Slimy roofer behavior

Doing a multi-100K addn&reno on my house. New roof required and spec’d (“asphalt shingles”) in plans.

GC completes the roof then says I’ll owe him for the copper around all the chimneys, under a shed edge where it meets an existing valley and around a skylight.

Does this strike anyone else as slimy behavior?

Why do I think it is?

  1. He &the roofer saw the roof before beginning work
  2. Why would a GC bid a job, knowing a roof is required, and then after the fact 5&10 me for flashing
  3. And, if flashing was extra why not talk to me about whether I want copper or alum.? (The existing flashing was alum.)

Maybe this isn’t a bad question for a poll.

Sounds more like slimy general contractor behavior…
Why blame the roofer?

i would never use copper unless it was asked for.

I’ve never even heard of anyone useing copper unless the contract called for it.I would take a real close look at it,hope its not just spray paint :shock:

If its in the scope of work contract tell him sorry for your mistake of not putting it in the contract.

Wait a minute you said skylight… if it is an aluminum skylight the copper will have corosive problems if he used copper. Thats in the spec of roofing. I would tell him sorry your loss. He knew better they are just trying to get some more money out of you.

Just for the heck of it what is he trying to charge you? :!:

sounds pretty strange. you dont just put on copper without approval. Its not cheap.

I’m with GTP here - we need to know what the contract details were like.

Was it “General Contract for repairs / renovations / additions, charge customer % of all completed work + added $$ or % for change orders”

or was it

“General contract for repairs / renovations / additions, charge set fee for all work as discussed & described on the estimate (or on contract) + added $$ or % for change orders”


& On top of those two options, did you MAKE or AUTHORIZE any change orders?

I will not debate the copper against supposed aluminum, because if that is true, then it is a definite error and will result in the aluminum corroding and be eaten away through the galvanic reaction.

Regarding the replacement of flashings.

Maybe they could not determine the extent of the useability of the existing flashings until the roof shingles were removed.

Maybe you were not around for the roofer to discuss with you, and/or the GC was unaware of the necessity of the replacement required to complete the job to a water tight condition.

Would you expect the roofer and his crew to sit around all day long awaiting your arrival to make what should only be a very minor difference in price, unless you are speaking of more copper being used than what was described.

The labor is still nearly the same, except you have to add more for copper to be more careful with it.

Was there any clause in the contract that allowed any minor necessary repairs to be done, to provide you with the correct weather-tight results you were expecting?

Be more precise please and if you have a copy of the contract, share it openly for review.


AS far as not aware they should know better, I dont shingle without replacing what is replacable. Copy the contract about the roofing and post it with some pictures of the flashing to see if it is copper.


Copper and aluminum can be against each other. If there is not water there will be no reaction. If the aluminum is painted there will be no reaction.

I use copper if it is not in the contract. Sometimes the way to make some flashings you need to use copper. You can solder the joints. As long as the aluminum is not mill finish, there will be no problems.


I have replace painted trim coil stock as well as aluminum baby tins which were completely eaten away from the chemical reaction to the copper.

I have never run up against any other old roof that had used a high quality product, such as Pac-Clad with a Kynar 500 finish on it in the residential tear-off market place though.

It goes against the rules, so I would not recommend doing it. Read the SMACNA Manual and the NRCA Manual for their views on this practice.


Hi Ed,

I understand what happens.

Practical experience and rules do not always mix.

I’ve yet to sell one inch of copper on a roof. Tried to on several jobs over the past couple years but none want to pony up the extra money.

Done a few new roofs were they had a copper bay window but the contractor hired that out to another roofer.

More than likely the roofer was just doing what he was told by the general.

Lefty you have a lot to learn. Practical roofing knowledge was not a happy accident. Its too bad not every roofing principal has gone through roofing apprenticeship to really learn what the hell they are talking about.

Apparently the OP is happy with his high end top of the line flashing…

We have not heard from him.


Copper and aluminum can be against each other. If there is not water there will be no reaction. quote]

Galvanic action (or reaction) is an electro-chemical reaction… it happens even in a vacuum, with zero moisture present.

And I’m not just getting this from a book, I’ve seen it for myself.


stop pickin on my uncle lefty hes old school they know the drill

What the heck does that mean?


What the heck does that mean?[/quote]

you know,old school :smiley:

Old School.