12 Commercial Roofing Tips

When it comes to commercial roofing, there is nothing more important than protecting your investment. Roofing isn’t our job; It’s our PASSION. Here are 12 commercial roofing tips.

Commercial Roofing Tip 1: Repair or Replacement

A roof undergoes serious wear and tear throughout its lifetime, with factors such as weathering and degeneration taking their toll. Through scientific testing and analysis, a roofing provider can outline the current condition of your roof and to help you decide if roof repair or restoration is an option or whether roof replacement is necessary. The building should dictate the roofing system, so the roofing provider must be familiar with building codes, energy solutions and various roof systems to help you make the best decision for your specific system and building type. Choosing a roofing provider that offers repair and restoration options, not just replacements, improves the likelihood of an accurate analysis and a successful plan for your roof and your budget. A good rule of thumb is to consider repairing your roof if it will survive its original service life expectancy without exceeding the cost of a new roof.

Commercial Roofing Tip 2: Roof Inspections

You can never visually inspect your commercial roof enough. Getting up on the roof to walk around may be a hassle, but is it more of a hassle than spending the money to replace it in 10 years rather than having it last for 15 or 20?

What should you be looking for? Blocked drains and ponding water would be a good place to start. After a storm, get up on the roof and make sure no damage has been done by a branch or a piece of material that came loose. Clear debris away from any drains to prevent water from sitting too long. The number one cause of roof leaks is weight on one part of a roof that has been there too long. This is the result of someone not being vigilant and checking the roof.

We suggest a roof inspection at least 3-4 times per year.  Preventative maintenance is the key to extending the life expectancy of your roofing system.

Commercial Roofing Tip 3: The Importance of Having a Reputable Roofing Contractor

Have a leak? Who are you going to call? How quickly do you expect them to respond to and repair your issue? What will you do if it will take them too long to repair your issue? What tools do you have on hand to fix the problem temporarily? These are all questions you need to have answered in your plan. Without the roof over the heads of the tenants in a building, the structure would be useless and unprofitable.

Having a roofing company that specializes in commercial roofing is important as well, especially having one with a local presence in the area. Having a roofer you trust and can rely on to do the work you need, when you need it done will save you headaches and dollars in the long run.

Commercial Roofing Tip 4: Key Questions to Ask When Choosing a Commercial Roofing Contractor:

  • Do you specialize in commercial roofing projects?
  • How long have you been in business?
  • Are you licensed and insured?
  • How many team members do you have handling service work?
  • What is the response time for an emergency repair?
  • Can you provide references of clients you have been working with for over 2 years?
  • Do you have experience working with my type of roof?

Commercial Roofing Tip 5: Choosing a Manufacturer

Partner with an experienced and proven manufacturer. You get what you pay for. Track record, guaranteed thickness, high grade raw materials, state-of-the art production facilities, detailed design solutions, skilled technical teams and a certified contractor base all result in a winning project.

Commercial Roofing Tip 6: Reflective Cool Roofs

Save energy with a cool roof in all climates. Building owners across the US in both hot and cold climates are subject to peak energy demand charges, which can represent 30 to 70 percent of a total commercial user’s electric bill. Reflective cool roofs are an efficient strategy to reduce peak demand power usage and result in a net energy savings.

12 Commercial Roofing Tips

Commercial Roofing Tip 7: In-House Maintenance

It’s always sound roofing practice to develop an in-house roofing maintenance program to increase life expectancy. Cleaning gutters of unwanted debris and sharp objects around mechanical units that could clog or puncture the roofing system is a preventative maintenance fundamental.

Commercial Roofing Tip 8: Initial Cost vs. Life Cycle Cost

Initial cost vs. life cycle cost. In most cases, the lowest cost option appears to be the most attractive, but not always the best long-term solution. Lower cost options tend to have shorter life cycles and increased maintenance costs resulting in replacements that are more frequent and unexpected out-of-pocket expenses. They typically offer the least amount of sustainability value as well. Re-roofing can easily cost 2-3 times that of a well designed system and maintenance program on the front end. Consider life cycle costing for a greater ROI.

Commercial Roofing Tip 9: Roof Overlays

In most jurisdictions, a second roof can be installed over an existing roof saving the owner money on labor, tear -off and land fill fees. Also, make sure a comprehensive moisture survey is conducted before roofing over an existing roof. All wet areas should be removed and replaced to ensure a long lasting new roof installation. Structurally or using tapered insulation slope to drain is always good roofing practice. Ponding water can harbor bacteria, mold growth, dirt build up, etc.

Commercial Roofing Tip 10: Proactive vs. Reactive Roof Maintenance

Proactive versus reactive maintenance is key to extending the life of your roofing system. Owners and facility managers who react to problems as they occur, pay an average of 25¢ per square foot annually for maintenance. Owners and facility managers who inspect and repair routinely (proactively) – before problems happen – spend an average of only 14¢ per square foot annually. Plus, proactively maintained roofs last an average of 21 years compared to an average lifespan of 13 years for reactive maintenance. The longer you can extend your roof’s life before replacement, the more your overall savings increase, and your life cycle costs decrease.

Commercial Roofing Tip 11: Roofing Technology

A roofing provider that has made an investment in technology can help take the guesswork out of your roof repair and maintenance decisions. Online software can help you manage roof assets easier, and through a variety of tracking and reporting options, including inventory management, in-depth reporting, invoice tracking and data tracking, you can more accurately determine your roof’s lifespan and avoid unexpected costs associated with emergency repairs.

Commercial Roofing Tip 12: Experience Matters

Surprisingly, weather is not the most common threat to a roof’s durability. Approximately 40% of all roof problems occur because of human error due to workers going on your roof for window washing, HVAC repair, etc., faulty maintenance or poor installation in the first place. Therefore, proper training, experience and consistent performance are all essential when choosing a roofing provider.

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