Why Roof Renovations are Non-Invasive for the Building Occupants

For commercial building owners who may be debating why roof renovations are non-invasive for the building occupants, this article is for you. Although some companies prefer you did not know it, not every roofing system that sustains damage or deterioration requires a complete replacement. In many cases, the system may only require a renovation, and going that route can yield big dividends for owners, building occupants, and interior processes.

What Is a Roof Renovation?

A roof renovation is essentially a more comprehensive method of repairs often made on a large scale that can extend the life of an existing roof system.

Commercial roof renovations are popular among commercial building owners because they:

  • Are non-invasive and generally do not disturb the people or activities happening inside the building,
  • Extend the life of a roof for a fraction of the cost of a complete replacement,
  • Are more cost-effective for building maintenance budgets,
  • Can eliminate small amounts of moisture from becoming a larger and more expensive problem in the future.

While renovations are not necessarily difficult procedures, they do require expertise and attention to detail such as starting at the decking instead of simply putting a proverbial band-aid on multiple leak sites. For this reason and because it does not yield the price tag that a replacement would, some roofing companies may not offer this service in a correct capacity. Verify that any renovation work will be done by seasoned experts who have vast knowledge of fluid-applied systems.

Why Roof Renovations are Non-Invasive for the Building Occupants

The roofing system of a commercial building is designed to protect the structure as well as the people, objects, and materials inside. To maintain its integrity, it must be regularly inspected and well maintained. However, the passage of time and presence of extreme environmental factors can wear down elements of a roof that will make a roof renovation necessary.

For many building owners, having work done to a roof can cause distress for fear of the loud noises and disruption to daily activities inside the structure it can cause. Fortunately, roof renovations are non-invasive for building occupants.

By avoiding a complete replacement of a roof with only a renovation, there are multiple benefits, including:

  • Little to no noise that would cause disruption to interior activities
  • Little to no waste that would become an eyesore for people in or near the building
  • No necessary stoppage of work or production

Roof renovations can allow business to continue as usual while simultaneously ensuring the safety of the structure and the people and things it protects are not compromised.

Inspections Are Gateways to Roof Renovations

The process of a roof renovation should begin with a thorough roof inspection. In other words, before a renovation can be the recommended path forward, it requires that a thorough examination of the state of the existing roofing system be done. In general, a quality inspection should include professionals scrutinizing a system’s interior layers, finding locations of leaks, identifying deteriorating conditions and defects, providing a detailed report to the client of all findings, and making recommendations for proper corrective measures.

The heart of a roof inspection can come down to determining if there is any moisture trapped in the system, and if so, the extent to which it has permeated the roof. To effectively determine the amount of moisture present, three primary methods should be used:

Core Samples

This is a grassroots level way to find out more about a roof’s physical make up. Samples of the system are collected and then taken to a laboratory to isolate information regarding the moisture content and tensile strength.

Infrared Scans

These specialized scans can aid with identifying the moisture content in a roof. This is critical because performing renovations without it could lead to substantial damage which then frequently turns into a hefty expense in the form of a roof replacement being necessary.


This technology can be helpful in quickly finding sources of leaks even in low slope or flat roofs.

Does My Facility Qualify for a Roof Renovation?

If the inspection of a roofing system reveals that there is trapped moisture, a decision will need to be made if it will qualify for a roof renovation. While no trapped moisture in a system is ideal, if the percentage of it is relatively low and there has been no deterioration of the surrounding area, a renovation may still be possible.

If limited moisture is found in the existing system and a renovation is still recommended, commercial building owners can expect the process to also include addressing the state of existing drainage systems as they may have been a contributing factor.

For systems in which the incidence of moisture retention or deteriorating materials are found to be high, it is likely that they will not qualify for a roof renovation and instead will require a complete replacement.

System Selection, Application, and Maintenance

Once a roofing system has qualified for a roof renovation, the work of system selection, application, and maintenance can begin.

Post-qualification, the next step is generally to determine the best roofing system for the structure. A reputable roofing company will take into account environmental factors such as climate and weather, potential for foot traffic on the roof, manufacturer reputations and warranties, as well as the commercial building owner’s budget. After a new system is selected, the work of application begins.

Roof renovations can be an excellent way to extend the life of the roof, but for them to be a true long-term success, building owners must commit to regular maintenance. Ideally, a roof maintenance plan should be put in place before the renovation ever begins so that the building owner clearly understands the role it will play in making the renovation last. Some key components of a typical plan can include addressing clogged drains and scuppers, ponding water, and the development of minor defects.

Roof renovations are non-invasive for the building occupants and is just one of the many reasons why commercial building owners are choosing this process over a complete replacement whenever possible. If you do not have an inspection or maintenance plan set up or believe your structure may be in need of a roof renovation, reach out to a reputable and professional roofing company today.

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