as the ones they made even as little as 20 years ago.

However, you can completely change the floor plan of your kitchen, even moving your plumbing to accommodate a modern flow. You can even include things like new windows in new locations if that’s your desire.

A kitchen remodel is a blank slate with only the shape of the walls and the size of the space hemming in your imagination. And, in truth, walls can be moved, too. It’s just a question of how much money you want to spend and how long you can stand to be without your kitchen.

Kitchen Refacing

Kitchen refacing can create just as dramatic a change in your kitchen as a remodel will, but without throwing away those old, better-built cabinet shells. The only place a refacing falls short is that most contractors don’t want to do any serious plumbing or electrical work, which takes moving your sink out of the equation.

During the refacing, your cabinet doors will be replaced with DuraCore doors that are remarkably strong and almost impervious to heat and grease. While you get to keep the old, better-made shells, you don’t need to keep the old tech that came with them.

Modern tech, like soft-closing glides for the drawers and other easy-access features, can be added to your old cabinets to go with their new, modern look. Also, all the hardware can be replaced, and you can even change from visible to hidden hinges if you’d like. In short, you get all the looks and modern conveniences of brand new cabinets, but without their high price tag and lower build quality.

The top two features of kitchen refacing are the short build time – as little as three days – and the lower cost – from 30-50% cheaper than a remodel.

So What Does It All Mean?

All of the above comparisons offer us a few conclusions.

  1. If you are looking to move windows and get rid of walls, remodeling your kitchen is the way to go.
  2. If you don’t mind that the sink, windows, and walls will stay where they are, refacing is worth serious consideration.
  3. If time and money are important factors in your decision-making process, then refacing your kitchen is the way to go.
  4. The end result of refacing or remodeling your kitchen will provide a dramatic and beautiful change and will feel about the same in function.

If you think refacing the kitchen in your Chicagoland home is the choice for you, contact us at Krumwiede Home Pros for a free quote.

What Is Cabinet Refacing And Does It Last?

A full kitchen before and after cabinet refacing, with before looking crowded and tired and after looking bright and fresh
Cabinet refacing is often confused with refinishing, the less thorough cousin of the home remodeling world. It’s an unfortunate reality that refinishing sounds more permanent than refacing since that’s the opposite of the truth. Consider refinishing as painting the door of your Chicagoland home and refacing as replacing that door with a better one, and you’ll be closer to the facts.


What Happens When You Reface Cabinets?

Cabinet refacing has many levels, especially in the kitchen. In fact, it could be more aptly named as kitchen refacing at the most thorough level, but that would become confusing, so we stick to the single term no matter how far we take it.


The Cabinets

It should come as no surprise that cabinet refacing starts with the cabinets. First, the doors and drawer fronts are removed and tossed out or recycled, never to return. Later in the process, they are replaced with high-quality materials of a design picked out by the homeowner.

Then, all hardware is removed and set aside, leaving just the boxes and shelves that make up the shell and interior of the cabinets.

Next, the shells are thoroughly cleaned and abraded to ready them for a new surface veneer chosen by the homeowner. It can match or contrast the new doors or even clash with them for a unique new look.

When we are done, all exposed sides and door frames will have a fresh new look.


The Doors

We replace all doors with DuraCore products, which are impervious to kitchen heat and resistant to grease and staining. They are also much stronger than standard cabinet doors and come in a variety of designs and colors.


The Drawers

Each drawer front is replaced with superior materials that match the rest of the doors in the kitchen perfectly.


The Gadgets

Along with new facing, you can add soft-close glides to the drawers and even have sliding shelves replace the original shelves in each cabinet. You can also get better use out of your corner cabinets by having us install lazy susans, turning unused space into handy storage.


The Hardware

You can use your old hinges and pulls or elect to replace them with new hardware to finish the new look of your cabinets.


Extra Steps

For a completely new look for your kitchen, you can replace your old countertops with beautiful new ones in rich quartz.

We can also relocate your cabinets to allow you to move or enclose large appliances like your refrigerator.


How Long Does Cabinet Refacing Take?

We know that it sounds like a ton of work, and it is, but cabinet refacing is fast. The average kitchen can be refaced, including relocations and new countertops, in no more than a few days. Measured against the weeks it would take to do a full replacement, refacing is lightning quick.


But Does It Last?

Since we are using veneers instead of paint or varnish, your cabinet’s new look will last for decades. We only use the highest-quality materials when refacing cabinets, so we can trust them to last as long as our lifetime warranty. Yes, lifetime. You’ll never have to worry about your cabinets ever again.


And Here’s The Kicker

One of the big secrets that kitchen remodelers don’t want you to know is that cabinet refacing gives you an entirely new look to your kitchen for a little over half the price of a full replacement. Also, modern cabinets are weaker and less durable than the cabinets from even 20 years ago, which makes cabinet refacing a win-win every time!

If you want a new look for your kitchen and want to explore refacing your cabinets, contact us at Krumwiede Home Pros for a free quote.

Why Offering A Lifetime Warranty Was An Easy Decision

Offering A Lifetime Warranty Was The Easiest Decision We Ever Made

Scared Lawyer
When most contractors say words like ‘lifetime workmanship warranty,’ their lawyers start flying out of the walls voicing objections. It was no different with our lawyers until we made them understand that there was almost zero risk. How did we convince them?

It was easy.


High-Quality Everything!

Offering a lifetime workmanship warranty on a new roof is considered insane by almost every expert you ask. The scope of the job, they say. The potential for errors, they cry. They point their fingers here, there, and everywhere – every direction but at themselves.


What A Warranty Really Means.

A warranty is a promise. Partly a promise by the roofing contractor to the client, but it’s more a promise to themselves. After all, no contractor likes doing warranty work. It costs money directly, but it also costs them money that the crew isn’t making working on a paid project.

So, most contractors only warranty their work for the period they are certain it will hold up. That means that a limited period warranty is telling you, in writing, that this contractor’s work can’t be trusted beyond this point. It says our faith in our work stops here.


High-Quality Materials.

If you use high-quality materials that are designed to work together, warranting your work for life is a no-brainer. And if you don’t trust the material you are using, why are you installing it into people’s homes?

We don’t sell anything that we don’t believe in 100%. Ever.

High-Quality People.

Too many roofing companies operate on pure body count, thinking any idiot can swing a hammer 30 feet in the air. While this is true, that doesn’t mean they are hitting the right thing at the right time in the right way.

We’ve found that hiring good people and teaching them what to smack, when to smack it, and even why it needs to happen that way has a dramatic effect on workmanship quality.

Then, we pay them a fair wage, so they are willing to stick around. After doing that for several decades, you end up with an amazing workforce that you know will do the job right every single time.


High-Quality Processes.

One of the biggest mistakes roofers make is mixing brands. We call that building Frankenstein roofs, and the result is about as positive as it was in the book.

A roof is more than just a bunch of shingles slapped over some plywood. Roofing manufacturers have worked hard to engineer roofing systems that will stand up to the test of time.

Each manufacturer has its own underlayment, seals, shingles, and supplemental parts. They are all designed to puzzle together in harmony, with each component enhancing the strengths of the next. Certain components of one manufacturer are less expensive than those of another.

Roofers who do Frankenstein roofs buy the cheapest version of each component and then throw them all together into a monstrous roof stew. The worst of these jumbled roofing systems fail within seven years.

We never mix manufacturers for our roof systems. And we never sell a system we don’t believe in completely. Even at different price points, it is possible to only sell quality systems, so that’s what we do.


It Comes Down To Faith.

We can confidently offer lifetime workmanship warranties because we believe in our people, our process, and the products that we sell. And if a roof does have an issue caused by an error on our end, making it right is simply the right thing to do.

So, deciding to offer a lifetime workmanship warranty wasn’t just easy; it was the only possible course for us to take. We’ve always known we had the best installers, best process, and the best products in the industry. The warranty is nothing more than our way of acknowledging the truth. We believe completely in who we are and what we do.

If you need to replace the roof on your Chicagoland home and want it guaranteed for life, contact us at Krumwiede Home Pros for a free quote today.

How Poor Installation Practices Can Kill Your Manufacturers Warranty

Poor Installation Practices Can Void Your Manufacturer’s Warranty

Denied Stamp
When a manufacturer’s adjuster visits you to inspect your failed product (shingles, siding, etc.), they have one and only one task: to find a way to blame anything other than the product for your problem. Installers who take shortcuts make an adjuster’s job exceptionally easy. Here are some of the most common ways an installer can become an adjuster’s best friend.


Frankenstein Roofs.

Each quality roofing manufacturer supplies more than just shingles. They make the underlayment, seals, soffits, and everything else that makes up a roofing system. Each component is designed to complement the next, and they all fit together perfectly to form a roof system that will last decades.

Different manufacturers price each component at different levels. The less reputable roofing contractors know this and will use the cheapest version of each component to construct the world’s prettiest and most useless roofing system. All while charging you a rate that goes with the high-quality shingles they use to cover the whole mess. The result is a hodge-podge of mismatched parts that might last seven or so years.

And when the inevitable happens, and the system fails, your warranty claim gets denied so quickly that the adjuster’s engine is still warm when they go to drive away.


Shoddy Installation Practices.

Each manufacturer creates specific installation procedures for their products, down to the number of nails to put in each piece and where to put them: these instructions arent’s guesses but the result of years of testing and experience.

They engineer their products to keep the price as low as possible and often use installation procedures to replace strengths that would be too expensive to include in the product itself.

For example, one shingle manufacturer states that each shingle must have six nails holding it down. Why? Because five nails will allow too much movement and a product that would work well with just five nails would be too expensive to be competitive in the market.

But nails cost money, and putting in just five nails could save an installer a couple hundred bucks in labor and materials per roof. Besides, who’d know, right? The adjuster, that’s who.


Cheap, Cheap Labor.

Many roofing contractors go through installers so fast they ought to have turnstiles installed on their work trucks. They pay little and demand much, so almost nobody sticks around long enough to truly learn the job. Some even pull extra labor from temp agencies.

There is just no way for a short-term worker to know what will or won’t erase your manufacturer’s warranty. And there just aren’t enough crew leaders in a setup like that to watch everything they do. So if your installer suffers from a permanently inexperienced crew, don’t bother reading the warranty on your roof or siding.


So What’s A Chicagoland Homeowner To Do?

You can’t be expected to watch your roofing or siding installers from dawn to dusk. But, who’s to say you’d even know what was right or wrong anyway? You’re not an installer; that’s why you hired them in the first place.

So how do you protect yourself?

Step one is to not join your chosen installer in a race to the bottom. Instead, take those low ball quotes and toss them into the circular bin of history where they belong.

Step two is to talk to the contractor and ask them about their installation process and their crews. Research the product a little and verify that they use the processes outlined by the manufacturer. Make sure that you are comfortable with their answers and that they are comfortable giving them. If anything feels even a little bit hinky, run.

Last, verify that everything they use is meant to go with the covering you have chosen. Be it shingles or siding, every piece in the system needs to match the manufacturer’s recommendations.

And always remember that the adjuster is not your friend, so don’t do them any favors.

If you need some remodel work done on your Chicagoland home and want to ruin an adjuster’s day, contact us at Krumwiede Home Pros for a free quote.

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Some Kind Words from a Few Recent Clients
Very smooth process throughout the entire project, from sales, to finished product. Professional beyond the usual experience of this type. Considering the installation and product quality, pricing is fair. A solid company.
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Job was done very professionally and accurate. All reps from Krumwiede were courteous & professional. Thanks so much and will contact Krumwiede for future projects!
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I purchased windows from Krumweide and they were installed last week. The windows are top quality and the installation process went very smoothly and quickly. Local permits and inspections were handled/arranged by Krumweide as well. I'm very pleased with my experience.
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Krumwiede Home Pros completed such a great job with my kitchen cabinets and if anyone ever asked me, I would be happy to recommend them as they were fantastic.
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