Loveland Roofing: Article About Early Commercial Roof Hurricane Preparation
Each summer and fall, weather forecasters are on the watch for hurricanes and other high-wind events. For facilities managers and building superintendents in the Southeast, the roof preparations for a hurricane should begin long before tropical storms are named and tracked on the evening news. Keeping a commercial roof well-maintained and ready for the unexpected requires regular checks and a watchful eye throughout the year.
A thorough annual check of your roof by your professional Loveland roofing contractor goes a long way toward ensuring that your roof is hurricane-ready, but it's not all that needs to be done. Effective, long-term preparation begins with proper roof design and continues with rigorous attention to every detail on the roof.
Annual hurricane readiness should start in late May or early June with a thorough examination of the roof top and the area surrounding the building. Walk the perimeter of the building first. Make note of any trees or bushes that need to be trimmed back or any branches that could fall on the roof during high winds. Make arrangements to have those items cut back or removed immediately. Next, note any signs, exterior boards or accessories that will need to be moved inside if a hurricane watch is announced. Post that list in a visible spot so that you won't have to remember those details when you are engaged in last-minute hurricane preparations.
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After the perimeter is examined, head up to the roof. First, investigate the items around the edges of the roof. Those are the first areas vulnerable to wind uplift during a storm. Make sure everything is tightly secured, especially the edge metals and flashing. Even the smallest item can harm the roof membrane with hurricane-force winds propelling it, so make sure nothing can come loose in a storm.
Next, check the field of the roof and any equipment on it. Everything needs to be tightly fastened, even the edges of the HVAC unit and vents. If equipment or hardware is attached to a support board that is then attached to the roof, make sure that the fastening is sound as well. When the Roofing Industry Council on the Weather studied roof failures following major hurricanes like Katrina, Charley and Ivan, they found that one of the leading causes of roof damage was the inadequate fastening of edge metals. So make sure yours are strongly fastened.
Once you are assured that every item on the roof and around the outside of the building is secured, you can wait until an actual hurricane warning is issued to take further action.