Raise the roof!

A few years ago we were hired to do a remodel project on a home in Ferndale. The family who hired us wanted to add a bonus room above their garage that connected to the upper story of their house. We drew up a design and a budget that fit.

Everything was going just as planned with the demolition until we came to the roof. It had to be ripped off so we could build a new floor above it. Taking a roof off a garage that size is not very difficult but it creates a lot of garbage that has to be hauled to the dump. We usually try to separate out all of the wood debris from the non-recyclable construction waste that is produced on our sites if it is possible. In this situation the idea was raised to just lift the roof and truss structure off the top with a crane, set it down on the ground during the construction of the second floor and put it back on top of the new walls. We added up the labor, time and cost of that demolition. Then we calculated the crane cost and time for detaching and reattaching the structure. In the end we figured it would save just a few hundred dollars, but the true savings was in the reuse of what we had.

The existing trusses were only a few years old and were in perfect condition. The composite roofing was in the same condition and it matched the existing roof! It seemed wasteful to just trash these materials. They were worth so much more in their current condition that in a demolished or recycled condition. It was an easy decision and it made a great show for the neighborhood kids coming home from school.

Everything we use to build has a cost. The cost is not just monetary. The question we try to ask is, “What was sacrificed so that we could use this material?” and when we have the option, we try to reuse. There is a reason the slogan Reduce-Reuse-Recycle is in a specific order.

Hope you enjoy these pictures, they were fun to take and the project turned out great too.

-Squalicum Builders Team

One thought on “Raise the roof!”

  1. Great post! I love that you were able to reuse all of that material. What a great lesson for the neighborhood kids too.

    Composite roofing is the eco-friendly alternative. I think it’ll be a growing trend in the construction industry. Oh yeah – it looks fantastic too!

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