Owners who view the roofing system as a one-time expense, to make specification choices based solely on first costs, operate the risk of experiencing higher roof maintenance and also repair expenditures. The bottom line : Choosing the wrong system is likely to cost a service executive significantly more than if the appropriate system had initially already been selected.
High repair costs may be avoided by installing a high-performance roofing system and carrying out routine preventive maintenance all through the life of the roof. The first cost of a quality roofing system might be higher, but the lower life-cycle costs of the system are going to more than offset the initial investment.
The initial cost of a roofing system contains materials, labor, overhead, profit and also indirect costs associated with the structure. The life-cycle analysis takes the very first cost of the roof, after that adds to it the future costs of operation and maintenance over the economic life of the roof.
The service executive that does not consider the value of a life-cycle costing strategy to the purchase of a new roof does the facility and everyone associated with it a financial disservice. First-cost buyers might overlook such important long term expense reduction opportunities as :
- Energy cost savings in the heating and air conditioning of the building by using white, reflective membranes or coatings and additional insulation.
- Extended roof service life for an optimally drained roof.
- Improved roof fire retardence and wind uplift resistance, leading to reduced insurance costs.
- Extended roof service life because of the use of heavier structural framing materials, permitting a heavier roofing system.
- Future savings while the roof is usually to be replaced by utilizing reusable roof component accessories.
- Reduced roofing surface maintenance via installation of a heavier membrane of walkway pads for high-traffic roofs.
- Prevention of roof surface degradation in those roof places that harmful emissions might occur by installation of suitable protective devices.
The most cost-effective roof is certainly one that will stand up to the elements and demands of time. Therefore, facility executives ought to be actively associated with the initial planning stages to figure out the best roofing system depending on the established criteria for the building.
Planning and Specification
Ensure the roofing system will meet the needs of the facility by answering the following questions :
- Which kind of system provides the best long-term performance and energy efficiency ?
- How will weather conditions and climate affect the building and roof ?
- What exactly is the desired service life of the roof ?
- Is resale value of the building important ?
- Which kind of system will incorporate the best water drainage characteristics ?
- What type of maintenance program will likely be followed ?
- What exactly are the expectations for the roof ?
- Are there environmental concerns ?
- Will the roof need to be wind- and fire-rated ?
Once these queries have been answered, begin the selection process depending on location, physical characteristics, and building structure and type. After that choose quality products in particular engineered to be integrated and also installed as a complete roofing system. To do that, form long-term relationships with producers that are financially sound with a reputation for commitment and also experience in the marketplace. Check the track record of suppliers, along with the quality controls they supply during installation.
Life-cycle costing analysis doesn’t do a whole lot of good if the facility executive chooses a manufacturer that is unable to demonstrate financial stability, experience and also roofing system longevity.
Successful roofing installations also rely on the expertise of a quality-focused, professional roofing contractor.
Often, roofing is specified just to get the building taken care of and protected. Facility executives ought to realize that the majority of the cost is in labor. Sometimes material dollars up front might save many dollars on premature replacement costs.
It’s also important to be aware of the role of the roof as the first line of defense against the elements. The roofing system is the key investment that helps to protect the interior environment of the building. Specializing in the lowest initial cost can leave facility executives with a structure that is unproven and contributes to further difficulties throughout the life of the building.
Even though the roof comprises less than 3 percent of the development cost of a commercial building, it is one of the most critical construction components, thinking about the consequences if it fails.
When the facility has as its simple purpose the security of not only humans involved with daily commerce, but also valuable business assets which are critically important to the conduct of that commerce, the roof emerges since more than a cost component of the total building asset – it might be an asset in and of itself.
The answer to life-cycle cost is total system analysis. A roof is a structure that requires a broad spectrum of elements working together. When a property owner chooses an asphalt roofing system for a particular application, the system ought to be specified and installed as a whole. The overall performance of any roofing system may be optimized when all the components are selected depending on how they integrate as part of a total roofing system.
An Entire System Approach
As with any investment, the final value of the roof will be identified in large part by the purchase term. In this instance, the term is the realistic, anticipated life of the brand new roofing system. The best method to determine how long a roofing system is likely to last is to think about the documented performance of the system in comparable applications and environments.
The value of a roof can certainly increase if it survives its first few years without incident. A life-cycle curve often has a bump for early mortality. If a roof survives past the time period of that bump, after that the long-term outlook actually improves.
Calculating Life-Cycle Cost
A basic formula for calculating the life-cycle cost of a roof is to subtract the estimated salvage cost of the brand new roof materials from the purchase price and then add the projected costs of maintenance, repair and replacement over the predicted economic life of the roof. For this calculation, the worth of today’s dollar has to be converted to an upcoming value.
Energy efficiency is now a significant factor in figuring out a roof’s life-cycle cost. Many facility executives are specifying metal-clad or coated modified bitumen membranes and flashing, other reflective membranes or even additional insulation since energy-efficient options. A number of aluminum or white acrylic coatings can be applied to smooth surfaces. Granule-surfaced modified bitumen membranes can be applied to enhance reflectivity. By improving the energy efficiency of the building with reflective membranes or extra insulation, facility executives might reduce cooling costs.
Before problems occur, proactive maintenance should also be conducted to remove visible particles from the roof, clean drains and also perform minor repairs. Regardless of how thorough the maintenance program is, however, it is necessary to make routine, semi-annual inspections to reduce long-term fix costs. At a minimum, facility executives really should have their roofs inspected once in the spring and once in the fall.
The eventual tear-off and disposal of the roofing system is an additional necessary factor to be included in the life-cycle cost. Some systems need a more labor-intensive removal process, which could add to the total cost, although certain membrane kinds might be recycled, that may ultimately reduce the cost of the system.
With the number of system types obtainable in today’s commercial roofing industry, one of the primary obstacles facility executives encounter is acquiring the knowledge necessary to create informed decisions. Manufacturers offer seminars that enable facility executives a forum in which to expand their knowledge base and understanding. As soon as owners have the information necessary to create sound specification decisions, they can confidently specify roofing products and also systems that will meet their long-term goals.
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