Building Homes or Extensions/smells after new roof



Our single story house just got a new roof - Certainteed shingles part of the house -  and IB roofing system  (garage and kitchen).  Throughout the process there has been a heavy glue smell in the house.  Is it normal?  We aired it out, thought it was gone, turned on our central air system and the glue smell is back REALLY STRONG. What happened?  What do we do?  Is it toxic?  

Also, IB system on flat roof (looks like PVC) has some bubbles.  Can this affect the longevity of this roof system?   

Thanks,  Gabriel

Hello, Gabe.

It's frustrating in situations like this, answering important questions online, because I can't smell what you're smelling, and can't see the severity of the bubbles.

I'm very concerned if there are VOC's (volatile organic compounds) in the glue that are toxic. You and your family shouldn't be breathing them, and they should have dissipated by now (although you didn't say how long ago the new roof was applied). With summer weather, you should be able to keep your windows open to help ventilate your home; if necessary, also use fans blowing out to increase the air flow.

The bubbles you mention can also present a longevity problem, depending on where they are and how big the bubbles are. If you trust the roofing company that applied the roofing, contact them and tell them about the problems (smell and bubbles). Any reliable, ethical company should take care of their clients -- not just a pat on the head -- provide real answers for you, and be willing to rectify the situation for no additional charge. You have a distinct advantage, because you can tell the world in social media how you've been treated by the roofing company (whether bad or good). Angie's List is an excellent way to report companies who provide products and services, to help others become informed consumers.

If you feel like the roofing company is not willing to help you, you can contact the National Roofing Contractors Association, If you're unhappy with the installation and their unwillingness to help you, you might be able to register a complaint with them. Like all professional organizations, they want to know if anyone installing roofs is giving everyone a bad reputation.

There's also a lot of information about your IB roofing online, if you want to search. I just typed "ib roofing" in Google, and got 1,300,000 results. Bing search resulted in 965,000 results. I also searched for "ib roofing glue." The first article listed talked about voc-free glue for ib roofing:

So, here are my recommendations:

1. Do some preliminary research online, to become better informed about the specific product that was used for your home (including glue options);
2. Contact the roofing company and ask for their help; if they don't help you,
3. Contact the NRCA (website, and phone call, if necessary).

Good luck! I hope that you get the best results with both of your roofing problems.


Diane Plesset, CMKBD, NCIDQ, C.A.P.S.
D. P. Design  

Building Homes or Extensions

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Diane Plesset


I will answer questions about designing and building a new home, building an addition, remodeling a home, sustainability ("green" building and remodeling), aging-in-place, kitchen remodeling, bathroom remodeling. The goal is to help homeowners achieve ultimate satisfaction with all of their choices and decisions.


Over 25 years in residential design, construction, improvement, and remodeling. Hundreds of completed projects in all ranges of investment. Author of the award-winning book "THE Survival Guide: Home Remodeling," host of "Today's Home" on Lifestyle WebRadio, and public speaker.

National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA), National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), Interior Design Protection Council (IDPC)

THE Survival Guide: Home Remodeling. Designer's Illustrated, Gentry, Interior Coordinator (Japan), Kitchen-Bath Business, Kitchen-Bath Design News, Oregonian, Portland Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, San Mateo Times, Statesman Journal

Degrees in residential interior design, bath design, kitchen design, and lighting design. To improve knowledge about codes, products, and trends that will affect homeowners, I regularly attend tradeshows, conferences, classes, and seminars, and read 7 major trade magazines and newsletters.

Awards and Honors
Certified Master Kitchen-Bath Designer (CMKBD), Certified Interior Designer (NCIDQ), Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist (C.A.P.S.). AWARDS: Henry Adams, Chrysalis, Best of the Best, CoTY, Master Design, HBA Excellence. 2003 NABE Award for best how-to book.

Past/Present Clients
Please see the portfolio in my website,

©2016 All rights reserved.