waterproofed shingle roof of commercial building

What Is the Best Way to Waterproof a Commercial Roof?

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Posted By:OpenBox Team

We all know you should waterproof your leather shoes. A waterproof jacket is a must-have for those rainy hiking trips. But roof waterproofing? Not exactly common knowledge.

Waterproofing your roof not only safeguards your property but also ensures its longevity and structural integrity. But is it really necessary? We’re bringing you all of the facts you need to know, including:

  • The reasons why you should waterproof your roof,
  • The dangers of water damage to your roof
  • How roof waterproofing works
  • The cost involved
  • How to find a reputable roofing contractor

Looking for more ways to protect the health of your roof?

Let’s start with the importance of roof waterproofing.

5 Reasons Why You Should Waterproof Your Roof

green waterproofed asphalt shingle roof on building

Roofs are designed to be outdoors. Shouldn’t they be able to stand up to a little water?

The truth is that water damage is very common in roofs, and should be taken seriously. Here are 5 reasons why you should consider waterproofing your roof:

1) Prevent Water Infiltration

The primary purpose of waterproofing your roof is to prevent water infiltration. A well-maintained and waterproofed roof keeps rainwater, snow, and moisture from seeping into your home, which can cause extensive damage.

2) Extend Roof Lifespan

Roof replacement is a costly endeavor. Waterproofing your roof can significantly extend its lifespan by protecting it from the damaging effects of moisture. This means fewer repairs and replacements in the long run.

3) Maintain Energy Efficiency

Water infiltration can compromise your home’s insulation, leading to heat or cool air loss. By keeping your roof watertight, you can maintain your home’s energy efficiency, reducing heating and cooling costs.

4) Prevent Mold and Mildew Growth

Moisture in your attic or ceiling can create the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. Waterproofing prevents these potentially harmful growths from developing, preserving your indoor air quality.

5) Preserve Interior and Personal Property

Water damage can wreak havoc on your interior walls, ceilings, and personal belongings. Waterproofing your roof safeguards your home’s interior, protecting your valuable possessions.

The Dangers of Water Damage to Your Roof

Understanding the potential risks associated with water damage to your roof is crucial in realizing the importance of proactive waterproofing measures.

  • Structural Damage: Over time, water infiltration can lead to structural damage. The moisture can weaken the roof’s supporting beams, trusses, and decking, compromising the overall stability of your home.
  • Health Hazards: As mentioned earlier, water damage can promote mold and mildew growth. These fungi release airborne spores that can lead to various health issues, especially in individuals with allergies or respiratory conditions.
  • Aesthetic Degradation: Water stains and leaks can damage the aesthetics of your home’s interior, causing unsightly blemishes on your walls and ceilings.
  • Reduced Property Value: Water damage can significantly diminish the value of your property. If you plan to sell your home in the future, a well-maintained and waterproofed roof will be an attractive selling point.

How Roof Waterproofing Works

Roof waterproofing is a systematic process that involves applying various materials and coatings to create a barrier against moisture. The specific method used may vary depending on the type of roof and its condition. Here are some common roof waterproofing techniques:

Roof Membranes

Membrane systems are one of the most popular choices for waterproofing flat and low-slope roofs. These membranes, made of materials like EPDM rubber, PVC, or TPO, are installed over the existing roof structure and provide a seamless waterproof barrier.

Roof Coatings

Roof coatings are applied directly to the existing roof surface, creating a waterproof layer. These coatings can be elastomeric, acrylic, or silicone-based, and they are particularly effective for extending the life of aging roofs.

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles can be waterproofed with the addition of an underlayment material. Proper installation and sealing of the shingles are essential for ensuring a watertight barrier.

Tile and Metal Roofs

Roof waterproofing for tile and metal roofs typically involves flashing and sealing around protrusions and seams to prevent water from infiltrating.

Maintenance and Repairs

Regular roof inspections and maintenance play a crucial role in waterproofing. Identifying and addressing minor issues, such as damaged shingles or seams, can prevent water from causing more extensive damage.

The Cost to Waterproof Your Roof

The cost of waterproofing your roof can vary widely depending on several factors, including the type of roofing material, the size and complexity of your roof, and the chosen waterproofing method. On average, you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000 or more for roof waterproofing.

It’s essential to consider the long-term benefits when assessing the cost. While waterproofing may seem like a significant upfront investment, it can save you money in the long run by preventing expensive repairs and premature roof replacement.

Factors That Influence the Cost

  • Roof Type: Flat or low-slope roofs typically require more extensive waterproofing measures than pitched roofs, which can affect the cost.
  • Roof Size: The larger the roof, the more materials and labor will be required, increasing the overall cost.
  • Waterproofing Material: Different waterproofing materials and methods have varying costs. Membrane systems tend to be more expensive than coatings or underlayment.
  • Roof Condition: If your roof has pre-existing damage or issues, repairs may be necessary before waterproofing, adding to the overall cost.
  • Labor Costs: Labor costs can vary by location, so it’s essential to obtain multiple quotes from reputable contractors in your area.

How to Find a Reputable Roofing Contractor

Choosing the right roofing contractor is critical to the success of your roof waterproofing project. Here are some steps to help you find a reputable contractor:

  • Research and Recommendations: Start by asking friends, family, and neighbors for recommendations. You can also search online for local roofing contractors with positive reviews and a solid reputation.
  • Licensing and Insurance: Verify that the contractor is licensed and insured. A valid license demonstrates that they meet the necessary requirements and adhere to industry standards. Insurance coverage protects you and the contractor in case of accidents or property damage during the project.
  • Experience and Expertise: Look for contractors with extensive experience in roof waterproofing. Ask for references and examples of their previous work.
  • Written Estimates: Obtain written estimates from multiple contractors. Compare the scope of work, materials, labor costs, and project timelines to make an informed decision.
  • Warranty: Inquire about the warranty offered on both materials and labor. A reputable contractor should stand behind their work and offer a reasonable warranty.
  • Contract Agreement: Ensure that all project details, including costs, timelines, and warranties, are documented in a clear and comprehensive contract. Never rely solely on verbal agreements.
  • Check References: Contact the contractor’s references and ask about their experience with the company. Were they satisfied with the work? Did the project meet their expectations?
  • Better Business Bureau (BBB): Check the contractor’s BBB rating and any complaints filed against them. A high rating and a clean history indicate a reliable contractor.
  • Local Building Codes: Make sure the contractor is familiar with local building codes and obtains the necessary permits for your project.

Quality Waterproofing Solutions

Roof waterproofing isn’t for everyone, but it can make a huge difference in the overall safety of your property. Got questions? We’ve got answered. Contact Open Box Roofing to learn more about the benefits of waterproofing for your home. 

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