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The Most Common Problems with Commercial Roofs

Commercial roofs can seem very appealing due to their ease of installation and supposed reliability. However, it needs to be acknowledged that while typically great, commercial roofs are not without faults. Thus, it is helpful to know all the most common problems with commercial roofs.

Water puddles

One of the most troublesome common problems with commercial roofs is the formation of standing water. After all, most commercial roofs have very slight slanting or are entirely flat. It makes it easy for any unevenness or deformation of the material to cause water to accumulate. And as soon as this issue starts, more severe problems have a high chance of following. Particularly troublesome is the development of mold or rotting of the materials used for roof construction. To avoid this, it is necessary to regularly check on the roof’s condition and either sweep away the water or find a way to solve the fundamental issue.

Slanted roofs
Slanted roofs are harder to check on and maintain, but it’s easy to avoid many issues flat roofs have. 

Leaks

Leaks develop very quickly in commercial roofs. Especially if the roof already has problems with standing water. Troubling also is that the method of building a commercial roof makes it a lot more troublesome to fix than traditional ones, especially if it was built out of a material like cement. Leaks in commercial roofs also easily worsen over time. Not to mention that mold is sure to follow and can take root to the point where it is difficult to remove it permanently. It is especially an issue in apartment buildings, where you might not have permission from the owner to do anything that can fundamentally fix the problem. Even if you have the consent, solutions are often costly.

 

A flat commercial roof
Flat commercial roofs are often more prone to developing leaks.

Problems with flashing

Flashing covers the seams in your roof and prevents any water from slipping between them. The fact that flashing problems are among the most common problems with commercial roofs is troubling. You need to periodically check on the state of flashing, especially as part of your efforts to prepare your roof for winter. Doing any repair or replacement for flashing during winter is difficult and potentially dangerous.

Erosion

Many materials used in the construction of commercial roofs are susceptible to erosion. It means that, while no problems are likely to occur quickly, the long-term lifespan of commercial roofs will always be threatened by erosion. It goes double if you live in an area where high-speed winds and frequent rainfall are present. If your roof is not maintained correctly, it will develop all of the issues we’ve already discussed, particularly standing water and leaks. If this happens, the required repairs will only be more expensive. So, it is best to look for professional help as soon as you notice significant signs of erosion.

Bad maintenance

This brings us to the next of the common problems with commercial roofs: poor maintenance. Of course, many people insist on regularly checking and trying to maintain their roofs. Unfortunately, without professional help, it is complicated to cover everything that can go wrong with a roof. Therefore, it is essential to get a professional you trust to check over your work occasionally. The recommended timing would be either before the winter season or immediately after. If you suspect a problem with your roof, you want it sorted before winter makes things worse. On the other hand, winter causes most roof damage, so it is wise to have someone check over your roof after it. 

 Repairing a commercial roof
Repair of commercial roofs is often very complicated.

Shrinking

It may seem silly, but shrinking is a significant threat to commercial roofs with metallic components. If your shingles are metallic, their shrinking causes leaks to develop very easily. Similarly, metallic flashing can expose seams to the elements. In such cases, even maintenance or renovation becomes more troublesome. You would need to choose the proper commercial storage to ensure the safety of your equipment since the damaged roof would easily let the elements slip into your premises. Unfortunately, there is no genuinely efficient way to prevent shrinkage. The best you can do is either avoid metallic roofs or regularly check everything over on a higher frequency basis.

Blistering

Another of the most common problems with commercial roofs is blistering. Blistering occurs due to high heat and direct exposure to strong sunlight. Several materials commonly used in the construction of commercial roofs are very susceptible to the problem, including Spray-On Silicon, metal roofs, and shingle roofing, with the latter’s susceptibility depending on the shingle’s material. The best way to avoid this is to learn more about roofs to pick out one with less of a chance to get blistered. If blistering does occur, you need to react quickly. It seriously threatens the structural integrity of your roof.

Faulty installation or poor quality

Finally, problems with commercial roofs are not only tied to the quality of the roofs themselves. An important factor is human error. It is easy for the teams to oversee a problem with standard commercial roof installation if they do not bother with more rigorous quality checks. And, if the overlooked problem is severe enough, you would have to prepare for a roof replacement quickly. You want to have a roof inspection done as soon as your commercial roof is installed. You can make sure no issues are present and immediately look for either a reimbursement or help with the fixes from the construction company that had installed it in the first place.

Final Word

Now that you are aware of the most common problems with commercial roofs, you should be able to spot them promptly. More than that, you will be able to decide whether you want a commercial roof to begin with!

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