Commercial roofing is an important part of every building because it protects the building from rain, wind, snow, and extreme temperatures. But, like any other roof, commercial roofs need regular maintenance to ensure they last and work well. Ignoring commercial roofing maintenance can lead to significant damage and costly repairs. To prevent such scenarios, we have compiled five tips for commercial roofing maintenance to help keep your roof in excellent condition and avoid potential problems. By following these tips, you can extend the life of your commercial roof and save on expensive repairs and replacements.
1. Schedule regular inspection appointments
Regular inspections are a critical aspect of commercial roofing maintenance. They are necessary to identify potential problems early on, such as leaks, cracks, and other types of damage. Inspections should be conducted at least twice a year, but it’s recommended to have them done by a professional roofing contractor.
During an inspection, a roofer will look at the whole surface of the roof for signs of damage or wear. They will also inspect the roof structure and the underlying building for signs of water damage or other issues. Any problems found during the inspection should be fixed as soon as possible to keep the roof and building from worsening.
The type of roofing material, the location of the building, and environmental factors like bad weather can all affect how often the roof needs to be checked. For example, buildings in places with a lot of rain or strong winds may need to be checked more often.
One of the first steps in doing regular inspections is to make a maintenance schedule that includes routine inspections. The schedule should outline when inspections should be carried out, who will perform them, and what will be included in the inspection.
Look for signs of wear and tear on the roofing system during your inspections. These signs may include cracks, punctures, or tears in the roof membrane, loose or missing shingles, and damage to the flashing. Identifying these issues early can prevent them from becoming more significant problems.
Water damage can be a significant issue for commercial roofing systems. During your inspections, look for signs of water damage, such as water stains on the ceiling, damp insulation, or mold growth. Ensure that standing water and any drainage issues are addressed promptly.
It’s important to write down your inspection results including any problems you find and any repairs that need to be done. This information can be used to keep track of the roofing system’s condition over time and make future maintenance decisions. It is essential to address any issues identified during the inspection promptly. Delaying repairs can lead to more significant problems, potentially resulting in costly repairs.
2. Remove overhanging trees
Trees that grow too close to commercial buildings can cause many problems, from clogged gutters to damaged roofing materials.
One of the most serious risks of having trees hang over things is that their branches may fall. This can occur because of high winds, heavy snow, or even natural decay. Falling branches can also scratch and damage roofing materials, leading to costly repairs. Leaves, sticks, and other things can get stuck in gutters, making it hard for water to flow off the roof. This can cause water to pool on the roof, leading to leaks and water damage. Removing overhanging trees can help prevent clogged gutters.
Overhanging branches can block the sun and airflow, creating a damp, humid environment where mold can grow. This can lead to structural damage, health issues, and other problems.
Trees that block sunlight can make it harder to heat the building in the winter, leading to higher energy bills. Removing trees that hang over a building can make it more energy efficient by letting more sunlight in and reducing the need for heating.
3. Keep track of your roof’s age
Knowing the age of your roof helps you create a maintenance plan, so you can figure out when it needs to be replaced.
The first step in keeping track of your roof’s age is to understand the expected lifespan of your roofing system. Different kinds of roofing materials have different lifespans, and your roof’s lifespan can be affected by weather, how well you take care of it, and how well it was installed. For example, a flat roof may last between 10 and 25 years, while a metal roof can last up to 50 years or more.
It’s crucial to keep accurate records of your commercial roofing system, including the installation date and any repairs or maintenance that have been performed. If you bought a building with an existing roof, ask the previous owner when it was put on and if there are any maintenance records.
Even the most well-maintained commercial roofs will eventually need to be replaced. If you’ve kept accurate records of your roof’s age and maintenance history, you can plan for a replacement well in advance. This can help you budget for the replacement and avoid unexpected costs.
4. Keep gutters and drains clean
Gutters and drains are responsible for channeling water away from your building, which helps prevent water damage and other issues. However, if they become clogged or blocked, they can cause significant damage to your roofing system.
It can be dangerous and time-consuming to clean your gutters and drains yourself, especially if you have a large commercial building. Hiring a professional roofing contractor to perform these tasks can ensure the job is done safely and effectively. A professional contractor can also identify and repair any damage or issues with your gutters and drains before they become more serious problems.
How often you clean your gutters and drains will depend on several factors, such as the size and shape of your roof, how much rain falls in your area, and what kinds of trees are near your building. Gutters should be cleaned at least twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall. If you have overhanging trees or other factors that increase the debris on your roof, you may need to clean it more frequently.
Putting up gutter guards is a good way to stop debris from getting into your gutters in the first place. Several types of gutter guards are available including screens, covers, and mesh systems. Tell your roofing contractor which gutter guard is best for your building and budget.
Cleaning the downspouts is an important part of gutter and drain maintenance. Downspouts can become clogged with debris and cause water to overflow, potentially causing damage to the roof or building. To clean downspouts, technicians will use a plumber’s snake or a pressure washer. If using a pressure washer, they will start from the bottom and work up to prevent pushing debris further into the downspout.
5. Repair leaks immediately
The first step in repairing a leak is to identify its source. Water can travel a considerable distance before it appears in the building, making it difficult to determine the exact location of the leak. One option is to tarp the roof. This involves covering the damaged area with a waterproof tarp to prevent water from entering the building. This is a temporary solution until a permanent repair can be made.
Landmark Roofing offers professional residential and commercial roofing services to Hickory, NC residents. Contact Landmark Roofing today to schedule an inspection.