In the United States, over 2 billion ft² of metal roofing has been installed annually within the past four decades. Metal commercial roofing materials can last 70 years or more. Other roofing materials like TPO, PVC, and EPDM have lifespans that are half as long as this.
However, even if you have metal commercial roofing, it won’t last forever. The years will go by fast and your roof will start to fail before you know it. At that point, you’ll need to get a commercial roof replacement.
However, you may not know how to handle a commercial roof replacement. If so, read on. You’ll learn how to prevent a need for, spot the need for, and get a commercial roof replacement.
In this article
1. Your “Flat” Roof Isn’t Flat
First, you should know the exact type of roof you’re dealing with. This way, you’ll know when your roof isn’t functioning properly and needs to be replaced.
Most commercial roofs are flat roofs. These are roofs that look like flat floors. In contrast, other roofs are shaped like 3-D geometric shapes.
Has a Slight Slope
However, even if your roof appears flat, it isn’t. Don’t be surprised if you take a leveling tool up there and find the surface of your roof has a slight slope. This just proves that your roof is functioning well and won’t need a roof replacement anytime soon.
It Drains Water
Without a slight slope, snowmelt, rainwater, and other types of liquid won’t drain. They will puddle up on the roof. This can cause flat roofs to collapse, grow mold, and sustain damage in other ways.
Make sure that all liquids continue to drain properly off your roof. If they puddle, you may need a roof replacement.
2. Signs to Look For
Aside from puddling, what signs tell you when you need a commercial roof replacement? You can find some examples of what you need to look for in the list below:
- Storm damage
- A loose membrane
- Holes in the membrane
- Damaged or missing flashing
- Missing or damaged pitch pans
- Blistering or bubbling on membranes
If these problems are severe, you may need a commercial roof replacement. If they’re mild, a repair by roofing professionals may be enough.
3. Perform Regular Roof Inspections
How can you spot these issues with your building’s type of roof? You need to perform regular roof inspections. These can help you notice the signs of a destroyed roof or a roof that merely needs repair.
Performing a Roof Inspection
Walk on your roof as little as possible. Your commercial roof is sturdy, but constant excess weight can weaken it. Put a ladder against your building’s wall, climb up it, and look out over your roof.
Keep Track of Your Roof’s Age
Also, try to keep track of your roof’s age. Know when it’s close to reaching its lifespan limit. At that point, the safest action is to get a roof replacement.
4. Get Regular Inspections
Are you a professional roofer? If not, you probably won’t be able to spot roof damage as well as one. If you hire a professional roofer for regular inspections, they will discover any damage and deal with it.
You don’t need to get inspections that often. Once or twice a year should be enough. Consider getting it done right before winter and summer to ensure that your roof can handle the upcoming harsh weather.
5. Maintain and Get Maintenance
Speaking of avoiding commercial roof replacements, another thing you can do is maintain your roof. You can also hire roofers to maintain your roof for you.
Clean Off Your Roof
You shouldn’t perform roof repair work. However, you can clean debris like trash, branches, etc. off your roof. This can help prevent mold from growing on your roof.
Cleaning water off your roof is also a good idea. This will prevent the water from leaking in and causing damage to your building’s interior.
Hire Roof Maintenance
You can also hire roofing professionals to perform regular roofing maintenance. During this time, they can perform any roofing repairs you need. This can keep your commercial roof from needing a replacement roof for a long time.
6. Choose the Right Roofing Professionals
When you inevitably need a commercial roof replacement, you need to make sure you get the right professionals to perform it. Here are some steps you can follow when doing this:
- Choose local services
- Ensure the roofers have licenses
- Get recommendations from locals
- Check for warranties and insurance
If you don’t follow these steps, you’ll end up having to pay more to get another roof replacement after this one.
7. Consider Getting a Different Type of Roof
Do you think that you’re just going to go with the type of commercial roofing materials you had before? This could conceivably be really smart. There are so many different types of commercial roofing you could try instead.
Here are some examples:
- Metal Roofing
- Modified Bitumen
- Built-Up Roofing (BUR)
- Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) Membrane
- Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO) Membrane
Before you call a roofing service, consider researching these different roofing materials. You may find a commercial roof type that you like more than another.
8. Prepare for a Commercial Roof Replacement
Finally, you need to make sure that you get your building ready for your roofers. Remove all vehicles from the parking lot and cover any outdoor furniture, decorations, etc. The roofers may use that area to store their equipment, dumpster rental, and so on.
Also, you should keep your business closed while the commercial roof replacement is happening. The dust and noise can irritate customers and maybe cause them injuries. Falling objects are another danger.
Learn About Roofers and Other Services
This should help you hold off on a commercial roof replacement for as long as possible and handle one when it inevitably becomes a necessity.
Do you want to learn more about business roofers and other services that can help your business? Check out the articles in our Business Products and Services section. You should walk away with a lot of great information.