A commercial building is a big financial investment and you don't want damage to occur to the structure due to negligence. Roof inspections and maintenance are important because they can find problems and repair them before they turn into serious issues that lead to water damage. Here are some tips for inspecting a commercial roof.
Develop An Inspection Procedure
A commercial roof inspection should be part of your operating protocol. Establish a policy for the frequency of roof inspections and use an established checklist to ensure all vital areas of the roof are inspected each time. Hire a roofer to do the inspections and keep copies of all the reports with the rest of the building's maintenance records.
Inspect All Aspects Of The Roof
Many commercial roofs are flat roofs and leaks in a flat roof can be destructive since water doesn't roll away quickly. Whether the roof is flat or sloped, you'll want the entire expanse of roof examined to make sure the surface is intact and sturdy. Any signs of cracking, missing roofing materials, or rotting should be noted so repairs can begin as soon as possible. Protrusions through the roof should be checked closely as these are vulnerable areas for leaking. Each protrusion such as a vent or HVAC should be inspected and marked as good or in need of repair, even if the repair will be minor. Also, when checking the HVAC, ensure water that drains from it does not collect on the roof.
The gutters should also be examined for proper drainage, damage, and clogs. The inspector should note if the gutters or roof have leaf or tree debris that needs removed. The entire roof from the edges which are prone to wind damage, to valleys, flat expanses, flashing, drains, seams, and joints should be inspected closely and the results noted on the inspection form.
Interpret The Results
Having the inspection done by a professional roofer is a good way to get help interpreting the results and to get help deciding if the roof needs repaired or replaced instead. Any damaged areas should be repaired shortly after the inspection, but in some cases, it may be necessary to apply a new roof or coating. Commercial flat roofs tend to last for many years due to the materials used, but shingles placed on sloped roofs will need replaced periodically. It's best to replace shingles when needed rather than delay so you can avoid water damage to your building.
Regular roof inspections are an important aspect of maintaining your building and preserving its value for resale. A simple roof leak can cause widespread water damage if it isn't caught soon enough so the money spent on inspections is money that's well spent.