How to Install Commercial Roofing: A Comprehensive Guide

How to Install Commercial Roofing: A Comprehensive Guide




The Importance of Proper Commercial Roofing Installation

Installing a commercial roof is not merely about setting up a protective layer over a building. It involves precision, the right choice of materials, and a considerable amount of skill to ensure that the roof serves its intended purpose effectively. A well-installed roof by a reputable commercial roofing company can:

  • Protect the building and its contents from environmental factors such as rain, wind, and UV radiation.
  • Enhance the energy efficiency of the building, reducing heating and cooling costs.
  • Extend the lifespan of the roof itself, delaying the need for costly replacements.

Purpose of the Guide

This guide aims to provide a step-by-step approach to installing a commercial roof. From pre-installation steps to post-installation care, we will cover everything you need to know to ensure a successful roofing project. Whether you are a business owner looking into the intricacies of roofing materials or a commercial roofing contractor wanting a refresher, this guide will be beneficial.

Types of Commercial Roofing Systems

Understanding the different types of commercial roofing systems available is crucial for making an informed decision. Here’s a breakdown:

Flat Roofs

Type of Flat Roof Features
Built-Up Roofing (BUR) Multiple layers, durable, good for high foot traffic
Modified Bitumen Roofing Single-ply system, flexible, and highly durable
Single-Ply Roofing (TPO, EPDM, PVC) Lightweight, easy to install, reflective surfaces

Pitched Roofs

Type of Pitched Roof Features
Metal Roofing Long-lasting, energy-efficient, and low maintenance
Shingle Roofing Versatile, cost-effective, and easy to replace

Green Roofs

Type of Green Roof Features
Extensive Green Roofs Lightweight, low maintenance, and cost-effective
Intensive Green Roofs Heavy, requires irrigation, more aesthetic options

Pre-Installation Steps

Conducting a Roof Inspection

  1. Assessing Current Roof Condition: Identify any existing damage, water leakage, or structural weaknesses.
  2. Identifying Potential Issues: Ensure the roofing framework can support the new system’s weight and demands.

Choosing the Right Roofing System

Consider factors such as:

  • Climate Considerations: Choose materials suited for your local weather conditions.
  • Building Structure Compatibility: Ensure the building can support the chosen roof.
  • Budget Constraints: Compare costs of different systems to stay within your budget.

Obtaining Necessary Permits

  1. Understanding Local Building Codes: Ensure the chosen system complies with local regulations.
  2. Preparing Applications and Documentation: Submit necessary paperwork to acquire permits.

Preparing the Roof Surface

Removing Old Roofing Material

  • Safe Removal Practices: Use protective gear and follow safety protocols to avoid accidents.
  • Disposal of Old Materials: Adhere to local regulations for disposing of hazardous materials.

Repairing the Roof Deck

  1. Identifying Damaged Areas: Look for rotted wood, rusted metal, or other damage.
  2. Using Suitable Materials for Repairs: Choose appropriate materials for a solid foundation.

Installing Insulation

  • Types of Insulation Materials: Consider options like polyisocyanurate, extruded polystyrene, or expanded polystyrene.
  • Ensuring Proper Installation for Energy Efficiency: Properly installed insulation can significantly cut energy costs.

Installing the Roof System

Built-Up Roofing (BUR)

  1. Laying Down Alternating Layers of Felt and Bitumen: Secure each layer well for stability.
  2. Adding a Final Layer of Aggregate: Provides UV protection and finish.

Modified Bitumen Roofing

  1. Unrolling and Securing Sheets: Ensure sheets are aligned precisely.
  2. Sealing Seams with Torches or Adhesives: Double-check all seals to prevent leaks.

Single-Ply Roofing (TPO, EPDM, PVC)

Membrane Type Features Installation Method
TPO Reflective and energy-efficient Heat-welded or bonded with adhesive
EPDM Durable and flexible Adhered or mechanically fastened
PVC Chemical-resistant and durable Heat-welded for secure seams

Metal Roofing

  1. Installing Metal Panels: Align panels correctly for waterproofing.
  2. Securing with Fasteners and Sealants: Use appropriate fasteners and add sealants where necessary.

Green Roofing

  1. Laying Waterproof Membrane: Use a high-quality membrane to prevent leaks.
  2. Adding Drainage and Soil Layers: Ensure proper drainage to avoid water accumulation.
  3. Planting Vegetation: Choose plant varieties that require minimal maintenance.

Post-Installation Steps

Inspecting the Completed Roof

  • Checking for Proper Installation: Look for loose areas, improperly sealed seams, or other flaws.
  • Identifying and Addressing Any Issues: Fix any issues immediately to avoid future problems.

Cleaning Up the Site

  1. Removing Debris: Clear out all waste materials from the site.
  2. Ensuring Safe Disposal of Waste: Follow local disposal regulations.

Finalizing Documentation

  1. Preparing the Warranty: Complete all necessary paperwork for warranty activation.
  2. Completing Any Remaining Permits and Inspections: Finalize all permits and inspections to ensure compliance.

Maintenance and Care of Commercial Roofs

Regular Inspections

  1. Frequency of Inspections: Conduct bi-annual inspections, preferably in spring and fall.
  2. Checklist for What to Look For:
    • Leaks or water damage
    • Loose or damaged roofing materials
    • Blocked drainage systems
    • Vegetation overgrowth (for green roofs)

Periodic Cleaning and Debris Removal

  1. Cleaning Techniques for Different Roof Types: Use appropriate methods depending on the material (e.g., soft-bristle brooms for metal roofs).
  2. Importance of Keeping Drains Unblocked: Ensure water flows freely to avoid pooling and potential damage.

Repairing Minor Issues Promptly

  1. Spot Repairs for Leaks: Address leaks immediately to prevent extensive damage.
  2. Patching Small Damage Early: Tackle minor issues before they escalate into costly repairs.

Common Challenges and How to Overcome Them

Weather Delays

  1. Planning Around Weather Forecasts: Schedule work during favorable weather conditions.
  2. Protecting Work Site During Unexpected Weather: Use tarps and weather-resistant materials.

Material Shortages

  1. Ordering Materials in Advance: Ensure all materials are available before starting.
  2. Substitutes for Common Materials: Have backup options approved by the commercial roofing contractor.

Safety Concerns

  1. Ensuring Worker Safety on Roof: Use safety harnesses, guardrails, and other protective equipment.
  2. Compliance with OSHA Regulations: Follow all OSHA guidelines for safety.


Recap of Key Points

  • Importance of Thorough Preparation: Proper prep is critical for a successful installation.
  • Adhering to Best Practices for Installation: Follow industry standards to ensure quality.
  • Ongoing Maintenance for Longevity: Regular upkeep can significantly extend the roof’s lifespan.

Encouragement to Hire Professionals

While this guide aims to be comprehensive, working with professionals like J.R. Swigart Roofing, a trusted commercial roofing company, can provide peace of mind. Professionals bring expertise, quality assurance, and efficiency that may be challenging to achieve on your own.

Final Thoughts and Resources

  • Additional Reading and Resources: [List of reputable sources and reference materials]
  • Contact Information for Professional Roofing Services: Reach out to J.R. Swigart Roofing for expert advice and services in commercial roofing installation.

By following this guide, you can ensure that your commercial roofing project is carried out with precision and care, resulting in a robust and durable roof that stands the test of time. Whether you opt to tackle the project yourself or hire professionals, the key to success lies in meticulous planning, quality materials, and regular maintenance.

For further details and personalized consultation, don’t hesitate to get in touch with J.R. Swigart Roofing, a leading commercial roofing contractor renowned for their expertise and exceptional service. Your commercial roof is a significant investment – make sure it’s done right!


How to Choose Flat Roof Materials for Commercial Use

flat roof materials

How to Choose Flat Roof Materials for Commercial Use

Choosing the right flat roof materials for your commercial building is not just a matter of practicality; it’s a critical decision that impacts the durability, energy efficiency, and maintenance costs of your roof. Imagine facing leakage issues or high cooling costs due to a poor choice of material—it’s a nightmare you can avoid with a bit of foresight and proper guidance. This post aims to be your comprehensive guide, helping you navigate the complexities involved in selecting the best material for your commercial flat roof.

Understanding Flat Roofs

Definition and Characteristics

A flat roof is designed with a slight pitch, usually less than 10 degrees, to allow water drainage. Unlike pitched roofs, flat roofs offer a sleek, modern look and additional usable space.

Common Uses in Commercial Settings

Flat roofs are a popular choice for various commercial buildings, such as warehouses, retail stores, and office complexes. Their advantages often align well with the functional requirements of these structures, offering both aesthetic appeal and practical benefits.

Benefits of Flat Roofs

  • Usable Space: Ideal for HVAC systems, solar panels, and roof gardens.
  • Ease of Maintenance: Safer and easier to inspect and maintain compared to pitched roofs.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Often less expensive in terms of materials and installation costs.

Key Factors to Consider

When choosing the best material for your commercial flat roof, several critical factors should guide your decision:

Climate and Weather Conditions

Different flat roof materials perform better under various climatic conditions. For example, a membrane roof may offer excellent performance in regions with heavy rainfall, while a flat roof design with built-up roofing (BUR) can withstand harsh winters and extreme temperatures.

Durability and Longevity

Understanding the lifespan and durability of your chosen material is crucial. Opt for materials known to resist environmental damage, wear, and tear.

Energy Efficiency

Roof materials play a significant role in regulating indoor temperature. Reflective surfaces and good insulation properties can significantly impact your building’s heating and cooling costs.

Maintenance Requirements

Some materials require frequent inspections and maintenance, while others are relatively low-maintenance. Consider long-term maintenance costs when making your decision.

Budget Constraints

Balancing quality and affordability is essential. While some materials have a higher initial cost, they can offer long-term savings through durability and reduced maintenance needs.

Local Building Codes and Regulations

Always check local building codes to ensure your chosen material complies with legal requirements. Consulting with a building inspector or expert can also help avoid costly mistakes.

Overview of Popular Flat Roof Materials

Below, we delve into some of the most popular flat roof materials, discussing their pros and cons to help you make an informed decision.

Built-Up Roofing (BUR)

Composition: Several layers of asphalt or tar alternated with layers of felt or fiberglass.


  • Multiple layers provide durability.
  • Excellent UV and weather resistance.


  • Heavier than other materials.
  • Labor-intensive to install.

Modified Bitumen

Types: APP (Atactic Polypropylene) and SBS (Styrene Butadiene Styrene).


  • Offers good tensile strength.
  • Easier to install compared to BUR.


  • Susceptible to UV damage without a protective coating.

Thermoplastic Olefin (TPO)

Characteristics: Single-ply reflective membrane made from ethylene-propylene rubber.


  • Cost-effective.
  • Reflective surface aids in energy efficiency.


  • Vulnerable to punctures and tears.

Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM)

Material Properties: Rubber roof material often referred to as “rubber roofing.”


  • Long lifespan.
  • Excellent UV and weather resistance.


  • Black surface can absorb heat unless treated.

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)

Composition: Single-ply roofing membrane that offers a durable, long-lasting solution.


  • Strong and resistant to chemicals and fire.
  • Energy-efficient reflective surface.


  • Higher initial cost.
  • Potential environmental concerns.

Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF)

Application Process: Applied as a liquid that expands into a foam, creating a seamless layer.


  • Seamless and self-flashing.
  • Excellent insulation properties.


  • Requires specialized installation.
  • Regular inspections are necessary.

Comparative Analysis

To make a sound decision, it’s crucial to compare these materials based on a range of performance metrics, costs, and suitability.

Performance Metrics

Material Durability Energy Efficiency Maintenance
BUR High Moderate High
Modified Bitumen High Moderate Moderate
TPO Moderate High Moderate
EPDM High Low (untreated) Low
PVC High High Moderate
SPF High High High

Cost Analysis

Material Initial Cost Lifespan Long-term ROI
BUR Moderate 20-30 years High
Modified Bitumen Moderate 20-30 years High
TTO Low 15-20 years Moderate
EPDM Moderate 25-30 years High
PVC High 20-30 years High
SPF High 20-25 years High

Suitability to Various Commercial Applications

Choosing the right material depends on the specific requirements of your building:

  • Warehouses: Modified Bitumen or TPO for better energy efficiency and strength.
  • Retail Stores: BUR or PVC for durability and appearance.
  • Office Buildings: EPDM for longevity and low maintenance.

Expert Tips for Making the Final Choice

Consult with Roofing Professionals

Roof construction is complex, and a professional can provide invaluable insights to ensure you choose the best flat roof material for your building.

Consider Future Expansion and Renovation Plans

Choose flexible materials that can adapt to future changes without compromising integrity.

Evaluate Warranty and Insurance Options

Select materials with robust warranties and check how they impact your insurance premiums. Ensuring your flat roof installation is insurance-friendly can save unexpected costs later.


Choosing the right flat roof materials involves thorough evaluation of your specific needs, climate, budget, and long-term plans. From built-up roofing to rubber roof material like EPDM, each option offers distinct advantages and potential drawbacks. By weighing these factors carefully, you can make an informed decision that ensures durability, cost-effectiveness, and energy efficiency.

Call to Action

What challenges have you faced in choosing flat roof materials for your commercial buildings? Share your experiences and questions in the comments below! For more expert tips and advice on roof construction and flat roof replacement, subscribe to our blog.

Additional Resources

Links to Further Reading

Contact Information for Professional Consultations

Have more questions? Reach out to our team of experts for personalized consultations on your flat roof construction and installation needs. 

  • Email:
  • Phone: (509) 547-4851

By integrating this depth of information and practical advice, this blog post aims to be the ultimate resource for any commercial property owner or manager facing the important decision of selecting flat roof materials.


Understanding the Commercial Roof Restoration Process: An In-Depth Guide

commercial roof restoration

Understanding the Commercial Roof Restoration Process

When it comes to maintaining commercial properties, a startling fact is that nearly 40% of all building issues stem from roof problems. This makes commercial roof restoration not just a want but a necessity. In this post, we’ll take you through the intricacies of the commercial roof restoration process, uncover the benefits, and offer tips on choosing the right roofing company for your needs.

What is Commercial Roof Restoration?


Commercial roof restoration involves rejuvenating an existing roof system to extend its life. Unlike a complete roof replacement, which involves tearing off and installing a new roof, restoration focuses on cleaning, repairing, and adding a protective coating to the existing roof.

Types of Roofs Suitable for Restoration

Certain types of roofs are more amenable to restoration than others. Here are the most common:

  • TPO (Thermoplastic Polyolefin): Popular in commercial roofing due to its energy-efficient properties.
  • EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer): Known for its durability and flexibility.
  • Metal Roofs: Often chosen for their longevity and strength.
  • Modified Bitumen: A reliable choice for low-slope commercial roofs.

Scope of Work

Commercial roof installation and restoration generally involve several stages:

  • Comprehensive inspection
  • Cleaning and preparation
  • Repairing damaged sections
  • Applying a restorative coating

Benefits of Commercial Roof Restoration


Restoration is significantly less expensive than complete roof replacement. Here’s a comparative table:

Activity Average Cost per Square Foot
Roof Replacement $7 – $12
Roof Restoration $3 – $6

Environmental Impact

Roof restoration is eco-friendly. By opting for restoration, you can reduce the amount of roofing material waste that ends up in landfills. Restored commercial roofs can also incorporate sustainable materials and coatings.

Energy Efficiency

Reflective coatings, often used in commercial roof restoration, help lower energy costs by reflecting sunlight and heat. This energy efficiency translates into reduced HVAC costs for your building.

Extended Roof Lifespan

Restoration can add 10–15 years to the life of your commercial roof, making it a worthwhile investment.

The Commercial Roof Restoration Process

Initial Inspection and Assessment

Before any work begins, a thorough inspection is crucial. Professional roofing companies use tools such as infrared thermography to detect hidden moisture and other issues.


The roof must be clean before any restoration process can be successful. This generally involves:

  1. Debris Removal: Clearing leaves, branches, and other debris.
  2. Surface Cleaning: Using specialized cleaning agents to remove dirt and grime.


Next comes repairing any damage. Common steps include:

  • Fixing leaks
  • Sealing cracks
  • Reinforcing weakened areas

Application of Coatings

This is a critical step in the restoration process. The type of coating depends on the type of roof:

  • Silicone Coatings: Ideal for weather resistance.
  • Acrylic Coatings: Useful for UV protection.
  • Polyurethane Coatings: Excellent for durability.

Final Inspection and Quality Check

The final stage involves a thorough quality check to ensure the restoration was successful. This typically includes:

  • Leak tests
  • Visual inspections
  • Infrared scans

Selecting a Roof Restoration Service Provider

Qualities to Look For

When choosing a roofing company, consider:

  • Licensing and Certification: Ensure they are properly licensed.
  • Insurance and Warranties: Check for adequate insurance and robust warranties.

Experience and Expertise

Opt for companies with a proven track record in commercial roof restoration. Ask for references and review past projects.

Cost Estimates and Contracts

Properly evaluate cost estimates by comparing multiple offers. Look for clear and detailed contracts to avoid hidden costs.

Cost Considerations

Factors Affecting Cost

Multiple factors influence the cost of commercial roof restoration:

  • Size and Complexity of the roof
  • Type of Materials used
  • Extent of Repairs needed

Budget Planning

Budgeting is essential. Consider financing options if available and plan for potential hidden costs.

Potential Hidden Costs Description
Unforeseen Water Damage Repairing damaged substrates
Additional Coating Layers Required Extra materials and labor
Access Issues Renting special equipment

Maintenance Post-Restoration

Routine Inspections

Post-restoration, it’s important to schedule regular inspections. Key areas to monitor include:

  • Roof membrane
  • Flashings
  • Drainage systems

Preventive Measures

For maintenance:

  • Regularly remove debris
  • Address minor repairs promptly
  • Clear and maintain drainage systems

Manufacturer Guidelines

Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for maintenance to keep warranties valid.


In summary, commercial roof restoration offers a cost-effective, environmentally friendly way to extend the life of your commercial roof. From initial inspection to final quality checks, understanding the process ensures you make informed decisions. If you’re considering commercial roof restoration, contact a reputable commercial roofing company today for a professional assessment.

Don’t wait until roof issues escalate. Act now to protect your investment and ensure the longevity of your commercial property.


Why Regular Roof Inspections Can Save You Money!

commercial roof inspection

Why Regular Roof Inspections Can Save You Money!

When it comes to commercial properties, the roof is often out of sight and out of mind. However, neglecting regular roof inspections can lead to costly damages and unnecessary expenses down the line. In this blog post, we will delve into the importance of commercial roof inspections and maintenance, the role of a roofing inspector, and how investing in roof inspection services can ultimately save you money.

Understanding the Need for Commercial Roof Inspections

Commercial roofs come in various types, from flat roofs to metal roofs, each with its own set of vulnerabilities. Weather, age, and lack of maintenance are common culprits for roof damage in commercial properties. These factors, if left unchecked, can lead to leaks, structural issues, and costly repairs. Regular roof inspections are crucial in identifying these potential problems early on, preventing them from escalating into major issues that could jeopardize the integrity of the building.

Benefits of Regular Roof Inspections

Preventing Small Issues from Escalating

One of the primary benefits of regular roof inspections is the ability to catch small issues before they turn into significant problems. By identifying leaks, weak spots, and areas of concern early on, you can address them promptly and prevent further damage to your commercial property. This proactive approach not only saves you money in the long run but also ensures the safety and comfort of your occupants.

Extending the Lifespan of Your Roof

Proper commercial roof maintenance can significantly extend the lifespan of your roof, delaying the need for costly replacements. By addressing minor repairs and maintenance tasks through regular inspections, you can keep your roof in optimal condition and avoid the hefty price tag associated with a full roof replacement.

Maintaining Structural Integrity and Enhancing Energy Efficiency

In addition to preventing water damage and leaks, regular roof inspections play a key role in maintaining the structural integrity of your building. A well-maintained roof ensures the safety of your occupants and protects your property from potential hazards. Moreover, a properly maintained roof can also enhance energy efficiency, reducing utility costs and contributing to a more sustainable operation.

Role of a Roofing Inspector

A roofing inspector is a trained professional with the expertise to assess the condition of your commercial roof accurately. Through a comprehensive roof inspection process, they conduct a visual assessment, document findings, and provide recommendations for maintenance or repairs. Hiring a reputable and experienced roofing inspector is essential to ensuring that your roof is thoroughly inspected and any issues are properly addressed.

Commercial Roof Maintenance Tips

Regular Maintenance Practices

Maintaining your commercial roof involves a combination of regular maintenance tasks to keep it in top condition. Here are some essential commercial roof maintenance tips:

  • Clearing debris and keeping gutters clean to prevent water buildup
  • Checking for signs of damage after severe weather events
  • Inspecting roof penetrations and seals for any gaps or leaks
  • Scheduling annual or bi-annual roof inspections as part of a proactive maintenance plan

Cost Savings Through Regular Roof Inspections

By investing in regular roof inspections and proactive maintenance, you can potentially save a substantial amount of money in the long term. Early detection of issues, preventative maintenance, and timely repairs can prevent costly damages and extend the lifespan of your roof. Comparing the expenses of minor repairs to major roof replacements, it’s clear that the cost of regular roof inspections pales in comparison to the financial burden of neglecting your commercial roof.

In conclusion, prioritizing regular commercial roof inspections is a smart investment that can save you money, protect your property, and ensure the longevity of your roof. Don’t wait until problems arise; schedule a professional roof inspection today and safeguard your commercial property against unnecessary expenses and headaches down the line. Your roof will thank you, and so will your wallet!


How Much Does a Commercial Roof Replacement Cost? 

A team of construction workers installing a new roof on a commercial building.

How Much Does a Commercial Roof Replacement Cost? 

When it comes to maintaining a commercial building, one of the most critical components to consider is the roof. A sturdy and well-maintained roof not only protects the structure but also ensures the safety and comfort of those inside. However, over time, wear and tear can take a toll on commercial roofs, necessitating replacement. The cost of a commercial roof replacement can vary significantly depending on various factors. In this blog post, we will delve into the intricacies of commercial roof replacement costs, exploring the key factors that influence pricing and providing insights on how to budget effectively for this essential maintenance task.

Factors Influencing Commercial Roof Replacement Cost

1. Roof Size and Complexity

The size and complexity of a commercial roof are primary determinants of the replacement cost. Larger roofs require more materials and labor, leading to higher expenses. Additionally, roofs with intricate designs or features such as skylights, chimneys, or HVAC systems may incur additional costs due to the complexity of the installation process.

2. Roofing Material

The choice of roofing material has a significant impact on the overall cost of a commercial roof replacement. Different materials come with varying price points, durability, and maintenance requirements. Below is a comparison table of popular commercial roofing materials and their estimated costs per square foot:

Roofing Material Estimated Cost per Sq. Ft.
EPDM (Rubber) $4 – $6
TPO $5 – $9
Metal $8 – $12
Modified Bitumen $4 – $8
PVC $6 – $10

3. Roof Accessibility

The accessibility of a commercial roof can also impact the replacement cost. Roofs that are difficult to reach or require specialized equipment for installation may result in higher labor expenses. Accessibility challenges can necessitate the use of cranes, scaffolding, or other costly resources, adding to the overall project cost.

4. Labor Costs

Labor costs account for a substantial portion of the total expenses associated with commercial roof replacement. Skilled labor is essential to ensure the quality and longevity of the new roof. Hiring reputable roofing contractors such as J.R. Swigart Roofing can offer peace of mind and guarantee a professional installation that adheres to industry standards.

5. Additional Costs

In addition to material and labor expenses, there are various additional costs that commercial building owners should factor into their roof replacement budget. These may include permit fees, debris removal costs, equipment rentals, and unforeseen expenses for unexpected repairs or upgrades. Budgeting for these contingencies is crucial to avoid financial surprises during the project.

Average Cost of Commercial Roof Replacement

According to industry data, the average cost of a commercial roof replacement can range from $5 to $12 per square foot, depending on the factors mentioned above. To provide a rough estimate, replacing a flat roof on a commercial building with an area of 10,000 square feet could cost between $50,000 and $120,000. However, it’s essential to note that these figures are general estimates, and actual costs can vary based on specific project requirements and location.

When comparing the cost of a full roof replacement to partial repairs or restoration projects, it’s crucial to consider the long-term benefits of investing in a new roof. While upfront costs may be higher for a replacement, the increased durability and lifespan of a new roof can result in cost savings over time through reduced maintenance and repair expenses.

Methods to Reduce Commercial Roof Replacement Costs

While commercial roof replacement is a significant investment, there are strategies to help mitigate costs and extend the lifespan of the roof. Proactive maintenance, regular inspections, and timely repairs can prevent minor issues from escalating into costly repairs or replacements. Investing in high-quality roofing materials and experienced contractors like J.R. Swigart Roofing can also contribute to long-term cost savings by ensuring a durable and reliable roof system.

In conclusion, understanding the various factors that influence commercial roof replacement costs is essential for budgeting and planning purposes. By considering the size, materials, accessibility, labor, and additional expenses involved in a roof replacement project, commercial building owners can make informed decisions and ensure the longevity and performance of their roofs. For accurate roof replacement estimates and expert guidance, consulting with reputable commercial roofing professionals is highly recommended.

Remember, a well-maintained roof is not just a shelter for your commercial property—it’s a valuable investment that protects your assets and enhances the overall value of your business.

The Ultimate Guide on How to Repair a Commercial Flat Roof

A professional roofer repairing a flat roof

The Ultimate Guide on How to Repair a Commercial Flat Roof

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on how to effectively repair a commercial flat roof. Commercial flat roofs are a common choice for many businesses due to their affordability and simplicity. However, these roofs require regular maintenance and timely repairs to ensure their longevity and performance. In this blog post, we will cover everything you need to know about flat roof repair, from identifying roof damage to implementing repair techniques and preventative maintenance tips.

Understanding Commercial Flat Roofs

Flat roofs are a popular choice for commercial buildings due to their cost-effectiveness and ease of installation. They are typically constructed using materials such as EPDM, TPO, PVC, or built-up roofing. While flat roofs offer numerous benefits, they also come with challenges such as poor drainage and susceptibility to leaks.

Signs of Roof Damage

One of the key aspects of maintaining a commercial flat roof is being able to identify signs of roof damage early on. Common indicators of roof damage include:

  • Leaks: Water infiltration can cause significant damage to the building’s interior and structure.
  • Ponding Water: Standing water on the roof can lead to deterioration of the roofing material.
  • Cracks and Blisters: These can compromise the integrity of the roof and allow moisture to seep in.
  • Membrane Shifting: Displacement of the roof membrane can lead to leaks and water damage.

Conducting regular visual inspections can help you catch these issues before they escalate and require costly repairs.

Preparing for Repairs

Before beginning any repair work on a commercial flat roof, it is crucial to hire a skilled roofing contractor who specializes in flat roof repairs. They can conduct a thorough inspection, identify the extent of the damage, and recommend the most suitable repair techniques. Additionally, obtaining necessary permits and ensuring the safety of the work area are essential steps in the repair process.

Repair Techniques for Common Roof Issues

A. Leaks and Water Damage

Repairing leaks and water damage is a critical aspect of flat roof maintenance. Here are some steps to address these issues:

  1. Detect the Source of the Leak: Conduct a thorough inspection to pinpoint the exact location of the leak.
  2. Repair Damaged Roofing Materials: Replace or repair damaged sections of the roofing material.
  3. Apply Sealants or Flashing: Seal gaps and joints with appropriate sealants to prevent water infiltration.
  4. Install Drainage Systems: Implement a drainage system to redirect water away from the roof and prevent ponding water.

B. Ponding Water

Ponding water on a flat roof can lead to structural issues and roof deterioration. To address this problem:

  1. Improve Drainage: Identify and rectify any drainage issues that may be causing ponding water.
  2. Level the Roof Surface: Ensure the roof surface is properly leveled to allow water to drain efficiently.
  3. Tapered Insulation or Roof Coating: Install tapered insulation or a roof coating to facilitate water runoff and prevent ponding.

C. Membrane Damage

Damage to the roof membrane can compromise the integrity of the roof. Here’s how to repair membrane damage:

  1. Patch Up Tears or Punctures: Use appropriate patching materials to repair tears or punctures in the membrane.
  2. Secure Loose Membrane Sections: Overlap or secure loose membrane sections to prevent further damage.
  3. Conduct an Adhesion Test: Ensure the membrane is properly bonded to the roof substrate to prevent uplift during strong winds.

Preventative Maintenance Tips

To prolong the lifespan of a commercial flat roof and prevent costly repairs, consider these preventative maintenance tips:

  • Schedule Regular Inspections: Conduct inspections at least twice a year to catch potential issues early.
  • Keep Gutters and Drains Clear: Regularly clean gutters and drains to prevent water buildup and blockages.
  • Trim Overhanging Trees: Trim overhanging branches to reduce the risk of damage to the roof during storms.

By following these maintenance tips and repair techniques, businesses can ensure the structural integrity and performance of their commercial flat roof for years to come.

Remember, when it comes to flat roof repair and maintenance, hiring a qualified roofing contractor is crucial. They have the expertise and tools to effectively inspect, repair, and maintain your commercial flat roof.

For more information on flat roof repair or to find a reputable roofing contractor in your area, feel free to reach out to us.


How to Choose a Good Commercial Roofing Contractor

A group of construction workers inspecting a commercial roof.

How to Choose a Good Commercial Roofing Contractor

As a commercial property owner or manager, ensuring the integrity and durability of your commercial roof is paramount. Selecting the right commercial roofing contractor is a crucial decision that can impact the longevity and performance of your roof. With so many roofing companies to choose from, it’s essential to know what factors to consider when choosing a commercial roofing contractor to meet your specific roofing needs. In this blog post, we will walk you through the process of selecting a reputable roofing company that delivers quality commercial roofing services.

Researching Potential Contractors

Before selecting a commercial roofer for your project, it’s essential to conduct thorough research to find reputable roofing contractors in your area. Here are some steps to help you find the best commercial roofing specialist:

  1. Utilize Online Resources: Explore websites, review platforms, and industry directories to identify local commercial roofers with positive customer feedback and ratings.
  2. Seek Recommendations: Ask for referrals from other businesses, industry professionals, or acquaintances who have recently worked with commercial roofing installers.
  3. Verify Credentials: Ensure that the contractor holds relevant certifications, licenses, and insurance to perform commercial roofing services legally and professionally.

Evaluating Experience and Expertise

When choosing the right roofing company for your project, consider the contractor’s experience, expertise, and specialization in commercial roofing:

  1. Track Record: Review the contractor’s portfolio and past projects to gauge their level of expertise in handling commercial roofing projects.
  2. Knowledge of Materials: Inquire about the contractor’s familiarity with various roofing materials, techniques, and the latest roofing technologies.
  3. Specialization in Commercial Roofing: Opt for a contractor who specializes in commercial roofing to ensure they understand the unique requirements of commercial properties.

Communication and Customer Service

Effective communication and superior customer service are crucial when selecting a commercial roofing contractor for your project:

  1. Responsiveness: Observe how promptly the contractor responds to your inquiries and requests for estimates.
  2. Project Discussion: Discuss project timelines, budgets, and expectations with the contractor to align on project scope and deliverables.
  3. Issue Resolution: Understand how the contractor handles communication during the project and resolves any issues that may arise efficiently.

Pricing and Bidding Process

When comparing commercial roofing contractors, it’s essential to receive detailed cost estimates and evaluate pricing and bidding factors:

  1. Detailed Estimates: Request comprehensive cost breakdowns to compare pricing, materials, labor, and project scope from different contractors.
  2. Avoid Low Bids: Be cautious of significantly lower bids without justification, as they may compromise the quality of workmanship or materials used.
  3. Negotiation: Negotiate a fair price that aligns with your budget while ensuring high-quality commercial roofing services.

Warranty and Maintenance Plans

A reputable roofing company should offer warranty coverage and post-installation maintenance plans for your peace of mind:

  1. Warranty Coverage: Inquire about the warranty duration, scope, and coverage for materials and workmanship provided by the commercial roofing contractor.
  2. Maintenance Services: Understand the contractor’s post-installation maintenance plans and how they handle repairs or issues after the project completion.
  3. Claim Procedures: Clarify the process of making warranty claims and the contractor’s responsiveness to maintenance requests.

Contract Terms and Legal Considerations

Reviewing the contract terms and ensuring legal compliance is essential when selecting a commercial roofing contractor:

  1. Contract Review: Thoroughly read and understand all terms and conditions outlined in the contract, including payment schedules, project timelines, and warranty details.
  2. Compliance Verification: Verify that the contract complies with local regulations, building codes, and industry standards for commercial roofing projects.
  3. Dispute Resolution: Discuss how disputes or disagreements will be resolved and ensure that the contract protects both parties’ interests.

Final Decision and Follow-Up

After evaluating the aforementioned factors, it’s time to make an informed decision and ensure effective communication with the chosen commercial roofing contractor:

  1. Decision-Making: Select the contractor based on their expertise, pricing, communication, and overall fit for your commercial roofing needs.
  2. Project Communication: Clearly communicate project details, expectations, and timelines with the contractor to avoid misunderstandings.
  3. Regular Follow-Up: Stay in touch with the contractor throughout the project to monitor progress, address any concerns, and ensure project completion as per the agreement.


In conclusion, choosing a good commercial roofing contractor involves thorough research, evaluation of experience, effective communication, consideration of pricing and warranties, legal compliance, and ongoing project follow-up. By following these steps and guidelines, you can select a reputable roofing company that meets your commercial roofing needs and delivers quality results for your property.

For professional roof and commercial roofing services, contact J.R. Swigart Roofing today. Our team of licensed contractors and commercial roofing specialists is dedicated to meeting your commercial roofing needs with top-quality services and expertise.

Remember, selecting the right commercial roofing contractor is a vital investment in the long-term protection and performance of your commercial property. Trust a reputable commercial roofer with the experience, skills, and commitment to deliver the best roofing solutions for your business.

Contact us today to help you find the best roofing contractor for your commercial property!

How Much Does a New Commercial Roof Cost?

Aerial View of Commercial Buildings with New Roofs

How Much Does a New Commercial Roof Cost?

A well-maintained roof is crucial for the integrity and longevity of any commercial building. As a business owner, understanding the cost factors associated with commercial roof replacement is essential to make informed decisions. In this blog post, we will delve into the various aspects that influence the cost of a new commercial roof and provide insights into the average costs for different types of commercial roofs.

Types of Commercial Roofs

Commercial roofs come in various types, each suited to different building requirements:

  • Flat Roof: Ideal for larger commercial buildings with limited roof access.
  • Pitched Roof: Common in smaller commercial structures with more accessible roofs.
  • Metal Roof: Known for its durability and longevity.
  • TPO Roof: A popular choice for its energy efficiency and resistance to UV rays.
  • EPDM Roof: Offers excellent waterproofing properties and flexibility.

Factors Influencing the Cost of a New Commercial Roof

Several factors can impact the cost of a new commercial roof installation:

  • Size and Square Footage of the Roof: Larger roofs will require more materials and labor, increasing costs.
  • Roof Material and Quality: Different roofing materials vary in cost, with metal roofs typically being more expensive.
  • Roofing System Complexity: Intricate roof designs or integrated features can add to the overall cost.
  • Roof Accessibility and Slope: Difficult access or a steep slope can affect the ease of installation and cost.
  • Required Permits and Inspections: Meeting regulatory requirements may add to the overall cost.
  • Labor Costs and Roofing Contractor Fees: Skilled labor and experienced contractors may charge higher fees.
  • Additional Features: Insulation, drainage systems, and other add-ons can increase the final cost.

Cost Estimation Methods

Estimating the cost of a new commercial roof involves various methods:

Square Footage Pricing

Calculating the cost per square foot of the roof area.

Comparative Pricing Analysis

Comparing quotes from different roofing contractors.

Roofing Material Costs

Understanding the pricing of different roofing materials.

Labor and Installation Costs

Factoring in the cost of labor and installation.

Total Project Cost Calculation

Summing up all individual costs to determine the total project cost.

Average Costs for Different Types of Commercial Roofs

Let’s explore the average costs associated with various types of commercial roofs:

Flat Roof Costs

Roof Type Average Cost per Square Foot
EPDM Roofing $7 – $13
TPO Roofing $8 – $14
Built-Up Roofing $5 – $10

Pitched Roof Costs

Roof Type Average Cost per Square Foot
Asphalt Shingles $1.50 – $3
Metal Roofing $5 – $15
Tile Roofing $7 – $20

Budgeting and Financing Options for Commercial Roof Replacement

To minimize costs and ease the financial burden of commercial roof replacement, consider:

  • Cost-Saving Tips and Strategies: Opt for energy-efficient materials or schedule installations during off-peak seasons.
  • Financing Options: Explore loans, grants, or rebates available for commercial roof replacements.
  • ROI of Investing in a New Commercial Roof: Understand the long-term benefits and savings of a quality roof.

Hiring the Right Roofing Contractor

Choosing the right roofing contractor is vital for a successful commercial roof replacement:

  • Factors to Consider: Reputation, experience, and expertise of the roofing company.
  • Checking Licenses and Insurance: Ensure the contractor is licensed and adequately insured.
  • Getting Multiple Quotes: Compare quotes and estimates from different contractors.


Investing in a new commercial roof is a significant decision for any business owner. By understanding the cost considerations and factors influencing the cost of a new roof, you can make informed choices that benefit your commercial building in the long run. Don’t delay in addressing your roofing needs and securing the integrity of your commercial property.

Additional Resources and References

For more information on commercial roof replacements and cost calculations, check out the following resources:

In conclusion, the cost of your commercial roof replacement may vary depending on the type of roof, materials used, and additional features required. By understanding the factors influencing the cost, you can budget effectively and invest in a durable, high-quality roof for your commercial building. Stay informed, explore your options, and make the best choice for your business’s roofing needs.


Commercial Roof Replacement: DIY vs. Professional Help

A team of professionals replacing a commercial roof.

A well-maintained roof is crucial for the longevity and functionality of any commercial property. When it comes to commercial roof replacement, you may find yourself contemplating whether to tackle the project yourself or seek professional help. In this blog post, we will examine the pros and cons of both approaches to help you make an informed decision.

DIY Commercial Roof Replacement

Pros of DIY

  1. Cost-saving: One of the primary reasons some business owners consider a DIY commercial roof replacement is the potential cost savings. By avoiding professional labor costs, you can significantly reduce your expenses.
  2. Flexibility: When you choose to replace your commercial roof yourself, you have the freedom to work at your own pace and on your schedule. This flexibility allows you to balance the project with your other business commitments.
  3. Enhanced control: Undertaking the roof replacement yourself enables you to have complete control over every aspect of the job. From selecting materials to overseeing the installation process, you can ensure that your commercial roof meets your specific requirements.

Cons of DIY

  1. Lack of expertise: Commercial roof replacement is a complex task that requires specialized knowledge and experience. Without the necessary expertise, you may end up making mistakes that could compromise the integrity of your commercial roof in the long run.
  2. Safety concerns: Working at heights without proper training and equipment can be extremely dangerous. A commercial roof installation project involves potential hazards, such as falls and accidents caused by improper handling of materials. It’s essential to prioritize safety and consider whether you possess the necessary skills and safety protocols to avoid accidents.
  3. Time-consuming: Undertaking a DIY commercial roof replacement project can often take longer than anticipated. Learning curves, unexpected challenges, and trial-and-error can significantly prolong the completion timeline. This extended project duration may affect your business operations and result in unnecessary delays.

Professional Commercial Roof Replacement

Advantages of Hiring Professionals

  1. Expertise and experience: When you hire professionals for commercial roof replacement, you benefit from their expertise and experience. Trained and certified roofing professionals possess the necessary skills to handle complex roof installations and ensure quality workmanship. They are well-versed in various commercial roofing systems and can guide you in selecting the most suitable materials for your specific needs.
  2. Time-saving: Professionals understand the importance of completing the project efficiently to minimize disruption to your business operations. Their experience allows them to execute the installation process swiftly while maintaining high standards. By hiring professionals, you can save valuable time and focus on other aspects of running your business.
  3. Insurance coverage: Professional roofing contractors typically carry liability insurance. This coverage protects you against any damages or accidents that may occur during the roof replacement project. It provides peace of mind, knowing that you are not financially responsible for any unfortunate incidents that may happen on your property.

Potential drawbacks of Professional Roof Replacement

  1. Cost: Hiring professionals for commercial roof replacement generally involves a higher upfront cost compared to a DIY approach. However, it is essential to consider the long-term benefits and potential cost savings. By relying on professionals, you can avoid costly mistakes, ensure quality workmanship, and secure durable roofing materials that will extend the lifespan of your commercial roof.
  2. Dependency: When you hire professionals for commercial roof replacement, you are more reliant on their expertise and decisions regarding the project. You may have limited control over the timeline and specific details, as you are relying on their professional judgment. It is crucial to establish clear communication and expectations with the roofing contractor.

Choosing the Right Option: Factors to Consider

In determining whether to opt for a DIY commercial roof replacement or seek professional help, there are several factors you need to consider:

  1. Roof complexity: The complexity of the project plays a significant role in deciding between a DIY approach and professional assistance. If your commercial roof system is intricate, with multiple layers and unique design elements, it may be best to rely on experienced professionals who can handle the complexity with precision.
  2. Budget: A crucial aspect to evaluate is your budget. While DIY projects may initially seem cheaper, consider the long-term investment. Professional roof replacement ensures quality workmanship, durable commercial roof materials, and potential cost savings down the line. Assess your financial capabilities and weigh the short-term cost against the long-term benefits.
  3. Time constraints: The urgency of your commercial roof replacement can influence whether you should hire professionals or undertake the project yourself. If time is of the essence, professionals can expedite the process to minimize disruptions, allowing you to resume normal business activities quickly.
  4. Safety concerns: Safety should always be a top priority, particularly when it comes to complex projects like roof replacement. If you lack the proper safety training and equipment, it may be wiser to hire experienced professionals who possess the knowledge and protocols to handle potential risks.


Making the choice between a DIY commercial roof replacement and seeking professional help can be challenging. By assessing the complexity of your roof, budget constraints, time availability, and safety concerns, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your specific requirements. Remember, even if you choose to embark on a DIY project, it is always wise to consult professionals for advice and guidance to ensure project success and safety.

At J.R. Swigart Roofing, we offer comprehensive commercial roofing services, including installation, replacement, repair, and maintenance. Our team of experienced professionals is here to guide you through the decision-making process and provide reliable solutions tailored to your commercial roofing needs. Contact us today to discuss your commercial roofing project!


Common Commercial Roofing Problems and Solutions: A Comprehensive Guide

A commercial building with a damaged roof.

As a business owner, you understand the critical role that a well-maintained commercial roof plays in protecting your investment. However, even the strongest roofs are susceptible to various problems over time. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the most common issues encountered with commercial roofing systems and provide practical solutions to address them effectively.

I. Introduction

A commercial roof serves as the first line of defense against natural elements such as rain, snow, hail, and high winds. Weather-related issues are among the most prevalent problems faced by commercial roofers and can lead to significant damage if not addressed promptly. With proper maintenance and reinforcement, these problems can be mitigated, ensuring the longevity of your commercial roof.

II. Weather-related Issues

  1. Heavy Rain:
    • Causes: Poor drainage, clogged gutters, or damaged roof flashing.
    • Solutions: Regular inspection, proper gutters and downspouts maintenance, installation of roof coatings.
  2. Snow and Ice:
    • Causes: Inadequate insulation, inefficient gutter systems, or ice dams.
    • Solutions: Adequate insulation, proper attic ventilation, installation of heat cables, and regular snow removal.
  3. Hail Damage:
    • Causes: Impact from hailstones leads to granule loss, punctures, or fractures.
    • Solutions: Inspection after a hailstorm, repair damaged areas, consider impact-resistant roofing materials.
  4. High Winds:
    • Causes: Loose or missing shingles, compromised flashing, or inadequate fastening.
    • Solutions: Regular roof inspections, secure flashings, reinforcement of vulnerable areas.

III. Roof Leaks and Water Damage

Roof leaks and water intrusion can be detrimental to the structural integrity of your commercial roof and the interior of your building. Here are some common causes and solutions:

  1. Aging Roofs:
    • Causes: Deteriorated roofing materials, worn-out seals, or inadequate maintenance.
    • Solutions: Regular roof inspections, timely repairs, or roof replacement if necessary.
  2. Poor Installation:
    • Causes: Improperly sealed seams, faulty flashing, or incorrect membrane installation.
    • Solutions: Professional installation, remediation of installation defects, and maintenance.
  3. Clogged Gutters:
    • Causes: Accumulated debris or leaves blocking the flow of water.
    • Solutions: Regular gutter cleaning, installation of gutter guards, or downspout extensions.
  4. Roof Coatings:
    • Causes: Existing roof coatings deteriorate, lose adhesion or develop cracks.
    • Solutions: Reapplication of roof coatings, ensuring a seamless and protective barrier.

IV. Ponding Water

Ponding water refers to the accumulation of water on flat or low-sloped commercial roofs, and it can lead to roof deterioration. Let’s explore the causes and solutions:

  1. Inadequate Drainage:
    • Causes: Poorly designed or clogged drains, sagging or damaged roof structures.
    • Solutions: Installation of tapered insulation to promote drainage, repair or replace damaged drains.
  2. Improper Roof Slope:
    • Causes: Incorrect pitch, settling of old roofs, or inappropriate design.
    • Solutions: Consult with commercial roofing services to assess the roof slope and determine necessary corrections.
  3. Adding Drains:
    • Solutions: Identifying low spots and adding drains in strategic locations to facilitate water removal.

V. Roof Membrane Damage

The roof membrane is the outermost layer of your commercial roofing system, and it is prone to various types of damage. Let’s uncover the causes and solutions related to membrane damage:

  1. Foot Traffic:
    • Causes: Frequent access to the roof, improperly placed equipment, or untrained personnel.
    • Solutions: Designated walkways using protective walkway pads or implementing access restrictions.
  2. UV Radiation:
    • Causes: Prolonged exposure to the sun’s rays leading to membrane degradation
    • Solutions: Installation of reflective coatings or UV-protective membranes, regular inspections to identify damage.
  3. Chemical Exposure:
    • Causes: Exposure to harsh chemicals, pollutants, or substances from nearby industries.
    • Solutions: Using chemically resistant roofing materials, regular cleaning, and application of protective coatings.

VI. Blistering and Bubbling

Blistering and bubbling can occur on the surface of your commercial roof, indicating underlying problems. Here’s what you should know about these issues and how to address them:

  1. Trapped Moisture:
    • Causes: Improper attic ventilation, moisture infiltration, or inadequate insulation.
    • Solutions: Repairing moisture sources, improving ventilation, or installing adequate insulation.
  2. Poor Installation:
    • Causes: Incorrect application of roofing materials, insufficient adhesive, or improper drying.
    • Solutions: Professional installation or reinstallation, addressing defects and ensuring proper adhesion.
  3. Improper Ventilation:
    • Causes: Inadequate airflow and ventilation causing heat and moisture buildup in the roofing system.
    • Solutions: Installation of proper ventilation systems or the addition of roof vents.


Regular maintenance, timely repairs, and proactive steps can help mitigate common commercial roofing problems. By taking the necessary precautions and working with professional commercial roofers, you can extend the lifespan of your roof while ensuring the safety and protection of your business. Don’t wait until a small issue becomes a major problem – prioritize regular inspections and address any roofing concerns promptly. Remember, a well-maintained commercial roof is a solid investment in the long-term success of your business.