Posts by rooftech

    RoofTech Consulting, Inc. Has Moved!

    We are proud to announce effective today that RoofTech Consulting, Inc. has moved to it’s new office! Our new address and office phone numbers are below. Please use this information to update your records accordingly.

     

    New address:
    3122 Sutton Blvd.
    St. Louis, MO 63143

     

    New office phone number:
    (314) 754-7440

     

    New fax number:
    (314) 833-3424

     

    All other personal contact information will remain unchanged. Feel free to stop by and say hello!

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    What’s a Building Envelope Consultant

    Have you heard the term “Building Envelope Consultant”? It is used to describe staff like ours that have expanded beyond roofs and into the exterior building envelope. This expansion of services is the result of an under served market and extensive new building performance & code requirements. In 2017  Carl A. Hargrove, AIA published a great article in  Facility Executive Magazine Online that explains in great detail when to utilize and what to expect from a Building Envelope Consultant. The following is an exert from his article.

     

    “With today’s strict energy conservation codes and increasingly complex facade and roof systems, many new construction projects involve the services of a building envelope design professional. This also applies to expansions and adaptive reuse. Making the best use of that consultant’s services is important not only to the bottom line of the project, but to the energy efficiency, code compliance, sustainability, integrity, and longevity of the building. When should a building envelope consultant get involved?  What services should he or she be expected to provide?  How does the consultant’s role differ from that of the architect of record? What, exactly, does a building envelope consultant do?” Click here to read the entire article.

     

    I hope you find this informative and helpful. Contact me to discuss how we can assist with your exterior building envelope assessments, troubleshooting, design of repair/refurbishment scopes, testing, etc.

     

    Project Consultant
    RoofTech Consulting, Inc.

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    Simple Advice for Budgeting

    Like you, our workload changes with the seasons. As winter arrives our focus begins to transition from performing roof inspections & other fieldwork to designing roof replacements for the upcoming year. Early during this process we often see that a budget is secured, but the amount is incorrect.  This is often the result of reused budgets that do not take into account the individuality and specifics of each building.

     

    We are currently designing projects that range in cost from $3.50 / sf to $38.00 / sf.  There is a reason for this spread.  Of the available 250,000+ roof component options, only a few may actually be suitable for your particular building.   Project costs will vary based on building type, local code requirements, contractor selection, roof type, etc. All these factors must be accounted for when designing and budgeting the new roof assembly. Not all systems are created equal and each system has its strengths and weaknesses.  There is no “perfect” system for all applications.

     

    No one wants to go “back to the well” to request additional funding after a budget has been established.  Because of this we recommend preparing specific budgets for each project.  In the case that an insufficient budget has been set, it is recommended to delay the project until appropriate funding can be allocated versus “value engineering” the roof design. As always, we are here to help if you have any questions or want to discuss your 2017 budgets.

     

    Project Consultant
    RoofTech Consulting, Inc.

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    2016 LTTR Values

    In January 2014 we sent a newsletter discussing newly posted  LTTR values (R-value) resulting from revised testing criteria. According to the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) the R value of 1″ of polyisocyanurate insulation has dropped once again effective January 2016.
    Why the change?
    This is the result of applying the newest test methods to insulation boards of varying temperatures.  Apparently boards at colder temperatures provide higher R values than boards at warmer temperatures. NRCA has chosen to refer to the lowest common denominator when listing new R values.  Below is a breakdown of changes by year.
    2013: 1″ of polyisocyanurate = R6
    2014 & 2015: 1″ of polyisocyanurate = R5.7
    2016: 1″ of polyisocyanurate = R5.0
     
    How does this effect you? 
    Most local building codes require an insulation package meeting R20 whenever a new roof system is installed. In 2014 & 2015 only 3.5″ of polyisocyanurate insulation was required to satisfy the R20 requirement.  In 2016, 4″ of polyisocyanurate insulation will be required to meet the R20 requirement. Additionally, the new roof height will be reducing flashings heights by 1/2″.  This may result in additional work required to meet industry standard 8″ minimum flashing heights. Ultimately these factors will result in more material & associated costs for future roof replacements.

    We hope you find this information helpful.  Contact us to discuss how this may effect your future projects.

    Project Consultant
    (314) 687-5687

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    Now Offering Electronic Leak Detection (ELD)

    RoofTech Consulting has recently introduced Electronic Leak Detection (ELD) to our list of services.
    Electronic leak detection (ELD) is often referred to as Electronic Field Vector Mapping (EFVM). There are two methods of ELD, low-voltage and high-voltage. These testing methods utilize electrical current to test the integrity of roofing and waterproofing membranes.  Our electronic leak detection equipment will assist in locating pinholes, leaks, and areas of weakness in non-conductive roofing membranes.  This type of testing is critical prior to project closeout or prior to the installation of overburden, pavers, etc.  This testing method often replaces traditional flood testing due to ELDs level of accuracy and speed of completion.


     

      

    Low Voltage Electronic Leak Detection: Enables testing on wet (water present) waterproofing and roofing membranes.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    High Voltage Electronic Leak Detection: Enables testing on dry (no water present) waterproofing and roofing membranes.

     

     

     

     

     

    Developing roof management programs, performing roof inspections, and designing reroofs are still our main focus but we are excited to offer a full lineup of complimentary services to meet our clients’ needs. Please contact me to schedule a demo of this testing method or to learn more about what we do.  We look forward to hearing from you.

     

    Cale Prokopf, RRO

    Project Consultant

    (314) 687-5687

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    August 2014

    Rooftop solar installations and vegetative roofs are becoming popular with commercial and industrial building owners. These options have gained popularity because they can benefit the facility, tenant, or owner. A few of these benefits include minimizing energy costs, increasing marketability, and adding usable space. Developing a project with this many intricacies requires detailed review of the structure and all associated components.

    Often the design of one of these systems is the product of a financier, electrician, or architect. No two buildings are alike so each design must be truly unique to that facility. These one-of-a kind creations result in designers and owners unknowingly overlooking items that affect the lifecycle cost of the installation. We often find that the roof system itself is ignored during the initial project design. Please consider the following questions when/if you are thinking about adding a rooftop solar installation or vegetative roof to your building:

    1. Has a licensed structural engineer reviewed the building to verify that the added weight of your installation will not result in damage to the facility?
    2. Are the components of the installation (solar panels, inverters, etc.) covered under your insurance policy or is additional coverage needed?
    3. Is the installation of a new roof included as part of the project? If not, should it be?
    4. Is the roof system compatible with the type of product that is being installed?
    5. How will the manufacturer’s roof system warranty be affected by the installation?
    6. If a new roof is not installed, how many more years will the existing roof perform?
    7. What is the cost to remove the new installation components to access the roof for repairs, add penetrations, etc.?
    8. What is the anticipated lifecycle of the new installation versus the roof system, i.e. will the installation out perform the roof?
    9. Has a maintenance plan been designed to help support the rooftop components?
    10. How will roof leaks be detected and located once the installation is in place?

    The photos below are a perfect examples of Rooftop Solar Installation and Vegetative Roof Installation.
    40 39

    We recommend involving a roof design professional such as you preferred roof consultant during the design process to help resolve these often overlooked questions.  It is much easier and less expensive to resolve issues prior to installation of the new system.  Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns about your next project.

    Cale Prokopf, RRO
    Project Consultant
    (314) 687-5687
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    Winter 2012

    Greetings!

    Thanks for taking the time to check out our newsletter!  We understand that your time is valuable so this newsletter will only contact the most pertinent information related to your roofs.  We would like to know what topics or issues you would like us to cover in the future.  Contact us with your ideas.  Enjoy!

    It’s finally here!

    After a very dry summer we are beginning to see more precipitation.  With this rain come lower temperatures and eventually the freeze/thaw cycle.  This cycle of freezing and thawing can cause minor issues to rapidly worsen.  Regardless if you own your building or manage the facilities of others, now is the time to take advantage of this dry, warmer weather and schedule your winter roof evaluations.

    It may be as simple as removing rooftop debris, applying a few patches, or clearing roof drains.  A roof evaluation performed now will cost only a portion of what emergency repairs may cost once ice and snow have accumulated.  Rooftop issues that are found and corrected now will save you the cost and inconvenience of bigger issues.

    What we do…..

    In response to a growing need in the roofing industry , RoofTech Consulting Inc. was chartered in June of 2001.  RoofTech is an authentic “third party” independent roof consulting firm in compliance with the Code of Ethical Practice ratified by the Roof Consultants Institute.  RoofTech provides a full range of roof consulting, testing, roof planning, and roof management services to facility managers and Professional Consulting, Architectural, and Engineering firms.
    We specialize in infrared moisture scans, annual roof evaluations, preparing reroof project specifications, and reroof project management.

    Cale Prokopf
    Project Consultant
    (314) 687-5687
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    Spring 2012

    Greetings!

    As you know, recent storms have torn through the Midwest causing severe damage to countless facilities in the St. Louis area. We hope that you made it through the storms unscathed.  If not, and you need assistance with roof related issues, please contact us to schedule a consult.

    We advise everyone to choose their roofing professionals wisely during this time of emergency and avoid “storm chasers”.

    Proper Roof System Selection

    During a recent Better Understanding of Roofing Systems Institute (BURSI) seminar some great information was presented.  A segment of the seminar focused on the rhyme and reasoning to specifiy one roof system over another.  We felt this could benefit anyone that may be budgeting roof replacements or dealing with replacement due to recent storm damage.

    Not all systems are created equal and each system will have its strengths and weaknesses.  There is no “perfect” system for all applications.  The breakdown below sheds some insight into which roof systems are best suited for each particular installation.

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    Although it does not cover all the concerns, this table is a good starting point in the selection of a new roof system. There is much more that should be taken into consideration before investing into a new roof system such as interior/exterior environments, durability, building use, budget, etc. Don’t hesistate to ask questions on why a certain roof system is being recommended by your roofing professional.  As always, we are here to help if you have any questions.

    Cale Prokopf
    RoofTech Consulting, Inc
    (314) 687-5687

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    Fall 2012

    Greetings!

    We hope everyone enjoyed their summer.  From temperatures in excess of 105 degrees to the devastating hail storm, the weather this year has been unpredictable to say the least.  As a result many of you ended up with unexpected and unwanted roof projects.  We hope your projects are wrapping up or will be within the foreseeable future.  Any uncompleted roof repairs or replacement could create further damage to the facility if not addressed before the winter months.

    Those of you that are still working with insurance adjusters may want to consider involving an independent third-party consulting firm to help work toward a resolution.  Insurance adjusters typically work alongside professional roof consultants to substantiate their findings, shouldn’t you?  Contact us to discuss the needs of your particular project and any possible assistance we can offer.

    The Liability of the Roof Recover Option

    Due to the extensive amount of roof replacements in the St. Louis area we felt it would be beneficial to many of you to explain the possible ills of installing a new roof system over an older, damaged, roof system.  This can be an attractive reroof option for many reasons.  This option reduces replacement cost, can be installed quicker than a traditional tear-off roof replacement, and roof system manufacturers will typically honor a NDL warranty.

    As with most things, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!

    Although widely practiced within the roofing industry, roof recover remains a controversial issue.  Roof recovers often encapsulate moisture in the underlying roof system.  Common issues surrounding this roof option are mold concerns, the drying of wet insulation, deck deterioration (dry rot of wood, disintegration of concrete, corrosion of metal), and fastener failures.  Ongoing leaks and voided manufacturer warranties are all too common when a new roof is installed over an existing roof system.  Most importantly, the installation may not meet current International Building Code (IBC) or the manufacturer’s warranty requirements.

    What can you do to protect yourself against these issues in the case of a roof recover project?  Randomly selected core cuts and visual observation are not enough investigation to determine the amount of underlying moisture within a roof system. Performing an infrared moisture scan will verify and document areas of subsurface moisture insuring that local code requirements are satisfied.  The infrared scan will allow you to mark and replace any wet or “suspect” areas in the existing roof system during the new roof installation process.  The scan should also provide as documentation to ensure manufacturer warranty compliance as installation of new roofing over wet substrate will lead to systemic issues and premature roof failure.

    Make sure to perform your due diligence when selecting a firm to complete an infrared moisture scan.  The company you select should have a minimum of 10 years’ experience using their infrared equipment and should be able to provide training certification from the equipment manufacturer.  This is important because dissimilar heat dissipation readings show up as “hot spots” or “anomalies” and are common.  These readings are not necessarily wet insulation but could be areas of sediment build up, interior lighting, or cupped insulation.  Prior to marking the roof, anomalies should be confirmed with secondary non-destructive equipment such as nuclear or capacitance meters.  Areas marked on the roof should then be confirmed through test cuts to verify and finalize the findings.  What good is an infrared scan if it’s done incorrectly?  We perform infrared scan services regularly and can offer a multitude of references and samples.  Contact us for more information or to discuss scheduling this service for your facility.

    Regards,

    Cale Prokopf
    RoofTech Consulting, Inc
    (314) 687-5687

     

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    August 2013

    In June, the Polyisocyanurate Insulation Manufacturers Association (PIMA) announced its Quality Mark certified R-value program is being updated to incorporate a new test method for determining long-term thermal resistance (LTTR).   As you may know, R-value is a measure of thermal resistance used in the building and construction industry.  Under uniform conditions, it is the ratio of the temperature difference across an insulator and the heat flux.  The polyisocyanurate product is NOT changing any current chemical makeup.  What is changing, is the test method (LTTR) process of calculating R-values.  As a result, new LTTR values are going to decrease for roof insulations from their current values.  Please note that this change will not affect wall insulations. Even with these changes, polyisocyanurate is and will continue to be the greatest energy-efficient performance of any building insulation product on the market. To give you a couple of examples of these changes, the current R-Value of 2″ polyisocyanurate is currently 12.10.  Effective January 1, 2014, that same material will have an R-Value of 11.4.

    The 2012 International Building Code (IBC) requires that R-25 be met during all roof replacement (tear-off) projects.  Fortunately, local municipalities still follow IBC 2009 or older guidelines.  We do not foresee local municipalities adopting IBC 2012 for at least another 2-3 years.  The combination of IBC 2012 and the lower R-values given to polyisocyanurate insulation effective January 1, 2014 will require at least another 1″ – 1.5″ of insulation be installed just to meet local code on future roof replacement project.  More material obviously results in an increase in roof replacement costs.  We recommend adjusting future roof replacement budgets to reflect these additional costs.

    We hope you find this information beneficial.  Feel free to call or email if you have any questions about this issue.

    Cale Prokopf
    Project Consultant
    (314) 687-5687
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