Living in Calgary, you know how harsh the winters can be . You’ve fought through snow in all four seasons. Now, imagine the damage Calgary roofs take over time. Extreme temperatures, excessive snow and high winds create havoc for roof systems. This is particularly true of the older bitumen-based systems installed on commercial and industrial buildings. Roofing inspections and preparing your roof for a typical Calgary winter will save you time, money, and a season’s worth of headaches. While this article is focused on commercial buildings, the same holds true for your home.
Regardless of the time of year, all facilities need a well-maintained roof system to ensure the building is protected from rain or snow leaks or worse, having an entire section of the roof collapse. First and foremost, eliminate potential issues by identifying and correcting defects prior to the winter months. To do this, facility managers and maintenance personnel should conduct a thorough inspection of the roof to determine the current condition and to fix potential problems before they cause major damage.
What are the two best times to inspect your roof?
Most industry experts recommend that roof inspections be completed in the fall — to prepare for winter weather — and in the spring — to identify and correct defects created by winter weather. The inspection should identify the problems at their initial stages. Verification is also essential to extend the service life of the roof system: If the defects are not correctly identified or properly repaired (or not repaired at all) they can contribute to roof failure.
Irrespective of the membrane covering, all roof systems are comprised of similar components. The materials for the components are the only variations. The roof system components are:
- Structural deck (substrate)
- Metal terminations
All of these components synchronize into one functional system. Though each component has its own failure modes, each component must be inspected for any damage that may require maintenance, even if one component may not lead to total failure of the entire system. It is imperative that the inspector pay close attention to each component and that all of the identified defects be immediately corrected.
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