We are updating our Metal Roof pages and adding our certifications, very large photo galery and also content for this page. But we wuld love to hear your feedback. What is mising, what will like you to learn about metal roofs. What you like and what we should change.
Leska LLC Blog
iPhone is one of the best designed smarthones to date. I personally love the simplicity and ease of navigation. But to me battery life was always personal issue. So many times I have run out of battery in the middle of the day.... I'm glad to tell you two facts.Matter fact every time with new release I was looking for only Two improvements (Better camera and longer battery life)
#1. I'm not alone
#2. There is solution and it "Works".
Its literally all in Proper Settings and in this article by Jeff Bessling with his is detailed step by step desriptions will change everything.
Matter of fact, in my opinion it's The best information out there.
So don't fear any longer you run out out of juice. Feel free to repost as this is One great article!
Part of every successful company is Constant improvements and product line growth.
.Here are 3 main items of what we will be offering in 2013
#1. Greater Countertops edging profile selection, including stamped edges.
We are expanding our zinc, copper and stainless fabrication and installation with new stamped edging details. Option will also include hand hammered nails. We will also offer line of matching sinks.
Expanded photo gallery of common and standard profiles with pricing catalog and lead time.
Until now we had offered mainly zinc gutters and ornaments made out of zinc . In 2013 we will offer entire roofing and wall cladding products.
#4. Synthetic Slate, Shakes and Tiles
Leska LLC become gold star certified installers with Ecostar and we will be offering entire line of they products.
Zinc Countertops and some History:
They've always been popular, but zinc countertops are coming into a time of their own! Many people may think that zinc countertops are a simple new 21st century discovery, but Zinc countertops have been used extensively, mostly in pubs and bars of Paris, France and throughout Western Europe for the last 200 years.
In fact, zinc countertops were so common that in French, suggesting meeting at “La Zinc” implies meeting a popular restaurant. Today, many modern bistros use zinc countertops to create a warm feel in a dining area.
It would take a while to list all the reasons people use zinc, but there are a few big reasons that we'll touch on: first, it's a relatively soft metal which makes it fairly simple (compared to steel) to form and polish, so you can get a smooth, waterproof surface quickly; it's also easy to care for and won't corrode. Zinc was used as a popular roofing and flashing product all over because zinc ore is fairly easy to mine and not too difficult to find.
Today's Use of Zinc as Countertops:
In today's kitchens, many designers and home owners are falling in love with this product again, mostly through exposure to modern-design, and re-discovering this fantastic product. At Leska, we love offering a a range of good choices, and this is a great option that we're proud to offer. Just like the past, today's homeowners and designers use zinc for the same reasons as previous generations. I can think of nothing better, especially to modern minimalist kitchens, than to add a zinc countertop. That warmth and character of zinc is due to the unique, rich zinc patina which will develop that will develop with use, giving each countertop a unique look. Zinc is not as hard as stainless steel, so if the countertop scratches it's easy to polish out, stainless is not..
A sheet's dimensions & seams:
Sheet Dimensions: It's not uncommon that islands are over 42” wide, and most fabricators only have access to 39” or 44” wide sheets. Here at Leska, we have access to 48” wide sheets without length restriction. If you need a 15’ long countertop, we can fabricate it from one piece! The only thing to keep in mind is that with huge countretops, delivery prices increase.
Seams: When seams are required, the biggest difference between us and other fabricators is that we will make sure you have waterproofed, lifetime seams by soldering and polishing the joints where two sheets overlap, an area where other fabricators would just let them overlap. This procedure is costly and takes time, so we understand why most fabricators simply won't do it (it's also more complicated to ship an already soldered L-shape countertop, or 15’ long countertop: another deterrent for most fabricators).
After soldering, a seam will still show as an approximately 3/16” wide area with small irregularities, ever so slightly visible. We are experimenting with different products and techniques to make the seams indistinguishable from the rest of the surface like we can with copper and stainless countertops, but it's something new, so we can't promise any solutions soon. However, even if you can still see it, it's far better to have a visible seam than to have gap where water will slowly enter and eventually expand the wood substrate, ruining a large section of the countertop and requiring expensive repairs. Some inexperienced contractors will try to use clear caulk, but that's simply not appropriate.
Round edges, radiused tables and under-mount sinks: The one thing that all of these have in common is that they all require round edges. This is another service we offer that sets us apart from other contractors. We already use a fabrication process that can make a detailed edge look like a casted edge, without any visible seam. The same goes for under-mount sinks.
Guidelines for choosing your countertop fabricator:
Will your installer weld/solder the seams?
Welded seams, as we'll touch on later, are very important to the longevity of your countertop. If your contractor is not goning to be welding/soldering your seams, it's likely that water will get under the zinc sheets and damage the wood under it.
Will your installer check the measurements with any preceeding cabinets or plumbing?
Zinc countertops are not easily altered. If you're going to have plumbing or electrical work done around your new zinc countertop it's very important that your contractor knows and can work with your countertop fabricator!
How is your fabricator getting their measurements for the new countertop?
Many contractors will only use the measurements for the countertop, assuming that a countertop that you want will be exactly square, which will make their jobs easier. This however, will not be good for you. Your fabricator should take the measurements of the area where they will be installed. If your countertop area isn't measured, it will end up with your countertop being slightly offset from the wall.
Can your contractor explain care and maintenance to you? Will they be charging you for easy maintenance that you could do yourself?
Zinc countertops will usually need maintenance, but most of the time it is only when there is a scratch that you want removed. On our website, we touch on what you'll want to do to repair scratches, but there are a few more things that you'll need to know. If your fabricator is hesitant to explain hot to preform simple maintenance, he's probably just hoping that you'll hire [read pay] him again for the repair.
A Little about Leska as a fabricator:
Designers and home owners have many fabricators to select from across the country, but bellow are few reasons most local customers end up using us.
We're a local installer: With our shop very close to Columbia, MD, we can fabricate the template ourselves or provide your contractor with exact directions as to how they should make a proper template. A good template is critical on historic homes, especially those with real plaster walls because the corners(of the room) will not be square and the walls are likely to be bowed and uneven. If your contractor fabricates a template, we can double check the design and correct any mistakes before the actual construction begins. This way, when it's installed, it will lie flush against the wall without denting the convex areas of plaster.
This is super important if the home owner does not want a backsplash! The tolerances must be precise. In place of a zinc backsplash, people end up using tile or glass mosaic, and rarely others, but do you really want to waterproof the back end with just caulk? A tight, rear-edge seam finished against the wall is very important, and local fabricator is the absolute best way to get this.
We will scribe the rear edge, and match every small curve that the wall takes with the perimeter of the countertop.
In addition to matching an uneven wall, we like to coordinate with cabinet makers, general contractors, designers, electricians. and plumbing contractors to verify important details like how the countertop will line up with overhangs, cabinet spacing, or plumbing and electricity access points. Making sure you have all your bases covered with a long-distance fabricator is just about impossible; planning specifics over the phone and sending back and forth designs, measurements, and models will almost always result in a bad fit.
Leska will provide delivery and actual installation. We make sure that everything goes smoothly and gets done right. On one of our recent jobs, we walked a 13' countertop up a very tight stairwell just because it wouldn't fit in the elevator! It's not unlikely that another contractor would try to put together an inferior countertop on-site just because they could get the materials there easily.
Zinc countertop details:
In-person meetings are also more helpful with explaining details like staging, mounting porcelain under mount sink with front apron and verifying proper size of sink. Explaining pros and cons of each metal countertop material so owner really can get what they want like for example (Many other fabricators had tried steer designer to top mounted stainless sink).
Finally Leska's lead (order to delivery) time is only 2 weeks with no charge for shipping and you'll never have to worry about scratches or other damages. After we install the countertop in the kitchen, we polish it once more and apply a special non-poisonous chemical treatement to start its patina process.
During final polish Leska LLC will walk the customer through a detailed explanation of proper care and maintenance to help them understand the advantages and appeal of zinc countertops. We'll also explain what to avoid doing on zinc countertop and we'll also leave the owner with a few products to help remove any scratches that might come up.
Zinc countertop fabrication in US is represented by only a handful of active fabricators and couple hundred resellers.
Scratches and imperfections:
From time to time we are contacted to help remove scratches on other companies' countertops during shipment or even during installation. After all, it's a soft material compared to stainless steel and even some fabricators don't take the care that they should.
Is a Zinc Countertop right for you?
We will help you really understand all there is to know about zinc with hand of demonstration and left sample for you to use and abuse. We want to make sure you really love your countertop.
This is also another great reason to contact us especially that we are most likely your local fabricators and installers. We also offer pewter, copper and stainless countertops. So we will gladly go over all materials. But mainly about each product specific benefits and characteristics. Main questions usually are:
Cost,Durability, Edging details, patina developing, heat conductivity, and maintenance.
We had already created separate pages for all countertop materials on our web site. But we will actually bring samples and let you keep those samples. The whole idea is for you to see, feel and test for yourself what you are getting into. Also we had installed few commerncail zinc countertops in Restaurants and always highly recomend for owners to go actaully see fr themselves to make sure they love what they see. Our motto is simple:
"The best customer is an educated customer" And because it will be new to many homeowners, we'll make sure you get all the zinc education you need.
Zinc Countertop Prices:
We have included some general pricing on our web site for straight forward square countertops with standard dimensions.
Keep in mind that these are only guidelines for standard prices. Each countertop, unless you conform to the most standard designs, will be different.
This ornamental resotration project in downtown Alexandria VA had its original copper railing, posts and pickets all stolen (probably to be sold as scrap). When we got there, there was only only one half-post left which was securelly anchored to the wall. In adition to the lone half-post, there were 2 twisted pickets and tiny section of the copper rails. The flat seam copper roof was completely gone, torn up by the theives.
The original balcony had been constructed years ago; since then, new railing codes had come into effect. Leska LLC had a discussion with owner to explain that we had to raise the railing to the minimal current code height of 42" to meet the current codes even though the balcony was rarely used. After we had filled in the homeowner on all the details, leska began custom fabricating each item, piece by piece.
Each post had detailed revealed panel which was quite a challenge to duplicate as all interior details were raidues and not square angles. But we suceeded with flying colors. To Prevent future theft extra heavy dute foot anchors were designed with supre sturd ways to solder anchors th posts to the copper.
Even simple pickets had 2 radiuses which then had to be soldered to the top and bottom structural rail. and custom stamp for copper rossetes had to be custom made. Leska created this process in simple mold and actually solder each individaul side to the front section.
Top and Bottom structural Copper rails:
Leska had added actualy few additional details to the both top and bottom rail as each additional bend created so much more structural rigidity and this was also key to us. By making entire rialing almost 8" taller to med new code hieght we tought that the additional ornamental bends can be also included giben fact that if we wanted to keet the enitre structure proportinatelly sound we had to increase actuall structural mass of the rail as well.
Because we didnt really had precise dimensions we had pre assemble in our shop entire railing in 3 sections with few inches of spare on each side for field modification. There is great images of this in the gallery and we then delivered thse sectins to the job site. This was of course done after we had installed new Build in copper gutters and pre tinned Copper Flat Lock Seam panels which we then assembled and fully soldered on site.
Final Image of completed Copper Railing on Balcony in Alexandria VA:
Atached is the link to detailed process of fabricating of this one of kind restoration job.
Here is another example of the huge effect a new roof can have on a home. I really think that picture speak thousand words. So, to be objective and let you see for yourself, I have attached side-by-side images of the home for you to compare followed with gallery link of 16 images for you to see.
Leska LLC used a custom Englert color called SunNet Blue. Leska had 8000 sqft of this coil custom made for us on this project! Given the mulptiple sections of roof and the details involved on this roof we used both 24" and also 20" wide coils. All of the field panels are 17" wide with 1" tall double mechanical seam. There were also 4 new custom made skylights with oversized double glass and Low E treatment measuring 45"x75" which repalced the old plastic bubble skylights. We also reframed and finished the interior of the skylights. Because modern homes have, in general, air circulation, 5 power fans were strategically installed on metal roof and were also custom flashed and painted to match the roof. In addition to that, both chimney flue stacks were also primed and painted so they matched the roof as well.
Leska's main attention and proudest detail on this project is the counter flashing detail and how we achieved this detail with existing vertical paneled cedar siding. We also painted the entire house without a spalsh of paint landing on the new metal roof. Because we know that our competion is frekvently looking into into our web site, some of our more detailed images are not displayed.
If you are interested in our work please call or email me.
I will gladly show you in person what separates us from metal roofing installation manuals and other local installers. It's sad that almost every manual for metal roofing in the US encourafes flashing details to rely on butyl tape, screws, and hiding counter flashing details with nothech panels. Reality is that those particular details around penetrations (which always cause of problems) are only as good as the sealant or caulk that the installer uses, and caulk will never last as long as a good metal seam.
Leska's flashing techniques are not some "secret technique" discovered by us. They are taught in all German, Czech, French, etc. roofing schools. These techniques have been taught for generations. With modern materials like rheinzink, malleable aluminum, stainless steel, and a couple more coupled with with modern tools, these techniques will become more and more popular and will without a doubt, become an industry standard in years to come.
Plase click here: Towson Metal roof for more images.
Leska just completed a new roof in Washington DC, Van Ness.
The most shocking thing about this roof is that when it we got there, we found two EDPM roofs that had been installed less than two months ago.The workmanship was so bad it was impossilbe to repair: the only solution was to replace it.
The original roof on the home, a metal roof, had lasted over 80 years. The homeowners got the badly installed EDPM roofs when it had slowly started to leak. The owner did what any owner would do, hire a contractor. We don't like to speak poorly of other builder's work, but in this case there were two unexcusible errors.
First, the original contractors didn't even bother to remove the old metal roof, install new flashing, and perhaps the most extreme, they didn't remove the old slates to insert the new membrane under the existing slates. Instead, they cut the membrane at the edge of the slate roof and caulk the seam. Their flashing details on the flat roof destroyed all of the hip and ridge coper flashing.
Leska separated this project into 2 tasks:
- Removed and disposed of 2 roofs.
- Lumber replacement (of course)
- Peel and Stick high-temeprature titanium underlayment.
- Temporary removal of slate and storage.
- The orignal pipe boot was damaegd by the previous installers and also used caulk to repair broken slates, so we fixed all of it.
- Leska then installed 16 oz copper panels with 1" tall double mechanical seam with tapered valley.
- 2 rows of slates were re-installed.
- We equpped the roof with new copper flashing on the hips
- All broken and caulked slates were properly replaced with new Vermont green slates.
The copper roof, as it's a beautiful material that will slowly change color (patina), was the obvious choice for the shed dormer on the fron of their home.
- The EPDM rubber roof instaleld directly over 80+ year old metal roof had to be removed.
- Leska's crew spent an entire day fixing damaged wood and removing pounds of caulk from slate and slate top flashing.
- Chimney and parapet flashing were done with the same "caulk craziness".
- Leska provide owner with multiple options
The owner, knowing how worry-free their metal roof had been talked to us about a new metal roof. We explained to them that it's almost unheard of for a metal roof to last that long, but that they would last for 12 years with minor maintenance and after that, occasional maintenance will keep your roof in great shape. Preaching that metal roofs are a great, wallet-friendly option, we encouraged them to consider one. Leska helped the owner with color selection. Along with the homeowner, we decided that a dark bronze color painted roof would look similar to aged copper which would match their home very well.
We installeld Englert's 26ga panels with double mechanical seams. Dont forget to take notice of our hand seaming techniques around the chimney penetration. The curved seam is actually a hand-made seam, something you can't get from a machine. Leska's custom parapet flashing finished the job.
This is hot topic those days, and YES there is a huge international summit soon, related to this global issue. I'm not so trusting of global politics unfortunately, and I feel that every citizen in any country can do something ver effective on his/her own and really make significant changes. If we all, or even some of us, do a little bit, the effects will be noticeable.
Without further ado, I present Leska’s water saving tips:
#1. The solution starts at home
So cut back usage here. It’s easier than you think. The largest water hog in your home is the toilet; each flush can use up to 4-6 gallons per flush! So please, go to your local home improvement store, buy energy saving toilet for as little as $95. An even cheaper option is to simply replace the water controls on your toilet for ~$25 per kit and about 1 hour of your time.
Switching from 6 gallons per flush to a toilet that uses double controls can reduce your usage to 1.6gallons per flush. These savings are significant and staggering!
energy efficinet toilets (echogreen I thing is the link)
#2. Stop buying bottled water
Many water bottle companies fill their water with tap water. The amout of trash and plastic bottles in addition to all the gas used to distribute plastic bottles filled with tap water is insane. If you get yourself a Brita filter and stop using bottled water at parties and events, you will be doing much more than you think. I'm not suggesting going to sodas; that’s even worse. However, a good old fashioned cooler or pitcher with ice, a few mint leaves and/or slices of lemon with fresh filtered tap water will quench anybody’s thirst....
#3. Washing clothes & energy efficient washing machines
It only makes sense to switch to the energy saving, water efficient European front loading washing machines. Especially if you have a large family with little kids; statistics show that that these households do the most laundry. On average, every US household does 2 loads of laundry per week.
#4. Aerated spigots.
By aerating the water coming from the shower head or faucet, it will look like there is much more water flow than it is actually coming out and will do be just as effective in washing your hands or dishes.
Not only will faucet aerators reduce the water used, but they will reduce splashing and can help if your home has low water pressure!
#5. Shorten your showers
The average US household uses around 200 gallons per day, and some people in developing countries live on less than 3 gallons per day. I am not implying that you should cut back your water usage by 197 gallons per day, but more so that there is benefit in thinking twice “Do I NEED to take a bath today?”
#6. Grass irrigation and rain water harvesting
It’s almost astonishing that nearly 98% of US households use drinking water for all water irrigation needs.
If you want to have amazing green grass, please have a large rainwater harvesting system installed so you catch all the rain that lands on your roof, store it, and then use those reserves to irrigate your lawn. In countires like Austalia, it’s a very common practice to filter and purify the rain water so much so that after processing it, they have potable water.
#7. Grey Water Harvesting
A distant cousin of rainwater harvesting, grey water harvesting, stores your water from bathroom sinks, filters it lightly, and reuses the filtered product to irrigate your lawn! Here are the basic schematics for such a system:
#8. Preserve the underground water
If you build new home, INSIST on installing a permeable driveway; avoid asphalt driveways. Insist on collecting your rain water in either cisterns, or try to have a green garden roof installed on any or all flat portions of your roof. Reduce amount of harsh chemicals in your lifestyle; antimicrobial soaps and products do eventually get into the streams and rivers and from there, into the groundwater and in the meantime, it encourages the evolution of more resistant viruses and bacteria.
#9. Ban Fracking
Fracking really affects underground water; remember that water=life.
#10. Join the Water Conservancy or other water-concious groups
In my opinion, if every person, or at least one in 5, did on of the techniques mentioned in one of the previous 9 steps, we would definitely see positive changes on our green planet.
Living the Central East Coast, while we don't have regular natural disasters, we do have serious, intermittent threats. From tornadoes passing by, severe thunderstorms lurking overhead, and 2011's 100 year snow storm, mother nature is definitely showing us her potential and baring her teeth. Coupled with steadily rising prices, how do you plan to properly protect your precious assets? How do you protect your home from damages?
At Leska, we work hard to continually be on the cutting edge. Not only do we apply green building techniques in all our projects, but we believe and stand behind entire building envelope systems.
We would like to introduce you all to our new tile roofing system; Polyset the foam tile adhesive!
Globally, more people choose tile roofs for their homes than any other roofing surface! For our area, the Central East Coast, you may assume that it may not be the best choice for our environment; but in fact, it is an excellent choice! Tile roofs are superior in so many aspects:
- Tile offers more color options than any other surface
- It has a wide range of tile profiles and shapes that can fit any style home
- It's a time tested product going back thousands of years
- You have 3 materials to choose from
- Clay - range of colors
- Concrete - economical
- Synthetic – lightweight and up-and-coming
- Tile is great for energy savings
- Leska offers tiles that are Leed certified, green products!
In addition to all of these points, tile is resilient from snowy, cold climates all the way to the classic hot dry applications. Tile has a Class A fire rating and make the tile roof much more hail resistant.
Until recently, tile's Achilles' heel WAS high wind. But those days are over! Roofers now have a ushered tile roofs into their wind resistant roof repertoire with Polyset foam, an ingenious, non-puncturing tile adhesive.
Tile roofs will now withstand winds in excess of 160mph – That's the equivalent of a category 5 hurricane!
Above are plans for a tile roof Leska is installing right now with Polyset!
How do you feel about about class 5 hurricane resistance and 160 MPH wind warranty? Tile is now resistant to hurricanes as strong as Katrina; it has been put to the test across folorda and the southern gulf coast in addition to independent laboratory testing. All clay and concrete tile roofs can now be high wind resistant!
As a certified installer with proper training, Leska can now offer full, 100% roof coverage backed by the foam manufacturer’s warranty of 20 years.
As icing on the cake, tile roofs installed with Polyset also have a great R-value!
Polyset reinforces the actual tile in the tile weakest part (i.e. it supports the center of the tile, making the area of each tile the strongest!) Also, because of how it attaches, Polyfoam does not penetrate the roof at all and everyone knows that a roof without holes cannot leak! Traditional metal fasteners puncture the roof weakening your second line of defense.
We are exclusively installing Polyset tile roofs in the Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC area and if you are building or designing a home; Polyset is not something you should overlook!
The clip below features an actual lab test of Polyset's holding power through hurricane force winds
Even Adults receive Mirracles around Christmas.Nothing spruce young parents spirit than large job completed: on budget, on time which turn ordinary home to trully one of the kind.
One Super Lucky couple just received almost complete interior home remodeling. It's trully amazing to see what can happen to the home if you remove Old carpet, standard builder grade cheapest door and windows trims. Remove flat hollow doors, $ 10 ceiling lights from 1970. Remove 10 time painted electric switches covers with modern dimmable lights. New Square outlets with seamless covers and take over year to collect material on bargain prices on close outs, etc.
Brazilian Walnut 3.5" wide plank was installed on the floors. This floor was found at close out warehose and cost only 4,80 sqft for highest grade normally comapred at over $13 sgft.Leska reused the floor covers for HVAC and spray paint the covers with 3 colors to closelly duplicate the variable pattern of the floor.
Thin Metal Tubing covers were painted over, were falling apart but surprisingly once the actual covers were removed the thin fins were clean and staright. Radiators received all new custom Wood radiator covers in each room. Front Screen mesh was made out of stock HD aluminum screen spray painted white. The actual radiator box seams are all connected with biscuits and glue like fine furniture to prevent worping.
Leska design pride.
each piece was milled from pre painted white fascia. Custom trims were all made at Owner garage. Series of saws, table saw and router tables and jigs created all the ornamental molding on display... In addition Three Rooms received additional fully custom additional wall trims. All new solid Jeldwen pine doors with new trims around doors and windows create illusion of larger windows and add character to each room. Both kids rooms have individual feel and style.
Original Family fireplace room had bare brick and brass door with mantel top.
This firepalce received fully custom ornamental wood work. Gas Insert will be installed after holliday to make sure Santa and present delivery to the 2 little kids will not be interrupted.... Slate tile and slate flooring will finish the Fireplace.
Additonal Trim work was designed and installed with extra thick door jambs and casing. Extra tall wall trims prevent wall damage. Blue wall and brown furniture create nice visual soothing contrast from bare white builder grade room.
As any girl being special this room have all unique trim, extra crown molding, wall decorative inserts, and pendant light.
First formal room from the door entry. This room will recieve much more details also down the line in the future with 10' extension, recess lights, more built in custom made cabinets and shelwing by Leska in years to come.