Maintenance Applications –
Roof Coatings & Roof Cleaning
Miami roofing systems face constant pressure from the elements. Regular roof cleaning and maintenance is essential to ensure homeowners receive full value for their roofing dollar, particularly roof coatings applications for residential flat roofs.
Residential roofs in South Florida present different maintenance challenges to homeowners and contractors. All systems should be kept clear of debris and trees should be cut back to avoid contact with the roof. A windblown palm tree can “sweep” a hole right through an asphalt shingle and trees are a highway for insects and critters to enter the home
Flat Roof Maintenance
Residential flat roofs benefit from proper maintenance more than any other system and should also be inspected yearly. Roofer Mike Inc (RMI) offers free yearly inspections to all homeowners in its service area.
Search your address online, click the map and look at your home from the air. Chances are you have a flat roof – either as an addition or part of the original design. It may even be completely flat as in the case of the adobe style homes which are so common in Miami. Now, look at the other homes with flat roofs in the neighborhood and notice how dirty most of them are. It is amazing, with all the attention focused on energy efficiency, how so many flat roofs are still neglected. It is plain to see that those roofs are aging at an accelerated rate as they absorb the sun’s rays rather than reflect. Not only will those roofs need to be replaced much sooner but electric bills are up as well as wear and tear on AC units.
In general, the life expectancy of a flat roof is proportionate to the level of maintenance performed on it. Special attention should be paid to debris buildup which can gradually rot the roof membrane. Debris can also clog roof drains with disastrous consequences. Ponding or excessive standing water can cause many problems and shorten the roof’s life cycle. Excessive ponding is defined by the Miami Dade County Building Department as any water on the roof that doesn’t evaporate within 48 hours. This definition is flawed as a flat roof in Miami could be under water for the entire rainy season. RMI adheres to a 24 hour maximum evaporation period for our flat roof installations, repairs and maintenance systems.
The most effective flat roof maintenance practice is the application of elastomeric roof coatings. These coatings slow the aging process by preventing ultraviolet degradation from the sun.
ELASTOMERIC ROOF COATINGS
Elastomeric products such as Sealoflex, GACO, Tropical and Somay are made with special resins that give roof coatings elastic characteristics which help protect and waterproof the roof. These coatings greatly extend the life cycle and improve energy efficiency.
RMI is proficient in the application of both water based and solvent based elastomeric roof coatings. Solvent based coatings are more expensive and are used where moderate to severe ponding conditions are present. Water based coatings are generally used on flat roofs with 100% drainage, metal roofs and even tile roofs. Elastomeric roof coatings should never be applied to a shingle roof.
The Miami market offers many local and national brands of coatings, available in a wide range of quality and prices. RMI can explain the differences and recommend the best product for the customer’s needs.
Tile Roof Maintenance
A correctly installed tile roof can be relatively easy to maintain. Broken tiles should be repaired or replaced. Usually, tiles are broken by people who do not know how to walk on tile. Miami roofers will tell you the best thing for your tile roof is to stay off it! Exterminators are notorious for breaking tiles when tenting a home. One should consider tenting before a tile roof installation.
Tile Roof Cleaning & Sealing
A clean roof adds to a home’s curb appeal, reduces cooling costs and extends the life of the tile underlayment. Repeated pressure washing to remove the growth of algae, fungus and mold damages the finish of roof tile. RMI features a roof cleaning and sealing system that not only maintains the finish of the tile but lasts much longer. The sealing process works with the sun’s ultra violet light to prevent algae re-growth. Our roof cleaning and sealing system also works great on driveways, patios, sidewalks and brick pavers. RMI also offers a 2-year warranty.
Shingle Roof Maintenance
Yearly inspections of a shingle roof is recommended. Exposed nails or any broken, displaced or missing shingles should be repaired immediately. Curling at the edges or corners, thermal shock cracking and widespread granular wash-off indicate the shingle roof is beyond repairs or maintenance.
One more thing – never apply roof coatings to a shingle roof. Shingles must breathe. Coatings create a dynamic whereby moisture is generated between the shingles and 30lb felt. Slowly but surely, the roof deck will rot.
Metal Roof Maintenance
Metal roofs are the most maintenance-free residential roofing systems the Miami market has to offer. Some factory paints get dirty in South Florida’s climate and will need to be cleaned. Nano cleaners should be used instead of repeated pressure cleaning which will wear on the metal plating. Decades will pass before any deterioration of a Galvalume roof panel occurs. 5V metal roof systems with exposed fasteners should be checked for rotting neoprene washers. Older metal roofs may show signs of rust, pitting or corrosion. If applied in time a roof coating can be applied for several more years of service.
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