As a business owner, you need a roof that is kept in good condition not just because of how it will help you get the most mileage out of your property, but also because of the savings that can be derived from it. In this post, roofing and siding repair company VillWell Builders, LLC shares tips on how you can save money with your commercial roof.
Schedule Regular Inspections
If regular roof inspections are not part of your roofing maintenance routine, it should be. Visual inspections, conducted twice a year and after storms, are opportunities to find and repair damage to the roof before they become bigger. You can conduct visual inspections yourself or delegate it to your maintenance team, however, having someone who knows what to look for can make roofing inspections — as well as performing subsequent repairs — more efficient. Having small problems repaired soon after they’re found will incur lower repair costs, resulting in savings in the long run.
Keep the Gutters Clean
While gutters are generally considered as a separate system, they are very much an essential part of any roofing system. Keeping them clear of debris is key to making sure that rainwater ends up down the drains instead of accumulating on the rooftop, where it can cause damage that could lead to costly repairs. As with the roof itself, gutters incur lower repair costs when problems are found and fixed sooner rather than later.
Improve Roofing Surface Drainage
A well-built roof should have a proper slope that allows drainage and prevents standing water on the surface. Standing water can weaken roofing seams and allow algae and bacteria to thrive, both of which can lead to roofing leaks. Ideally, standing water on a flat roof should drain or dry out for no longer than two days, otherwise you’ll need to have your roof examined by a commercial roofing contractor. As with most roofing problems, addressing drainage issues as soon as possible can result in savings from lower repair costs.
Mind Your Footwear
Certain types of flat roofs are not intended to be walked on, and it helps to be aware of whether yours can handle foot traffic or not. Single-ply roofs, for example, require footwear to avoid punctures that could lead to water infiltration, while built-up roofing systems are more resilient. If you must have utility or maintenance staff on the roof, make it a point to have them wear protective footwear. The small cost of foot covers may help prevent having to spend money on repairs caused by punctures.
Provide Adequate Ventilation
A well-ventilated roof is less vulnerable to damage caused by trapped heat and humidity underneath. Sloped commercial roofs have ventilation systems that are similar to their residential counterparts: vents located at the highest areas of the roof release warm and humid air, while the resulting negative pressure pulls cool air from vents located at the lowest areas. Flat roofs have vents typically located near the roof edges. These passive ventilation systems can be supplemented with mechanical fans installed on the rooftop. In addition to maintaining ideal roofing temperatures, ventilation helps prevent problems caused by mold and mildew.
Prepare Your Roof for Bad Weather
Keep an eye out for weather forecasts and take steps to prepare your roof. You may not be able to control the weather, but you can take steps to prevent or mitigate damage that would otherwise result in costly repairs. If you have a single-ply roof, make sure that all seam welds are intact. High winds can tear into loose seams and tear the outer layer apart. Clean the roof and remove loose items that may cause punctures. On a loose-laid roof, make sure the ballast that weighs the outer roofing layers are secure. Protect equipment like air conditioners and generators from wind damage with appropriate covers. As discussed above, schedule a roofing inspection after a storm, and have repairs performed as soon as possible.
Mind Your Roof’s Life Span
Many property owners tend to wait for their roof to be visibly aged or significantly damaged before deciding to have their roof replaced. While this can help put off replacement by one or two years, delaying roof replacement is placing the roof at a greater risk. Small leaks can damage the roofing substrate gradually and out of sight. Instead of replacing just the outer layers, replacing such a damaged roof will require more extensive work — with a correspondingly expensive price tag.
If your building’s upkeep requires getting the most years out of your roof as possible, then make sure that your roof is being regularly inspected and maintained by a roofing professional. When getting a new roof, consider getting a roofing type that is more suited to the climate and conditions such as foot traffic.
Choose Roofing With Reflective Surfaces
Most commercial roofs have a white outer surface. It’s not for aesthetic purposes, as flat roofs are barely seen from the ground and therefore doesn’t contribute to the building’s curb appeal. Rather, white or light-colored roofs are more reflective, which helps reduce the radiant heat absorbed by the roof and, in turn, helps reduce indoor cooling bills. Reflective surfaces are also at lower risk of damage caused by UV rays. Reflective coatings can also be applied to existing roofs, which can help achieve the same effect.
Apply a Protective Coating
Roof coatings are protective coating systems designed for use on roofs that are halfway through their life span. When applied properly, roof coatings form a durable barrier that helps protect the underlying layers from impact damage and standing water. Roof coatings are ideal for roofs with an adhered or built-up outer layer. Before applying roof coatings, the roofing contractor has to make sure that the underlying layers are free of issues that could lead to moisture damage and mold growth, as the roof coating will seal everything after application.
Work With a Roofer That You Trust
Commercial roofing upkeep is a continuous process. As described above, commercial roofs need regular inspections to make sure it’s always in its best condition. Most commercial roofers offer maintenance agreements that take most of the maintenance work off your hands and eliminate the need to set maintenance appointments, saving you time and money in the long run.
If you need such a roofer, look no further than VillWell Builders, LLC. Learn more about our services by calling us at (203) 879-2118 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment.
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