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Roofing contractor recommends fire-resistant products

Fallbrook residents are finding the value in investing in high quality roofing, siding and double-paned windows in order to better protect their homes against the threat of fire.

However, many don’t think about one of a home’s areas most vulnerable to fire: the ventilation system.

Licensed general contractor John Fiedler has worked in the Fallbrook area for more than 30 years with his company, Fiedler Construction.

He recently made the decision to offer Brandguard Vents to his clients. These vents are flame- and ember-resistant and designed to better protect a home’s most vulnerable opening.

Brandguard Vents were created by Brent Berkompas, one of the first firefighters called to combat the 2003 Old Fire in San Bernardino, which burned at the same time as the Cedar Fire in San Diego.

More than 5,000 structures were destroyed and $253 million spent relating to the Old Fire.

One common occurrence that Berkompas noticed was that homes were catching fire from embers entering vents, catching the house on fire from the inside.

Berkompas began researching ventilation systems and found a method to create vents that would allow air to enter the home but guard against embers and flames.

According to Kelly Berkompas, who owns Brandguard Vents with her husband, the vents protect a home by using overlapping baffle protection, which requires the air to filter into the home by entering a series of turns.

There are no moving parts to the vents and nothing needs to be activated to make it work, but no ember can pass through the vent and catch the house on fire because it burns out before igniting.

Brandguard Vents are available for the entire home and offer roof vents, gable vents, under-eave vents, block holes and foundation vents.

The vents are available to those who are building new homes as well as for those looking to retrofit their homes with better fire protection in mind.

Kelly called the difference between the Brandguard Vents and the standard mesh vents like “night and day.”

She said that mesh even as small as an eighth or a sixteenth of an inch wide is just a “Band Aid fix” that “does nothing to keep flame and embers out of the home, as it would only take an ember seconds to get through the mesh.”

While there is a slight price difference between standard mesh vents and Brandguard Vents, Kelly said it can be viewed as cheap insurance for a home.

Fiedler agrees. He believes that choosing and installing Brandguard Vents is a small investment that could easily save a house from burning down.

Another way to make a house more fire safe is to install metal roofing. During firestorms, it is typical for fires to pass roof-to-roof. Fiedler recommends metal roofing for homes, saying he believes they are “totally fireproof.”

Fiedler offers metal roofing made of galvanized steel with a baked-on enamel finish available in many colors, all of which withstand fire, high winds and earthquakes.

“It will literally last for generations,” he said proudly, “and it is virtually maintenance-free if it is put on right.”

Fiedler feels that metal roofing and Brandguard Vents are advisable for all homes, especially since the products are recyclable and will protect a home for years to come.

For more information about Brandguard Vents or metal roofing, contact John Fiedler at (760) 468-2789; for information about the Brandguard Vents directly from the manufacturer, go to or call (949) 481-5300.

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