The following are some things to consider when hiring a roofing contractor:
- Look for established, licensed or bonded professionals.
- Obtain several bids for services.
- Ask for and check references that specifically include other commercial buildings in your area.
- Ask to see certificates of insurance. Make sure that coverage for liability and workers’ compensation insurance is current.
- Contact your local Better Business Bureau to check for complaints filed against the inspector.
- Make sure the bid clearly defines the work that will be done, including hauling away of debris and grounds cleanup.
- If your new roof is being installed on an existing building, make sure that the deck is checked out for water soaked or deteriorated material; have damaged material replaced as part of the contract.
- Discuss, verify, and receive in writing the warranty information. Confirm what is and what is not covered. Keep copies of all warranties and a record of work performed to assist in future inspections, maintenance, and repairs.
To prevent large issues arising in and on your commercial or industrial roof system, you should have a capable contractor perform a preventative and proactive maintenance plan. This plan will allow you to maximize the strength and resistance of the system, along with providing a great peace of mind. An effective plan should be scheduled every 6 months, or at the beginning of the spring and the end of the fall, as the weather drastically changes.
Here are some things to keep in mind:
- All inspections should look for and develop a repair plan for the items that indicate signs of problems described above.
- After a severe windstorm or hurricane, inspect your roof for damage, as repeated storms can reduce the strength of the roof. Even if the roof survived a storm, it may have been damaged or weakened enough to fail during the next storm, or the one after that.
- Inspections should look for signs of previous leaks or other problems to make sure that repairs have stayed intact.
- Remove any loose objects and accumulated debris. A clean roof eliminates leaves and other materials that have a tendency to hold moisture, which can speed up the deterioration of the roofing materials. In dry areas, keeping the roof clear of debris reduces the risk that embers from a wildfire will ignite the roof.
- Keep trees trimmed. This prevents branches from rubbing against the roof and leaves from accumulating on the roof and clogging drains and gutters.
- Check gutters and downspouts for leaves, twigs and other debris that will inhibit proper drainage.
- If located in a hurricane prone area, check if the gutters include gutter straps designed to resist uplift.
- Inspect rooftop vents and equipment to make sure they are well sealed. Seal any gaps with flashing cement. Replacement may be necessary if the metal flashing is badly deteriorated, or if vents can wiggle back and forth.
- After a hail event with hail stones larger than ¾ inch, contact your insurer and have the roof inspected even if you are not aware of any damage.
- Consulting a professional roofing contractor may be helpful if concerns exist after a maintenance review of the roof. The contractor can also help to determine the health of the roof, estimate the remaining life of the roof, help you develop a maintenance plan, and identify additional steps to protect the roof.