Do’s and Don’ts of Low-Slope Commercial Roofing

When it comes to commercial buildings, low-slope roofs are the most cost-effective and space-efficient roofing options. For these reasons, it’s rare to see a factory, warehouse, or grocery store with a sloped roof. While there are many advantages to a low-slope roof, this type of structure also presents some issues that commercial building owners should be aware of.

Here are the basic do’s and don’ts about owning and maintaining a low-slope commercial roof:

Don’t…

  • Ignore the maintenance schedule—With a low-slope roof, a small problem can become a big problem very quickly. Low-slope roofs don’t flush debris or moisture as easily as pitched roofs. Because of their large surface area, they can easily conceal problems. This makes regular maintenance and inspections even more important for a low-slope roof. 
  • Wait for repairs—Because low-slope roofs are so exposed, damage can get worse quickly. When there is damage on a low-slope roof, it’s important to get it taken care of as soon as possible before a small tear becomes a giant leak.
  • Make the roof overly accessible—Roofers and building contractors need access to your roof, but that doesn’t mean every person should be able to go up there. If someone doesn’t have official business on the roof, don’t give them access. High traffic on a low-slope roof can cause damage, not to mention it being a safety hazard.

Do…

  • Clean the roof regularly—A little mess on your roof may not seem like a huge issue, but it can become a serious problem for a low-slope roof. Debris, dirt, and grime don’t flush off a low-slope roof as easily as a roof with a pitch. Over time, filth can build up on a roof, clogging drains and even causing leaks. Regularly cleaning a low-slope roof will help your building look nice, and it will prevent problems.
  • Give water an escape route—When designing a low-slope roof, make sure not to create places that will retain water. Moisture build up is one of the biggest risks with a low-slope roof, and having a proper drainage system is critical to preventing leaks. Be sure to consult a professional roofer about drains and other equipment you’ll need to guide water off the roof’s surface.
  • Get on a consistent inspection plan—A maintenance schedule for a new low-slope roof should begin the day after it’s finished. Regular inspections and being consistent with minor repairs are the only way to ensure that a low-slope roof stays healthy. By working with a roofing contractor, you can get enrolled in a roof management program that will predict when you’ll need roof repairs.

There’s a lot to consider when getting a new commercial roof. Let the experts at Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. help. For a consultation, contact Maxwell today.

How to Maximize the Life of Your Commercial Roof

Commercial roofs are a big investment. Business owners who are about to spend big money on a new roof are probably wondering, What is the life expectancy of a roof? 

Brand new roofs should last long enough to make the building owner’s investment worth it, but that isn’t always the case. So, what is the life of a roof? It depends on how you treat it. There are many factors in determining the life expectancy of a roof. Here are some tips for making that new roof last as long as possible:

1. Schedule regular inspections.

Professional roofing inspections help catch roof problems early on and repair them before they can affect the long-term health of the roof. Facility managers should perform regular self-inspections for obvious roof damage, and a professional should come by a few times a year for a forecast assessment. Roofing forecasts can help predict future maintenance needs and help facility managers plan for upcoming costs.

2. Create a maintenance plan.

Maintenance is the single most important thing that a building owner can do to extend the life of a roof. Using information from professional forecast assessments, building managers should be able to create a detailed schedule for minor repairs and roof part replacements. Programs like our own MAXCare® create no-hassle roof management plans for property owners. MAXCare® automatically schedules maintenance and inspections so property managers never miss an important roof check up. 

3. Plan for emergencies.

Even the best maintenance plan can’t control the weather. Storms, falling trees, and other emergencies are always a risk. To be sure that an uncontrollable calamity doesn’t affect the life of your roof, you should have an emergency plan. Responding quickly in an emergency can prevent the need for a major repair or roof replacement, this is why MAXCare® includes 24/7 emergency response. 

4. Choose more durable materials if buying a new roof.

The typical life of a commercial roof made with conventional materials is anywhere between 10 to 30 years, depending on installation and how it is treated, but what is the life of a metal roof? Metal roofs can last up to 70 years depending on the materials used. If you’re buying a new roof or are in need of a roof replacement, consider a long-lasting material like metal.

To learn more about how to extend the life of your commercial roof, contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today.