New Trend in Home Improvement Draws Ire

By Glenn Cardale | Home Improvement Expert

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The roof of Kenny Grimes’s Bass Lake house needs to be replaced. He’s doing the work at night to beat the heat. (Glenn Cardale, Home Improvement Expert)

Summertime is home improvement time. But when temperatures soar and the sun beats down, or when the sun beats down and temperatures soar, whichever comes first, any type of roof work can get really, really hot.

But one clever Bass Lake resident found a way to beat the heat while doing a full tear off and new shingle installation. And he’s making his neighbors really, really mad in the process.

Instead of waking up early to beat the heat, Kenny Grimes is staying up late. Using a couple of Klieg lights he borrowed from the Bass Lake High School film club, Grimes is pouring nearly 12 million lumens onto his roof, and working from midnight till dawn.

“It sure beats baking up there during the day,” Grimes said. “Granted, the lights throw off a lot of heat, and the bugs tend to get pretty thick, but at least I’m getting it done.”

His neighbors aren’t so sure. Sam Sonite, a travel agent and part-time cheese maker, said Grimes mostly just walks around on the roof playing air guitar to an endless loop of 1980s hair band music.

“He’s up there prancing around all night in front of those lights, pretending his shingle shovel is a Gibson Flying V, or something,” Sonite said. “Only once have I seen him actually do anything you would call roofing. I haven’t slept a wink in three weeks.”

But Grimes claims he’s making headway. And judging from the shingle fragments and roofing nails scattered about his lawn and driveway, he may be right. After all, tearing off three layers of asphalt composition shingles is no walk in the park.

Nighttime home maintenance is becoming more popular. One local company now offers lawn care services while you sleep. And another installs vinyl siding and seamless gutters by moonlight. The quality of their work, however, is unclear. And headlamps and Klieg lights may not provide sufficient light in some instances.

But Grimes thinks his roofing work has not suffered. With Mötley Crüe cranking across the rooftops at 3 a.m., Grimes said his work actually improves.

“There’s nothing like a little ‘Theatre of Pain’ to get your juices flowing,” he said. “Makes hauling bundles of shingles up a ladder seem like nothing.”

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