Different Available Commercial Roofing Materials
There is a wide assortment of commercial roofing materials available for every type of building structure. They are usually classified in two specific categories including steep slope and low slope. Steep slope roofing materials usually exceed 14 degrees (3:12) whereas, low slopes are less than 14 degrees. This is important because the roofing material is designed to handle wind. The lower the slope, the greater potential of wind lifting the roofing material.
Popular Low Slope Roofing Systems
In the commercial world, TPO (thermoplastic) roofing materials are leading the way in new technology. Manufactured with high durability material, TPO roofing systems offer low temperature flexibility and high tolerance to extreme temperatures. In fact, a thermoplastic roofing system is highly resistant to chemical exposure, ozone and ultraviolet rays. Most TPO roof systems are installed with a 20-year plus lifespan and can hold up well against high winds, punctures, chemicals and fire.
EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) roofing systems are constructed as a single ply rubber roofing membrane. It is offered for installation in a variety of “mil” thicknesses from 30 to 100. However, the most popular mil thicknesses are 45 and 60. The material is versatile and durable, and considered one of the longest lasting roofing options for commercial roofs.
BUR (built up roof) membranes is also a popular roofing material used on commercial structures. This built-up roofing material has been used for over 100 years. Often described as a “tar and gravel” roof system, BUR systems alternate layers of with a strong reinforcing fabric to develop a durable finish membrane. Often times, these roof systems are finish with four plies of the material. In addition, they are often lay down with a heated tank or a kennel of coal tar or asphalt to permanently seal the roofing system on top of the roof substrate.
Metal roof systems are extremely popular on commercial applications. They work as an ideal solution for both low slope and steep slope roofs. They provide an ideal water barrier and are highly resistant to penetrating water at its joints or laps. It is also used for roof decking on numerous substrates.
Popular Steep Slope Roofing Systems
Asphalt shingles are likely the most recognized roofing material on commercial structures that can be seen from the curb. Most shingles are made from glass fiber or organic felt. This highly weather resistant material provides a high level of protection from UV degradation, impact and fire. Most shingles are installed as a strip, and layered one over the other in a staggered pattern to provide a solid barrier from the outdoor elements, to protect the commercial structure.
Clay and Concrete Tileroofin
Clay tiles are manufactured from molded clay baked into a final product. They are excellent weather barriers against extreme temperatures. Sometimes they are glazed and are offered in a variety of colors, finishes, styles and profiles. Different designs are mixed together to create interesting gable ends, hip intersections, and ridges.
Concrete tiles are manufactured out of portland cement, water and sand. They are usually extruded from a mold while under high pressure. Like clay tile, concrete tiles are available in a variety of colors, finishes, styles and profiles. Some of its profiles mimic the look of other materials including slate.
Slate roofing material is a natural product that is durable, dense and beautiful. It has non-absorbent properties. The stoneís natural cleavage allows it to be split easily in a single direction. The slate materialís color is dependent on its mineral and chemical composition. It only minimally fades in color over the decades. Slate tends to weather beautifully, and naturally maintains its decorative appearance for generations.
Commercial roofing material has along rich history around the world. While thatch, made of rye, seagrass and wheat straw made way to hardwood shingles, todayís commercial roofing technology has revolutionized the way the commercial structures are protected from the outdoor elements including snow, rain and sunshine.
Many commercial roofing materials provide an aesthetic quality to the beautiful design of the building, while others offer only functionality and durability against the elements. When properly installed by a licensed, certified roofing contractor, todayís commercial roofing material products can last for many decades.
Hiring a Licensed Contractor for Roof Repair
Roof repairs around the home continue to be an important home improvement project to maintain the structural integrity of the house. When roof repair issues are left untreated, they can cause serious leaks that could damage the ceiling, walls and floors of the home. In fact, avoiding repairs of even a small roofing issue can cost the homeowner thousands of dollars of unnecessary repairs. The easiest way to ensure that the home’s roof is protected is to have a regular roof inspection at least once every year.
Damage to the roof often occurs during severe weather including thunderstorms, torrential downpours, winter storms, hurricanes, and snow buildup. Because of that, it is essential to have routine roof inspections before any apparent damage becomes obvious.
Best Left to a Professional
The job of a roof inspection or roof repair is best left to a professional that has the skills and experience of dealing with working with equipment in high locations. Professional expertise is essential, to guarantee that the work that is performed is done correctly.
The inspecting professional roofing contractor can look for holes, tears or cracks in metal flashing that protects the chimneys and roof penetrations. In addition, they can look for missing shingles or tiles, and any obvious signs of water penetration through the roofing system. This can often be seen visually by inspecting the interior of the attic.
Avoiding Unplanned Repairs
The intense climate weather during summer and winter can put added strain on the roof system. During the winter, hail, ice and snow cause specific problems to roofing material, as do animals searching for warmth generated around the chimney or flue stacks on the roof. In addition, branches and trees can wreak havoc on tiles and shingles, as can intense sunshine during the heat of the day.
Making a minor roof repair on a simple roofing issue is a way to avoid unplanned repairs that could be extremely costly in the future. This is why it is essential to perform an inspection.
Selling the House
Making roof repairs before marketing the house is essential to show potential home buyers that the roof is safe and sturdy. This can help boost the value of the home to ensure that the homeowner receives a fair price during negotiation. Many times, the home buyer requires a roof inspection on the house to complete the purchase, performed by a licensed roofing contractor.
Hiring a Roofing Contractor
If the home requires roof repairs, it is essential to hire an experienced roofing contractor with years of experience. There are specific things to consider before hiring any contractor to work on the roof. These considerations include:
Get References – The simplest way to locate a reliable contractor in the community is to ask neighbors, family and friends. Chances are, if the referring individual was satisfied with the work the contractor performed, you will likely be satisfied too.
Licensed Contractors – It is essential to hire only licensed contractors. This is because licensed contractors have met the legal standards set by the state. They understand how to repair roofing problems properly, according to code. In addition to their license, they will also be bonded and insured to provide you, the homeowner, would legal liability insurance in the event that any unexpected damage happens to the home.
Workers’ Compensation – In the event that the licensed contractor sends a roofing technician, the company will likely carry workers’ compensation on their employees in the field. This protects you, the homeowner, in the event that the worker is injured while making roof repairs on your home.
Pricing and Warranties – Making any roof repairs properly is essential to the longevity of the roofing system and the home. A licensed contractor should offer competitive pricing in their written estimates, and provide guarantees on the work they perform. In addition, the work by a licensed contractor should validate the warranty of all materials used on the repairs, according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Not every contractor has experience in working with a huge variety of roofing materials available in the marketplace. Before hiring anyone, it is essential to get referrals from any potential roofing contractor candidate, to ensure that previous customers were happy with the results the contractor provided while making repairs.
Hiring Roofing Contractors for Roof Repair, Inspection and Replacement
Routine maintenance on a rooftop is essential to ensure that the shingles, tiles or other roofing material continues to provide protection for the home. When water from snow or rain is allowed to penetrate through the roof system, it can create extensive damage to the home structure including its walls, ceiling, basement and foundation. This is where the expertise provided by professional roofing contractors can prove especially valuable.
When left untreated, water penetrating into the house can create harmful contaminant levels of mold, mildew, fungus, bacteria, pathogens, viruses and others. This can create serious health hazards for every family member suffering from a compromised immune system, or respiratory problems including asthma and allergies.
It is imperative to have the roof inspected at least once every year, preferably before the heat of the summer or the intense cold of the winter months. Inspecting the roof requires climbing a ladder and walking the roof system to look for visible signs of wear and tear, cracks in sealant and caulking, and missing material.
This is not a do-it-yourself homeowner’s project, because of the expertise required, and working at a dangerous location. A roofing contractor can recommend any necessary repair or replacement to extend the longevity of the entire roof system. This is because roofing systems can begin to degrade over time, and can quickly create expensive problems if not remedied or replaced. Hiring licensed roofing contractors is the only way to ensure that the roof inspection is handled properly.
With an annual or semi-annual roof inspection (here’s a handy DIY guide), roofing contractors can detect small problems with the material, sealant and caulking. They can make small roof repairs before they quickly escalate into expensive unexpected repairs or replacement. This might include installing new tiles where missing or re-caulking flashing around chimneys and penetrations.
A Roof Replacement
Most residential roofing systems are designed to last 15 to 20 years if properly maintained. When it is time to replace the entire roof system, the job can usually be accomplished over the course of 2 to 3 days. This time may be extended during the rainy season or throughout the winter months.
A Roof Replacement Estimate
Roofing contractors typically charge by the ‘square’, where one square equals one hundred square feet of roofing materials. In addition, there will also be a charge to tear off the existing roof and discard it at the local landfill. In the event that there is more than one layer of shingles installed on the roof, there may be an additional charge for the extra weight and labor involved. Most roofing contractors charge more for any problems with the roof structure substrate, where plywood has been compromised by water and requires replacement. Providing a solid structure underneath the roofing material is a sure way to extend its longevity.
Choosing a Professional Roofing Contractor
Reputable roofing contractors in the community will be licensed with the state and possibly the county or city. This license indicates that they have passed a test, and have fulfilled specific requirements to ensure the state that they performed quality work according to code. In addition, they will be bonded and insured to provide liability insurance to the homeowner in the event that unexpected damage occurs during the roof replacement or repair.
At nearly every location in the nation, professional license roofing contractors are expected to carry workers’ compensation on every employee. This assures the homeowner that any employee hurt on the job is covered under the contractor’s insurance, and not the homeowner’s policy. It is always best to ask for a copy of the workers’ compensation policies along with liability insurance and the roofer’s license.
Once the professional roofing contractor has been selected, they can perform the repairs or replacement according to the estimate or quote they provided. This includes removing existing materials and disposing them properly. They should also guarantee that the mess they make around the perimeter of the home during a roof replacement is picked up, so that the area is restored to its prior condition.
Roofing contractors provide a valuable service to the community, so that homeowners and business owners can protect their property from outdoor elements. In addition, because of their expertise, all of the materials roofing contractors provide and install should be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.
The Benefits of Hiring Reputable Roofing Companies
To increase the longevity of the home, every roof requires ongoing maintenance, and a thorough inspection to examine its durability. Reputable roofing companies can provide necessary inspections to determine if there is any leak, damage, or rust beginning to build up on the roof structure.
To maintain the longevity of the home, the roof must be durable to withstand a variety of weather conditions. However, over time, many roofing systems will experience damage caused by rain, snow, ice, hail, wind and intense heat from the sun. When not properly maintained, a simple roof problem can transform into a huge issue that is often expensive to repair.
In addition, many homes have poorly constructed roof structures that could easily rot timber in the attic, leak water onto the insulation or create the buildup of mold in the home. If the water is allowed to penetrate into the house, it can easily damage the furniture and household appliances if not attended to immediately.
Locating Reputable Roofing Companies
The easiest solution for locating reputable roofing companies in the community is to ask neighbors, family and friends for a recommendation. If a friend has received good workmanship in roof repairs or roof replacement, in all likelihood, you will too.
In addition, you should perform research online, or seek out pamphlets, leaflets or brochures from the company. You can call the company directly, and ask about their specific terms and conditions on every service they provide. In addition, you want to understand the payment schedule, any discounts that apply, special rates that are being offered, and the limitations of their warranty.
You can ask the company directly for referrals from previous customers, or search online to read about suggestions, opinions, feedback and comments left by others. Understanding what others think about the company can help you make a better informed decision before hiring them to do your roof repairs, inspections or roof replacement.
Just like your entire household, the roofing system tends to be a massive investment. However, it is a necessity, because it protects the entire home from the outdoor elements. Even a small leak can cause serious problems, when not attended too quickly. Because of that, it is essential to hire a roofing contractor that offers quick service to stop the leaks, and make necessary repairs to minimize any future damage.
If you are replacing your existing roof, with new material, you will need to ensure that you have a quality warranty. Nearly every type of roofing material will have a warranty from the manufacturer that lasts from 10 to 20 years. However, the only way that the warranty is validated is to have all the materials installed by a qualified roofing contractor.
To ensure a valid warranty, you will need to hire a licensed, bonded and insured roofing company. Anyone not licensed could easily void the warranty, and make it worthless, should the materials ever start to fail.
In addition, your licensed contractor will carry workers’ compensation on every employee on your roof. This is important, because if they become injured you will not be held responsible, nor be required to pay for any damages involved in their injury. The contractor also carries liability insurance, should they unexpectedly damage another component on the house.
Cleaning Up The Mess
Repairing or replacing an entire roof is often an extremely messy job. There is no way to avoid small pieces of debris, and rusty nails from falling off the roof, around the perimeter of the home. It is essential that all roofing companies that provide you an estimate indicate exactly how the mess will be cleaned up, once the entire job is complete. Experienced roofers know how to properly handle pieces of felt paper, scraps of shingles, and roofing nails.
Selecting the best candidate from a long list of roofing companies can be a time-consuming process. However, by choosing the right one, you can be assured that the work they perform will be top-notch, and that the material will last to the end of its warranty period.
Reputable roofing companies offer a valuable service to homeowners, to protect their homes against the exterior environments of wind, rain, sunshine, sleet, ice and hail.