What Is High Performance?

Tuesday, February 6th, 2018 by Jerry Sprague

What does this really mean in the world of exterior restoration? It means that it’s built to withstand Mother nature’s brutal storms and weather for a long time, the storms that intensify at an alarming rate. Some call it global weirding where we’re exposed to more extreme conditions more often, so unless you’ve got your home up for sale, you’ll want to consider investing in your home with the right protection. As John Ruskin said, “It’s unwise to pay too much. But it’s worse to pay too little.”

One of the best kept secrets that the local roofer doesn’t know or doesn’t want you to know is that our trades actually have the last century codified and figured out. They have built various roof SYSTEMS that are designed to restore or replace in a way that actually works, in other words are High Performance and that are built to last. Like anything else whether medicine, architecture, or cooking our industry has come up with high performing low risk designs which if properly installed will stand the test of time.

As a boy, I grew up in the family trade of roofing, and was taught how to build roofs that were High Performance because they had to pass the scrutiny of professional inspectors on important projects that require everything be done right the first time. When I started my own residential company I quickly realized that most of my competitors were selling something very different. They were selling what has come to be known as cosmetic roofs. These are ones that look good on the surface but are deficient in the hidden parts that make it storm proof, watertight and durable. These are based on the marketing theory that since this is a blind purchase to the uneducated homeowner most folks will be attracted to low price, after all who wants to spend one more dollar on their roof than they absolutely need to? The low-price companies try to convince you that all roofs are alike, that it’s a commodity item. But unlike a new car which is a commodity, the roof comes unassembled. This means the contractor can control the design, the materials and installation. If any one of these critical elements are deficient then the roof, like a rocket, is doomed to fail. Like the Challenger Rocket, all that it takes is just one thing to cause a complete system failure.

The Good News is we’ve got the design, the appropriate material and the trained installers to give you what professional buyers of restoration projects demand. The High Performance job and assembly. As John Ruskin said over a century ago, “When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do…There is hardly anything in the world that someone can’t make a little worse and sell a little cheaper… and people who consider price alone are this man’s lawful prey.”

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GF Sprague & Company, Inc.
45 Kearney Rd
Needham, MA 02494