Is Regular Roof Maintenance Really Worth It?

Well in short, if you own a commercial property the answer is yes.

Admittedly as a roofing manager, it’s easy to say that. But in the same breath, roofing companies often get too busy to do small jobs like maintenance and so they don’t get to it or don’t want to promote it.

Regular Roof Maintenance on Commercial Properties

Last week we finished our 4th year of annual maintenance for our regular customer, Mrs. B.

She has an old tar and gravel roof that, when it eventually has to be re-done, will cost her about $32,000.00. On average, over the last 4 years she has spent about $600 to $800 per year.

tar and gravel roof maintenanceAfter inspecting her roof this time, there was no debris there, the flashings were a very shiny metal color as all the rust has been coated with a protector; the caulking of all the flashings were fresh and solid; worn out spots have been re-done and the gravel put back on.

In short, it virtually looks like a new roof, prepared for the winter; drains are all clear and ready for the Vancouver monsoons.

A Commercial Property Roof Without Regular Maintenance

The next day I inspected a roof that we had done 5 years prior, but the owner declined regular maintenance.

When I arrived, there was 8” of water on 1/3 of the roof. Garbage and debris were scattered in every direction, and a lid from a soda pop cup was blocking the drain. slope roof shingle damageThe sloped roofs that attach to the flat roof had a dozen shingles blown off and they were falling apart. A downspout was missing and water was splashing against the building.

Even though one roof was 5 years old and the other 18; the 18 year old roof looked better and still has a number of years left in it.

The 5 year old flat roof, in fact, needs regular maintenance. Debris has a tendency to collect on it and obstruct the drains. The sloped roofs which are 15 years old, are failing and the caulking on a 100 foot wall needs to be renewed.

How Can Regular Maintenance on a New Commercial Roof Save Money?

It’s easy to think that once a roof is new, or at least not very old, you can just leave it until it gets very old. But, I can tell you first hand that regular basic maintenance can, and will, save you money.

Even though a roof does not have moving parts like a car, where we all know we need to do regular maintenance, the roof does have incredible forces beating it down. There are the intense summers; then the freezing and thawing cycles; add to that the heavy rain, off and on, every single day and night non-stop!

A heavy rain washes all the debris to the drains and blocks them; the sun dries and cracks almost all surfaces; wind and birds bring debris to the roof and gravity steadily pulls at any vertical surfaces.

Today, roofing companies supply pictures and along with the regular roof maintenance you get a fully updated status of your roof. All in all, a very good value.

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