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Why Your Home Needs Proper Attic Ventilation

attic ventilation

You may not pay much attention to your attic, but it’s an important part of your home and can help provide protection – as long as it’s properly ventilated. At P.J. Fitzpatrick, we try to help homeowners understand the importance of attic ventilation and how to go about making sure they have the proper amount.

There are several reasons for attic ventilation (especially for homes in the Northeast). They include:

Mold & Mildew

When your attic is properly ventilated, it can help keep the area dry during episodes of rain, snow, and sleet, when excess moisture is in the air. It can also prevent excess condensation form forming on your attic insulation. A dry attic means one that is less likely to develop mold and mildew, which can not only break down the strength of wood, but can also cause health issues.

Energy Efficiency

Attics can get very hot in the summertime (sometimes up to 140 degrees in our area), and if your attic is hot, it can increase the temperature in the rest of your home. This means you’ll have to use your air conditioner even more in order to keep cool. With proper ventilation, however, your attic can stay cooler in the summer and help keep your home energy efficient. This coolness in the winter also helps to prevent the snow on your roof from melting and forming ice dams in your gutters.

Types of Ventilation

There are two common types of ventilation – passive ventilation and powered ventilation.

Passive ventilation relies on the natural upward movement of warm air. By creating ventilation both at the bottom of the roof and at the top, cool air is free to move into the attic at the bottom and push the warmer air out of the top.

Like passive ventilation, powered ventilation also uses vents at both the bottom of the roof and at the top. However, the top vent uses power (instead of natural movement) to push the warmer air out of the attic.

The type of attic ventilation you need for you home depends on many factors. Give our New Jersey roofing experts a call and we’ll explain in more detail.

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Protect Your Gutters from Fall Debris

Today is the first official day of fall, and that means in the coming weeks, we’re going to start seeing a lot more leaves on the ground. However, the ground isn’t the only place you’ll be seeing leaves. Every fall, dozens of leaves get stuck in homeowners’ gutter systems, and this can cause problems.

Leaf Buildup

Your home’s gutter system is designed to trap water and carry it away from your home and its foundation. But when leaves get caught in the gutters (whether they landed there when they fell off the tree or they were blown there), they disrupt the flow of water.

What’s worse, if they pile up throughout the fall season and winter comes, you could experience a buildup of ice dams. These dams will make it impossible for water to enter your gutters and will cause a water backup that can lead to roofing, siding, and eventually interior water damage.

An Easy Solution

Luckily, P.J. Fitzpatrick is an expert in Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, and Pennsylvania gutters, and we know a very simple way to prevent all of this from happening. We offer what’s called a Gutter Protection System that can help prevent gutter leaves while still allowing precipitation to drain through.

In addition to protecting your gutters, this system will also protect your home’s exterior, interior, basement, and foundation – plus, it comes with a lifetime transferable warranty.

Be a step ahead of fall and call us today for your very own Gutter Protection System.

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Your Home Checklist for Fall

home insulation

While it’s still pretty warm outside, fall is right around the corner. At P.J. Fitzpatrick, there are a few things we recommend doing before the colder months hit in order to keep your home in great shape. These include:

Prepping your windows

Chilly temperatures are on their way, and the last thing you want is all that cold air seeping into your home and making it colder. Check the caulking and weather stripping on your windows. If it’s cracked or damaged, replace it with fresh caulk or weather stripping. If your windows are old or in bad shape, consider replacing them with new, energy efficient models.

Inspecting your roof

Fall and winter weather can be rough on your roof, and if you have any missing shingles, damaged shingles, holes, or water damage, they’ll only get worse as the cold seasons go on. Schedule a roof inspection appointment with one of our professionals and we’ll make sure that your roof is ready for the cold.

Checking your heating system

Chances are you didn’t use your heating system during the summer, which means it’s been dormant for several months. Before the cold sets in, make sure you replace your HVAC filter and check your heater for any leaks, cracks, and other issues. You don’t want to find out your heater has a problem when you need it most.

Reversing your fans

If your ceiling fans have a “reverse” switch on them, switch it so that they create an upward draft instead of a downward one. This will help distribute the warm air in your home when you turn your heat on.

Sealing your driveway

During freeze-thaw cycles in the winter, the ground underneath your driveway shifts, which can make any cracks or holes it may have worse. Filling in any damage and applying a seal coating can help elongate the life of your driveway and protect it during the colder months. In addition, it’ll give your driveway a bold, beautiful look.

Cleaning your siding

The summer months have brought dirt, dust, and other debris, which means your home’s siding is probably in need of a good wash. At P.J. Fitzpatrick, our Delaware siding experts recommend mixing an ordinary gentle soap with warm water and cleaning it with a soft bristle brush. You can also pressure wash your siding, however, we suggest contacting us before doing so – some siding manufacturers believe pressure washing is too aggressive for their siding.

Making sure you have enough insulation

Insulation is an important part of your home year round, but especially during the colder months. If your home doesn’t have enough insulation or doesn’t have the right kind of insulation, you’ll overwork your heater and waste money trying to keep your home warm. We can assess your insulation situation and install the required amount for your area, if needed.

Winterizing your outdoor spigots

If you have outdoor spigots, you’ll want to winterize them to prevent any water damage to your home. First, disconnect any hoses, splitters, or connections from your spigots. After that, turn off the shut-off valve for each spigot and drain any water in the pipes. Make sure you coil your hoses neatly and store them in your garage or shed.

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10 Crazy Houses from Around the World

At P.J. Fitzpatrick, we want to make sure your house is one that you love living in every day, so we offer an array of home improvement services to help. However, if you want to live a little differently, you might consider a house like one of these:

1. Though no one actually lives in it, this house in Affoldern, Germany was built completely upside down. Known as the “Crazy House,” visitors can walk through the home that features furnishings, fixtures, and accessories that are all upside down as well.

crazy house

For more photos: Click here

2. In 1999, a man decided to transform an old Boeing 727 commercial airliner into his own home outside of Portland, Oregon. The jumbo jet features a living room, bathroom, lighted staircase, and tons of storage, and is estimated to be worth twice what he paid for it.

airplane home

For more photos: Click here

3. If you’re traveling through Cincinnati, Ohio, you’ll find the “Mushroom House” on Erie Ave. This 1,260 square-foot home was designed by architect Terry Brown and 35 of his architecture students from the University of Cincinnati. It’s made from metal, wood, glass, shell, and ceramics and is crafted to look just like a mushroom.

mushroom house

For more photos: Click here

4. This house in Portugal is called the Casa de Pedra, but it’s lovingly referred to as the “Flintstones House.” Built from a mix of rock and concrete, the house is barely recognizable as a house. It features crooked, handmade windows, rough-cut log furniture, and is powered by a local wind turbine.

flintstones house

For more photos: Click here

5. In Eastern France near Strasbourg, you’ll find a home that looks like a giant spinning top. The “Heliodome” is a bio-climactic solar house that was designed to look like a three-dimensional sundial. It provides shade during the summer months and warm natural sunlight during the spring, fall, and winter.

heliodome house

For more photos: Click here

6. This octagonal house in New South Wales, Australia is built upon a rotating platform (and is actually available to rent). The platform spins a full rotation every 45 minutes, giving the three-bedroom house a complete view of the Caffrey’s Flat countryside.

rotating house

For more photos: Click here

7. In Mexico City, a couple decided that they wanted to live in a seashell, so they had this house (also known as the “Nautilus House”) built. Made from concrete, it not only features an indoor garden, but also stained glass, abstract furniture and rounded doorways.

nautilus house

For more photos: Click here

8. If you’ve always wanted to live in a space ship, consider modeling your home after this “Space House” outside of Chattanooga, Tennessee. It features three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living room, kitchen and an entrance that’s actually a drop-down airplane door.

spaceship house

For more photos: Click here

9. For 23 years, architect and sculptor Robert Bruno worked to build this giant pig-shaped house from 110 tons of steel. Located in Lubbock, Texas, the house overlooks Ransom Canyon and is designed to optimize both light and a visual experience.

For more photos: Click here

10. Head to Chelyabinsk, Russia and you’ll find a man who built his house almost entirely from champagne bottles. Called “Palace Oz,” the house was built using 12,000 bottles and was created to commemorate Hamidullah Ilchibaev (the builder)’s late son.

bottle house

For more photos: Click here

*Photos courtesy of:

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Don’t Miss Our Labor Day Sale!

Labor Day sale

If you need some home maintenance done, don’t miss our three-day Labor Day sale! On September 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, you can get a special discount on two of our most popular services:

Repair Special

Have a minor repair that needs to be fixed NOW? Maybe your home was damaged by hail, wind, or airborne debris, or maybe it just needs a little TLC. No matter what the cause, our Repair Special can help. We’re offering a deal of $189 (regularly $249) to fix minor roofing damage, gutter damage, siding damage, and more.

Gutter Clean Special

Over the summer, you may have collected a lot of debris in your gutters from rain, wind, or even birds. If they’re clogged, they’re susceptible to water backup and eventually, that water could start to infiltrate your home and cause damage. Right now, our Gutter Clean Special for $149 (regularly $189) can get your gutters back to working properly.

Make your appointment today and we’ll have your home back to normal in no time. We can even possibly be out the same day!

*Call for complete details*

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Don’t Fall for These 4 Roofing Scams

Pennsylvania roofing

Your roof is what keeps you and your family safe, and repairing or replacing it can be a big project for your home. With that said, you don’t want to trust just anyone to work on your roof – you want the best in the industry and a company you can hire with confidence.

Many homeowners don’t know the ins and outs of the roofing business and because of this, there are companies that aim to take advantage of them. Here are some of the most popular roofing scams out there and how to avoid them:

Bad Weather Claim

Sometimes after a big storm, roofing companies will place flyers on your doorknob or in your mailbox with their business information on them. They’ll usually tell you that your roof has been damaged in the recent wind, rain, or hail storm and that it needs to be repaired. Before you agree to use them, do some inspecting yourself (is there hail damage to other parts of your yard or neighbors’ roofs?) and get a second opinion from a different roofing company. They may just want you to repair something that doesn’t actually need repaired.

A Down Payment for Nothing

Another common roofing scam is when a roofing company gives you a quote to replace or repair your roof, but asks for a sizeable or significant down payment before they begin working. Sometimes this down payment will be for “labor” or to “buy materials,” but after you give it to them, they’ll never come back and do the work they were supposed to. Instead, they’ll simply take your down payment and run. Our Pennsylvania roofing company suggests not handing over a sizeable or significant down payment until work has begun or until supplies have at least been delivered.

Free “Inspection”

These scams are usually a door-to-door affair. You may find a roofing salesman at your door one day offering a free roofing inspection. (Like the first scam, this will usually happen after a storm has hit the area.) If you agree, the roofing contractor may take a climb up to your roof and rip off a few shingles to mimic wind damage. They may also show you photos of another home with roofing damage and claim it’s your own. Before you agree to any roofing work, get a second opinion and talk to your insurance company.

Lack of Insurance and License

While not necessarily a scam, a lack of insurance can be a big problem for homeowners. Say you find a roofing company that works locally, has several years of experience, and is offering you a good deal to repair or replace your roof (all good things). Before you say yes, ask to see the company’s “Certificate of Insurance” and business license. If the company can’t provide you with them, you don’t want to hire them. Without insurance, you become responsible for any damage caused by the workers or any injuries that may occur, and without a license, they are not permitted to even do business or pay taxes in your area.

For a Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, and Pennsylvania roofing company you can trust, turn to the experts at P.J. Fitzpatrick.

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Exceptional Care for Children Magical Journey 2015

logo4This month we are P.J. Fitzpatrick are again partnering with our friends at Exceptional Care for Children, an non-profit organization that focuses on improving the lives of technology-dependent children and their families through skilled nursing, transitional and palliative care. They are raising money in order to take a group of the children to Disney World this year, and so we thought we’d do a promotion with them on social media to help raise money and awareness.

What we’re asking folks to do is to visit P.J. Fitzpatrick’s Facebook page, and then post a picture with them holding a message, either for the kids going to Disney World, or a message about why Exceptional Care for Children is so great. For each person who posts a picture throughout the month of August into the first two weeks of September we will donate $5.00 to Magical Journey 2013 up to a maximum of $1,000.  If you’d like to participate mosey on over to:

To learn more about Exceptional Care for Children visit their website at https://http://www.exceptionalcare.org/ or you can check out this video from Ignite Newark a few years back:

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Go Green with Ultrex Fiberglass Windows

Do your windows old and inefficient windows need replacing? Or maybe you’re just looking to update your windows to give your home a new look. No matter what your reason, our Ultrex fiberglass windows from Infinity by Marvin are a great solution and an easy way to make your home greener.


You may be considering vinyl windows, which are a popular choice among homeowners for their strength and durability. However, Ultrex fiberglass windows are actually eight times stronger than vinyl and are resistant to corrosion, breakage, cracking, expansion, and contraction. They also have the strength to stand up to natural elements like hail, wind, and damaging UV rays.


Marvin’s Ultrex windows are ENERGY STAR-certified, which means they’re designed to reduce your energy usage and save you money “without any sacrifices in performance.” Because of their strength, these windows are resistant to leaks and seal failures, which means they’ll provide a secure barrier between the air temperature outside and the air temperature in your home. They’re also finished with a Low-E coating that can reduce window heat loss. According to Marvin, this coating can cut energy costs by up to 34% in cold climates and 38% in warm climates.


Whether you’re looking for a dark finish or a light finish, Marvin offers a variety of window finishes to complement your decor. To add strength to the windows, these finishes are mechanically bonded and are up to three times thicker than competitive finishes.

To learn more about their Ultrex fiberglass, visit Marvin’s Infinity by Marvin webpage. And, if you’re interested in replacing your home’s windows with durable, energy efficient windows, contact our windows specialists today. We’ll get you started.

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6 More Ways to Increase Your Home’s Resale Value

resale value

Last year, we wrote a blog titled “6 Ways to Increase Your Home’s Resale Value.” Since there are many ways to increase the value of your home and appeal to potential buyers, we thought we would share a few more ways you can do so:

Match Your Appliances

If your kitchen appliances are only a few years old but don’t match each other, consider giving them a facelift by replacing their doors or face panels. The kitchen is one of the biggest selling points in a home, and having appliances that match can give your kitchen a clean, elegant look.

Add More Storage

You can never have too much storage, and most potential home buyers would agree. If your home lacks open areas for storage, try adding a closet system to your bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, and/or entrance. You’ll not only appeal to buyers, but you’ll also be able to use them while you’re still living there.

Replace Your Siding

When it comes to adding value to your home, curb appeal is very important. If your home’s siding is worn, damaged, or faded, it can make your home look drab and unappealing. Get rid of your old siding and replace it with newer Delaware siding for better curb appeal. You can even take the opportunity to update your home’s color and change its look, if it needs refreshing.

Update Your Roof

If your home’s roofing system is more than 30 years old, you may want to consider updating it. Having a roof that needs replaced can easily shy away a potential buyer – they may see it as a project they’ll have to take on. Having a brand new roof, however, can be a great selling point and add value to your home.

Professionally Landscape

Curb appeal applies to not only the actual structure of your home but also the areas around it. To make a good impression on visitors, you should have a well-maintenanced lawn with clean landscaping. If landscaping isn’t your strength, hire a professional who will take into account your home’s style, color, and yard shape to create an attractive facade.

Upgrade Your HVAC System

Just like your roofing system, your HVAC system should be up to date as well as productive. If your system is more than 15 years old, consider replacing it with a newer, energy efficient model. It will not only add value to your home, but an HVAC upgrade will also appeal to your potential buyers.

If you’re in need of a siding, roofing, gutter, window, door, or bath update, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’ll help you update your home and its resale value so that you can be confident putting your home on the market.

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4 Places in Your Home That Look Great with French Doors


French doors

If you’re interested in a new door installation, let our specialists help. We offer a wide variety of doors and while each design has its own benefits, we love what French doors have to offer. These doors are typically side-by-side doors usually created with lots of glass to add style and natural light to any room. Here are our favorite places to use French doors:


The patio entrance is perhaps he most popular spot in the home for French doors. Because French doors allow so much light through them, they’re great for using as a segue to an outdoor area. They’re also popular for patio entrances because of their ventilation quality. Since both French doors usually open, you can allow an abundance of fresh air into your home.

In Corners

You’re probably wondering what we mean by “in corners.” When you install French doors next to each other at a 90-degree angle, you can open both sets and turn any corner (and the corresponding room) into a makeshift open floor plan. With so much free space, you’ll be able to move easily between the two rooms, which makes French doors ideal for areas where you would usually entertain.

Dining Rooms

French doors have a classy look to them, and one of the best rooms you can show this quality off is in your dining room. French doors can not only give this room a touch of elegance and sophistication, but they can also give you the opportunity to open up the area and connect it to another room like the kitchen or living room for a seamless transition.

Sitting Rooms

If you have a sitting room, a regular solid door may make it feel too enclosed and too secluded from the rest of your home. Instead, French doors can make this area of your home seem larger and more open. Their many glass panels can also give the room just enough privacy without isolating it.

If you’re interested in French doors for your home, don’t hesitate to call us at 1-888-446-6492 or fill out our Estimate form.

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