Roofing Redux

by Katie Lee

Defer major roof expenses by extending the life of the roof you have.

By Anthony Vross

So many maintenance needs. So few budget dollars. Facility executives have limits on what they can spend on building maintenance, and big-ticket items like unexpected roofing expenses can quickly eat those up.

The operations and maintenance category represents the greatest expense in owning and operating a facility over its lifecycle, according to the National Institute of Building Sciences. Further, Freedonia Group projects that building maintenance services expenses will increase 4.3% over the next 3 years.

The challenge for facility executives is in prioritizing uses for what budget dollars are available. These individuals need to make wise decisions that allow for addressing the most pressing issues now, while deferring other less-critical ones to another time.

But here’s the problem. You have a roof leak. Or worse yet, a series of roof leaks. The roof is aging quickly, and each year you find yourself spending more and more on repairs. Now must be the time for a total replacement. Right?

Not so quickly — there might be a better solution. What if the leaks could be resolved as part of a roof system restoration that would defer the huge cost and business disruption involved in a total replacement? At roughly half the cost of a replacement, on average, a restoration also essentially resets the clock on the roof’s warranty. Some installers may even agree to perform the restoration in stages over the course of 2 to 3 years, giving you even more budget flexibility. Just think about all the other building improvements you could make with the money you’d save.

With a roof restoration, the focus is on extending the life of the roof you already have — not just jumping right to a replacement when a few recurring leaks surface. Many facility executives intervene too quickly when ordering a roof replacement, and they leave several years of remaining life still on that roof structure. One report (NICS, Georgia Tech) shows that number as high as 85% of commercial roofs being replaced unnecessarily due to bad information about their condition.

A restoration solution is not just patchwork. It can include decking, insulation, membrane, surfacing and metals — as dictated by the building and the geography. Customized solutions can also be determined by necessary waterproofing, wind protection, number of penetrations, color and protection from fire, rust and corrosion.

Properly executed and maintained, a restoration can be coated and restored repeatedly over time, thus further extending the roof’s life and its warranty.

Minimize your roofing-related headaches and budget-draining expenses. Consider extending the life of your roof by restoring it, and free up maintenance and operations budget dollars for addressing other needs within the building.


— Anthony Vross is a co-owner of Simon Roofing, a national provider of innovative commercial roofing solutions for more than 100 years. For more information, visit

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