Flat roofs, whether installed on commercial facilities or used on residential buildings, are strong structures that can stand up to a lot, but even these strong building components need regular maintenance to maintain their strength. Here is how that maintenance should work:
- Regularity is key – maintenance sessions should be carried out based on a schedule. Ideally, your flat roof and the adjacent gutters need to be cleaned and inspected twice a year, once in spring and again in fall, to prepare the roof for the two harder seasons, summer and winter;
- Additional inspections – strong storms and other forms of extreme weather can damage even well-maintained roofs, so it is very important to check your roof after each major event;
- The tasks involved with maintenance – maintenance visits should involve the thorough cleaning of the roof surface as well as of the gutters and the vents and the detailed, inch-by-inch inspection of the roof and the adjacent parts. Any roof faults detected during the inspections need to be addressed in a timely manner – commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO pros recommend that quick repair action is essential to prevent the aggravation of the fault and to prolong the life of the roof;
- Coating – if the roof is made from a material that could benefit from the additional protection provided by weatherproof coatings, the coats need to be refreshed every couple of years after the first application.
Commercial roofs might not be visible from the ground, but they are surely exposed to the elements and protecting your building all the time.
The summer heat is an especially insidious enemy of flat or low-sloping roofs – here is how the extremely high temperatures and the UV radiation associated with summer weather can harm your roof:
- The degradation caused by UV rays – ultraviolet radiation can decompose almost any material it comes into contact with by altering the chemical composition and the physical features of the materials. As a result, the material that your roof is made from can lose its oil content and moisture, becoming brittle and prone to developing cracks. Dedicated commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO contractors corroborate that UV radiation can also accelerate the aging of the roof, leading to the need to replace it before time;
- Overheating – an unshaded roof can also absorb lots of heat from the sun. When the roof overheats, the materials used on it react with drying as well as with expansion. When the material becomes too dry to expand, but the heat still forces it to change size, the roofing surface will develop cracks and will become prone to water damage. When the heat subsides and the night comes with lower temperatures, the roofing materials that have become dilated during the day start shrinking again – a movement that can also cause cracks if the material is not sufficiently elastic.
Getting your roof replaced is a costly process and unfortunately, it can have many pitfalls due to poor craftsmanship. To make sure that your new roof is not affected by installation mistakes, here are some things that you should inspect before approving the work performed by your roofer:
- The roof sheathing – also called the roof decking, the sheathing consists of thin boards of wood placed on the trusses and serves the purpose of supporting the roof layers on the top. Signs of improper sheathing installation include an uneven roof surface and roof fasteners that protrude;
- The underlayment – ideally, the sheathing and the roofing cover should be separated by a waterproofing layer. Check the existence of the layer – it is essential for preventing leaks;
- The placement of the nails on shingle roofs – the shingles on your roof need to be individually fastened on the roof to prevent any lifting or tearing by wind. Check whether the nails on your roof are driven in sufficiently deep;
- The overlap – whether you have shingles or tiles on your roof, the individual component need to be installed in an overlapping pattern. One of the most common roofing mistakes is to make that overlap too short. While having a shorter overlap reduces the quantity of the materials used on the roof, it increases the risk of leaks and can have severe consequences.
- For quality roofing you can count on, discuss your project with commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO trusted contractors at Interstate Roofing.
A collaboration with a commercial roofing company is very important for ensuring that the roof on your building stays strong and healthy for as long as possible. Here are some tips to identify potential contractors in your area:
- Ask around – you probably know other business owners who work with a contractor to take care of the roof on their building. Ask these people to provide you references and to tell you about their experiences – after all, word of mouth is till the most reliable way to obtain first-hand information;
- Look online – most roofing companies today have websites on which they present their services. Use your internet browser to find local contractors that specialize in commercial roofs, then take your time to check each website. While evaluating commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO contractors, look for a roofer that is suitably licensed and insured and that offers references as well;
- Contact the roofers who seem suitable – personal meetings are also essential, so contact the roofers that you find suitable, tell them about your roof and request roofing cost estimates from them. Before you make your final decision, collect three or four estimates and compare the documents in terms of pricing, material quality and the warranties offered by the roofers.
Waterproofing the roof is an extremely important step for ensuring protection against water infiltration in the house, office building or commercial space. Therefore, commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO authorities suggest that an EPDM membrane may be the long-term solution you are looking for.
Produced in large sheets, the EPDM membrane is made of a synthetic rubber specially designed to adapt to the most demanding requirements in construction and roof waterproofing.
The first EPDM membrane sheet was installed in 1980, on the roof of a building in the USA, being still functional today. Nowadays, with over 1.5 billion square meters installed globally, EPDM membrane is a reference product in waterproofing that has won the appreciation of customers through the perfect quality of waterproofing and the outstanding properties of the material from which it is made.
EPDM is a fully vulcanized membrane, composed mainly of EPDM polymer and carbon black, which offers unmatched resistance to ozone and ultraviolet radiation. Because it does not contain flame retardants or plasticizers, it has stable characteristics. The EPDM membrane remains flexible up to temperatures of 45 ° C and has an elasticity of over 300%, which gives it resistance to building movements and temperature fluctuations.
EPDM membrane can be used in a wide range of applications, from foundations, terraces, ponds and lakes to industrial waterproofing.
Most commercial roofs are flat and designed by respecting the type of structure, thermal insulation – waterproofing technology and the operating conditions depending on each roof. These factors determine the life span of the roof.
Currently, the best material for a commercial roof is considered the EPDM membrane.
EPDM rubber products for construction were developed in the late 1950s. The climate in the Middle East required a roofing material able to withstand it. The material had to be very flexible and remain stable even in temperatures variations between -45 and + 120 °C. EPDM rubber proved to be a very suitable product for this market.
Ethylene Propylene Dien Monomer is a synthetic rubber, very resistant to UV, ozone and other atmospheric influences. In addition, it is known for its great, permanent flexibility. The material has proved its efficiency for more than 50 years, and is used by commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO flat roofing specialists as a waterproofing material for flat roofs and other architectural or non-architectural applications.
The characteristics of natural rubber could not be adapted or manipulated. However, with a synthetic rubber product, scientists can select, adapt and modify the basic products to determine the molecular structure, thus allowing them to design the construction of polymers. The result allows EPDM synthetic rubber to adapt precisely to its specific uses and requirements.
Incorrectly installed holiday decorations are among the most common culprits for roof damage – the pins and clips that are not suitable for being used on roofs can puncture the roofing surface and decorations that are not suitable for being used on roofs pose a fire hazard.
However, the holidays cannot be complete without lights, so here is how to hand your lights safely and correctly on your commercial roof:
- Use light strings intended for being used outdoors – these products are safe to be kept outdoors even when it is snowing and you don’t need to worry about leaving them turned on for longer periods;
- Use clips and tape intended for being used on roofs – commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO technicians emphasize that you should replace traditional nails and metal clips with plastic clips or tape designed to be used on roofs. These special fasteners do not damage the surface that they are attached to, so they are safe to use;
- Attach your lights to the edge of the roof – do not install lights on the roof surface, clipping or taping them to roof edge or to the edge of the gutter ensures much more safety for the lights as well as to the structure that the lights strings are fastened to.
Imagine neglecting your roof this fall to save money. While the initial initiative might seem good in the short run, and during the winter you might not have to deal with issues such as excessive rainfall, once the spring comes you might realize that the problem has come back to haunt you. The damaged roof could now have more leaks than ever, and the internal structure might also be plagued with mold and mildew, requiring extensive repairs that could cost you thousands of dollars.
Instead of that, it might be best to have your roof inspected in advance and make sure that you can repair at least some of the issues to prevent them from getting worse as the weather gets harsher. Leaks can be fixed with just a couple of hundred dollars, and you can also clean and fortify your roof against future damage. Special coatings are available that can keep flat roofing systems protected and improve on their energy efficiency. Set up a time to have positively reviewed commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO contractors inspect your roof and complete necessary repairs before the colder weather hits.
In the process, as you apply all the necessary preventive repairs and maintenance work, you might also notice that your roof has become more efficient in retaining its thermal resistance. This means that throughout the winter you’ll have to deal with far fewer issues with your heating system and even save a lot of money that would otherwise be required to adequately heat your building.
The roofs on commercial buildings are built using resistant, durable materials, but even these materials need protection, especially in climate areas that get extreme summers, with high heat, extended dry spells or rainy periods. Here is how to give your roof the protection it needs:
- Inspect and maintain the roof before and after summer – regular roof inspections are the best way to detect any roof issues that need repair before they turn into severe issues. The inspection should be followed by roof cleaning to remove any debris from the roof surface and to prevent exposure to excessive moisture. Commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO representatives support that the process should also include the inspection, the cleaning and the repair of the gutters and the downspouts – the drainage system is especially important for flat commercial roof that are very sensitive to any exposure to water that is not drained by the gutters;
- Protection with coatings – roof coatings are paint-like chemicals that provide extra protection to roofing materials. Some coatings prevent overheating by enhancing the roof’s reflective properties, others provide protection from harmful UV rays and there are products that sealing the surface of the roof and enhancing its water resistance. Whatever the purpose of the coating process, the protective layer needs to be refreshed regularly, at the intervals specified in the instructions of the coating product of choice.
Hail storms happen quite rarely – fortunately! – and they may not seem the worst weather phenomena, but those who witnessed a severe hailstorm probably know the kind of long-lasting damage it can cause.
When it comes to a roof, hail damage is dangerous even if it is barely visible, because it creates vulnerabilities that will aggravate sooner or later. As such, it is extremely important to identify hail damage on your roof, so you must perform an inspection once a hail storm passes by.
Like we said before, hail damage may not be easy to identify, especially on certain roofing materials, so a visual inspection from the ground is not enough. The person who inspects the roof must climb it to be able to observe potential damage. If you do not feel safe climbing your roof or do not have protective equipment to prevent you from falling and injure yourself, you should contact a Colorado Springs professional roofer. This is always the best option and not only for safety reasons. A hail damage commercial roofing Colorado Springs CO expert knows exactly what to look for, not to mention that its written report will be useful if you make an insurance claim.
Hail damage looks different on different roofing materials. Generally, keep an eye on any small impact areas – chips, dents, tiny craters, scratched pain etc. Additionally, look for damage on windows, doors, vehicles, because if they have hail damage, your roof will most likely have hail damage too.