Signs It’s Time to Replace Rather than Repair
If your roof needs significant or consistent commercial roof repair, it may be worth it to compare the costs of a full installation rather than making costly repairs to a roof that will likely need to be replaced soon anyway. Looking back at maintenance records for your building can help to determine if it needs repairs or needs to be replaced. Consider these factors when weighing your options for a repair or roof replacement:
- When Your Roof is Old – The lifespan of a commercial roof is generally about 25 years. Knowing when you’re due for a replacement may require researching the original installation. If your commercial roof is older than 20 years, it’s probably time to consider replacing it.
- Broken Shingles and More – If you have a shingle roof, any sign of splitting, cracked, broken, or buckling shingles are clear indications that a replacement is needed.
- Deterioration of Roof Support – Any sign of dips, low spots, or areas where water pools after rain may indicate a deterioration of roof support. Any joists or rafters that are compromised should be replaced so the rest of the roof can do its job.
- Visible Water Infiltration – If there is visible water or stains on the walls or attic space, you have a leaky roof. This is usually the result of both a damaged membrane and the secondary protection failing to stop the water. Not only are these stains unsightly, but they are also a sure sign of a failing roof.
- Damaged Roof Membrane – Strong winds or storm damage will eventually cause severe uplifting on your commercial roof membrane. If 25% or more of your roof is lifting during strong winds, then you need it replaced. Left unattended, rainwater will eventually do considerable damage to the commercial roofing and the attic itself.
Types of Commercial Roofing We Work With
In addition to residential roof repairs, we also do commercial roof repair with both slate and metal roofing materials. These materials can all be used on commercial buildings, and each has very different application methods, purposes, and benefits.
TPO (Thermoplastic Polyolefin)
TPO is a lightweight, reflective material that is now one of the fastest-growing commercial roofing materials. It is great for weather resistance in Louisville, KY, and is known for both its performance and installation advantages. They are popular for restaurants and other industrial buildings that may emit oils and fats because they are resistant to UV chemicals, bacteria growth, punctures, tears, and UV light. They also have a high-temperature tolerance and can withstand both fire and high winds.
EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer – Synthetic Rubber)
Constructed from a single-ply rubber material, EPDM is known for its performance and longevity. It is a popular option because of its design versatility, strong resistance to ultraviolet light and ozone, and simple installation. The material is tough, durable, waterproof, and maintenance-free when compared to other types of commercial roofing. It’s flexible for buildings in colder temperatures and has reflective properties to help lower cooling costs in the summer months.
Slate tile is a natural material quarried from mines and then fired. With natural slate tile roofing, the individual tiles are hung in rows with the shingles overlapping each other in a very specific design often specified by architects. Slate tile commercial roofs are unique to each building.
Synthetic Slate (Symphony, Davinci, Inspire)
Synthetic slate shingles are designed to mimic the beautiful look of slate at a much lower price point. These tiles are typically made from rubber and plastic and are easier to install and maintain when compared to authentic slate tiles.
Standing Seam Metal Roof
Standing seam is a style of metal roofing where all the panels snap together, and the screws are hidden by seams or ribs. Standing seam is a very popular type of metal roofing simply because of its sleek and more finished appearance.
Snap-Lock and Double-Lock Metal Roofing
Snap Lock is a type of standing seam metal panel that has a male and female leg that snap together, and clips used to attach the panel directly to the deck. The clips fasten underneath the panel and out of view to provide a beautiful, clean standing seam roof.
Batten and Flat Seam Metal Roofing
Batten seams are metal roofing that are often used for sloped or pointed designs. A batten and flat seam roof has an underlying framework where the metal panels are mounted between a raised batten strip and a cap is used to cover the seam.
5 Benefits of a New Commercial Roof Installation
While it’s easy to focus on the financial burden of a commercial roof repair or replacement, a new roof is a great investment. In fact, a new roof can actually make your company more money in the long run.
- You Improve the Safety of Your Building – If workers or contractors sustain injuries due to an unsafe roof, you could face costly lawsuits, settlements, and fines. Instead, a new roof can keep you and others safe with building technology, new materials, and innovative construction techniques.
- You Increase Your Building’s Storm Resistance – There is no way to completely avoid deterioration and aging over time. However, there are new materials and installation techniques today that make commercial buildings more storm-resistant than ever.
- You Benefit from New Depreciation Rules – Under the new tax code, depreciation for roofs may now be immediately expensed on tax forms up to $1,000,000. Some roof repairs are also included in the new rules, but only if they are made necessary by other qualifying capital improvements such as a new HVAC, security, or fire-protection services.
- You Increase Energy Efficiency and Sustainability – New roofs and materials offer increased energy efficiency. This means you’ll see an immediate drop in your utility bills for heating and cooling after tightening up your commercial building’s roofing materials.
- You Reduce Repair Headaches – Replacing your commercial roof means you no longer lose sleep at night wondering how much the next roof repair will cost you. New roofs come with warranties that provide peace of mind for many years to come.
How Much Does It Cost to Repair a Commercial Roof?
Unfortunately, there is not a one-fee-fits-all for commercial roof repair, and you can’t expect to get a reliable estimate from an online commercial roof repair calculator. There are simply too many factors involved. However, knowing how your estimate is created can help you have an educated guess on whether you’re looking at a simple fix or a major commercial roof repair.
- Leak Location – Leaks typically don’t fall in a straight line. Using infrared cameras and moisture meters can pinpoint the source of a leak. This is the first step in most commercial roof repairs.
- Type of Roof – Flat roofs are typically less expensive to install, but more expensive to repair. Sloped roofs are vice-versa. This also can vary based on the type of material or shingles you have.
- Height, Pitch, and Access – The higher the roof, the higher the bill. This is due to the inherent risk involved in commercial roof repair. If the source of the problem is more difficult to access, your commercial roof repair will cost more.
- Type of Damage – Typically, a leak caused by a gutter or flashing is less expensive than major problems like deterioration or damaged trusses.
- Extent of Damage – If you have damaged shingles in one main area, that’s less expensive than a roof full of damaged or missing shingles. Typically, if you have more than 10 problems in 10 square units, you’re better off with a full replacement than a commercial roof repair.
- Geographic Location – The labor and material costs can vary quite a bit from coast to coast. If you’re located in an area with high winds, you may have additional costs.
- Warranty Status – If your commercial roof is still under warranty, it will cost you less for any necessary commercial roof repair. However, most warranties are a reimbursement program, where you’d need to pay for the repair and then file with the warranty program for reimbursement.
FAQs About Commercial Roof Renovation