All About Your Commercial Roof
You have a commercial building in need of a roof. There are near endless options in the phone book and internet. How do you know where to start? A roofer is a roofer. Not the case! If you need a roofer to install a new commercial roof or do repairs to an existing one you must choose a roofer who has experience on commercial roofs.
What is it that make residential and commercial roofs so different? An clear difference is size. This size difference means that the roofers you choose need to have enough manpower to install your roof. Commercial buildings typically have a larger number of protrusions jutting out than a home. Homes almost always have only a single chimney. The roof of a commercial building has many more things to take into account. You may have smoke stacks, ventilation systems, pipes, mechanical wiring, skylights, or even a roof entrance! Businesses like restaurants can have even more additional machinery on the roof. You will need trained professional roofers to handle these obstacles.
The pitch of the roof is the other large difference between residential and commercial projects. Commercial buildings frequently have flat roofs as oppose to residential homes whose roofs are more concerned with looking aesthetically appealing. Flat roofs incorporate energy saving into their roofing materials in multiple ways. Flat roofing membranes are reflective. They are designed with the intention of saving your business energy and money. Highly reflective membranes reduce the amount of energy it takes to cool your building. Your building will be kept cool through the hottest times of the year. You will be both saving money by decreasing the amount of energy you consume and be lowering the amount of pollution you are producing. This contributes to a cleaner environment. Two energy efficient roofing membranes are TPO and EPDM. The commercial roofers you are considering should know about these.
TPO is a reflective roofing membrane. TPO exceeds the basic guidelines to achieve an Energy Star rating. Not only is it solar reflective, depending on the color of the membrane it has a thermal emittance level of.8 to.9. Thermal emittance measures the heat radiating and being absorbed from the material. A metal roof that is very hot to the touch has a low rating; it is absorbing heat but isn’t releasing it again. A membrane, like TPO, that has a high thermal emittance rating will absorb heat and then release it back out. Doing this keeps the building cool. Thermal emittance is measured on a scale from 0 to 1. In addition to these benefits TPO is 100% recyclable.
EPDM is also an outstanding membrane roofing material choice. EPDM is flexible which is a benefit on flat roofs where inflexibility in materials can be a large reason behind the leaks. EPDM is ethylene propylene diene M-class rubber. As another green benefit the runoff water doesn’t become polluted by it, so rainwater can be harvested to be reused for multiple purposes. EPDM membrane roofing’s thermal properties lead in large part to lower energy costs and help it keep the building cool.
Maintenance is needed on every roof. When you will need it and how much of it is needed can greatly depend on how well that roof is installed. This is also true for the life span of a roof. A commercial roof can be expected to live in the range of 12 to 25 years. A roof’s life expectancy will in part depend on the environment it is in and the traffic level it carries. Proper installation also plays a large role in how long your roof will last. With the important role the roofers play in the install of your commercial roof, choose carefully. Your roof will have bear the brunt of all four seasons, your roofer will have a great effect on how well it does that.