What to Know About the Maxwell Roofing Experience

Unlike other basic roofing companies, Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. is a one-stop shop for all commercial roofing needs. We do everything from design and fabrication to construction and maintenance, and we do it all with the most professional and quality-focused team of roofers. Here’s what our customers can expect for every step of their roof’s life with Maxwell Roofing.

Fabrication

Sheet metal is a critical component of any commercial roof. While most roofing companies buy pre-cut sheet metal, Maxwell fabricates its own. Our fabrication shop allows us to create custom materials to fit any roof design. While other roof companies limit their customers to mass-produced components, Maxwell can create the best components for the job. On top of it all, Maxwell’s design services are free.

Construction

With more than 60 years in business, Maxwell Roofing has installed just about every type of roof system and design you can imagine. We can do everything from traditional single ply to specialized green roofs and patios. Maxwell has all the certifications and skills you would expect in a good roofing company, but what we really pride ourselves on is our service to customers. All of Maxwell’s employees are trained not only to do their jobs right but to explain their work to customers in a clear and professional manner.

Maintenance

For Maxwell roofers, a roof’s construction is just the beginning of a long relationship. All commercial roofs should be maintained properly in order to last, and Maxwell has the best maintenance plan in the business. MAXCare® allows property managers to track the maintenance schedules and inspections of all of their roofs in one easy-to-use online portal. Maxwell inspectors use industry-leading reporting to inform building managers about exactly what is going on with each roof. The program has forecasting tools built in to limit surprise expenses and help a roof last for its full expected life.

Emergency Service

Even with the best materials, construction, and maintenance, roof accidents are still bound to happen every once in a while. MAXCare® customers have 24/7 access to a dispatcher in case of an emergency. Fast repairs can prevent further damage to a roof in an emergency.

Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. isn’t just a roofing company; they are a partner throughout the entire life of a commercial roof. To learn more about how Maxwell can help with your commercial roofing project, contact us today.

The Importance of Reporting During Roofing Maintenance

Everyone knows that making a commercial roof last requires persistent maintenance and regular inspections. But, equally as important as the roof work itself are the reports that come from those inspections. Facility managers often overlook quality reporting as a desired quality in a roofing company. 

Here are a few reasons why you should care not just about maintenance but also about the reports that commercial roof inspections yield:

  • Proof and Understanding—Inspection reports provide detailed proof about what is happening on a roof. Top-notch inspection reports will include imaging—that may be photos, infrared moisture images, or drone footage—to show exactly why a roof needs repair. The best inspectors will walk building owners and property managers through exactly what the report says and explain why a problem needs fixing. The best roofers understand that not everyone understands how a commercial roof works, and they will ensure that their customers understand why they should spend money on this important part of their building’s structure. 
  • Preparation for the Future—Forecast assessments are used to determine a roof’s condition and predict what sort of maintenance and repairs will be required in the future. This type of assessment allows property managers to plan ahead and budget for roofing expenses instead of being caught off guard by an accident or emergency. These assessments are useless without a quality report that lays out a maintenance schedule and estimates a cost for future repairs.
  • Managing Warranties—All quality roof systems have warranties, but getting them fulfilled often requires a lot of work. A manufacturer is not simply going to hand out a refund. Instead, they will want proof and a report of an inspection. Professional roofing companies keep their employees up-to-date on warranties and ensure that inspectors are aware of the implications of their reports. A poorly done inspection report could cost your company thousands in a lost warranty.
  • Juggling Multiple Properties—Worrying about a commercial roof can be stressful, and property management companies often have dozens of roof maintenance schedules floating around on their calendars. Roof management programs like Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal Inc.’s MAXCare® allow property management firms the ability to track all of their roofs in one online portal. Maxwell’s industry-leading reporting is at the center of MAXCare, informing all the maintenance schedules and budget planning.

Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc.’s roofers aren’t just trained to conduct thorough inspections, but they also learn how to make the best reports in the business. This is why Maxwell is consistently considered an industry leader in reporting. To learn more about what Maxwell can do for managing your commercial roof, contact us today.

Resolve to Improve Your Commercial Roof’s Performance in 2020

Making resolutions for a new year has been shown to improve personal performance and to help people more effectively reach their goals. With all the 2020 offerings from Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc., businesses can also make a resolution this year: to improve their roof performance with new commercial roofing.

Here are just a few ways that a new commercial roof can help your business in 2020: 

Better Energy Efficiency—Energy-efficient materials have come a long way during the last decade. Commercial roof new construction allows building owners to install top-of-the-line insulation or other materials to help reduce energy costs. A new commercial roof can also be equipped for hardware like solar panels.

Improved Weatherproofing—New commercial roofs are better at resisting weather like rain and snowstorms. Old roofs may not hold up against hail or strong winds. Aging materials may not be up to the job of securing equipment on the roof, and outdated roof membranes and other roofing materials may start to lose their waterproofing qualities.

A New Look—A change in roof design can completely change the look of a building. Altering the roof pitch or material can give a business a whole new style, while also improving performance. Additionally, the design of a roof can help with everything from weatherproofing to energy efficiency.

Preventing Leaks—Leaks are the biggest concern when it comes to a commercial roof. Not only can a leak damage a roof, but it can also create problems in other parts of a building. With a new commercial roof, your business can get the best leak protection. If a new roof isn’t in the budget for 2020, your business can still improve leak performance by fixing penetrations and other problem areas on a roof. It’s not just the roof itself that protects against leaks but also all roof accessories.

Starting Strong with a Maintenance Plan—No matter how good a new commercial roof is, without a regular maintenance plan, it won’t make it to its expected replacement date. Commercial roofs are complicated systems and need regular inspections and repairs. Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. offers a no-hassle maintenance plan called MAXCare®. With MAXCare, companies can easily schedule inspections and plan for upcoming repairs. Going into 2020 with MAXCare will ensure that your company’s roof performance greatly improves. 

To learn more about how a new commercial roof can set your business up for success in 2020, contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today.

How to Avoid Ice Damage on a Commercial Roof

Considering it’s only frozen water, ice is surprisingly adept at causing damage to a commercial roof. Left unprotected, a roof can emerge from winter much worse off than it was going in. Here’s some helpful information regarding what ice can do to a commercial roof and what to do to prevent damage.

Ice Damage to Commercial Roofs

When it gets cold, any water that is already on a roof may freeze and expand. This ice can block drains, buckle flashings, and expand gaps in the roof. Storms can also dump ice directly onto a roof. The weight of this ice can stress roof structures and, in some cases, even cause collapse. Even small amounts of ice will eventually melt, possibly causing water damage.

One of the most common problems is an ice dam on a roof. Ice dams occur when commercial roof ice melts and flows to the edge of a commercial roof. When this water re-freezes, it creates a wall, or dam, that can prevent future ice melt from leaving the roof. 

Preventing Ice Damage

Preventing ice damage on a commercial roof begins before winter even starts with an inspection in the fall. During this inspection, a roofer will examine the roof for moisture that may later freeze into ice. The inspector will also identify any clogs or blockages that will prevent ice melt from leaving the roof. For some roofs, the inspector may recommend a commercial roof ice system, known as an ice shield or ice guard.

Once winter is underway, some roofs may require regular de-icing. Chemical de-icers can prevent ice buildup during a storm and help clear a roof before ice buildup becomes a problem. It’s important to make sure that any chemicals used on the roof won’t damage the building materials and also comply with local environmental regulations.

Commercial Roof Ice Systems

Roof ice shields or ice guards are a protective coating that sits on top of a commercial roof deck. The membrane protects the roof from leaks as the ice melts. Once ice has melted, the water that doesn’t leave the roof will leak down to the ice guard, which will catch it and direct it toward the gutters. Installing this type of system in problem areas prevents standing water on a roof and ensures that ice doesn’t accumulate.

To learn more about how to protect your commercial roof from ice and snow, contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today.

Client Spotlight: Colliers International | Huntsville

Accelerating Client Success with Seamless Services to Investors, Property Owners, Tenants, & Developers

Colliers International is a commercial real estate services organization with more than 400 offices across the world. The company got its start in Alabama in 2007 when father and son team Joe Sandner III and Joe Sandner IV created Sandner Commercial Real Estate, Inc. in Birmingham, Alabama. The firm quickly became one of the city’s leading commercial real estate companies and then joined Colliers International in 2012 as an independently owned affiliate.

In 2013, Colliers International began investing in Huntsville, acquiring 2.1 million square feet of office space in the city. After merging with a local Huntsville real estate firm, Colliers formed Colliers International | Alabama, opening three offices and employing 47 people. The firm employs specialists in local real estate who know their communities and local industries. Colliers International provides services from brokerage sales and leasing to investment services, project and real estate management. 

“Our clients depend on our ability to draw on years of direct experience in the local market,” says Alison Waddell, Director of Operations for Colliers International in Alabama. She adds, “Our professionals know their communities and the industry inside and out.” 

The Opportunity 

Colliers International enlisted the services of Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. in 2013, making the company a preferred roofing vendor for all of its Alabama properties. Colliers uses Maxwell for roof repairs, assessments, and replacements and is enrolled in Maxwell’s roof management program, MAXCare, for several of its properties.

According to Waddell, Maxwell has been dependable, responsive, and professional on the job. She says, “We have not had any complaints from our tenants or building engineers since we started using Maxwell.”

The Solution

Because Colliers owns so many different types of properties, their roofing needs vary. Still, Colliers has found that Maxwell’s quality work translates from job to job. “They are always willing to work within our building owner’s budget to prolong the life of the roof until a replacement can be afforded,” says Waddell.

Beyond the actual roof work, Waddell says that it is Maxwell’s service that sets them apart from other roofing companies. The communication between Maxwell’s account managers and technicians with the property manager has helped make managing their properties easier. Says Waddell about Maxwell Roofing, “Try them. You won’t be disappointed.”

Is 2020 the Year for a New Commercial Roof?

If your roof is getting old, if it has serious damage, or if it’s just full of outdated materials, then 2020 might be the year for an upgrade. New construction for a commercial roof is a big undertaking, but it’s usually worth the effort. Here are some signs that it’s time to get a new commercial roof.

Reasons to Get a New Commercial Roof

  1. Leaks and damage: Sometimes, leaks can be solved with a simple repair, but often they’re signs that something more serious is going on with the roof. If you have severe leaks, you may have other problems, and it’s probably time for a new commercial roof. Other damage to the roof membranes, flashings, or deck can also signal the need for a new roof.
  2. Investing in the longevity of your building: The cost of a new commercial roof can be off-putting, but the investment goes a long way. New commercial roofs can last for more than 20 years, and they also protect the rest of the building from damage. Without a good roof, your building may be prone to damage from storms or moisture.
  3. Improve energy efficiency: Energy efficiency technology has come a long way in the last few years, and roofs play a large part in how many of those technologies function. A new commercial roof can get better insulation or be fitted for solar panels or some other kind of technology to lower electricity bills and make your building more efficient.
  4. Structural roof damage: Old roofs or roofs that have undergone some sort of accident can become structurally unsound. When this happens, it doesn’t just endanger your roof but the integrity of the entire building. If a roof is sagging or bending, it’s time to get a new commercial roof as soon as possible.
  5. Damage to roof equipment or penetrations: Damage to roof accessories like flashings, drains, or penetrations like skylights can be a cause for a roof replacement. Sometimes, these accessories can’t be replaced, and you will need a whole new roof.
  6. Get a new design: Maybe you want to make your building more green. Maybe you want some nice skylights to wow your clients. A new commercial roof opens up a whole world of design possibilities.

If you’re thinking about starting a new year with a new roof, consider Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. We have more than 60 years of experience and pride ourselves on the quality of our work. To learn more about how Maxwell can help you get the most from your new commercial roof, contact us today.

How Rooftop HVAC Systems Can Affect Your Roof

Commercial rooftop HVAC units have many advantages and are a common choice for many building owners. Choosing a rooftop HVAC unit can help keep the machinery safe and makes it more versatile for changes later, but rooftop HVAC units can have a big effect on the roof structure itself. 

When considering commercial rooftop HVAC prices, facility managers should factor in the additional maintenance a roof will need to support one. 

Ways Rooftop HVAC Units Impact Roofs

  • Condensation: HVACS are heavy duty machines, and when they run they can cause condensation and sometimes steam. Moisture is the biggest enemy to a solid roof structure. Over time moisture can erode the roof’s membrane or cause leaks. Ponding on a roof can also cause mold. 

Moisture should vaporize while still inside of an HVAC unit, but sometimes malfunctions can lead to leaking. Many roofs with HVACs have special areas to trap and retain moisture, but it’s also important to regularly inspect roofs with HVAC equipment to ensure that there aren’t any pooling or build up in condensation. 

  • Roof strain: Not every roof can support a heavy HVAC unit. Roofs need to be specially designed to ensure the structure is strong enough to support HVACs. Typically, HVAC units are planned out and installed while a roof is under construction in order to accommodate the added weight. Some building owners may want to add more HVAC units after the roof is already done. It’s absolutely essential that a roofer be consulted during this process to help design the area where the new units will be placed.
  • Wind lift: HVAC units are heavy, but that doesn’t mean they are immovable. Strong winds and storms can shift or lift units out of place, damaging the roof and creating a dangerous situation for people inside and outside the building. Workers who install HVACs know how to properly secure their systems, but they may not know what impact that will have on the roof underneath it. 

Roofers need to be consulted about the fasteners used for HVAC systems to ensure they don’t pull on the roof and damage the structure underneath it. Even slight movements in heavy HVAC equipment can cause major damage over time. Making sure all curbs, flashings, and sealants have been properly installed is the only way to guarantee your roof is protected. 

  • Negligent technicians: Having a rooftop HVAC unit means inviting technicians onto your roof for maintenance and repairs. These HVAC technicians will not be specialized in roof care and may cause damage without realizing it. Keeping up with regular inspections can help identify damage that negligent technicians may have overlooked. 

At Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, we have worked for decades with different HVAC technicians and systems to ensure that both the roof and the equipment can function properly. Contact us today to learn more about what Maxwell can do for your rooftop HVAC unit.

Common Questions About Commercial Roof Construction

Commercial roof construction can be intimidating for a business that hasn’t dealt with a major project on their building before. The process naturally brings up many questions. What happens if the roof isn’t well-made? How do you know if you’re getting the best deal? What does it mean for the future of your business? 

Here are the answers to some of the most common commercial roof construction questions so you know what to expect with your new project.

1. How much is this going to cost?

There’s no easy answer to this. It depends on a whole variety of things, like the size of the roof, the materials used, and whether you’re tearing down to the deck and installing new (roof replacement) or putting a second roof on an existing system (recover). There is no “typical commercial roof construction,” as it varies from project to project. 

The good news is that companies like Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. can help building managers be proactive in planning and budgeting for their future roofing needs. For new roofs, Maxwell can help find a solution that fits a full range of budgets.

2. Can commercial roof construction help save money?

Depending on the project, your roof may qualify for some tax incentives. This is especially true for roofs that provide energy efficiency improvements, but it also applies to other commercial roof construction types.

3. Will I need to close my business?

Probably not. Most commercial roof construction projects won’t force a business to close, but you should inform your clients or tenants and make sure they are aware of any areas that may be hazardous during construction.

4. Should I be concerned about workers on my roof?

Roof construction can be dangerous, but reputable companies provide training and take precautions. It’s important to find a roofing company with the proper licensing, bonding, and insurance, so that your company is not liable for anything that might happen during construction.

5. What are the commercial roof construction types?

The materials available for commercial roofs are endless—everything from metal to bitumen to membranes. Some commercial roofing projects may even involve green roofing, which involves putting vegetation on the rooftop. A good roofing company will be able to work within any reasonable budget to find the right material.

6. Will my roof have a warranty?

Typically, roofing systems come with a warranty from the manufacturer. The trick is finding a roofing company that knows how to properly install that system and can monitor it for flaws that would trigger the warranty. Even the best warranties are useless if you don’t know how to take advantage of them.

7. Will my new roof need maintenance?

All roofs—old and new—need maintenance to help them last longer and function properly. The best way to make sure you get the best possible return on investment on your roof is to start a maintenance plan immediately. 

If you’re getting a new commercial roof or re-roof, you likely have many other questions. A good roofing contractor like Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. will make sure that a customer service representative walks you through everything from costs to the commercial roof construction terms you should know. 

To get the answers to all your commercial roofing questions contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal today.

A Beginner’s Guide to Roof Recover Systems

It can’t be said enough: preventative maintenance is the best way to protect a commercial roof and make it last longer. Most major roof repairs can be prevented by following this important guide, but if you’ve lapsed on your maintenance or inherited roof problems after buying a building you may need to consider a roof recovery.

A roof recovery system uses a new membrane over the existing roof. These systems can be installed on roofs with damage, but only if the structural integrity of the roof deck is still sound. For many leaks and other types of damage, roof recovery may be the best option, but there are some things anyone considering a major change to their roof should know about.

Roof recovery systems are more affordable:

Reroofing requires stripping every part of the existing roof down. You have to tear off the insulation, membrane, and flashing all the way down to the roof deck. This is a time-consuming and expensive process. Because roof recovery systems also use the existing insulation and other roof materials, there is less to replace, making it more cost-effective.

Roof recovery systems are considered more environmentally friendly:

By reusing the existing roof materials, less new raw materials go into roof recovery. This isn’t just good for your wallet, but it’s also beneficial for the environment.

The age and amount of damage can limit the effectiveness of a roof recovery system:

Roof recovery systems are cheaper than a reroof, but they aren’t inexpensive. If a roof is already reaching the end of its life or has significant damage, it may be worth the extra money to just get a new roof that will last longer. Though this costs more up-front, it may save money in the long run.

Excessive moisture can make a recovery unviable:

While many types of damage can be papered over with a roof recovery, extreme moisture intrusion cannot. If the insulation or roof structure has gotten wet, putting a new roof over the existing one will only exacerbate the problem. It’s possible to remove moisture from some parts of the roof and replace wet insulation, but it’s important for roofers to use thermal detection to attempt to discover how much of the roof insulation is contaminated. If too much of the roof is wet, it may be more cost-effective to replace the roof. 

Consider the roof deck:

Without pulling up the existing roof, it’s impossible to adequately examine the condition of the roof deck. A damaged roof deck will eventually mean that the roof needs to be replaced and can render a roof recovery system ineffective. If there is reason to believe that the roof deck has been damaged, it may be necessary to replace the roof. 

Only a roofer can determine if a recovery is appropriate:

The best way to understand if your roof is best suited for a recovery or a replacement is to consult a reputable roofing company. Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. has decades of experience in both roof recoveries and replacements. To find out more, contact us today.

Employee Spotlight: Dan Maxwell

Born and raised in Nashville, Dan Maxwell grew up interested in manufacturing. After graduating from high school, he went to Tennessee Technological University and then entered an apprenticeship program for tool designers. After graduating, Dan entered the manufacturing industry, where he spent 15 years. Dan joined the family business 26 years ago when his brother John was looking to expand.

Current Role

Dan works at Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. as a company Vice President and Senior Estimator. He works alongside the sales department to determine the approximate costs of different projects. To do that, Dan and his team determines the scope of work for a given project and establishes pricing for each element. Based on this proposal, Dan and other estimators write proposals for the project and work orders for the materials once the project is contracted. To make these estimates, Dan works with facility managers, building owners, designers, and general contractors. Dan’s precision and technical knowledge is what makes him so valuable to the Maxwell team. He is dedicated to solving problems and establishing the proper scope of work. Dan is able to look at the overall building envelope and assist in discussing other issues or conditions with anyone from facility managers to building owners, while also diagnosing the roofing problems and providing cost-effective solutions. 

Why Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. Stands Out  

Dan loves working on the Maxwell team because of the company’s core values of professionalism, quality, and safety. By being a family-owned business, Dan says the team feels closer and more accountable to each other.

“I love working alongside individuals who display integrity and professionalism,” Dan said. “I think that’s what makes Maxwell Roofing like a family and what makes the company successful.”

Personal

When he’s not working, Dan likes to spend time with his wife and five kids at home. The family also has a cat and a dog. Dan and his son enjoy biking, hiking, and camping together, and when he’s at home, Dan likes to work on his house. Dan’s favorite place to travel is to Florida’s beaches. 

Client Spotlight: RCP Companies

RCP Companies was founded in 2013 as a boutique real-estate company focused on mixed-use properties. RCP’s portfolio includes everything from commercial spaces to offices and residential properties. RCP handles every aspect of real estate development, from construction through planning and property management. The company focuses on properties that contribute positively to a community and help create extraordinary experiences for the people that use the spaces.

RCP consists of a team of 15 highly-motivated team of individuals with diverse expertise and backgrounds in real estate development, marketing, construction, finance, management, and vertically integrated elements including retail, hospitality, and tech. RCP’s unique skill set and cohesive process contribute to its mission—to promote innovative economic and cultural drivers and authentic places that improve the quality of life within the communities they serve.

The Opportunity

RCP’s clients and customers consist of a wide variety of businesses. As is a highly-proactive, boutique real estate firm, RCP’s clients are international and national tenants, non-profits, architectural firms, members of the community, and more. It’s because of this company model that RCP eventually found the services of Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. in 2014. For the past six years, Maxwell’s team has provided RCP with a variety of services on multiple facilities for RCP, including: emergency leak repair services, larger scope repairs that address ongoing issues in localized areas, and budgeting and project development to assist in the re-roof process. 

The Solution

When it comes to what makes the relationship with Maxwell Roofing so good, RCP’s Property Manager Jessica Partington says, “Maxwell Roofing provides cost-effective and detailed service to our projects. The team’s detailed reporting assists us in tenant and other vendor communications regarding any rooftop deficiencies.” This high level of service is a big part of what makes Maxwell such a great roofing partner for RCP. Since working with Maxwell Roofing, RCP has seen and improved workflow when it comes to its ongoing commercial roofing needs. Partington affirms, “Maxwell’s roofing inspections have allowed better long-term project forecasting to prioritize facility needs.” Since RCP works with businesses of all types and sizes, having a commercial roofing partner like Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. has proven to be of utmost importance.

5 Reasons Comprehensive Roof Assessments Are a Must

Plenty of things can go wrong with a commercial roof system, but it takes a trained eye to find the small problems. Only a trained roofer can tell what parts of a roof need maintenance and repair, which is what makes regular comprehensive roof assessments a must for any facility manager. Here are just a few of the reasons that roof assessments are so important:

1. Stop a small problem before it becomes a big problem.

What’s an almost undetectable maintenance problem today, could become a leak or major repair down the road. Comprehensive roof assessments give roofers a chance to fix the little things before they become big, expensive problems.

2. Proactively plan your budget.

It’s a lot easier to come up with the money for a repair when you know that it’s coming. A regular roof assessment is the only way to know your roof condition, which allows you to plan for whatever maintenance is in the future.

3. Prepare for the changing seasons.

A small puddle in the summer can become an ice blockage during a winter freeze. An assessment gives a roofer a chance to clear the roof of anything that might become an issue when the season’s change, preventing a major problem later on.

4. Ensure you get the most out of your warranties.

Many roof parts and equipment come with good warranties. To take full advantage of these warranties, the roof needs to be well-maintained and the equipment with the warranty needs to be monitored carefully. Regular roof assessments are a chance to make sure everything is functioning as it should be and to cash in on those warranties if it’s not.

5. Extend the life of your roof.

When paired with maintenance, roof assessments are the best way to extend the life of a commercial roof. If left alone, a roof can develop problems that will eventually threaten its structural integrity. With a regular roof assessment, small repairs are completed before they can become a major leak.

6. Save money.

Roof inspections prevent roofs from developing costly problems, saving your business time and money. While there is an upfront cost for an inspection, it’s nothing compared to the cost of a major repair or re-roof.

To learn more about how Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. can help make your roof last longer with regular assessments, contact us today.

How to Prepare Your Commercial Roof for a Nashville Winter

Harsh winter conditions can spell disaster for an unprepared commercial roof. Even Nashville’s mild winters should be a concern for facility managers who want to keep their buildings in good shape. The shift from a hot summer to a cold winter leads to many changes on a rooftop, and if left alone, a roof can crack in the winter or spring a leak. Here are some tips for roof winterization in Nashville.

Why Worry About Winter?

The most common problem that roofs face in winter is the accumulation of ice. Moisture can build up on a roof during the summer and fall. Sometimes, this water can seep into caulking and roof panels or sit inside drains. When winter arrives that water freezes and expands, cracking the roof and creating clogs and leaks. 

How to Prepare a Roof for Winter

Every roof management program should include a plan for the winter transition. In places like Nashville, where snow is not common, roof winterization is typically focused on debris and moisture removal. While regular cleaning can sometimes be done by a general maintenance team, the cleaning in preparation for winter should be done by a professional so that they can properly inspect for clogs and ensure that all the drains are working properly.

Some roofs will also need small repairs in advance of winter. Small separations of roof panels and cracked caulking provide the perfect places for water to seep in. In winter, this water turns into ice and can cause structural problems in the roof or create a leak.

Emergency Response

Preparing an emergency response plan is also critical for winter. Ice storms can cause trees to fall or quickly fill a roof with dangerous debris. It’s critical to have a plan in place that allows you to respond quickly to these roofing emergencies. Having a professional on-call at all times during winter could save your building extensive damage in an emergency situation.

Prepare with a Management Program

Whether it’s winter or spring, all commercial roofs should have preventative maintenance plans to keep them working for the duration of their expected lives. The best way to do this is through a roof management program with a local roofing company. These programs provide customers with everything from forecast assessments to discounted repairs and roof winterization. Some programs, like Maxwell’s MAXCare® program, also provide 24/7 emergency response services to protect their customers’ roofs during extreme weather.

To learn more about how Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal Inc.’s MAXCare program can help you prepare for winter, contact us today.

Common Questions About Custom Sheet Metal Fabrication

Sheet metal is the hidden champion behind many construction projects. The material supports buildings, makes machines work, and comprises important mechanical structures. If you’re in need of sheet metal for a project, then customized fabrication might be the best option. Here are the answers to some frequent questions about sheet metal fabrication.

What Is Sheet Metal Fabrication?

Fabrication is the process used to cut, assemble, or otherwise form sheet metal into a finished product. This can be done in bulk in a factory that produces identical parts or in a custom shop that creates unique pieces designed for a specific need.

How Is Sheet Metal Manufactured?

Sheet metal can be made from a variety of different metals depending on its intended purpose. Copper, aluminum, and steel are all popular materials in sheet metal and can be combined with other types of metal in the same sheet. After selecting the material for the sheet metal, it’s melted down in a crucible and then poured out into rectangles. From there the sheet metal is cleaned and rolled out into sheets.

How Can I Get Sheet Metal?

Sheet metal can be bought from a hardware store, or even online, but this uncut sheet metal can’t be used for much. In most cases, going through a fabrication shop is the best way to get sheet metal. A fabrication shop can make sheet metal customized to any use and then cut and shape it into a final product.

What Kind of Machines Are Used for Sheet Metal Fabrication?

Industrial sheet metal cutters aren’t something you just pick up at the hardware store. These large and expensive machines can only be found in machine shops. Industrial machines like water jet cutters can make precision cuts through almost any type of sheet metal.

What Is Customized Sheet Metal Fabrication?

Unlike mass produced sheet metal components, customized sheet metal fabrication creates individual sheet metal components for a specific project. For almost any project, customized sheet metal is going to be more effective and of a higher quality than mass-produced sheet metal. 

Do Custom Sheet Metal Fabrication Shops Help with Design?

Not all custom sheet metal shops help with design, and most charge for design services. This can be difficult for customers with little design or construction knowledge. That’s why Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. never charges for design services, providing them free with all custom sheet metal fabrication.

To learn more about how Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. can help with your sheet metal job, contact us today.

Commercial Roof Preventative Maintenance 101

Not even the best commercial roofs last forever, but with proper maintenance and preventative care they can last a long time. The key to extending the longevity of any roof is to keep it in the best condition possible. Here are the basics anyone with a commercial roof needs to know about preventative maintenance.

What Is Roof Maintenance?

Roof maintenance encompasses everything from cleaning and repairs to general assessments. If left completely alone, roofs will accumulate debris and small damage. Without intervention, these little problems will worsen, causing the roof to need to be replaced prematurely. 

To maintain a commercial roof, building managers should schedule regular cleanings to remove debris that might cause damage. Yearly inspections are also important to uncover developing leaks and to reveal which specialized roof parts—flashing, gutters, etc.—might need to be replaced.

Good roof maintenance is also critical for complying with factory warranties. Most roofing products come with a guarantee that they will last a certain amount of time. If the manufacturer finds that the roof is not properly maintained, however, it can void the warranty.

How Does Roof Maintenance Save Money?

Roof maintenance can be expensive, but it saves a building owner’s money in the long-term by extending the life of the roof. The best way to save money and still get the benefits of preventative roof care is to join a roof management program, like Maxwell’s MAXCare®

MAXCare helps building owners save on each individual inspection and get discounted repairs. MAXCare customers are also the first priority in an emergency situation, like a storm. With an emergency repair, every minute could cost money in further damage to the roof or other parts of the building.

How Do You Assess Your Roof Maintenance Needs?

With MAXCare, you don’t have to assess your own roof maintenance needs, because a professional will do it for you. Starting with a forecast assessment, a professional roofer will lay out a maintenance schedule for the entire life of your roof, helping you prepare your budget for the future. All roofs have different needs, so it’s best to let a professional handle the planning.

Another advantage of using MAXCare is the program’s industry-leading reporting. Using cutting-edge software, Maxwell technicians log all of their work in one portal so that property managers have easy access to the information they need. With MAXCare, there are never any unwanted surprises or questionable repairs.

To learn more about how MAXCare can help your company keep its commercial roof maintained, contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today.

How Infrared Moisture Surveys Can Save Your Roof

Infrared devices detect a different wavelength than a normal camera or the naked eye, viewing the world through heat rather than light. The image from an infrared camera can show warm objects in a lighter color where cold objects will appear darker. So, how can infrared devices be beneficial for commercial roofing? Here are some thoughts to consider. 

Using Infrared for Roof Surveys

Infrared cameras have been used in roofing since the 1970s as an inexpensive and nondestructive way to detect moisture within the underlying insulation. Wet areas reflect and retain heat differently than dry parts of a roof. By using an infrared camera, roofers can “see” where wet patches are, without penetrating the roof system.

4 Types of Infrared Roof Surveys

There are four different ways to use infrared cameras to detect roof moisture:

  1. Rooftop moisture survey: Usually roofers will conduct an infrared moisture survey by walking on top of the roof. Aside from obvious tears and sealing problems, a qualified roofer will know how to examine for hidden sources of moisture.
  2. Under-roof moisture survey: Sometimes, roofers will want to use infrared to examine a roof from the inside. This method can help find moisture that has penetrated the roof surface and is trapped inside the building envelope. Certain metal roofs won’t retain moisture on the surface and will require an under-roof moisture survey.
  3. Elevated roof moisture survey: By moving above the roof to capture infrared images, roofers can get a look at a larger portion of the roof’s surface. This gives a better picture of the scope of the water damage and can also help find wet areas that would be hard to see close up.
  4. Aerial roof moisture survey: This is the most accurate and efficient type of roof survey. Using an aircraft or a drone, roofers can get an image the entire roof to detect slight differences in temperatures that indicate moisture build up.

Generally, Infrared surveys are followed by test cores to confirm actual moisture infiltration and gather further details of the effects.  With the large investment in roof insulation on modern roofs, non-destructive moisture detection surveys, like Infrared, are more important than ever.

To hear more about how an infrared moisture survey can save your roof from long-term damage, contact us today.

What to Know About Roof Curb Installations

For commercial buildings, a roof is much more than just a protective covering. Large industrial and commercial roofs need to do more than provide a ceiling; they also must support heavy equipment that is critical to the function of the building. To handle this extra hardware, many commercial roofs should have one or several roof curbs.

What Is a Roof Curb?

A roof curb is an elevated platform on a roof that supports some piece of equipment or roof penetration. Because roof curbs are sometimes a part of a roof, they must be able to keep out moisture and debris, while providing a spot to anchor the equipment.

Most commercial buildings will require some type of roof curb. They are used with everything from exhaust fans and HVAC units to skylights and vents. Each type of equipment requires a different kind of curb, and each type of roof material carries different considerations.

Who Can Install a Roof Curb?

Installing rooftop equipment and roof curbs typically involves more specialists than other aspects of a building’s construction. The general contractor and the equipment manufacturer will likely do a great deal of the work, but to get the job done right, it’s also important to bring in a professional roofer. 

While other specialists may be more familiar with the product going on the roof, only a qualified roofer can ensure that the roof itself will still function as needed once the equipment is installed. Maintaining a weatherproof roofing surface is critical to the health and longevity of any commercial building.

Other Things to Consider with Roof Curb Installation

Some of the most common problems with roof curb installation occur when rooftop equipment is replaced. Rather than call a professional roofer, many facility managers will simply have the contractor use an after-market roof curb. While going this route may save some money up-front, after-market roof curbs can often create airflow and temperature issues once installed. 

To ensure the continued safety and functionality of the roof, it’s best to use a fully-welded and assembled custom roof curb. Though this may cost more money up front, a custom roof curb improves longevity and protects the investment in the roof and the roof-top equipment. Finding a roofer with its own fabrication department is the most cost-effective way to get a quality product. 

To learn more about how Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. can help supply your building with quality roof curbs, contact us today.

Understanding the Connection Between Insulation & Commercial Roofing

Everyone knows that a roof keeps buildings dry, but many might not realize the role roofs play in keeping a building warm. Insulation is a critical part of any roofing system, but the bigger the building, the more susceptible it is to temperature change. This is what makes proper insulation so important for commercial buildings in particular.

What Does Roof Insulation Do?

Insulation is a special material that sits between a roof’s outer layer and the waterproofing layer and/or deck. While there are many different types of insulation, they all work to protect a building from the elements outside. Here are a few things that roof insulation does for a building:

  • Regulates temperature: Insulation’s primary purpose is to prevent heat transfer between the building and the outdoors. Insulation seals the cold air out of a building in the winter and traps cool air inside in the summer, keeping the building at a comfortable temperature.
  • Reduces energy costs: Insulation seals out nasty weather, meaning that an HVAC system has less work to do to keep a building at an acceptable temperature. With insulation, just a little bit of temperature modification can go a long way because it will stay in the building longer without escaping through unsealed parts of the building.
  • Provides fire resistance: Most insulation is fireproof and can help dampen flames or restrict their spread in case of a fire. Some building codes require insulation in some cases to improve a building’s fireproofing.
  • Provides moisture protection: Insulation provides another line of defense between outdoor moisture and a building’s interior. Using the proper form of insulation can help prevent condensation under the roof membrane.

Proper Roof Insulation

Insulation goes into almost every building, but not every contractor knows how to insulate a roof properly. While some homeowners may install insulation themselves, this process becomes much more complicated with commercial roofs. It’s unlikely that a contractor or facility manager would know how to insulate a metal roof or how to insulate a concrete roof.

Improperly installed insulation can lead to leaks, moisture problems, and diminish a building’s ability to retain a comfortable temperature. With any insulation job, the most important thing is having the right roofing partner to avoid problems in the future.

Contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today to learn more about how insulation can benefit your roof.

Why Nashville Companies Choose Maxwell Roofing for Commercial Roof Replacement

Deciding when to replace a roof is a difficult decision. Facility managers must consider their budget, their long-term plans for the building, and how the roof will be used. But, the most important decision to make before determining how to replace a roof is deciding which company to use.

There are plenty of options for commercial roof replacement but, in Nashville, Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. stands above the rest. Here are just a few of the reasons why customers return to Maxwell again and again.

  • Maxwell’s stellar reputation: With more than 60 years of experience in Nashville, Maxwell has proven to be the area’s most trusted roofing partner. Maxwell built this reputation through years of over-delivering on their customer’s roofing needs by making themselves available and always producing a quality product.

“When you’re a property manager, and a roofing issue appears, accessibility matters,” said Maxwell customer Steve Horrell, the president of the Horrell Company. “That’s the kind of difference in Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal Inc.’s level of care that has helped them maintain their high-ranking reputation throughout Middle Tennessee.” 

  • Expert personnel: Maxwell treats its employees better than the competition, so it expects its employees to live up to higher expectations. Maxwell’s team is always professional, courteous, and knowledgeable. In the Nashville area, there is no better team for assessing and carrying out a roof replacement.
  • Excellent customer service: Maxwell prides itself on a high level of customer service. While other companies work just to get the job done, Maxwell’s employees strive to ensure that every customer feels as though they are a part of the process. Maxwell employees are willing to walk customers through every step of the roofing process from answering simple questions like, “How much does it cost to replace a roof?,” all the way through technical issues.

“There’s never been a time when Maxwell Roofing has not been on site within 24 hours,” says Terry LeTourneau, the facilities manager of Maxwell customer JLL-Mars. “They always make us feel like we’re the most important customer, which gives us a peace of mind when potential roofing issues might occur.”

  • MAXCare®: How often should a roof be replaced? With MAXCare®, Maxwell’s roof management program, customers get regular roof forecast assessments to answer these important questions. MAXCare® helps customers proactively care for their roof, preventing disasters down the line.

“It’s better to know any potential roofing problems or needs upfront than have surprises throughout the year,” says Greg Victor, the director of facilities at Ensworth School, a Maxwell customer. “As a facilities guy, you can’t always use who you want to use, but with Maxwell, we got lucky.”

  • Full-service roofing services: Most roofing companies put all their focus on roof construction, but Maxwell offers customers a full-service approach with maintenance and fabrication services. Not only can Maxwell replace a roof, but they can produce custom sheet metal pieces to cut down on costs and deliver exactly what each customer needs.

If you’re ready to learn more about how Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. can help with your commercial roof replacement, contact us today.

The Importance of Commercial Roofing 24/7 Emergency Response

No one gets to choose the best time for a life emergency, and the same is true for a commercial roof. A roofing emergency can occur in any season, at any time of day, on holidays or on weekends. There are plenty of ways to prepare for a roofing emergency, but having access to a 24 hours a day, 7 days a week emergency response team is the most important thing to have in your emergency tool box.

What Qualifies as an Emergency

A roofing emergency is any type of sudden damage that threatens the integrity of a roof or building. Fallen trees and storm damage are the most frequent and obvious sources of emergency roof damage, but even small events can cause an unpredictable disaster. 

How to Prevent a Roof Emergency

It’s important to develop a regular maintenance plan to catch small problems that could become larger ones later, but some emergencies are inevitable realities for commercial roofs. Roofs are exposed to the elements all day and all night, and there’s no way to completely protect them from harmful debris or weather. The best way to prepare for an emergency is to plan for one with a budget and an emergency response team that’s available at all hours.

What 24/7 Emergency Response Does

Most roofing companies operate during regular weekly business hours, which can leave a gap of hours or days between emergency roof damage and a necessary repair. With 24/7 emergency response, customers can report the damage when it happens and receive a quick response from a qualified roof technician. In cases of serious or dangerous roof damage, companies with 24/7 emergency response will have roofers on-call and ready to respond.

Why 24/7 Emergency Response Is Important

While some roof repairs can wait a few days or weeks, very serious roof damage can cause additional deterioration to the building or harm to the people who use it. Exposed roofs, holes, storm damage, and other issues can create a fire hazard or further destruction to a building’s structure if left alone. Quick repairs are the only way to ensure that roof damage stays isolated to the roof, and that’s where 24/7 emergency response comes in.

When an accident happens outside of normal business hours, a 24/7 emergency response team will be able to make an urgent repair and prevent further damage. Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. prides ourselves on our great customer service and ability to respond anytime to your roofing needs. 

To learn more about Maxwell’s preventative maintenance plans and our 24/7 emergency response services, contact us today.

The Benefits of White Reflective Roof Cleaning

White reflective roof membranes, or cool roofs, are one of the most popular choices for commercial roofs. The light color reflects the sun’s rays away from the building, lowering the roof temperature and easing the effects of harmful UV rays. 

It’s true that using a light-colored roof surface can help lower electricity bills and even prolong the life of the roof, but this only works if the roof maintains its light color and reflective properties. The best way to ensure that a cool roof stays cool is to get regular cleanings by a professional roofer. 

Most roof manufacturers recommend building managers have commercial roof cleaning services contracted to be performed at least once a year. While it may be tempting to attempt this cleaning with in-house janitors, roofs require special care. Only certified roofing companies have access to proper commercial roof cleaning products and the safety equipment necessary for performing a precise cleaning.

The Benefits of Commercial Roofing Cleaning

  • Roof cleaning keeps white roofs white. Roofs are a building’s first line of defense against the elements. Roofs are constantly exposed to rain, mud, dirt, pollen, and air pollutants, and even the most cared for commercial roof will eventually become dirty. Only regular cleanings can keep grime from building up and permanently discoloring a roof.
  • Roof cleaning improves energy savings. In order to maintain its heat-reflecting properties, white roofs need to remain free of debris and dirt. A clean roof will better reflect sunlight away from the building, deflecting extreme temperatures and lowering cooling bills.
  • Roof cleaning improves longevity. Not only can dirt and grime make a roof look shabby, it can also lead to damage. Pollutants in the air can build up and break down a roof’s waterproofing materials, causing leaks and holes. Contracting a roof company for commercial roof cleaning services allows opportunity for roofers to uncover small damage that otherwise would have gone unnoticed and could have led to major repairs.
  • Roof cleaning prevents mold. While white roofs have a lot of advantages, there are some studies that show they may be more susceptible to mold due to moisture. Regular roof cleanings eliminate the possibility that a commercial roof will develop a mold problem.

To learn more about commercial roof cleaning and preventative maintenance, call Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today.

5 Tips for Commercial Roof Leak Prevention

Roof leaks can pose serious problems for commercial buildings, causing structural damage that extends far beyond the leak. Facility managers should have someone on call who knows how to fix a leaking roof, but the best protection against leaks is to prevent them in the first place.

Tips on How to Prevent a Roof Leak

  1. Perform regular inspections: Storms and fallen trees aren’t the only things that can cause leaks. Damage can occur slowly over time and go unnoticed without regular inspections. Facility managers should walk their roofs regularly to examine for leaks and call in a professional roofer at least several times a year to perform more thorough inspections.
  2. Call in a professional: A lot of facility managers may have someone on staff who knows how to patch a roof leak in an emergency, but only a professional roofer has the know-how to prevent further damage and leaks. Just because water has stopped coming into the building doesn’t mean that a leak is fixed. A professional roofer will have special equipment to detect hidden leaks and know how to identify damage that isn’t obvious.
  3. Create a maintenance schedule: The best roofers don’t just know how to fix a roof leak, they are partners throughout the entire life of a roof. Every new roof should come with a maintenance plan and a forecast assessment. When it comes to leaks, a good offense is the best defense.
  4. Trim trees and clear debris: A building’s surroundings determine the longevity of a roof almost as much as the quality of the roof does. Surrounding trees can fall in a storm, posing serious threats to a roof. Trimming nearby trees and clearing debris from a roof after a storm can protect roofs from developing leaks.
  5. Be aware of problem areas: Leaks can happen anywhere on a roof, but there are a few common hotspots that tend to attract leaks. Roof penetrations, like skylights and vents, are vulnerable to wear and tear that may develop into a leak. High traffic where workers regularly stand, like areas near HVAC units or other equipment, spring leaks often. Facility managers should give these areas regular attention and monitor them for leaks.

For a quote on a management program for your commercial roof, contact Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. today.

Sheet Metal Installation Do’s and Don’ts

Sheet metal is one of the most durable materials that can be used for commercial roofs. Metal is long-lasting, weather-resistant, and can help save on energy bills by reflecting the sun’s rays away from the building. But, while metal can be a great choice for many commercial buildings, it takes a highly specialized sheet metal installer to get the job done properly.

If you’re considering metal for your commercial building’s roof, here are a few of the do’s and don’ts for how to install sheet metal:

Do

  • Know what you’re paying for. Yes, metal roofs have a lot going for them, but adding on customized roof parts can quickly add on to the project’s cost. Before purchasing a metal roof, it’s important to know what will raise the cost of the roof system. Certain types of metal, complicated engineering, or high levels of customization will raise the price of your roof system, but they may make the roof last longer.
  • Make proper measurements and estimates for the roof pitch. This may seem like a no-brainer, but improper measurements are one of the most common things that can mess up roof installation and deplete a budget. It’s important to hire a properly trained engineer or sheet metal installer to estimate a roof’s pitch accurately and make correct measurements.
  • Get the right fasteners. Sheet metal fasteners are not one-size-fits-all. If installing yourself, it’s important to get the proper fasteners for your roof’s substrate material. If a sheet metal installer is doing the work, be sure to ask about the fastener’s corrosion minimization capabilities. Low-quality roofers may try to skimp on fasteners that corrode easily, diminishing your roof’s value.
  • Research extensively. The best way to prepare for roof installation is to do your research and know what your expectations are. Be sure that your roof will suit the needs of your area’s weather and your business before making the big purchase.

Don’t

  • Paint with a sprayer. When it comes time to paint your roof, don’t use a sprayer. Wind can easily cause paint to drift and spread unevenly. It may be more work, but using a paint roller is the best way to ensure that a roof’s color is properly distributed.
  • Rely too much on the warranty. Metal roof warranties can be a big selling point. Having a good warranty is important, but warranties will only cover manufacturer defects. Regardless of the quality of your roof’s warranty, it’s essential to set up a proper maintenance schedule from the get-go to ensure that your metal roof will last.
  • Assume all roofers know how to install sheet metal. Not every roofer can do everything. Finding a qualified sheet metal installer means you’ll have to find a full-service roofing company. Using a company with a sheet metal fabrication unit will be best because it lowers costs and allows for additional roof customization.
  • Try to install your roof on your own. Even if you know how to install sheet metal, you’ll likely need some help along the way. Using a qualified roofer is the best way to ensure that your metal roof gets installed properly and lasts as long as possible.

To learn more about Maxwell’s in-house fabrication unit and metal roof installation, contact us today.

Why Rooftop Grease Trap Installation Is a Must

Anyone who works at a restaurant or food processing plant knows that grease can damage the building’s interior and is best addressed by blowing it out of the exhaust fan. However, once that grease leaves the building, it can wreak havoc on the roof outside if not properly handled.

More than 80 percent of food industry buildings are damaged when grease is released from the building without a properly installed rooftop grease trap.

Types of Grease Damage

Without a rooftop grease trap bucket, grease can contaminate or destroy a commercial roof. Here are just a few of the ways grease can harm a commercial roof:

  • Breakdown of tar or gravel roofs—Grease exposure can turn tar and gravel roofs soft. Over time, the roof will start to break down and take on a sponge-like texture, weakening the roof’s structural integrity.
  • Membrane blistering—Roof membranes help keep buildings waterproofed. When grease gets into a membrane, it can cause the roof to blister and crack.
  • Contamination—Over time, grease can seep into a roof so severely that it becomes contaminated and needs to be replaced. Even roofs with a grease bucket are vulnerable to this when not properly maintained. It’s critical to regularly bring in a professional roofer who knows how to clean grease traps on rooftop hoods.
  • Ruptured seams—A roof’s seams, or any other part that involves an adhesive, will deteriorate if grease gets on them. Over time, this could lead to a rupture in the seam and cause a collapsed roof. 
  • Fire damage—When grease is allowed to build up on a commercial roof, it can become a fire hazard. Grease is extremely flammable, and allowing it to build up isn’t just a risk for a roof but for the entire building and anyone who uses it.

Why Grease Traps?

Because the potential for damage is so high, grease traps are a fairly common and inexpensive addition to a commercial roof.  A rooftop grease trap is installed near the exhaust fan and captures any grease and other harmful particulates before it can fall onto the roof or be released into the environment.

Restaurant rooftop grease traps are often required by law, and other types of buildings may need them to be in compliance with EPA regulations in certain states.

Why You Should Work with a Professional Roofer

Only a professional roofer has the technical skills to properly install a rooftop grease trap or a rooftop grease trap bucket. Once installed, your roofer should also be able to perform regular maintenance on the trap to ensure that it functions properly.

Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. has more than 60 years of experience working with commercial kitchens. To learn more about how a rooftop grease trap can help protect your building, contact us today.

5 Common Misconceptions About Commercial Roofing Preventative Maintenance

If not carefully attentive on an ongoing basis, a lot can go wrong with a commercial roof. However, businesses often ignore their roofs until disaster strikes. There are many myths about modern roof maintenance and how frequently roofs should be inspected. To clear up some of the rumors, here are some insights to several common misconceptions about commercial roofing preventative maintenance, so you can get back on track with proper preventative roof maintenance practices.

MYTH 1: Waiting to fix roof problems saves money.

Many business owners think that waiting for damage to take its course or waiting for roof replacement can save money. The fact is that leaving roof damage until the last minute only leads to more damage to the building. Leaks and holes in the roof can cause water damage in other parts of the building. Tears and damaged insulation can have a direct impact on a building’s heating and cooling bills. Commercial roof preventative maintenance is the only thing that could save money in the long run by preventing disasters before they happen.

MYTH 2: Roofs only need to be examined when there is damage.

For commercial roofs, damage can begin very slowly and go almost unnoticed. Waiting for roof damage or replacement to get an inspection is a missed opportunity to have prevented the damage in the first place. By following a roof preventative maintenance checklist, facility managers will regularly check problematic parts of the roof. Regularly caring for the roof can prevent slow building damage and keep the roof in shape so it can face storms and other types of common damage. You can wait for an inspection until your roof is damaged, or you can avoid small problems before they become full-blown damage.

MYTH 3: Flashing only needs to be replaced when you get a new roof.

It’s easy to think of a commercial roof as one system. But, while each part of a roof has to work together to function, every individual piece has its own maintenance schedule. Flashing should be specially maintained to prolong its life, but even then, it may need to be replaced earlier than other parts of the roof.

MYTH 4: Every roof maintenance company can handle every type of roof.

Not all roof materials are created equal. Shingle roofs need a very different type of care than asphalt roofs. Metal roofs also require special care and may be best handled by a company with an in-house fabrication shop. Not every roof maintenance company has the expertise to handle metal roof maintenance.

MYTH 5:  Warranties cover all roof problems.

Roof warranties only cover manufacturing defects. In some cases, a warranty may cover major damage to your roof, but usually manufacturer defects start as small problems and only grow to a disaster once the warranty is expired. To catch these small issues, it’s important to get regular roof inspections from a professional roofing company.

Maxwell Roofing and Sheet Metal, Inc. has great pride in the thoroughness of our maintenance program. To learn more about our roof inspections, contact us today.

5 Eco-Friendly Commercial Roofing Options to Consider

Companies decide to go green for many reasons. It may be due to a core business value or for a chance to connect with customers. It may just be for the cold hard cash savings that come from energy efficiency. Whatever the reason for becoming more eco-friendly, facility managers shouldn’t overlook the importance of choosing the right type of roof to maximize energy savings and eliminate waste. Here are five environmentally-friendly options for commercial roofs:

  1. Solar Panels—The large empty space on a commercial roof is the perfect place to put solar panels to offset a building’s electricity use. New roofs can be specially outfitted to support the weight of solar panels. Older roofs will likely need some modification to safely secure panels on the roof. Though a solar company may say they can install the panels, it’s important to always use a professional roofer to ensure that the installation doesn’t do any damage.
  2. Green Roof—Not only do roof plants help fight climate change, but they also can help moderate the temperature of a commercial building and improve air quality in the surrounding area. Green roofs are ideal for urban areas where there is little other surrounding vegetation.
  3. White Roof—Roofs with white or light-colored membranes are considered “cool roofs” because of their ability to reflect more of the sun’s rays away from the building. In hot places, cool roof systems can help reduce the need for air conditioning in the summer, lowering the building’s electricity bill.
  4. Metal Roof—Metal is one of the most eco-friendly materials for roofs. A metal roof made from recycled materials can last up to 60 years, and the material can be re-used again once it is time to replace it. Metal is also reflective, keeping buildings cool in the summertime.
  5. Recycled or Biodegradable Roof Material—There are plenty of ways to use recycled or biodegradable materials for a more traditional commercial roof style. Reclaimed clay can be used in tile roofing. Sustainably harvest wood shake is biodegradable and can be used for shingles. Old tires can also be made into rubber roofing material that can last for many years.

When choosing the right eco-friendly roofing for any building, it’s important to always use a professional roofing company. Maxwell Roofing has experience with all types of materials and roofing types. We even have our own fabrication department to customize your metal roof or roofing parts. To hear more about how the Maxwell team can help make your roof more eco-friendly, contact us today.

Why Reputation Matters When Choosing a Commercial Roofing Partner

When choosing a commercial roofer for a new building, the budget is often the first consideration. But while affordability is important, a “budget roofer’s” poor work may end up costing your company more in the long run.

Finding a commercial roofing company with a good reputation is the best thing you can do for the quality and life of your commercial roof. Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. knows that reputation is more than just gossip. It’s trust that’s built through years of good work. Reputable roofing companies should embody these six qualities:

  1. More Experience—The best roofing companies will have had at least ten years on the job, preferably more. With more than 60 years of commercial roofing experience, Maxwell Roofing has seen it all.
  2. Better Safety Record—Companies that have accidents on the job or build roofs with liability issues never develop good reputations. If your roofer comes recommended, it means they know how to keep their employees (and yours) safe on the roof.
  3. More Expertise—To build a good reputation, roofing companies need to keep their employees up-to-date on the latest trends and technology. Maxwell Roofing has experts in everything from energy-efficient roofs to custom metal fabrication, ensuring that you’ll have the expertise needed to get your commercial roof done right.
  4. Better Value—Cheap is not the same thing as a good value. While cheap roofers will skimp on your roof to keep costs down, good value roofers find ways to get you more for your money and to make your roof last. Our team at Maxwell offers customers a full roof management service called MAXCare that ensures their roof is well cared for and cuts down on surprise costs that come with poor workmanship.
  5. Professionalism—Good reputations are built by treating customers right. Maxwell’s team prioritizes customer service, and our sales team and project managers always keep our customers informed.
  6. Quality—Though it might cost more up-front, using a roofer with a good reputation ensures that you will get a quality roof that will last. Maxwell does all we can to extend the life of your roof and to eliminate costly mistakes in the construction process.

Maxwell Roofing has a great reputation in Middle Tennessee and Northern Alabama for commercial roofing. To learn more about the value and quality we can bring to your roofing project, contact us today.

Employee Spotlight: Keith Stiles

Keith Stiles joined the Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal, Inc. team in 1997 as a partial owner of the company. Keith came to Maxwell with ten years of commercial roofing experience back in his home state of Arkansas. For the past 22 years, Keith has worked alongside John Maxwell and Dan Maxwell to use new technologies and practices to grow the business.

Current Role:

During his tenure at Maxwell Roofing, Keith has held multiple roles. He is currently Senior Vice President, pursuing profitable work for the Maxwell Roofing team. Keith spends his busy days meeting with property owners, general contractors, and government and industrial building managers. Through these meetings, Keith works to identify new projects for the Maxwell team and then develops them into profitable opportunities. While Keith works with other sales team members, his work requires a great deal of independence and intrinsic motivation. “My role is somewhat autonomous and very fulfilling,” says Keith.  

Why Maxwell Roofing & Sheet Metal Inc. Stands Out:

For Keith, it’s Maxwell’s professionalism and commitment to good work that makes the company stand out from competitors. Keith believes these values are best reflected through Maxwell’s employees. Above all, Keith takes Maxwell’s professionalism and core values very seriously and expects the same of all Maxwell employees. He affirms, “We have a strong and dedicated workforce. The diversity within our team is bountiful.” 

Personal:

Beyond the office, Keith is always looking to make the best of life. While he loves working hard for Maxwell, Keith still dreams of making it big some other way. He jokes, “I’m forever on the pursuit of winning the lottery.”

How to Know When It’s Time for a Roof Replacement

It’s a surprise no one likes. It’s more than added stress, noise, and disruption. It’s a five- (or six) figure check for a new roof. Like taxes, roof replacements can’t be avoided. No matter how good you treat your roof, you’ll have to replace it eventually. However, it’s possible to plan for a roof replacement instead of being surprised by it.

A Roof’s Lifecycle

A roof falls into four categories during its lifecycle.

  1. 0-3 years: Honeymoon Phase
  2. 3-5 Years: Preventative Maintenance Phase
  3. 5-15 Years: Ongoing Maintenance Phase
  4. 15-20 Years: Re-Roofing Watch

But, don’t be fooled by those categories. Not all roofs make it to 15 years old. Some fall victim to severe weather, others to faulty installation, and many to poor maintenance practices.

Smart Roof Maintenance

All roofs must be replaced eventually, but there are some easy things you can do to make your roof last longer and save money in the process.

1. Perform Roof Inspections Regularly. Regular roof inspections will help you identify potential problems before they turn into actual problems. We recommend hiring a professional to perform these inspections. Unless you have roofing knowledge or experience, you might not know what you’re looking for. If you miss a small issue, it could turn into a big issue down the road. If you decide to perform a roof inspection yourself, take pictures and notes. You want to have a record of your roof’s condition, so if any major problems arise, you’ll be able to provide your roofer with background information.

2. Put Maintenance at the Forefront. A new roof may need preventative maintenance as early as three years after being installed. Be willing to pay a small price for preventative maintenance to avoid paying a big price for repairs.

3. Fix Problem, Not just Symptoms. Imagine your ceiling has started leaking. The leak is the problem, right? Fix it, and the problem is solved. Not exactly. By this point, the problem could be that the insulation is so saturated with water it can’t absorb anymore—along with the fact there is a hole in the roof. In this case, the leak is the symptom, and there are two problems. The first is the hole causing the leak, and the second is the saturated insulation. When repairing issues, fix the whole problem, not just the symptom. It might be more costly at the time, but it will help extend the life of your roofing system and save money in the long run.

4. Budget for Repairs. Budget about $750 for a simple repair. You can estimate the number of repairs on the amount of foot traffic expected on the roof, as well as the number of repairs needed in previous years.

When to Call a Professional

Sometimes, your roof needs special attention. You should call a roofer if you notice:

  • Cracks, blisters, tears, or other blemishes on the roof’s membrane
  • Failing flashing
  • Soft insulation
  • Water stains on inside walls
  • Leaks

An experienced commercial roofer will be able to identify the severity of these issues and recommend a course-of-action to fix them. An experienced roofer can also estimate how much life your roof has left within these ranges:

  • 1-3 years
  • 3-5 years
  • 5 years or more

So, if your roof has an estimated three years left, you can start budgeting for a roof replacement and eliminate the surprise that too often comes with roof replacements.

When Should You Replace Your Roof?

Only a professional can accurately tell you when your roof should be replaced. However, the four major factors that contribute to the necessity of a roof replacement are:

  1. Roof age (How old is the roof?)
  2. Roof usage (Does it experience a lot of foot traffic?)
  3. Maintenance history (Have you performed maintenance throughout the roof’s lifecycle?)
  4. Roof damage (Has the roof experienced major damage from weather or people?)

Not sure how long your roof has left? Just click here to contact us and learn how we can help!