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Category : Roofing Tips

Frequent Mistakes Made in Roofing Bids

Roofing replacement and large maintenance projects can be expensive but they are necessary to protect your investment. It is important to avoid complications where possible because of this. There are common mistakes that you can make and know what these can help you to take care of your roofing and bidding projects more efficiently.

Bidding

  • Soliciting Bids without Specifications: This causes bids to be created that cannot be compared which affects decision making. A specification can be as small as one page, but it must be complete and detailed for large projects. Larger projects are typically prepared by an architect or roofing consultant. The job specifications should not be prepared until after the final product selection is made.
  • Accepting Lowest Bid Too Early: Associations try to save time by just selecting the lowest bid. Not all contractors are the same quality and lower bids are likely missing important costs that will cause increases to the final cost. You need to meet with several contractors to accurately evaluate the strengths of the companies and their experience.
  • Large Deposits: It is a common mistake to give contractors large upfront deposits for materials. All successful contractors have credit accounts with their suppliers, so this is not necessary. If a bidder cannot fund their payroll until the first payment is made, the association should reconsider moving forward with that contractor.
  • Measurable Work: You should only pay for measurable work on these projects. Measuring progress as a percentage is difficult, so it is better to pay only for pre-agreed benchmarks of construction once they are completed.
  • Failure to Plan in Advance: Early and efficient planning can help to limit or eliminate emergency assessments, disruption to daily lives and unnecessary costs. Planning ahead for a major roofing project is best done at least five years in advance to avoid these problems.
  • Believing that City Inspectors Ensure Proper Work: City inspectors make sufficient job-in-progress visits to verify the work is done per code or manufacturer’s specs.
  • Making Final Payment without Closeout Documents: Closeout documents include permit, warranty, and lien releases. You need to get these right away and if necessary withhold final payment until they are in your hands.

Conclusion

Knowing the common mistakes that are made when it comes to roof bidding can help you avoid them. This ensures a more efficient process when it comes to getting your roof projects taken care of and protects you from unnecessary financial loss.

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Checking your Flat Roof for Low Spots

Low spots in flat roofing are common and can cause damage and expensive repairs if not taken care of. But how do you know if you have any low spots? There are signs to look for to identify a low spot, so you can contact a roofer to help get it taken care of before it causes too much damage.

Pooled water: Flat roofing is not completely flat and has a small incline. This allows water to drain off to the gutters away from the roof. Water that has pooled or accumulated is one of the first signs that you have a low spot, as it prevents water from its natural flow down the gradient. These pools will weaken the roof and eventually cause leaks and even structural damage to the roofing system.

Clogged drains: When drains or gutters are clogged, they collect water. The strain of the backed-up water weight can cause a low spot. You need to check your drains regularly and clean them out if you notice clogs. You should then check to see if water runs off, if not, then you may have a low spot.

Collected dust: Low spots provide protection from the wind for leaves and debris so piles on the roof could indicate a low spot. Collected dirt and debris can also become heavy like water causing damage to roofing materials. You need to clear these out and get the low spots repaired right away.

Concentric sediment circles: Unless you are on the roof directly after it rains, then you may not see any puddles. They do leave tracks though. Puddles will leave concentric circles after the water has evaporated that indicate there was once a pool there. These circular deposits let you know that you have low spots.

Moldy smells: Pooled water can collect bacteria which can increase chances of mold growth and odd smells. Black mold growing on your ceiling or strange musty smells can indicate that water is collected on the roof in a low spot.

Changes in the ceiling: If your ceiling is sagging, stained, or dragging, then you have a low spot in the roof. Low spots collect water which becomes heavy and causes leaks into the building. The signs will be apparent on your ceiling before you even identify the spots on the roof.

If you know what to look for and you check regularly, low spots are easy to identify. Once identified contact us right away to help get them fixed. We use a number of different methods to fix low spots so we guarantee to find a way to get your roofing repaired right away.

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Avoid these Roofing Project Bidding Mistakes

Roofing replacement and large maintenance projects can be costly, but they are important. Boards need to avoid as many complications as possible because of this. There are common mistakes that boards make and knowing what these are can help you to take care of these projects more efficiently.

  • Soliciting Bids Without Specifications – This creates bids that cannot be compared which leads to poor decision making. A specification can be as small as one page, but it must be complete and detailed for large projects. Larger projects are typically prepared by an architect or roofing consultant. The job specifications should not be prepared until after the final product selection is made.
  • Signing Contracts Without Consulting Legal Counsel – This mistake is usually made in an attempt to save money. All major contracts must have at the very least a thorough review by legal counsel, and when possible be signed in the presence of one.
  • Deciding on the Project Manager – Community managers are well-trained in the duties of association management, but they have no formal training in construction management projects.
  • Giving Large Deposits – Many associations mistakenly believe they need to give contractors deposits for materials. All successful contractors have credit accounts with their suppliers and if a bidder cannot fund their payroll until the first payment, the association should reconsider doing business with that company.
  • Paying Percentage of Completion Instead of Measurable Work – Measuring the amount of progress in percentage is difficult for everyone involved. It is better to pay only for pre-agreed benchmarks of construction completed and materials that are confirmed for use on-site. You should only be paying for measurable work.
  • Failure to Start Planning in Advance – There are many reasons this can happen. Early and efficient planning can help to limit or eliminate emergency assessments, disruption to daily lives and unnecessary costs. Planning ahead for a major roofing project is best done years in advance to help avoid these problems.
  • Accepting Lowest Bid Too Early – Associations try to save time by just selecting the lowest bid. This mistake is made based on a belief that contractors are all the same and bids are all the same too. Lower bids are likely missing important costs that will cause increases in the final cost. You need to meet with contractors to accurately evaluate the strengths of the companies and their experience.
  • Believing that City Inspectors Ensure Proper Work – City inspectors make sufficient job-in-progress visits to verify the work is done per code or manufacturer’s specs.
  • Making Final Payment Without Closeout Documents – Closeout documents include permit, warranty, and lien releases.

Conclusion

These need to be demanded and a final payment withheld until they are in your hands. Knowing the common mistakes that are made when it comes to roof bidding can help you avoid them and ensure a more efficient process when it comes to getting your roof projects taken care of.

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Cool Roofing Can Save You Money. Here Is How.

Cool roofing options are a popular choice for all buildings as a beneficial alternative to more traditional darker-colored surfaces. They absorb less heat and reflect more sunlight because cool roofing typically consists of a highly reflective type of paint or sheet covering.

The Benefits of Having a Cool Roof

  • Reduces your energy bills by reducing the need for air conditioning
  • Reduces roof surface temperature which extends the roof life
  • Improves indoor spaces by making them more comfortable
  • Reduces air temperature by reducing the urban heat island effect in cities
  • Lowers peak electricity demand and power plant emissions used to power cool energy, which benefits the environment

Depending on the surface you have to work with, you can usually make a new or existing roof cool. Cool roof coating is a reflective paint which absorbs heat and reflects light rays away. It protects against both chemical and UV damage and is available for most roof types.  When you decide to install a cool roof, you need to consider if the costs will justify the energy savings. For a new building, this can be considered during the planning stages of construction. For older buildings, you can likely replace the existing system or retrofit it with a reflective material. Green roofing is also an option that works well with flat roofing. Green roofing helps you manage stormwater better and it makes an aesthetically pleasing roof. They provide great insulation which reduces your energy costs and the carbon footprint of your building. These are more expensive than standard cool roofing options, but worth looking into or the overall benefits they provide.

Final Thoughts

Whether you have low-sloped or high-sloped roofing and regardless of the materials, there are ways to make your roofing system cool. You can just add to the roof surface you already have or replace it completely. Reach out to us today to discuss your cool roof options and we will find the right option for you to keep you cool and saving money.

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Flat Roof Drain System Pros and Cons

Flat-roof-draining

Flat roofing systems offer a number of benefits, specifically giving you more space for storage or even rooftop gardens. Flat roofing is ideal for warmer climates and not areas where there is a lot of rainfall; it is perfect in the Los Angeles area. As with all roofing systems, flat roofing has its good and bad qualities, and there are often problems with the drainage that you should be aware of.

Flat Roof Drain System Pros and Cons

Types of Drains for Flat Roofing

The interesting thing about flat roofing is that it is not entirely flat. There is always a slight slope towards the drain. Gravity is what allows the drainage system to work, so the water needs to have a natural flow away from the roof. Despite this, there are common drainage problems associated with flat roofing:

  • Foundation problems
  • Infiltration of water into living spaces
  • Water damage to walls and casings

These problems may be common, but there are still numerous advantages to having flat roofing and each type of drain system has its own pros and cons.

  • Inner drains: These sit away from the edge towards the center of the roof. There is a pipe system below the drain that shuttles the water away. Often these can form pools of water on the surface if there are any clogs to the system and the heavy water can eventually find a way into the building. These drains are also more expensive and repairs can be costly. On the positive side, they are great for colder climates as the pipes do not freeze. There is also the benefit of having a clean roofline as the system is away from the edges.
  • Scuppers: These are small boxed drains that exit through the parapet wall. The slight slope of the roof allows water and debris to move along the roof and out the scupper. Like inner drains, these too can become clogged and if water pools near the roof edge, it can spill over. If they are not connected to a downspout, then water can damage your foundation as it falls, eroding the surface. These drains are not very expensive and when you get a wider variety, they are easier to maintain and prevent from clogging.
  • Gutters: These metal structures sit along the edge of the roof, collecting water as it flows down the slope. These not only help protect your foundation but they help to control the flow of water away from the roof. They are inexpensive and are the best way to protect your foundation, basement, and soils from erosion. These do however require frequent maintenance to prevent clogs and it is wise to have leaf guards for easier cleaning.

Conclusion

Flat roofing is a great choice for any building, just be sure you have the appropriate drainage system in place too. The top three choices have pros and cons, so discuss your options with the professionals and we’ll help you decide which drainage system is best for your needs and your flat roof.

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Solar Dos and Don’ts

Solar Dos and Donts

Investing in solar energy for your home is probably one of the better ideas you’ve had lately. Especially if you live in a Southern California where net-metering is available, you can dramatically reduce your energy bills while also reducing your carbon footprint. There are tips and tricks to get under your belt before jumping head first into a new world of technology. Let us navigate some of the trickier aspects of going Solar with your home with these list of dos and don’ts.

DO! For sure DO!

Preliminary preparation is the key to success in any field, but even more so in solar. In anticipation of going solar, take a few assessments:

Can you roof support solar? It’s not totally a question of weight (although, that is a factor) the more important aspect of answering this question is whether or not your roof gets enough sunlight to be able to generate electricity from solar panels. If your roof is covered by a giant tree then it’s either “Bye tree” or find an alternative solution. You could cut the tree back so you can have both solar and a natural oxygen producer in your yard. But that’s going to add to the regular overhead costs instead of to reduce.

If your roof receives steady sunlight between the peak hours of 10 am and 2 pm, then you’re good to go.

Get an energy audit. It’s almost like having your house appraised before selling or when applying for a home loan. One of the things you need to know prior to ordering and installing a solar system is how much energy your house uses to function on a regular basis. The last thing you want is to throw down some money on panels and then you still have to supplement with regular electricity to keep things up and running.

Do all you can to reduce energy output prior to installing solar. This means upgrading all your appliances to energy efficient models, swapping out light bulbs for LEDs, and so forth. Have as much of this in place well before your energy audit so you have the most accurate reading.

Don’t! Stay away!

Equally as important to success is avoiding the traps. Here’s what we’ve got and why…

Don’t neglect your research which includes price quotes as well as general information about solar and possible rebate programs available to you. Lack of knowledge will harm you in the long run.

Don’t cut corners either with pricing or installation. It’s possible to install solar panels yourself, but not recommended. Cheap products are usually cheap for a reason and the same goes with labor. In this case, you really do get what you paid for. 

Don’t assess your energy needs in a low season. If you’re that neighbor who so thoroughly loves to deck the halls every December with every light under the sun, that’s when you need to schedule your energy audit. It doesn’t do you or your house any good to have an audit under the lightest possible circumstances. Think about holiday dinners, the average temperatures throughout the year, and how you use energy differently depending on the season. It’s better to overshoot than underestimate in this situation.

Solar will reap many benefits for you and the environment. It’s a popular and, now, trusted source of renewable energy. Even though it’s new to you, you can still take the right steps to make all the trouble very worth your while.

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Why Your Building Needs a Cool Roof?

Why your building needs a cool roof

While the weather is generally temperate, it is not uncommon to have really hot days in Southern California. Very few people plan ahead or aware of any changes that can cause potential damage to their building. The changes in weather from day to day can have big effects on your roof, even when it is only a few degrees.

Why Your Building Needs a Cool Roof?

The majority of commercial buildings in the country have black or dark-colored roofing surfaces and this is not good. As a result of these dangerous surface temperatures, cool roofing was developed and is becoming more popular. Thanks to durability, reflectivity, and better energy efficiency, cool roofing is the best way to save money and extend the life of your roof. Cool roofing absorbs less heat than standard granulated roofing which allows for better regulation of building temperatures. This reduces maintenance and energy costs and ensures your roof will last longer. Cool roofing also helps the environment by reducing carbon emissions and the overall “urban heat island” effect common in most large cities. The top-rated cool roofing to use is a fluid-applied cool roofing system. It can easily be applied over modified bitumen, metal, and single-ply roofing already in place. This eliminates the need to re-roof which can be destructive and very costly. Once you experience the more comfortable building temperatures and energy savings on your bill, you will realize the change was more than worth it.

Final Thoughts

If you have a black roof and want to cut down on energy usage and carbon emissions as well as increase the value of your building, reach out to us today to discuss your cool roofing options.

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Why You Should Hire a GAF Master Commercial Roofer

Why You Should Hire a GAF Master Roofer

Getting a new roof is a major investment so you need it to be done right. Not only is a roof a financial responsibility, but it is important for the safety and integrity of the building. Poor roofing can result in leaks, damage, and unnecessary costs for you. To get the best roofing you need to hire the best contractor, but there are so many choices that this can be challenging. The roofing industry can be confusing and picking a contractor can be quite a chore, but there is one credential you can look for to assure quality roofing installation.

Why You Should Hire a GAF Master Commercial Roofer

GAF Master Certification is the ultimate in quality when it comes to choosing a roofing contractor for your projects. GAF is the largest manufacturer of roofing materials in America. Their products are ranked number one by building owners as well as third-party associations. Their quality and their philosophy set them apart from the rest because they focus only on helping you make the safest and right choices for your investment.

Their Master Contractor certification program is helping to ensure that roofers receive the best training and experience to offer. By hiring a GAF Certified roofer, you can be assured of quality, integrity, and efficient service. You will get a qualified contractor with experience and exceptional service every time. The GAF certification process is not easy and has proven tough for many contractors. With only 3% of contractors in the US qualifying for this certification, you can be assured of getting the best.

When you hire a contractor with the GAF Master Certification you can be assured of a few things:

  • They are fully licensed according to local and state regulation to work in your area.
  • They have an excellent reputation that has been verified by a community, peers, and customers.
  • They carry appropriate worker safety insurance.
  • They are committed to ongoing professional education, so they can always offer you the best and most current technology and techniques.

Hiring a GAF certified contractor gives you peace of mind and a quality job done right the first time. You also get exclusive access to extended warranties because their work is trusted and guaranteed. They can offer you the latest in materials and technology as well as state of the art roofing that will stand the test of time over that of other contractors and companies. Looking for the GAF certification takes the stress out of looking for a contractor. Every worker you meet with the GAF approval has been screened and thoroughly tested so you can rest assured that you and your roof are in the best possible hands.

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How Roofers Can Use Drones

How roofers can use drones

New technologies are completely transforming the way things are in various industries all over the globe. Companies that keep up with the latest technology is staying more competitive when servicing their customers. Looks like no field of study will go without being affected; the roofing industry is not an exception. Typically, the tools that a contractor uses to survey and inspect residential and commercial roofing may vary greatly. So, it is important that you are doing your research to see what each contractor has in their disposal. This is because your research may now consist of the use of drones.

For those of you who are presently in the commercial roofing industry or expecting to hire a commercial roofer to do your next job, you may want to think about the innovations of using a drone to do your roof inspections. Particularly, since you may find that drones are speeding up roofing projects, while also saving the consumer money in the long run.

Old Traditional Roofing Inspections Performed on the Ground

First of all, when thinking about hiring a contractor to do a roof repair job, you will often find that the initial stages of this kind of project usually begins within performing a roof inspection. With the traditional processes that are presently used today, you will see the roofer climbing on to the roof to identify what is really going on. While many contractors are usually prepared to do these jobs using various safety techniques and procedures, there are some drawbacks and disadvantages to the traditional method. Some of the more common that is usually identified are as follows:

  • The roof is weak so the roofer can suffer potential injuries.
  • Additional roofing damage can be done in these inspections when the roof is already compromised.

New Roofing Inspections Performed by Drones

Today, the methods for inspecting a roofing system has changed dramatically. From climbing on the top of the roof to identify repair problems in using a drone to complete these inspections, the newer methods are bypassing the problems and issues that exist in the traditional inspection methods. So, how are these roofing contractors using the new techniques?

Use Precision Imaging to Complete the Inspections

When drones are used in these inspection jobs, they can be done with precision. According to some of the most recent advanced technology, this simply means that the contractor can use its functions to go farther than the top layer. Typically, when this is the case, the drone can be programmed to go farther down below the roof’s surface. For instance, if the contractor has access to drone fitted software applications, the inspection can uncover water damage that hides in places that are difficult to see. Typically, when the contractor uses thermal imaging to do their inspections, the roofer can use the technology to take measurements of peaks, ridges and other difficult to reach places. Once this information has been collected, the roofer will have the data that they need to identify what needs to be done to the roof without having to climb a ladder to make these distinctions. By using these images, the consumer can even expect the roofer to not only save them time but also money.

Work Digitally Encapsulated – Great for the Company’s Portfolio

In addition to completing the inspection of the roof with a precision image, these digital can use for a number of different purposes. For the smart and innovative roofing contractor, these photos can become a part of their company’s online portfolio.

On-the-Go Provisions Made

Roofing companies and homeowners alike can benefit greatly from this on-the-go technology. Specifically, after storms and other natural disasters where it would be difficult or impossible to get to the roof to see what is going on. Today, commercial roofing contractors have the ability to send these drones out to capture a picture of what is damaged and what needs to be done.

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Checking your Roof for Drainage Issues

(Adco) Checking your Roof for Drainage Issues

 

Drainage issues are common in roofing, but they can be detected early and you can avoid serious problems. Repairing the issue quickly avoids water from leaking and avoids water damage to the structural integrity of the building. Working with a professional commercial roofing contractor will ensure your roof gets the regular care it needs so you can avoid the potential damage from drainage issues.

Checking your Roof for Drainage Issues

Roofing contractors will start with exterior inspections to evaluate the condition of the surface of the roofing. Any standing water that is left can leak into the building after weakening the surface materials. It can cause severe sagging in the roof and any additional pressure or water in the future will damage it more. You can end up with holes and leaks that reach the interior of the building. The top signs to look for to avoid this include:

  • Cracks in the skylights
  • Damaged flashing
  • Bubbles in the roofing membrane or roofing surface

You also need to look at the gutters to make sure they are not blocked and are draining water away from the roof properly. If they are clogged or damaged in any way, water can pool on the surface. Too much-pooled water causes excessive strain on the roof and the weight can be more than it can bear. You risk extreme damage to the roof and your facility. Contractors will also inspect the inside of the building as this can give clues as to potential damage that may not be visible from the surface. The signs of water damage and drainage issues to look for inside include:

  • Water stains on ceilings
  • Mold or mildew on surfaces
  • Leaking near skylights
  • Rust on the underside of the roofing structure
  • Discoloration to walls or surfaces near the roof
  • Deformation of wall surfaces

Conclusion

Working with a reputable and trustworthy contractor like us guarantees your roofing system will be in the best shape possible. We perform regular inspections and if any damage is identified, we repair it early so that you can avoid costly drainage damage.

 

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