Roof coatings are one of the keys to help extend the life of any roof system. A building may need a new roof; but, coatings may be a viable option to extend the roof for five to ten years, along with the addition of a roof warranty for those years.
Due to the recent tariffs imposed on steel and aluminum, prices will escalate until the United States plants are able to produce the needed supply.
Spring is right around the corner and that means peak roofing season. So you might be asking yourself, when is the best time to initiate your roofing project? The answer to that varies based on the size of your project and the backlog of the contractor you are using.
After a city and county ballot initiative passed in Denver, CO, a Denver Green Roof Initiative went into effect January 1, 2018. This affects commercial roofs with a gross floor area greater than 25,000 square feet. The Initiative requires that building owners have a percentage of the roof covered with vegetation (green roof) and/or solar power.
Winter is right around the corner. Yes, we prefer not to think about it or to say it aloud in the middle of summer. But, if you have a roofing project that needs to be completed by winter, it’s time to get that project on the schedule.
Weather and daily temperature variations are a challenge to your building and its roof. Concerns for your roof specific to temperature extremes exist if you are located in sunny South Florida, frigid Alberta, Canada or anywhere in between. As daily cooling and warming cycles occur, your building and its various components expand and contract.
When it comes to rooftop pipe supports, building owners need to think about the long term. All too often during a roofing or re-roofing project, support for the rooftop pipes are not considered until deep into the project. Quick fix options may seem like an economical solution, but may cost building owners dearly in the long run.
Experienced facility managers know that re-roofing projects are time consuming and involve many important decisions. These include the type of roof system, method of attachment, type of insulation, amount of repair work to the existing deck and, of course, what edge metal system to use. An often overlooked but important detail during the planning stage of a re-roofing project is also ensuring that the project includes a high performing roof drainage system.
Having adequate drainage plays an important role in the life of the roof. When originally designed, the roof drainage requirements would have been calculated and the number and placement of drains on the roof should reflect that calculation. Your roofer, or specifier, can verify how many drains you’ll need, but a good rule of thumb is two for the first 10,000 square feet (and smaller roofs), plus one for each additional 10,000 square feet and no more than 100-feet apart. Consult an engineer to review your roof drainage system, especially if there are any structural changes to your roof or adding an adjacent wing or addition to your building.
Making sure that all the water drains from your roof is very important. The National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) defines standing water as any water on a roof that hasn’t drained or dissipated within 48 hours after rainfall or other precipitation. Left unaddressed, standing water can cause several problems. First, water is heavy. Five gallons weighs nearly 42 pounds and an inch of water over a 10 x 10-feet. area weighs over 500 pounds. Second, standing water can deflect the roof deck over time, which can lead to roof leaks and even roof collapse. If your roof has several low areas where water ponds, consider adding tapered insulation during re-roofing to aid in roof drainage.
Keep it Clean
As a building owner, you are responsible for maintaining the roof. Today’s advanced roof systems typically don’t require extensive maintenance but keeping drains free and clear is something to check frequently. Good roofing practice is to inspect your roof at least twice per year -- quarterly is even better -- and before and after major storms. Remove the strainer to ensure drain leaders are free and clear. Also remove leaves and other debris built-up around the outside of drains and scuppers so that water can flow freely.
Assuming that the drainage system is sufficient, there are three choices when it comes to the drains during re-roofing. Rework the drains, remove and replace the drains or retrofit the drains.
1) Rework – Most OEM drains are cast iron and prone to rusting and cracking which can lead to leaks in your building. To rework the drain, contractors take the drain apart, clean, repair and often repaint the components. Replacement parts can be difficult and time-consuming to source depending on the drain and tiny cracks in the bowl are easy to overlook. The benefit of reworking drains is that the job can be completed from the rooftop without disrupting building occupants. The downside is that re-working drains can take several hours each, which may not justify the expense or extra labor.
2) Remove & replace – Replacing the entire drain and plumbing connection is not all that common because it is expensive and logistically difficult. In addition, much of this work requires a plumbing professional which can cause roofing delays, and gaining access to the underside of the roof typically disrupts building occupants. Unless the drainage system and infrastructure are completely unusable, this is not the best option.
3) Retrofit – For owners who want new drains on their new roof, adding insert or retrofit drains are a good option. Retrofit drains are installed without disrupting building occupants. More importantly, retrofit drains are designed to fit into the existing water leader and over the existing drain bowl, so they use the existing plumbing system. Retrofit roof drains have been commonly used since the mid-1980s. Most are made with aluminum components that will not rust and the good ones also feature a mechanical seal that does not restrict flow. In fact, the leading retrofit drains exhibit flow-rates that are as good as or even better than original roof drains. They also surpass the ANSI/SPRI RD-1 standard for backflow prevention in order to keep water out of the roofing assembly. Some are also available with coated flanges that can be directly welded to certain thermoplastic roof covers.
According to the U.S. National Climate Assessment’s “Climate Change Impacts in the United States”, the frequency of torrential rains in much of the United States has increased dramatically since 1958. The report, which was published in May, 2014, states that the proportion of precipitation that is falling in very heavy rain events has jumped by 71 percent in the Northeast, 37 percent in the Midwest and 27 percent in the South. With this type of trend, it’s clear roof drains require even greater attention and that building owners, facility managers and roofing contractors alike must be vigilant when it comes to ensuring that roofs drain effectively. Remember, always consult an engineer to do a drainage study if you have concerns that the building has been modified from the original design or water is not being discharged from your roof properly.
Commercial Roofing Options Have Changed with The Times
As with every industry, commercial roofing is rapidly evolving to meet changing market demands. When it comes to installing a new thermoplastic ( TPO or PVC) roofing system, facility managers now have more options. Most thermoplastic roofing systems are mechanically fastened to the structural roof deck using screws and plates or oversized washers. However, a great option called RhinoBond has been gaining traction in the commercial roofing industry for nearly a decade.
This is a question many building owners struggle with. The answer varies depending on each situation. Understanding the type of roof assembly and the existing condition of your roof is important to make a good decision.
It’s amazing to see the number of buyers who purchase roof systems with the primary consideration being the type of roof system that will be installed. So little time is spent on selecting the contractor installing the roof system!
Safety and Roof Access Hatches
What are Roof Access Hatches?
Many roofs, especially low sloped roofs, are accessed via a fixed ladder or stairway leading to a roof hatch or scuttle. Most hatches are equipped with a hinged lid that has pistons or springs to assist in opening the lid along with a locking mechanism to keep it open. These fixed ladders and hatchways make climbing onto a roof more convenient than using an extension ladder.
6 Weeks + 8 Men + 33,608 square feet of retrofit over metal = one awesome garage.
Last month, CentiMark’s executive committee took a trip to meet Richard Rawlings’ and check out some of his sweet rides at Gas Monkey Garage. After getting to know our business, Richard hired CentiMark to perform some service work on his roof.
Code changes are very complex, some take years for compliance and all are best left to discuss with your professional roofing contractor. Roofing codes are found in Chapter 15 of the International Building Code which is part of a family of codes from the International Code Council (ICC). Each of these codes are revised every three years before being promulgated. It is up to each state to decide which version of the code they wish to adopt and the adopted version may vary from state-to-state.
Roofing Products and Product Development
Perhaps the most significant change in the industry is that over the years, preference for roofing materials has shifted towards white TPO/PVC membranes. The reflectivity and energy efficient roof systems continue to gain popularity.
Around 20 CentiMark sales and marketing associates braved the frigid Madison, Wisconsin weather to attend The University of Wisconsin’s (UW) continuing education training for low slope roofing from December 2nd through 4th.