When a commercial roof is damaged, even slightly, the potential for disaster is great. Tenants can be inconvenienced, water damage can cause rot and, if left unchecked over time, mold can result costing many times the cost of the simple repair. Water leaks can also result in legal claims from tenants if their work is damaged.
For all of the challenges of inspecting and repairing roof damages, improper or shoddy repairs can be an even worse nightmare for a building owner or manager. When improperly trained service technicians “fix” an issue of a commercial roof in a slipshod manner, a bad condition can get worse over time! It is for these reasons that savvy building managers and owners call a licensed, reputable commercial roofing contractor to repair even minor problems.
DK Haney Roofing Approaches the Repair Problems Differently
According to Christopher Castillo, Service Foreman for DK Haney Roofing, there are several common issues associated with commercial roofs that he and his service professionals deal with each week.
“Leaks resulting from ‘cold welds’ are very common,” Castillo said. “Most commercial roofs have a thermoplastic membrane and its seams are typically heat-fused (welded) to form a continuous membrane. The ‘lap’ seams can also be fused with solvents instead of heat and can be as strong as the rest of the membrane. The most common thermoplastic membranes are PVC (polyvinyl chloride) and TPO (thermoplastic polyolefin). If the weld is done improperly, a leak in the membrane can occur and this requires patching before water damage can occur. This problem with cold welds usually occurs around AC pipes and drains. If this membrane is manufactured by Duro-Last it is easy and inexpensive to patch because they have a special design to accommodate pipes and corners.
“Another common repair problem involves punctures resulting from debris often left behind by other contractors. Typically, we see punctures that are caused by an HVAC tech leaving screws on the roof after repairing heating and cooling equipment. If someone accidentally steps on these objects, a puncture can result and this can cause a water leak in the roof. It’s amazing how much damage a puncture from one, small screw can cause.”
Big Problems Can Result from Small Issues
At one time or another, most building managers have learned the very expensive lesson of putting off making repairs for what seemed like a small roofing issue. Unfortunately, big problems can result from small damages.
“Very small punctures or damage can result in serious problems such as rotted decking,” Castillo said. “If any water gets underneath the roof’s membrane, over time, it will rot the wood decking. I have actually seen roofs cave in after a couple of years decking rot. In many cases, the building manager or owner didn’t even recognize what was occurring before the major damage happened.
“Over time, a rotted deck can also lead to mold and mildew in the building. This requires very specialized, and expensive technicians and equipment to remediate.
“Having regular inspections by professional roofing contractors will also discover drain blockage that can cause standing water on the roof. In my time as a repair specialist for DK Haney, I have seen something as simple as water bottles or other trash, which were left by other workers, clogging up a drain and keeping the water from draining off the roof (especially a flat roof.) If there is even a small puncture in the roof’s membrane, this standing water will cause deck damage over time.”
The DK Haney Approach to Commercial Roofing is Different
Christopher Castillo minces no words when he explains how the DK Haney approach is different from other roofing contractors – large or small.
“We worry about the customer and not just the money,” he said. “We firmly believe that if we give the customer the best service – including thorough inspections and attention to detail on repairs – the money will take care of itself.
“When we’re up on that roof – checking for water-proofing and membrane damage and also picking up debris and cleaning drains – we think of that roof as OURS. And we take care of it like it like it was!”