When it comes to commercial roofs, the concern we encounter most often is leaking. Building owners call us with the hope that we will be able to fix their roof leak without needing an entire new roof and many times, we can perform the required repairs without needing to do a total replacement. Our skilled and dedicated team of professional roofers will provide you with a free, no-obligation inspection and estimate for your roof repairs.
It is important to understand that if your roof is leaking, it has likely been damaged for a while and could be causing extensive damage that you can’t see. At this point, it’s crucial to address the damage right away in order to stop it from becoming too serious to be fixed.
AKVM’s commercial roofers have amassed a stellar reputation for being Sarasota and Bradenton’s trusted commercial roof repair contractors. Our professional services range from consultatory inspections and estimates to repairs of all kinds and sizes to full roof replacements. We have the experience and expertise that building owners seek when it comes to getting the job done right the first time.
A roof leak can occur for a number of reasons, any time, to varying degrees. Here are just a few of the most common causes:
Improper drainage Many commercial roofs are flat or low-slope, so any blockage that prevents water from draining can cause pooling or standing water which, when allowed to sit on top of the roof for any amount of time, can cause significant damage. The weight of water (8 ounces weighs roughly a half-pound) adds up quickly on a large commercial roof and can put unnecessary stress on the structure of the building, as well as cause cracks in the roofing membrane, allowing water to seep in.
Weather conditions Your roof should be professionally inspected after a serious storm to check for damage caused by wind, rain, hail, lightning or falling tree limbs. It’s important to have any possible damage located and repaired as soon as possible to prevent further damage to the structure of your building.
Damaged flashing The flashing around the edges of your roof’s membrane, which seals the edges as well as the areas around roof penetrations (chimneys, vents, etc.) can become degraded over time and exposure to climate conditions such as the sun’s UV rays or thermal shock from temperature fluctuations. A damaged or loose flashing can allow water to penetrate the membrane and reach the underlying structure of the building in a short amount of time.
Foot Traffic Excessive walking on the roof on areas other than designated walkways can cause tears, punctures and cracks in the roofing membrane, allowing water to flow freely into the structure. A roof should not be walked on by anyone other than roofers or HVAC technicians, if your HVAC system is located on the roof, and they should walk only on designated reinforced walkways to avoid costly damage.
Age Sometimes, a roof will simply succumb to age. Generally speaking, a roof will last longer if it is properly installed and conscientiously maintained, but all roofs are subject to age-related failure after a certain amount of time.
The problem with a roof leak is less about the leak itself and more about the consequences of the water entering the building. While water is essential for life among plant, humans and animals, it’s detrimental to building materials in many ways, including:
Mold Moisture makes most materials highly attractive to mold spores and other unwelcome growths. It’s easy to be completely oblivious to a small leak, and mold takes the opportunity to grow and spread throughout the innards of a building before being discovered. Mold can have dangerous health effects on a building’s occupants and can create expensive losses for the business in the form of damaged or destroyed goods and equipment, mold removal and structural reconstruction and even the medical care of those affected by the mold’s presence.
Weakened structural integrity A leak that is large enough or goes long enough without being remedied can cause wood rot, soggy drywall, bubbling paint and more. Compromised wall framing, rafters, ceiling joists and more can pose a significant physical safety hazard as well as cost thousands to repair.
Fire hazard How can water cause a fire hazard? Water that finds its way into the electrical components of a building can short the wires and cause a fire. Damage to the property as well as personal injury can be devastating, so it is essential to get regular inspections by a professional roofer.
Elevated energy bills Water that invades the roofing’s insulation can deteriorate the insulation over time, causing heating and cooling systems to work harder and leading to higher energy costs.
AKVM’s experienced team of roofers are highly skilled at fixing roof leaks that haven’t developed to the point of no return. You can count on us for:
AKVM offers a wide range of commercial roofing services, is licensed, bonded and insured and maintains a BBB rating of A+ as well as a 4.9-star rating on Google. Our team is dedicated to providing outstanding commercial roof repair and installation services so that you can remain focused on running your business.
Contact us for a free, no-obligation evaluation and estimate today
When you contact AKVM about your commercial property, we’ll send a qualified inspector to examine your existing roof and assess its condition. We’ll listen to your concerns and suggest the best solution based on your budget and needs. If you need simple repairs and not a whole new roof, we won’t try to sell you one.
The types of roofing materials available in commercial roofing are varied and address vastly different needs.
In use since 1989, thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO) is a roofing membrane made from the polymerization of ethylene-propylene rubber and polypropylene. Its highly reflective white surface is exposed throughout its life, reflecting UV radiation and thereby keeping the roof and the building underneath it cooler during hot summer months.
Available in three thicknesses, TPO membranes resist tears, punctures, and impact and can accommodate both low- and high-sloped roofs. They are flexible and can be reheated and reshaped multiple times to allow them to be installed around roof details such as flanges, vents, and skylights.
TPO membranes are typically installed in one of two ways. A mechanically attached system uses fastening plates to secure the membrane to the roof. With a fully adhered system, the membrane is attached to a suitable substrate with adhesives. The latter system is a good choice for contoured or irregularly shaped roofs and those with limited load-bearing capacity. It is also preferred in hurricane-prone areas like Sarasota, Bradenton, and other parts of west central Florida.
TPO roofs can last anywhere from 10 to 50 years, depending on a number of variables. Generally, they last 15-20 years. Completely recyclable, they contain no hazardous or toxic materials.
Learn more about TPO Roofing
EPDM roofs are a synthesized amalgamation of their ingredients: ethylene, propylene, and diene monomer. This specific combination makes EPDM roofs highly resistant to UV light, fire, abrasion, acids, alkalis, and oxygenated solvents. These roofs also resist cyclic fatigue and thermal shock, which is tension in a material caused by a sudden variation in temperature. Because it is not an organic material, EPDM is not susceptible to decay caused by leaks or condensation. For this reason, EPDM roofs tolerate ponding and moisture, making them an excellent choice for the flat and low-slope roofs often found topping warehouses, office high-rises, and other commercial buildings.
EPDM membranes are available in black and white, and each color has a specific purpose. Carbon black is added to black EPDM membranes to convert UV rays into heat, a plus in cold climates. In warmer climes, such as Sarasota and Bradenton, the white membrane is typically used. To reflect the sun’s rays, it contains titanium dioxide, the same ingredient found in some sunscreens.
An EPDM roof is installed in much the same way as a fully adhered TPO roof is. Strong adhesives are applied to the substrate and to the membrane itself, and the membrane is smoothed with a special, long-handled broom. Whenever possible and feasible, sheets of EPDM material are installed whole to reduce the number of seams.
In the United States alone, EPDM roofs account for more than one billion square feet of new roofs every year, which is approximately 35% of the entire roofing market. Their typical life expectancy is 25 to 35 years, and materials are warrantied up to 50 years. Like TPO membranes, EPDM materials are recyclable.
Learn more about EPDM Roofing
Modified Bitumen (MB)
Bitumen, more commonly known as asphalt, is actually a mixture of hydrocarbons that can be found in natural deposits or as a residue of the petroleum distillation process. Modifiers are normally added to standard roofing asphalt to replace the plasticity and flexibility features removed during the distillation process. Then the bitumen is reinforced with either fiberglass or polyester fiber matting to increase its strength and durability.
Invented in western Europe, the MB roofing system was introduced to the commercial roofing market in the 1960s. The two most common types of MB are styrene-butadiene-styrene (SBS) and attactic polypropylene (APP). SBS increases the material’s flexibility and its ability to expand and contract. APP keeps MB from drying out and aging quickly.
Recommended for use on flat and low-sloped roofs, MB systems can be installed in one of various ways: self-adhesive sheets, cold-applied adhesives, or hot-mopped asphalt. A standard SBS MB roof is actually a two-ply system that is applied with each layer slightly overlapping the previous one. Seams are melted together with applied heat.
With a life expectancy of about 20 years, MB roofs are not only exceptionally durable but also highly rated against wind, rain, hail, and fire. They are also easy to repair.
Learn more about Modified Bitumen Roofing
Asphalt shingles continue to be the roofing material of choice for many owners of commercial buildings, mainly because of their easy installation and low cost. They are typically used on hotels, restaurants, apartments and condominiums, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other buildings that resemble homes.
Asphalt materials work well on roofs with steep slopes and are easy to cut, fit, and install. In addition, they are available in a wide array of colors, shapes, and textures and can mimic the look of more expensive materials such as slate and cedar shakes.
Depending on the manufacturer, asphalt shingles can be rated to withstand impacts, winds up to 130 mph, and fire, and some are ENERGY STAR compliant. Asphalt is also lightweight and has sound-dampening qualities. The life expectancy for asphalt roofs is about 15 to 20 years.
A viable option for some owners of commercial properties is metal roofing. Resistant to fire, insects, mildew, and rot, metal roofs seal out water and survive hurricane-force winds (up to 140 mph) better than other roofing materials. In addition, metal roofs can last 40 to 70 years, and they naturally reflect the sun’s radiant heat, which can reduce building cooling costs by 10 to 25 percent. A metal roof applied over a layer of foam insulation with a high R-value can increase energy savings even more.
Tile roofs are both beautiful and functional, and are the true workhorses of modern roofing materials. Both low-maintenance and long-lasting, commercial roofing tiles add distinction to any place of business and dramatically increase curb appeal.
In addition to adding a distinctive and appealing atmosphere for your commercial space, tile roofs have unique benefits in our Suncoast climate. Concrete and clay tile roofs are durable and naturally resistant to insects, rot, fire and the elements, and can withstand hurricane-force winds with ease. The robust nature of the materials used means that concrete tile typically lasts 50 years or more when installed and maintained correctly. The light reflective properties of tile, the thermal resistance of the material, and the air space around the tiles combine to provide a heat barrier, reducing thermal transfer to the roof deck. This energy efficiency can provide reduced energy bills and increased comfort for employees and customers alike.
A wide variety of roofing tiles are available to customize your property to fit your needs and budget. Roofing tiles come in a range of profiles and finishes, from flat profile tiles that mimic the look of wood or slate shingles to high profile S-tiles for a Spanish or Italian flair. Business owners can choose from an incredible selection of color, textures and profiles to distinguish their building and truly set it apart in the marketplace.