Pros, Cons, and Timing
For commercial or industrial facilities, understanding a roofing system’s maintenance needs often get pushed to the back burner. Whether your roofing system needs repair, replacement, or simply annual maintenance, read up on how to optimize your commercial roof.
With roofing systems, materials and composition determine how long your commercial roof will last, when your commercial roof needs to be repaired, and ultimately, when your commercial roof needs replacing. Commercial and industrial facilities are typically flat-topped buildings, meaning they have a flat roofing system. Membrane roofing, built-up (or BUR) roofing, and modified bitumen (mod bit) are the primary materials for flat commercial roofing systems. Each system has a unique set of maintenance needs, but as with any type of roof, they all have one thing in common: they all require routine maintenance, regular repairs, and eventual replacement to keep protecting your facility.
Repairs to your existing roofing system are inevitable. Whether it’s a patch repair, a new roof coating, re-sealing flashing or cleaning out downspouts, a twice-annual roof tune-up is recommended. It’s always a best practice to have an ongoing preventative maintenance plan with your roofing contractor; that way, you know roof care is always in the hands of a technician who thoroughly knows your roofing system very well.
The lifecycle of a roofing system depends on the materials, the amount of ongoing maintenance it’s received, and the environmental climate conditions it’s exposed to. Eventually, though, replacement is inevitable. Membrane roofing systems (like TPO or EPDM) provide excellent waterproofing, but can become punctured with excessive debris; if you live in a particularly storm-heavy and windy region, for example, your membrane roof may need replacing sooner than that.
Flat roofing systems are also vulnerable to ‘ponding’ – or collecting standing water. If a puncture occurs, leaks can quickly take hold into your facility’s structural beams. Defer to an experienced roofing contractor for a bi-annual condition report, which will tell you how well your roofing system is protecting your facility.
As we discussed, an ongoing maintenance plan is of vital importance to any commercial roofing system. It benefits record-keeping – having a clear, structured maintenance schedule helps to ensure issues don’t go undetected. Also, maintenance work is often tax-deductible; talk to your tax advisor for more information on what qualifying improvements / maintenance work applies to your property taxes.
Overall, keeping your roofing system in good shape is the best way to prevent catastrophic damage, keep your business running smoothly, and earn property tax breaks. For more on commercial roofing maintenance, check out our Service page – or contact one of our experienced roofing technicians today!