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Home / National Roof Restoration & Repair and Building Owner/Customer Roofing System Best Practices, Requirements & Responsibilities

National Roof Restoration & Repair and Building Owner/Customer Roofing System Best Practices, Requirements & Responsibilities

The following information is not only educational in nature, but encourages the owner/customer/lessee to engage in proactive roof preventive maintenance, elaborates on non-warranted roofing conditions, and establishes simplified boundary conditions between owner/customer/lessee responsibilities and NRRR warranty requirements.

Best Practices, Requirements & Responsibilities

NRRR representatives utilize their experience, knowledge, training, investigative skills, and best judgment to inspect and evaluate external roof surface areas for exposed voids, holes, cracks, rust, obvious assembly defects, and other deficiencies. Representatives also inspect inside building conditions at customer identified leak locations for telltale signs of sagging insulation, visual light penetration, non-insulated roof components & thermal circuit penetrations, etc. NRRR representatives do not perform destructive testing unless specifically requested by the owner in writing. NRRR is not responsible for hidden or buried assembly defects and other conditions such as “under-panel” rusting that are not observable to non-intrusive visual inspection. NRRR makes no statement of guarantee or warranty on such hidden deficiencies.

NRRR representatives will, when external & internal roof observations dictate, recommend disassembly of roof components and/or the physical cutting open of roof panels to verify suspect defect areas, if warranted, through visual sight. In such instances, if defects prove to be expansive, National Roof representative may recommend roof replacement as an option to restoration, maintenance or repair. Nevertheless NRRR representatives generally provide the most cost effective and comprehensive metal roof repair recommendations to the building owner that is consistent with a visual inspection and with accurate information provided by the customer.

NRRR representatives rely a great deal on roof problem information disseminated by the building owner and/or residing customer. Inaccurate reporting by the owner/customer may preclude an effective & thorough investigative analysis by NRRR representatives, thereby limiting the opportunity for the writing of a successful proposal. It is incumbent upon the owner/customer to be as honest and as helpful as reasonably possible to ensure that a full expanse of data is available for evaluation.

Throughout the life of a metal roof system and ancillary gutter & downspout systems, exposure to the collection of debris or external “non-roof” materials is likely. Examples include, but are not limited to; twigs & leaves from surrounding trees and shrubs, bird & rodent nests, windswept dirt, exhaust vent material discharge, baseballs, clothing, pop cans, beer bottles, other type containers, loose wood, vegetative growth, and the like. These are a few of the items that our leak technicians have encountered over the years during repair visits to owner/customer facilities. In many cases these are the type of obstructions that impede the rain waters evacuative path, and are the root cause for roof leaks. Failure of the owner/customer to perform routine roof inspections, and to ensure a clear passage for water to evacuate the roof & gutter system can, and will render NRRR guarantees and warranties null and void. This is the sole responsibility of the owner/customer or their delegate(s) to ensure an unobstructed roof & gutter system.

Most metal roof systems are exposed to foot traffic. Authorized and unauthorized employees, mechanical contractors, electricians, and other maintenance type personnel often access a roof system with no intention to harm the surrounding environment. It is the consequential and unintended damage done to roofing components that often leads to roof leaks. Broken panel corrugations, collapsed trims and flashing, dislodged vent hoods, improperly reassembled HVAC covers, etc. can cause non-warranted roof leaks. Further, if roof top HVAC units do not receive routine maintenance; dirty filters can significantly diminish proper air flow over the condensing coils, leading to insufficient heat transfer and icing during high humidity periods (i.e. before and during rain storms) with a subsequent melt cycle that overflows the drain pan and pours condensate into the building. Condensate overflow from a HVAC unit is not considered a roof leak. It is very important that the owner/customer understand the ramifications associated with these conditions to pre-empt a potential lapse in roof warranty coverage.

Internal building condensation is often mistaken for a roof leak, but in reality is the result of the “dew point” temperature being reached at the surface of such components as insulation vapor barriers, exposed bare metal panels, high thermal circuit penetrations, etc. When atmospheric conditions such as elevated water vapor in the air exists concomitant with cool outside temperatures and relatively warm inside temperatures, the probability for condensation occurring inside the building is significant. If a warehouse is heated by the un-vented and direct injection of natural gas burners, a byproduct of the combustion process is H2O that is retained in the air as water vapor. When the warm & moist inside air comes into contact with relatively cool and exposed roof assembled components, dew point temperatures for these atmospheric conditions are attained and condensation takes place. Condensation dripping from within the building is not a roof leak and is a non-warranted condition.

Metal buildings come in many shapes and sometimes include parapet walls, mansard walls, masonry fire walls, etc. that interface with the roof system. NRRR representatives focus on the watertight integrity of the flashing that joins the roof & wall together when this type configuration is present. Wall detail problems and deficiencies may or may not be elaborated on in the roofing report and subsequent proposal. It is not NRRR intent, requirement or responsibility to involve itself in wall component issues. In some instances, where warranted, NRRR representatives will recommend the installation of metal wall panels and coping caps over deteriorated masonry walls. However, complex, and previously paneled walls are typically the responsibility of the Owner/Customer. Leaks occurring at the perimeter of such building features can have the appearance of a roof leak, but in reality is usually water infiltration through the wall components, beneath the interface flashing and into the building. It is not unusual, if wall leaks are present, for the infiltrating water to enter the building and run along structural components. These conditions are non-warranted, and not the responsibility of NRRR.

Water-tight integrity for valley gutters & internal type gutter systems must have a free & unobstructed evacuative path for rain water. This characteristic is absolutely critical for the prevention of water breaches. If valley gutters & internal gutters discharge into underground piping systems they must be free flowing and not prone to back-ups. All too often these hidden drain systems become clogged with debris or are infiltrated by vegetative growth that prevent a full and continuous out flow of rain water from the gutters. All roof systems will leak if water is allowed to back up due to inadequate drainage from valley gutters & internal gutter systems. Such conditions are non-warranted, and not NRRR responsibility.

Exhaust fans that extract inside air and discharge through the building envelope can often create a negative air pressure condition. If offsetting wall louvers or make-up air units are not installed or are inoperative a negative ∆P will most likely occur. A negative ∆P will siphon water into the building and compromise warranties and guarantees. If air flow into the building is present a ∆P analysis should be performed, and corrections made to ensure that the building atmospheric air pressure remains > or = to outside atmospheric air pressure. This condition is non-warranted, and not the responsibility of NRRR.

Best Practices, Requirements & Responsibilities

In many cases, when NRRR roof technicians are called upon to perform repairs associated with roof leaks, they often find the following conditions that are not covered under the NRRR warranty, and are considered chargeable repairs to the owner/customer/lessee. Some of these conditions can be repaired for a charge, while others require customer/owner action:

  • Bullet holes
  • Broken corrugations
  • Debris on the roof
  • Negative air pressure
  • Roof repairs by others
  • Damaged sealing tape
  • Missing vent caps
  • Clogged downspouts & u/g drains
  • Dirty HVAC filters
  • Non-compatible roof materials

Please keep in mind that NRRR leak technicians are available to serve you, and complete roof repairs that fall within the NRRR warranty coverage. However, post restoration & maintenance roof leaks, in a significant number of the cases we review, are non-warranty related, associated with insufficient roof preventative maintenance, and subsequent repairs are chargeable to the customer. You, the owner, can have a fundamental and positive influence on the longevity and leak free performance of your roof system if you follow the aforementioned recommendations & requirements.

National Roof can provide the owner with annual inspections and reporting for the purpose of assisting in clarifying current roof conditions, perform debris and vegetative growth removal and help improve the sustainability of the roofing asset at a minimal cost. These inspection reports not only serve to provide knowledge to the owner, but also act to comply with manufacturer roof system warranty requirements. Please contact us today if you are interested in annual inspection reporting.

Thank You,

NRRR leak technicians, installation crews, and staff