All roofs have a lifecycle. Different types of roof have different sets of challenges as they age, but they all decline over time. Sun, wind, rain, rapid thermal cycling, chemicals, human traffic, mechanical damage and time all take their toll, and they all eventually fail.
Routine inspections combined with aggressive proactive maintenance can significantly reduce the net result of these impacts. By catching and dealing with small issues before they grow into big problems, owners can add many years to the life of their roof and save huge amounts of time, aggravation and money over the long run.
Many owners believe that having a roof warranty in place somehow protects them from having to do regular maintenance. They do not understand that those policies are written by roofing manufacturers for the purpose of protecting themselves from liability and, while they do protect against improperly installed or defective roofing materials, they also contain (often vague) language about “regular” or “routine” maintenance which they are very quick to note if a failure should occur.
To avoid this outcome, building owners should have a written agreement in place with a qualified roof inspection expert to routinely inspect and maintain their roof in accordance with the terms of their manufacturer warranty. Each inspection should be thoroughly documented and then archived along with other critical asset management records.
Roof Inspection Choices
Edge Roofing offers an array inspections services designed to fit different needs.
- Initial Roof Surveys
- Diligence Inspections
- Proactive Maintenance Inspections
- Storm Damage Inspections
Initial Roof Survey
Whether you are taking first steps to institute a regular roof maintenance program, or you are unsure of the condition of your roof and just need facts to make an informed decision about next steps, a good place to start is with Edge’s Initial Roof Survey.
An Initial Roof Survey is exactly what the name implies. It is a thorough, first-line survey designed to determine the overall condition of a roof. If during discovery significant roof defects are uncovered, (such as extensive moisture contamination or deterioration of major roof system components) this survey will identify those issues, but it is not intended to do a deep dive or conduct exhaustive discovery on systemic problems. Other surveys such as Edge’s Roof Moisture Inspection are specifically designed for this purpose. The purpose of the initial survey is to establish baselines and a starting point for moving forward.
How Initial Roof Surveys Work
Edge’s Initial Roof Surveys are conducted by highly trained roofing experts with years of experience on all types of commercial and industrial roofs. Our inspectors are also trained in roof safety and are fully insured. No matter the type, size or complexity of the roof system or its associated challenges, we can provide you with the expertise and resources you need.
An Initial Roof Surveys starts with creating a map of your roof (or roofs). If the roof is low-sloped, we measure it, identify different zones (if applicable), locate walls, copings and perimeter attachments. We map roof top equipment, curbs and penetrations, and the roof slope/s and drainage system/s. If it is a steep-sloped roof, we map the facets, determine pitch/es, perimeters, penetrations and gutters or scuppers.
Once the roof is mapped, the inspector examines, photographs and documents the condition of the roof and each of its elements, along with any exceptions or concerns. Our goal is to thoroughly understand the condition of the roof, to note any immediate issues, to be able to provide recommendations for corrective actions if needed, and to provide you with a plan and budget for regular proactive maintenance going forward.
The deliverable in this survey is a comprehensive report with supportive documentation that thoroughly details our findings and recommendations. It also includes a follow up conference with an Edge representative to review the report, answer any questions that may arise, and to determine next steps if required.
If you are considering investing in or selling a commercial building or buildings, a roof diligence inspection may be in order. Like standard inspections, Diligence Inspections are designed to equip you with the facts you need to make informed financial and operational decisions and to advise you of otherwise hidden roof deficiencies.
How Diligence Inspections Work
Diligence Inspections differ in emphasis in that they focus on discovering flaws and deficiencies that could affect the value of the asset. A typical Diligence Inspection looks for visible and/or hidden roofing materials that are nearing the end of their product lifecycle, entrained roof moisture, deferred maintenance items, un-repaired mechanical or storm damage, energy loss issues, potential warranty concerns and a range of other issues. Because of this they are more geared toward determining projected costs associated with the repair, restoration or replacement of a roof asset, and how those issues relate to a particular set of investment goals.
Each diligence report is as unique as the investment opportunity it represents. Because of this, a Diligence Inspection and subsequent report can involve some or all the elements of an Edge Roof Survey. If water encroachment is involved, it may include an Edge Infrared Moisture Survey. If an exceptionally large roof or a large number of roofs are in view, or if you are dealing with a roof with a large solar PV array, an Edge Aerial Infrared Survey may be required. Usually a Diligence Inspection is proceeded by a preliminary (free) “look-see” and a consult with the investor to get an idea of the scope that will be required, the business goals in view, and the scope of the project.
proactive maintenance inspections
If a commercial roof is neglected, its service lifecycle will be dramatically reduced. When (not if) it prematurely fails, it will most likely be at an unanticipated and inconvenient time and it will cost much more than the proactive maintenance that could have prevented it.
How Proactive maintenance Inspections work
Even if the roof is new, most building owners don’t realize that the fine print in their roof membrane warranty requires them to provide and document periodic roof maintenance. According to The National Roofing Contractors Association even new commercial roofs should be inspected and cleaned annually to ensure longevity and satisfy warranty requirements. The industry recommendation is to “perform preventative roof maintenance on a commercial roof a minimum of two times per year, and after any event in which it is subjected to extreme weather conditions such as hail or very high winds”. Inspection frequency should be determined by the overall condition and age of the roof, and the amount of foot traffic and activity it is subjected to, and the amount of debris it tends to collect.
Annual or bi-annual roof inspections will allow you to stay ahead of any problems, proactively manage your maintenance and remain compliant with manufacturer warranty requirements.
The good news is that Edge Routine Roof Inspection and Maintenance Programs are relatively inexpensive are available at several different levels of intervention. This small investment in prevention can save thousands if not tens of thousands of dollars in future repairs and significantly extend the life of the roof.
Storm Damage Inspections
If your building has experienced severe weather, it is important to have your roof and building waterproofing checked for damage. Wind, hail, flying debris and excessive water can all cause damage to a roof system which may not result in an immediate a leak, but can nevertheless dramatically shorten the life of the materials.
NOTE: If your building it is actively leaking, please contact us as soon as possible and let us know you have an urgent situation that requires immediate attention. In these situation it is important to stop the leak but it is just as important to deal with the water that has entered your facility.
How storm damage Inspections work
Edge Roofing Inspectors and Emergency Response Teams have many years of experience in dealing with storm-related roof and building damage. We are experts in working with clients and insurance companies and related trades to get your facility dried out, document and assist in filing property damage claims, and in getting your entire building restored to a pre-damage condition.
Roofing expertise and experience is particularly important in these situations because many times storm damage, especially with commercial roofs, is not readily apparent to the untrained eye. Metal panels can be undented, yet closer examination can reveal cracks in the finish which will lead to long term issues. The adhesive in a fully-adhered, single-ply TPO or PVC system can be compromised with no apparent damage to the surface of the membrane. Shingles and tiles can be disturbed or dislodged in ways that are not visible from the ground. Many other details can be missed, even by well-intentioned insurance inspectors who may have their hands full with other storm claims in the area. Make sure you call Edge and let us help you. Edge Storm Inspections are free, and can save you thousands in “missed damage” reimbursements.
Even when customers are aware of damages to their property, insurance policies can be complicated. Many times, customers don’t know the extent and limits of their policy related to covering certain specific damages, or how to present those damages in a way that ensures they will be fully compensated. Edge Roofing has a full-time department that specializes in helping customers understand, document, organize, present and supplement their claims.
If you are in our service area and your commercial building or residence has been subjected to severe weather, contact us and we will send someone out at no charge to you, to inspect your roof and help you with your situation.