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Checklist for Safe Commercial Roofs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Don’t wait for the building inspector to come over and go through the yearly evaluation process of your property. Once he finds a violation of the building code, you won’t be able to evade paying the fines, losing your business license, and being slapped with the threat of jail time. Take time to check up on your property’s roofing construction yourself. Use the following short checklist for safe commercial roofs.

Check for Signs of Water Damage

Look under your roof deck and check for water stains. They’re sure signs of leakage. Leaks cause corrosion to quickly eat away at the tiny holes on your roof and make them larger. Roofs with a single ply membrane tend to shrink or show some tenting. The screws would have looked rusty and their heads were loose enough to pop above the surface.

Look for blisters on the surface of your steel or tin roof. They may form clusters of bubbles or longitudinal ridges. When the blisters break, they’ll flake away. On shingles and clay tiles, you’ll often see cracks running across each piece rather than blisters. Clay tiles not only crack and grow mold, but also weaken and chip easily.

Check for Excessive Weathering

Signs of wear and tear will be more visible around connections to walls and penetrations, such as hatches and curbs. The wind shear is probably enough to cause tears and punctures into your roof. Look for mold or algae growing on tiles because they signal the presence of long-standing water on your roof and gutters. Also, check for granular loss on a modified bitumen roof and embedded gravel in a built-up roof.

Check for Roofing Safety Measures

See whether the roof is safely accessible for employees who need to do some cleaning and maintenance work for the building. Make sure there are industrial ladders and scaffolding with temporary stairwells for the employees. For buildings that are two to three storeys high, put up a protective mesh around the roof and beneath it to catch employees who may slip and fall during construction or maintenance work.

In addition, check whether the roof trusses, rafters, purlins, and roof battens are insulated and strong enough to carry your weight. Identify which part of the roofing seems too fragile or worn down. For example, check whether the cement sheeting and fibreglass skylights are strong enough.

If you’re looking to replace parts of your roof that has worn seams and membrane gaps, then contact us at The Leafman Australia for professional assistance. We’ll also advise you on your guttering needs, especially with gutter guards that screen debris and keep them away from your gutters and downpipes.

Article by Heidi Cridland