Selecting a Type of Roof System

Commercial Property Owners, Operators and Property Managers face a difficult task in selecting a type of roof system to install. There are many types of roof systems (Table I) and three (3) or more can be present on a single building.
Types of Roofing and Roof Systems
Built-Up Shingles Metal
Cold Process Slate Sheet Metal
Modified Bituman Tile Waterproofing
Polyurethane Foam Wood Shakes
* Includes four different types of systems (PVC, EPDM, TPO and Hypalon)
Most roofing companies only recommend and install roof systems they offer
The right commercial roof system for any building is a function of time, cost and individual objectives? External issues (including tenants) that affect the timing of restoration can influence roof system selection while weather conditions and local regulations introduce dynamic boundaries into the decision process?

This video demonstrates a roofing contractors recommendation. A high level of positive building pressure generated by the HVAC unit contributed to original roof failure (8 years). The positive pressure will stress the single ply fasteners until it is resolved.

NOTE: The billowing of this single-ply membrane. The installation of narrower panels or a
ballast roof system (multi-ply membrane with gravel) may have been better choices.

There are several variables to take under advisement when determining which of the fifteen roof systems (Table I) should be installed on any building. When navigating type and brand, material selection should be made in accordance with elements specific to the property.

Understanding a Contractors Agenda
Each type of Roof System (Table I) is an installation specialty that takes years to master. Qualifying to offer Manufacturers Warranty requires a roofing contractor to be Certified by the material manufacturer for that type of roof system.

Since each type of roof system requires a significant investment of time, personnel and financial resources, many roofing firms offer a narrow range of solutions. Understanding these specialties makes it easier to identify the right contractors to bid. Otherwise, we get what we asked for!

A single-ply roofer will quote and promote a Single-Ply system. A roofing contractor that specializes in Built-Up-Roof systems will quote and promote a BUR system as the best solution for your property. And, so on...

Making Informed Decisions
Choose advisors that view the roof as a combination of roof related services and equipment. Independent Roof Consultants offer advise that's removed from the supply chain.

  • Select a type of material that meet requirements specific to the property.
  • To properly compare prices, establish a Bid-Specification that spell out the details (SOW), will hold contractors accountable later and improves the roof quality.
  • Talk to an advisor skilled in asset management, roof technologies, standards, materials, manufacturers and specifications, federal regulations, state building codes and municipal rules.
  • Review Warranty options, prices and the actual return on investment. Difine what you expect from a Material and Labor Warranty and ask for it.
  • Understand the Scope of Work and how contractors avoid the details.