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What is TPO roofing all about? This is a question that many business owners tend to ask when they are faced with the choice of selecting the type of roof they want for their first commercial building. TPO is considered by many commercial roofers near me to be one of the best choices by far when it comes to resilience and weatherproofing.
Even though there is no one type of commercial roofing system that is good for all applications, TPO comes close, ensuring that as a building owner, you can call the shots when it comes to the design and longevity of your roof, as long as you take a few precautions to keep your new TPO roofing system protected in the long run.
What Is a TPO Roof?
So, what is TPO roofing about anyway? What is this mysterious material that roofers hold in such high regard? TPO is an abbreviation that stands for thermoplastic polyolefin. The term is often used to refer to a type of membrane roofing system that features a single ply construction, and uses the material known as TPO as its most essential chemical component.
TPO membranes can be produced through one of three different methods:
- Extrusion with added lamination;
- Calendering with lamination;
- Various extrusion coating methods.
These membranes are typically white, and like other thermoplastic materials (PVC and EIP, to name two of the most popular ones), TPO involves no chemical crosslinking, and the material can be gradually softened through heating, then allowed to cool until it hardens into a strong, weather-resistant coating that will protect your building from the elements for many years.
Most manufacturers will recommend TPO roofing for a variety of uses and provide commercial buyers with warranties of up to 30 years. Most TPO systems do not receive surfacings, and they can be installed mechanically, fully adhered, or ballasted.
The Uses of TPO Roofing Systems
Because of its single ply construction, TPO can be installed quite easily. So it’s often recommended in cases when clients require roofers to provide them with a quick, easy to install and durable solution to their roofing problems. But TPO is also much more than that. It can typically be used in many different ways and for many different reasons:
- Because warranties are known to last for up to 30 years, it stands to reason that TPO can outlast most types of commercial roofs. This is true, and it’s not uncommon that a well-maintained TPO roof can be recommended for buildings expected to last for a long time without much maintenance work required.
- This is a great type of roof to use when your buildings needs to be protected against heat and elemental threats. You’ll find it can easily withstand storms, snow and water damage. It’s also used when single ply membranes are the only choice, and when other single ply roofing systems, such as EPDM, fail to meet the environmental or durability requirements.
- They are also used when there is a threat of the roof being exposed to various contaminants that would damage other types of roofing membranes.
- Occasionally, TPO can also be used in residential applications, although you won’t find many manufacturers willing to extend their warranties for that purpose.
Undoubtedly, TPO roofing is one of the best types of roofing systems you can use, especially if you want a roof that’s durable, easy to install, and capable to withstand most elemental threats.
Planning for hail is the best way for homeowners and business owners to avoid storm damage in hail-prone regions and in quiet areas that get only one or two milder storms a year. Don’t expect our preparations to prevent all and any damage to your items – you cannot be everywhere, you cannot hold all your roof tiles or shingles in place while high winds are raging and large balls of ice are falling from the sky, but a proper plan can significantly reduce the harm caused by hail storms and will also reduce the time you need to spend cleaning up after the storm. Here is how to prepare for hail.
Preparing the House and/or Business, Inside and Outside
Start preparing your home/business for hail from top to bottom. Go up on the roof and inspect it for any weak points, such as damaged surface components, cracked or corroded flashing, loose or damaged gutters and fix all these minor issues before the next storm hits. Schedule an annual professional roofing inspection as well. For your business, schedule a roofing inspection with commercial roofing companies in Michigan to make sure your roof is in good shape and can withstand a severe storm.
Prepare the siding on your business as well – damaged or improperly fixed panels can be easily torn off by the high winds associated with hail storms and hail stones can also harm siding panels that are weak.
The openings on your home also need protection. Install strong blinds or shutters to protect the glass in your windows and check the areas around the doors and windows for cracks that need to be caulked for enhanced integrity.
When you are done prepping your building from the outside, prep the home/business interior, too. As an extra precaution measure, install drapes on the windows – you can draw them to prevent accidents caused by shattered glass. If a very strong storm is announced, collect important documents, valuables, food and medication and move them to a windowless safe room. Make sure all your cell phones and laptops are charged and unplug all the appliances that you don’t need to reduce of risk of damage and electrical fires.
Hardscape and Landscape Preparation
The hardscaping and the vegetation in your yard and garden also need to be prepped for extreme weather. Start with your deck or patio – remove all outdoor furniture, then inspect the boards and other components of the decking, repair or remove any damaged parts and make sure all the components are properly fastened and able to resist high winds.
Take care of your plants as well – prune the trees and the bushes to remove dead branches that could be torn off by the winds and thrown at your building and deadhead the flowers to make them stronger.
Your cars also need protection, so make sure your garage is functional and clutter-free to be able to move your vehicles inside quickly when you see the storm approaching. If you don’t have a garage, park your car in an area that is not surrounded by trees – large trees might be damaged by strong hail and falling branches can cause serious damage to your car.
Properly planning for hail is essential to reduce the damaged sustained by your property to the minimum, so try to fix and to fortify everything inside and outside the home or business and the storm will surely pass leaving behind only minor problems.
Whether you need roof maintenance, extensive or minor repair, complete or partial roof installation, using the right Fayetteville roofing contractors for your project is essential for success. Arkansas gives home to lot of great roofers, but most of them specialize in specific areas of the profession, so here are a few tips that can help you elect the best contractor.
What Type of Expertise You Need
Each roof type and each roofing material requires a different approach when it comes to repair, maintenance and installation. To mention just a few examples, flat roofs use materials that are not encountered on sloping roofs and the methods used for installing roofing tiles are completely different from the techniques used for mounting roofing membranes. The complexity of the profession makes it almost impossible for one roofer to be an expert in all materials and techniques, so specialization and suitable experience are among the most important things to look for when choosing a roofer. You can find out about the areas of expertise of the roofer in your area if you check their websites – good roofers are proud of their work and they publish photos of their previous work on their site.
You need a roofer who is not only knowledgeable, but also reliable. Use every source of information you can to find out about the reputation of the roofer you are planning to hire – ask around among your neighbors, friends and family if they know anything about the company, check online review websites and the websites of professional organizations to find out whether there are any complaints lodged against the roofer.
Different roofing companies can provide very different quotes for the same job, so try to obtain at least 3-4 quotes and compare them in terms of material quality, the services included and labor costs and deadlines before you make the final decision. Find out how many people will be in the roofing team, what time they start work each day and also find out if the roofer is willing to clear the debris created during the roofing work – it is a good idea to hire the company that leaves the space around the house clean and neat.
Trust Your Instinct
Don’t forget that you will probably need to communicate and collaborate with your roofer at least for weeks, so hire the candidate that you can imagine yourself working with. You can probably decide whether you like the roofer or not during your very first meeting and you can make sure you like the roofer by eliciting from him information related to his experience, his qualifications as well as his approach towards the type of job that you are faced with.
Include All the Details of the Project into a Contract
This is a very important step and also one that is skipped by many homeowners. Quotes are not sufficient for guaranteeing that the work on your roof will be done under the conditions you agreed on with the roofer – you need a detailed and legally binding contract to guarantee you the quality that you pay for.
When you build a home, you want everything to be perfect. You want everything to last for as long as possible. This is especially true for the literal roof over your head. The roof is what protects us from the elements and you have to pick the right kind of roof for the job. The material you choose for your roof is almost as important as the type of roof, so let’s look at the best materials you can use to get more mileage out of your roof.
Shingle Wood Roof
This is a material that is sawn out of logs of woods as thin and flat sheets. Since it is wood, it is prone to decay and deterioration over time so to extend its lifetime of over 25 years, you must immediately replace any broken or decayed shingles as soon as you find them.
Shake Shingle Wood Roof
Though similar to Shingle Wood Roofs, they are not quite the same. They are also sawn from logs of wood but are much thicker than the run-of-the-mill shingles. This means that they are better at protecting you from weather and lost almost twice as long with an expected lifespan averaging around 40 years. But this kind of material requires regular maintenance as it is still wood. It is important to remove debris (if any) and prevent moss growth to extend its life further. Also remember to replace decayed and split shakes as soon as possible.
Standing Seam Metal Roof
This roofing material as the name suggests is made from metals like zinc, steel or copper. They are quite durable with an expected lifespan of about 40-50 years. But specialized roofing companies are usually needed to install it thereby making it pretty expensive. You can increase the life of the roof with regular checkups to see for leaks and failure of sealants. Also look for warped or bent panels and fix them.
Spanish Tile Roof
This material is made out of clay and is extremely distinctive in its appearance. It adds a European or Spanish flair to your home and hence the name. With its style, it is also extremely durable usually lasting upwards of a century. The main problem with this material is breakage so replace broken tiles as quickly as possible to extend the roof’s lifespan.
The absolute best material for roofing in terms of longevity is slate. It’s extremely durable with buildings made of slate roofing lasting hundreds of years. Slate is real stone and hence it is very heavy and requires a very sturdy frame to hold it. Again, the best way to increase the life of your slate roof is to replace the broken slate tiles. The flashing or material used over joints over the tiles must be replaced occasionally as it tends to get water damage.
There can be a lot of issues that arise due to weather or natural wear and tear for your roof system. We will list out five of the most common problems that your roof is prone to. Some of these are problems with a very easy solution that you can fix yourself but others require tools and the know-how so it is recommended to call a trained professional to do it properly and safely.
Bugs and Critters
It is important to check your roof and make sure to prevent any infestations of bugs or rodents. They are extremely harmful to your roof especially wooden ones as they can easily eat through the material and compromise the integrity of the whole structure.
Ponding or standing water
Make sure to avoid any pools of water building up on your roof. It can reduce the lifetime of your roof and cause leaks. It is usually caused by debris blocking the drainage pipes or improper design. Wind, rain and
Trees and other overarching structures
Trees can do a lot of damage to a roof whether it is the growing branches rubbing onto the roof eroding the top protective layer or whether it is the branch falling onto it causing even more damage. It is important to have the branches trimmed down to avoid and remove the tree altogether if it poses a threat to your home’s structural integrity.
Flashing is material used to seal off any gap in between the roof on edges, perimeter or drains. This is usually a weak point in a roof and is prone to leaks if not maintained properly. It also decreases the roof’s puncture resistance (Holes in the roof). The flashing is commonly made from galvanized steel or aluminium so its biggest enemy is weather and oxidization which causes it to erode. Nowadays there are preformed flashing pieces that can be applied without much difficulty using roof cement.
Lack of Maintenance and Care
This is perhaps the biggest enemy to roofs. Many people do not conduct regular check-ups on their roofs and this can cause some serious problems. Even if they do find a problem like debris on the roof, they shake it off saying it is small and insignificant. But this can develop into much bigger trouble later on. The debris can block drainage pathways and can cause leaks. The leaks will lead to moulding or rusting thereby threatening the structural integrity as a whole. The whole ordeal will be very expensive as well. To avoid this, conduct a routine inspection of your roof to extend its life. If anything is broken or decayed, replace it. Call a professional to inspect the whole structure if you don’t know what you are doing. It will save you a whole lot of money in the long run and give you peace of mind as well.