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Every April, the world puts a spotlight on sustainability and energy-efficiency, thanks to Earth Day. Cool roofs are eco-friendly, and whether you’re passionate about climate change, you’re likely enthusiastic about saving money on property maintenance. Can a cool roof system help you save on building costs?

Yes! A cool roof system provides reflexive properties that can help reduce inside air temperatures and cut down on your building’s cooling cost. Additionally, the sun’s rays are less likely to hasten the deterioration of materials used in a cool roof system.

River Run Roofing has years of experience installing cool roof options. Let’s explore other ways our commercial roof options can save you money.

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If you own a building with a flat roof, you’ve likely heard about TPO or single-membrane roof systems.

TPO stands for thermoplastic polyolefin and it’s a single-ply membrane installed on commercial roofs to provide leak protection as well as heat-reflective benefits.

Demand for TPO roofing is on the rise as cities strive to combat urban heat island effect through cool roof options such as TPO.

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Realtors will tell you that shingle color and style are important when it comes to the value of your home. Roofing product choices are ever-expanding and can range in costs from high-end slate to more affordable asphalt.

So, what roof shingle colors and styles are the most popular? That depends on your budget, the architectural style of your home, and where you’re located.

In Pennsylvania, asphalt shingles in dark gray or black are the most popular choice for residential roofing, especially on brick homes.

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No matter where your commercial building is located, there’s likely a time when HVAC units, roof vents, electrical conduits, or other items will need to be installed. These require roof penetrations. Unfortunately, roof penetrations are always a risk for leaks unless they’re properly flashed and sealed.

And while facility managers may be able to flash and seal these penetrations adequately, they could, in the process, inadvertently compromise their roof warranty.

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Whether you’re looking for a residential roofing professional or a commercial roofing pro, one skill you may overlook in your quest to find the best roofer in your area is how that roofer handles debris and waste caused by the roof repair.

It may seem like a small worry, but it shouldn’t be. Proper roof debris cleanup should be part of a roofer’s job site etiquette.

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There are some easy home upgrades, like landscape improvements, strategic outdoor lighting, resurfaced cabinets, that may add value to your home.

When it comes to more substantial upgrades that offer a good ROI, however, does a new roof fit the bill?

According to Remodeling’s Cost Vs Value Report 2020, you’ll recoup 60-68% of the cost of a roof replacement at resale. When it comes to roof repair, however, the return on investment depends on many variables.

Let’s look at what impacts how much value a new roof adds to a house.

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If water is coming out of soffit vents or coming into your house or building, ice dams are likely the main culprits.

In a residential building, substantial insulation in your attic can help prevent ice dams from forming. In both residential and commercial buildings, a rubber membrane installed under the shingles can help prevent ice dams. Do not place rock salt or ice melt products on your commercial or home roof during winter. These products can damage roofing materials.

Water is powerful and stubborn. If anything blocks its proper flow, it will find another route. Often in winter, water can back up underneath roof shingles. If that water breaks through the protective barrier below your home’s roof shingles, it will leak into your home; if water finds its ways to a bad seam or weak spots in flashing, it will leak into your commercial building.

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Fall weather is some of the most enjoyable out of the year. You probably find yourself spending more time outside through autumn than other times of the year.  It might not be the time of year you give a lot of thought to your home’s roof. But there’s a big reason why you should: Rodent Control.

As temperatures start to dip, mice and other rodents are preparing to find shelter. Rotting eaves, damaged roof flashing, and other structural weaknesses are an open invitation to your home.

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So many variables play a role in determining the cost of a roof. Roof size, materials, existing condition, environmental conditions…not the least of the variables being: Are you talking a new roof, a roof repair, or a roof restoration?

Also, the average cost of a residential roof may vary greatly from that of a commercial building.

Online roofing cost calculators can provide a ballpark figure. While these online calculators are a good place to start, River Run Roofing hopes you’ll depend on our team of trusted residential and commercial roofing contractors to provide a more accurate, customized roof estimate for your project.

The online roofing calculators can be adjusted according to roofing materials, from asphalt shingles to TPO, roof size, roof slope, and can even consider geographic variables using zip codes. But you can’t get a more customized answer to your roofing problem than one gained from having a conversation with a River Run Roofing professional roofer. We are here to answer any questions you have.

Costs to install or replace a roof, whether it’s a commercial building or residential structure, will likely be much higher than costs to repair a roof or restore it.

Roof Install, Replace, Repair, or Restore Costs

Residential

Residential Roof Repair: If you have an existing roof that’s showing signs of age or you’ve noticed signs of a leak, it might just need to be repaired. However, locating the cause of the leak and where it might begin can be a challenge. Our team of roofing experts can thoroughly inspect the roof of your home to spot any weaknesses and determine how we can restore its integrity. Normally we have a minimum charge of $325 plus materials to come do the repair. This includes up to 2 hours of labor.

Residential Roof Replacement: If the damage to your roof proves to be extensive or weak spots point to impending further damage, you may need a roof replacement.  A home with a roof older than 20 years will likely need a roof replacement. You can expect to pay between $3.50 to 8.50 per square foot to replace an asphalt shingle roof on that typical, single-family home.

If your house is a Tudor style, with a lot of odd slopes and dangerous pitches, the cost to install, repair, or replace could be higher.

It’s a big investment to replace your roof, so we’re ready to help you decide on the cost benefits of repair versus an entire roof replacement. We can conduct a thorough roof inspection while keeping your budget in mind. If your home needs a roof replacement, a roofing contractor will explain popular roofing systems and help determine a feasible solution. River Run Roofing offers a 10-year workmanship warranty and a 50-year manufacturer’s warranty on residential roof installations.

We are a certified installer for CertainTeed products, and proudly offer other top brands including GAF and Owens Corning

Commercial

New Commercial Roof Installation: Commercial roofs will cost between $2.50 and $7.50 to install.There are many commercial roofing systems available. Choosing the right one for your building depends on your building’s location, condition, your budget, and the type of warranty you desire.

We install Flexion, metal, TOP, EPDM rubber, or PVC.

Commercial Roof Repair: If you have an existing commercial roof system that’s showing evidence of leaks or damage, but is otherwise in good shape, you may be able to opt for just a roof repair. A traditional commercial roof repair could cost $500 to $2,000 depending on the extent of the repair.  A roofing contractor can inspect your facility’s roof and determine the severity of its weaknesses.  Our commercial roofing pros have years of experience repairing damaged flashing, ponding issues, and other common issues that require roof repair.

If your building’s roof needs more extensive repair, consider a commercial roof restoration. A roof restoration can save you thousands of dollars compared to an entire roof replacement.

Commercial Roof Restoration: Today’s roofing systems not only extend the life of commercial roofs, but they can increase your building’s energy efficiency and sustainability. River Run Roofing’s cool roof systems can help decrease the HVAC costs for your building and these energy-conserving qualities are a green energy choice.  Commercial roof restoration through River Run Roofing could cost around $2.50 to $8.50 per square foot.

Are there any tax breaks for roof replacement?

Unfortunately, you can’t deduct the cost of a residential roof. You can, however, place the costs of that home improvement project toward the basis of your property. Increasing the basis of your property could decrease your property gained earned upon resell. For more information about offsetting the gain of your home’s base value. Visit the IRS Publication 530 Tax Information for Homeowners.

Some commercial roof repairs are included in the new Section 179 of The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. It enables taxpayers to expense the cost of improvements to a nonresidential property. You should discuss your options with your tax accountant. The IRS offers online guidance on Section 179 expenses.

Is there special financing available for roof replacement?

We can finance up to $100,000 for home improvement through our partnership with Enhancify. Their financial programs offer flexible, affordable solutions to help fund roof improvement projects. You can view, compare, and apply online without impacting your credit scores.

Team up with River Run Roofing professionals to help determine the extent of repairs your roof needs. Our experts in both residential and commercial roofing will offer friendly advice while keeping your budgetary needs in mind.

For commercial building owners and managers, choosing the right commercial roof is a critical decision. The material you choose will impact the overall safety of your building, as well as its energy efficiency and longevity. 

The best way to make sure you end up with the right roof for your building is to find a commercial roofing professional you can trust. An experienced commercial roofer will consider all factors and make a confident and informed recommendation based on your building’s specific needs.

Not sure how to find a reputable commercial roofer? Check out this resource for help:

THE #1 THING YOU SHOULD DO BEFORE
HIRING A COMMERCIAL ROOFING COMPANY

But, while a recommendation from a trusted professional should carry considerable weight, ultimately the final decision is yours. Choosing the wrong roof can lead to years of expensive headaches so it’s important that you have some understanding of what material is most suitable for your building’s needs. That’s why River Run created this list of factors to consider when selecting a new roof for your commercial building, as well as a quick overview of the types of roofing systems you’re likely to encounter. 

No single factor on this list will determine the perfect roofing system for your building by itself. Since the different systems’ beneficial features often overlap, there may be multiple options that would meet your building’s needs based on just one factor. That is why it’s important to look at all the factors together and choose the type of commercial roof that best meets your building’s complete needs. 

Here’s everything you should consider about your building when choosing a commercial roof:

Its Existing Roof and Physical Makeup

The current state of your commercial roof is the first thing to look at. The type of roof, any existing structures it houses (HVAC or fire mitigation systems for example), protrusions, and accessibility requirements should all be taken into account. 

Some commercial roofing systems can be applied directly on top of an existing roof, saving you the time and cost of tearing off the first roof. But reroofing (layering one roof directly on top of another) isn’t always possible. PVC for example, cannot be applied over an existing asphalt roof. In that situation, PVC’s incompatibility with asphalt would require a complete replacement (tearing off the first roof before applying the new one).

Existing structures and protrusions like AC units, vents, and skylights should also be taken into consideration since they can affect the installation and maintenance of different commercial roofing systems.

Ideally, no one should really be walking around on a commercial roof except for roofing professionals. But since this is often unrealistic, it’s important to take foot traffic into consideration for both the safety of your employees as well as your roof. 

Single-ply systems that are vulnerable to puncture, like EPDM, can be easily damaged when walked on, resulting in damaging leaks. Metal roofing systems, on the other hand, are unlikely to be punctured by foot traffic but are slippery and can pose a safety risk to the people walking on them. How often your roof will need to be accessed outside of professional maintenance is an important factor to consider when choosing a commercial roofing system.

Its Location, Immediate Surroundings, and Climate

A building’s physical location is another significant factor in choosing the right type of roof. Local building codes, nearby hazards like overhanging trees or wildlife, and extreme weather expected for that climate should all be taken into consideration. 

Commercial buildings in different climates may require different types of roofs. Buildings that see a lot of snow and hail might require the durability of a metal roof, while buildings in a desert climate would need the extreme energy-efficiency of a reflective system like Flexion, and buildings in climates with both extreme heat and cold may see the most benefit from a flexible material like EPDM that can easily adapt to temperature fluctuations. 

Or two buildings in vastly different settings may benefit from the same type of roofing system for different reasons. A building surrounded by trees with low-hanging branches may benefit from TPO’s tensile strength and puncture resistance, while a building in an urban setting may benefit from TPO’s energy-efficient properties, limiting their contribution to the heat island effect.

Commercial roofing systems are designed to function in a variety of climates so environmental conditions won’t greatly limit your options. But it’s still something to consider carefully. 

The Type of Business(es) Housed Within It

The third factor to consider is the type of business conducted within your building. A storage warehouse will have vastly different heating and cooling needs than a retail clothing store. In the case of a retail store, where customers are expecting a moderate and comfortable temperature, an energy-efficient system like Flexion or TPO may be worth the higher upfront cost. While a warehouse that stores non-temperature-sensitive inventory may opt for a less energy-efficient but more affordable roofing system, like EPDM.

Buildings housing restaurants or manufacturers require a roofing system that can accommodate ventilation and exhaust systems, as well as withstand damage from chemicals and oils, like PVC. Roofing materials that can be degraded by exposure to these substances, like EPDM and TPO, would be a poor choice for these types of businesses.

Environmental Impact

The environmental impact of commercial roofing systems is another important factor to take into consideration.. Whether a system is made from recycled material, can be recycled at the end of its life, is highly reflective, or whether it can accommodate additional insulation or photovoltaic panels are all “green” features commercial building owners may want to watch for.

Beyond the obvious energy efficiency (and subsequently lower utility costs) these features provide, certifications like LEED® and ENERGY STAR® may offer significant incentives for building owners to “go green” for their new roof.

Your Budget

With a significant purchase like a commercial roof, it can be easy to let the budget rule your decision. However, it’s important to remember that your roof is an investment and you need to consider more than the initial price tag to truly understand its value. 

You’ll want to take into account the true lifetime cost of the roof by considering factors like future maintenance, repairs, longevity, and available warranties. Roofing materials that are less expensive upfront often come with a shorter lifespan, requiring repairs or even complete replacement much sooner than materials that are more expensive to start with.  

Roofing systems with added benefits like the ability to be recoated, extreme energy efficiency, or stellar warranties, could end up paying for themselves when you compare your initial investment to what you will save over time. 

Future Plans for Your Building

The longevity of different roofing systems is an important factor to consider, especially in relation to your future plans. With proper care and maintenance, different commercial roofs can offer life spans ranging from 10 years up to 50 or more. A roofing system with a long life expectancy is great for clients who plan to own their commercial buildings for decades. Meanwhile, an owner who is planning to sell their property in the near future may not want to invest in a longer-lasting but more expensive system.

Considering these 6 important factors should help you get a clearer picture of what you’re looking for in a commercial roofing system. It’s also important to be somewhat familiar with the different types of commercial roofing systems on the market. This way you can be prepared to ask questions when your commercial roofing professional makes their recommendation. 

Here are the 5 types of commercial roofing systems your contractor is most likely to recommend:

Metal: Typically made of corrugated, galvanized steel, these roofing systems offer great energy efficiency and outstanding longevity. 

Click here to learn more about metal commercial roofs.

Ethylene Propylene Diene Terpolymer (EPDM): A synthetic rubber membrane often made from recycled materials and completely recyclable at the end of its life. EPDM’s best features are its light weight, high tensile strength, and affordability. 

Click here to learn more about EPDM roofs.

Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO): A single-ply reflective membrane composed of polypropylene and ethylene-propylene rubber polymerized together. TPO offers outstanding durability and energy efficiency, along with quick installation times. 

Click here to learn more about TPO roofs.

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC): A single-ply reflective membrane made from ethylene and chlorine, PVC is environmentally friendly and extremely durable. Its ability to withstand exposure to chemicals, grease, and animal fats makes it a top choice for restaurants and manufacturers. 

Click here to learn more about PVC roofs.

Flexion®: Conklin’s groundbreaking advanced PVC membrane offers excellent durability and efficiency, as well as low maintenance requirements over its lifetime. 

Click here to learn more about Flexion® roofs.

Now you’re all set to have an informed and knowledgeable discussion with your commercial roofing professional about selecting the best roofing system for your commercial building. If your building happens to be in Lancaster County or one of its surrounding areas, contact River Run today. We’d be happy to assess your roof and share our expert recommendation!