When it comes to the overall expenses of running a business it is not a good idea to ignore the condition of the roof. Although commercial roof repair can tend to be expensive, when all is said and done having a roof is a pretty important component. Trying to do business without one might be pretty challenging, especially if your building is full of electronics, valuable equipment, important documents, furniture, and people.
Replacing an entire roof can cost upwards of $50K, whereas staying on top of the condition of the roof can cost a lot less. If you practice some general rules of maintenance, you can keep that roof healthy and in good condition for years and years to come.
Any Roof is Prone to Deterioration
Depending on the materials used to build the roof, the kind of weather situation that the building is located in, and other natural factors such as damage from falling debris a roof can run into problems. One of the best ways to prolong the health of the roof is to keep an eye on it and look for anything that could cause damage or any minor damage that could be present without being noticed.
Prevent Stopped Up Gutters
One of the biggest culprits of roof damage is a gutter that is clogged up that causes pools or puddles of water on the roof. The way that most roofs are built is so that the water that lands on them are allowed to flow naturally into a place where it is safely carried away to a conduit that leads it to the ground where it can join the Earth and one day be reclaimed into the atmosphere to do it all over again.
When water puddles up on a roof it can stand for extended periods of time and seep through to the wood underneath where it caused problems such as mold and dry rot. If the dry rot begins to spread in an area where it is not easily seen, it can continue to spread over time and eventually ruin an entire section of the roof.
In addition to the potential threat of dry rot and mold, if there are existing cracks on the roof, especially if it is a flat roof, the water can seep into areas through there and cause leak damage to the area underneath where it could go undetected for long periods of time. Moisture and water will cause the foundation underneath and weaken. Eventually, thee will be a serious leak or even a total collapse of the area.
Prevent Damage From Humans
When a building has a large, flat roof that has access from the ground teenagers and other types of adventurous people will be attracted to the height and the privacy of the place. One of the worst things that can happen to a roof is for people to be running, jumping, and partying on top of it. The best way to keep the roof safe from these types of intrusions is to block all ways to access it and allow only certain people to be there.
In the event that a person or group of people have been on the roof, make sure to have an inspection done to see if the visitors caused any damage. Even if there is a slight bit of cracking that doesn’t seem like much, if it is patched up before it gets filled with water it will help to prevent further damage.
Consider a Roof Coating
There are several factors that involve the wear down of a roof. Weather can play a huge role in the way that time wears out the roof. Damage from the heat and sun is one of the leading causes of roof problems because the surface can become very hot, dry out, and crack. Once a roof has cracks in it, problems are not far behind.
Many commercial roof owners have a company apply a reflective roof coating that protects the roof from the damaging rays of the sun, and other problems that come with harsh weather conditions.
Depending on the quality of the coating and the skill of the professional that applies it, a coating can last upwards of 7 years before it has to be reapplied. Adding an additional 7 years to the roof is a great way to get the most out of the roof that is there and avoid having to completely replace it for a very long time.
Schedule Regular Maintenance and Inspections
It would seem as if a roof, of all things, should just sit there and do what it does for a few decades without any help or maintenance. The truth is that a roof is a surface, just like any other surface, that is subject to all of the damage that the elements can bring to it.
Having the roof inspected and maintained at least once a year can greatly reduce the risk of having a small crack turn into an entire roof rebuild. Water and moisture are not the friends of the roof, nor are built-up leaves that stand around and cause mold to breed.
By having a professional roofer inspect the roof and keep it squeaky clean you can undoubtedly extend its life of it simply by stopping potential problems from happening before they have a chance to come to evolve into catastrophic issues.
Remain Aware and Diligent
One of the most helpful things a person can do to help to maintain the quality of their commercial roof is to understand the issues that can happen if left unattended. Whenever there is a big storm, or some kind of event that results in tree branches, or anything else coming into contact with the roof, have a professional get up there and take a look at it.
In addition to having a professional inspect the roof for any damage after storms and other occurrences, it is also a good idea to do an inside inspection as well. Take a look at the ceilings in each room and look closely for any signs of discoloration, or water seepage.
Just because a roof gets a small leak from damage from a storm does not mean the entire roof has to be replaced. If the leak is caught before it causes any major damage the roof can be patched up where the leak is. However, if the entire underboard of the roof becomes damaged by water it will compromise the entire structure of the roof itself and could eventually collapse inward.
Roof work is not cheap. However, in the event that the roof is well taken care of during its life, it can be extended far beyond the typical lifespan of a commercial roof. Maintaining the roof, keeping an eye out for damage after storms, having regular inspections, keeping people off of it that do not belong there, ceiling inspections…all of these and many more small things that can be done to help prevent severe damage are all part of the ways that can prolong the lifetime of a roof and allow it to provide great shelter for decades to come.