Commercial roofs are durable
These types of roofs are known to last for decades, especially when they are taken care of. However, they do not last forever and they will need some tender loving care eventually.
Since you put a lot of money into building the roof, it is a wise decision to look after it. A commercial roof is a big investment you do not want to lose too soon. To keep it in good shape, there are some considerations you have to think about.
These considerations help you decide where you should start in maintaining and repairing your expensive roof.
The questions you need to ask
The following questions will help you determine if your roof needs to be repaired and where you should start repairing it. They will also help you decide when you should start those repairs.
#1. How old is your roof?
On average and depending on what your commercial roof is made from, the roof should last somewhere between 25 and 45 years. This longevity also depends on many factors.
The older your roof gets the more likely it will start to wear out and leaks will begin to show themselves.
#2. How is your roof constructed?
This question takes into account the different roofing materials and how well they stand up to the elements. Some roofing materials withstand rain, UV rays, snow, wind, and more a lot better than others.
In some cases, it is financially better to upgrade your roof before the high maintenance costs ruin your bottom line.
#3. What was the date of your last roof repair?
The trouble with small leaks is that they can cause some big-time damage if you let them go. The date of your last roof repair should help you schedule regular roof inspections to keep track of all repairs and to make sure your roof is still in top condition.
These inspections and roof repair dates should help you create a preventive maintenance schedule that will help your roof last a lot longer.
#4. Is there visible damage on your roof?
The visible damage includes damaged flashing, blistering or bubbles, pools of standing water, punctures, tears or cracks, and damaged seals. If you see any one of these or a combination of them, then it is time to repair your damaged roof.
If you leave them alone, then they can only get worse, not better. When they get worse, you are looking at paying a lot more money to repair the damage.
#5. Can you see water leaks inside your building?
The signs for these leaks are- dark spots on the ceiling or walls, sagging in the ceiling or water stains, mold growth or an unusual odor inside your building, and finally, the presence of plants or grass on your roof.
All of these signs are evidence that you have a commercial roof problem that needs immediate attention.
Roof repair considerations
#1. Have you conducted regular preventive medicine? Remember an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.
#2. Paying for quality materials- when you repaired your roof did you buy the cheapest materials or did you plan for the future? By spending a little more on top-quality materials you can save money in the long run and your roof will last longer.
#3. Prepare for the future- your repair records will tell you if your current roof is ideal for your location and weather patterns. If they indicate otherwise, then it may be a wise move to change your roof to one that is ideal for your location.
#4. With every passing year your roof’s ability to withstand damage deteriorates. Consider the age and make sure to have regular roof inspections to watch out for any possible damage.
Remember, leaks do more than just damage the roof. The water and moisture will get inside and cause hundreds if not thousands of more dollars in damage if you do not keep an eye on your roof and make timely repairs.
Criteria to consider when hiring a roofing contractor
Having a solid set of criteria to base your hiring practices on can save you a lot of trouble and money. These criteria can filter out the not-so-good contractors and guide you to employing the best one.
#1. Look for a trusted and professional contractor- you can test them out on the smaller repairs and see how they work before hiring them for bigger jobs
#2. How are their communication skills? If they do not communicate with you in a professional and timely way, then it is time to find someone who will. You will want a contractor that will communicate with you before and during the project.
#3. The lowest bid is not always the best bid- while you want to save money, sometimes the lowest bid is an indicator that the contractor does not know what they are doing.
Or they may do a poor job using inferior materials. Read their estimate to make sure the work is clearly defined and make sure this definition goes from start up to clean up. Know what you are paying for and inspect the roof to make sure the work is being done correctly.
#4. Check their references- while some good contractors may suffer from those customers who vindictively give bad reviews, it is still a good idea to check references and check more than one.
You want to get a full picture of their character as well as the quality of their work
Some additional words
When you pay a lot of money for a commercial roof, it only makes sense to maintain it through preventive maintenance. While roofs can last for 2 to 4 decades, if not longer, they can also break down fairly easily if they are not regularly and well maintained.
The above considerations will help guide your roof maintenance program and ensure that you get a longer lifespan out of your roof. When you do this, you will get a roof worth what you paid for it.
All roofs are the same
No matter the materials they are made from, residential and commercial roofs are the same. They can get damaged for a variety of reasons. When they do get damaged the cost to repair them can be quite high.
Unfortunately for many businesses, the roofing repair costs are far higher than a residential one. To spare the business and building owner of these repairs, it pays to know the causes of the damage so they can be avoided when possible.
To find these causes, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about so you can protect your commercial roof.
The causes of commercial roof damage and leaks
No matter the damage that is done to your roof, you will always find leaks. The two go hand in hand. Here are some causes to be on the lookout for and get ready to upgrade before it gets worse.
#1. Low-quality workmanship and installation
Sadly, not every roofing professional has a solid work ethic and the results of their attitude often end up with a badly installed roof. When this happens, you will often find more than one roof leak.
If you can, filter out the different roofing companies and settle on the best even if it costs a bit more. The same can be said when you find those leaks and need them repaired.
#2. Old age
Not much can be done to avoid this problem. Commercial roofs will age out eventually and their longevity depends on the types of materials used to build the original roof.
The only thing you can do in this case, is to replace the whole roof. There will be no spots that are younger than the others and to leave any of the old roofs intact and in place is just asking for more leaks and damage.
#3. Wear & tear
While in many cases, this cause goes hand in hand with age, it is not limited to appearing with age. If your roof gets a lot of traffic or a lot of bad weather, it will wear out faster than you want it to.
When it starts to wear out, it is difficult to know exactly where the leaks originate. Sometimes it is a treasure hunt to find those leaks and patch them up. But if you see your roof starting to wear out, get your maintenance crew up there to reinforce the weaker spots to prevent future leaks.
#4. Punctures or holes in the roof membrane
These holes, etc., can be caused by any number of sources. If your rooftop is designed to let employees take a break up there, then high heels or just foot traffic can create punctures and holes.
Or the wind blew sharp debris across your roof and that debris snagged the membrane causing the damage. Whatever the source, these holes and punctures are hard to find unless they become bigger.
Once you spot a leak, get your crew up there to find and seal it before it causes greater damage.
#5. Clogged gutters & drains
Always a big factor in roof damage and roof leaks. It will happen to the best of roofs at some time. The wind can blow a lot of debris onto your roof and after a while, the rain will bring that debris to the gutters and drains.
When it does, the water backs up and causes a lot of damage to your roof. To avoid this problem make sure you regularly have someone up there cleaning those gutters and drains.
Keeping your roof nice and clean is one of the best ways to avoid any damage to your expensive roof and protect your building’s interior and contents.
#6. tree branches & other debris
Not all commercial roofs are built in the downtown core where there are no trees. Nor are they built high enough to escape the treetops and broken branches.
If your building does not escape the tree-lined areas, then tree branches and other debris, for example, leaves, will cause damage to your roof. Broken branches can fall on the roof, the wind can bring smaller branches, twigs, sticks, and leaves to your roof, and so on.
After they get blown around up there, your roof may suffer a lot of damage and cannot keep the water out of your building. Trimming those trees is one option to avoid this problem.
#7. Poor ventilation and insulation
Damage to either of these building components can let condensation and moisture inside your building. When they do get inside, they are free to cause as much harm as possible.
The best thing to do is ensure that the insulation and ventilation are not damaged and if they are, repair or replace as soon as it is feasible to do so.
Preventing damage to your commercial roof
You will not be able to prevent all the possible damage that can be done. But you certainly can cut down on the magnitude of the damage if you take the biggest step to avoid proof problems.
This big step is to have roofing experts do regular inspections. The reason you have expert roofing inspectors is that they know what to look for and where to look for possible damage.
Then when they report their findings to you and there is some type of damage on your roof, send your maintenance crew up to do the repair work. Or, if the roof is too far gone, hire a top professional roofing company to replace the roof.
Some additional words
The commercial roof is as important as the residential roof. It needs as much tender loving care as the latter because what you have inside your building may be more valuable and harder to replace than what is in a typical home.
When you need roofing inspections and repair work call our company today and see what we can do for you. Go with the best to get the best results.
Durable and strong materials are used
When a contractor builds a commercial roof, they take care and select durable and strong roofing materials to finish their job. These materials are expected to last a very long time.
However, even commercial roofs cannot withstand strong winds, and storms or remain damage-free. There will be signs letting you know when you need to get an experienced roof to come and repair the damages you have spotted.
To know what you are looking for, just continue reading our article. The content gives you these signs and more.
Common signs that are easy to spot
The signs that tell you that you have a damaged commercial roof are usually easy to spot. They are very visible for the most part and a quick visual inspection should see these signs. Here is what to look for and at:
#1. Flashing- This is the material that covers the joint between different roofing materials. It helps redirect water and keep it from entering your building through that joint.
If any part of the flashing is damaged or missing, then you know you need a roofer to come out and examine the amount of damage this sign has caused already. If you are lucky, you may catch it in time before any further damage is done.
#2. Pooling water- Usually, commercial roofs are flat with a slight slope to direct the water to the drain pipes. However, if the drains get plugged then the water will pool in different parts of your roof.
You do not want pooling water on your roof as that little pool can cause some damage to your roof. When you see this sign, check your drains and clear any ones that are plugged.
#3. Interior water damage- This is not just caused by rain. When flashing is damaged or missing or there are pools of water, those issues can allow water to flow inside your building.
When this happens you are looking at a fairly expensive repair. If you see water marks on your ceiling or walls, you know you have a leak or two somewhere on your roof.
The best fix is to hire an experienced and good roofer to find and repair those leaks. Then repair any damage that the water may have caused.
#4. Little ventilation- ventilation helps remove excess moisture but when there is not enough of it, the excess moisture can cause roofing damage and may even encourage mold or mildew growth.
Check your ventilation system and if it is not doing the job, then get qualified help to rectify the problem.
#5. The roof is getting old- this can be determined by how the roof looks. While this is not an immediate issue to deal with, when your roof is starting to show its age, you know that the potential for damage increases.
An aging roof may look like it is bubbling, cracking, or blistering, or it just may have lost its color and look outdated. When you see these signs, it is time to consider replacing the roof and protecting your building’s structure and interior.
#6. Higher than normal energy bills- a business’ energy bills can remain the same for a very long time. While there is some fluctuation in your monthly bill, if you see a sharp increase in the cost, then you may have a roofing problem.
This sharp increase is telling you that your energy is escaping somewhere through the roof. When you see your energy bill, make sure to call a roofing expert to investigate and find the source of the problem.
Sealing the leak or repairing the damage will pay for itself over the long run and lower energy bills.
#7. Holes- every now and then you should walk up to your roof and walk around. This routine inspection can help you spot any holes in the roof birds, or storms that may have caused.
Once you see those holes, you know that you need to repair the roof as quickly as possible. The next rainstorm could cause a lot of interior damage if the holes are left alone.
The best fix is to call a good roofer to come in and make the repairs. Get several quotes and pick the best one for your budget.
#8. Roof membrane tears- During your routine walk-through inspections, check the roofing membrane. The same sources for the holes in your roof can cause tears in the membrane.
Once that happens the integrity of the roof is in jeopardy and could lead to interior damage that is more expensive to fix. When you see tears, get on the phone quickly and get a top roofer out there to fix the problem.
When to replace the roof
Now that you know what signs show a damaged roof, the bigger question that needs to be answered is Do you need to replace it? Most often, you may not have to but if the roof is getting old or the damage is irreparable, then you have to make this hard decision.
To help make this decision you have to consider the cost to your business if you delay and there is interior damage done later on. Patchwork repairs only delay the decision.
Get estimates for the work first before authorizing any work. Then pick the most credible and experienced roofer to do the work. This is not a repair where you go cheap.
Some additional words
When you see any of the above signs on your roof or interior walls, give us a call. We at Motor City Roofers are based in Detroit and we know what the weather in this city can do to a commercial roof.
We also know how to fix those damaged roofs making them stronger than ever. Once you call us, we will schedule an appointment and then come out to inspect the damage.
No roofing repair is too small or too large for our company. Plus, our rates are reasonable and competitive. Call us today for the best roofing repair work.