Commercial Roofing How-To: Be Prepared For Roof Repair

Roof Repair Commercial Roofing How To: Be Prepared For Roof RepairThere are generally two types of roofs: flat and pitched. Most commercial and industrial roofing systems fall under the first, having flat or slightly sloping roofs. While regular care and proper maintenance strengthen and extend the life of your commercial roof, time and again, repair will still be necessary when problems due to age, weather, foot traffic, and rooftop equipment occur. Know how to deal with them with these simple steps.

Check: What Needs Repairing?

Your first priority should be to identify any and all roof-related problems, especially if it’s been a while since your last inspection. Tears in the roof system and cracks in the seams are generally bad signs already, but other visual clues include:

– Prolonged ponding of water – one of the most common problems that plagues all flat and low-sloped roofs, they can greatly speed up the aging and deterioration process of the roof cover and lead to leaks. The significant additional weight can also weaken the roof deck.

– Blisters – typically caused by a void or unadhered area either in between the felt plies, or between the substrate and the membrane of multi-ply or membrane systems. Breaks and cracks in the blisters can absorb and trap moisture that causes leaks and membrane deterioration. Blisters can also cause surfacing loss and reduce the roof system’s effectiveness.

– Flashing damage – these strips of impervious material around the perimeters of your roof protect the areas where the roof system meets the wall or the equipment. Gaps and damage in the flashing can turn these same areas into prime spots for roof failure during high winds, and water intrusion during the rains.

You can also look for signs apparent from inside the building, such as water stains on the ceiling, mold, or unexplained odors. These may signal a leak caused by cracks or holes in the roof. Leaks that go undetected can slowly rust and rot roof decks and even turn lightweight insulating concrete and gypsum into thick, paste-like substances.

One sign of damage may not be an isolated occurrence but, rather, hint at other similar problems. It’s best to schedule inspections every 6 months, during the fall and spring seasons, to stay ahead of any major problems.

Hiring a Contractor

Finding a roofing contractor is necessary not only for repairs but also for maintenance. Ask friends and relatives for their recommendations. Get in contact with local professional associations as they have stringent guidelines for their members to follow, and can provide you with the names of good roofing companies in your area.

Make sure that the roofing company you choose is specialized, licensed, and properly trained in commercial roof repair and installation. Ask for credentials and references, so you can review their past work. This way, you will be able to gauge how well they can handle your particular roofing needs. The bids you get should clearly define the work that will be done, and that includes debris removal and grounds cleanup.

When it comes to contracts, permits, and insurance, everything should be in writing and available to both you and your contractor at all times. The contract should spell out everything you have both agreed upon. In addition, all necessary building permits should be obtained, and the insurance should cover both worker’s compensation and general liability. This is the best way to prevent problems from the very beginning.

The Repair Process

Commercial roof repair jobs will vary according to the material and the extent of damage. The equipment and technique used will also depend on your roof’s specific needs. Thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO) membranes, for example, are heat-weldable and will require hot-air welding tools and patching material for puncture and tear repairs. The bottomline is: Knowing your roof system goes a long way toward preventing mistakes in repair that could void the warranty.

Author Bio

Mike Curcio has more than 20 years of experience in the roofing industry, including co-founding CMS Roofing in 2002. When he is not busy providing his customers with high quality cost-effective roofing solutions and sharing his expertise, he enjoys spending time with family, watching sports and coaching his youngest son’s soccer team.

Related posts:

  1. Flat Vs. Pitched Roofing: Which Is Right for Your Home?
  2. Why a Flat Roof is a Good Thing
  3. DIY Roof Inspection Tips to Find Leaks
  4. 8 Benefits of Hiring Best Roofing Contractor
  5. Building a Lean to Shed: Pitches and Materials for Roofing Improvement
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