Nails vs Screws In Construction – Which Should You Use?

Posted on: September 9th, 2017 by Lori Smith

The Fastener Depends On The Application

Some of you may not be sure which is the right fastener for your do-it-yourself project – nails vs screws. The truth is that they both have their place in construction, so it does depend on what you’re working on.

If you are doing basic construction such as attaching floor joists to deck framing, nails are the best fastener. Nails are used in most all framing and structural situations.

The time to use screws is when you are building something where forces will be applied in a parallel direction. In accordance with the above example, screws would be better for fastening the decking to the frame.

Nails vs Screws in Construction


Shear Strength vs Tensile Strength

The general rule is that you use nails when the pressure will be perpendicular because of their shear strength, but you use screws when pressure will parallel because of their tensile strength. There are a lot of conflicting opinions out there, and this site allowed several experts to chime in.

I tend to agree with this statement:

Screws are a “superior” fastener over a nail (they have far superior tensile strength)—especially if you’re talking about screwing down decking. However there are many scenarios where a nail is the proper fastener for the application (attaching joists is one example—screws are brittle and will fail when subjected to the forces of a shear loaded application).

Screws vs. Nails: When Do You Use One or the Other?

Hanging a picture versus building a deck require vastly different fasteners.  The hardware aisle can be a little intimidating with the wide variety of nails and screws, but the type project makes all the difference.

Are you hanging sheet rock, putting in a fence, finishing trim, siding your home, or roofing?

If you prefer a visual demonstration of the difference between screws compared to nails, this video is an excellent example:

The above video is a complete show of shear strength because the motion he is using is perpendicular to the surface. If he tried to pull straight up on the two fasteners, the nail would come out but the screw would not, mostly because of the threads.

Other Reasons To Choose One Fastener Over The Other

The cost of the nails vs screws in construction is an entirely different story. Part of the reason construction contractors use nails is that they are significantly cheaper to use than screws.

According to Home Depot, a five pound box of 8 penny nails, which are approximately 2.5 inches long, is $12. If you shop for 2.5 inch screws in a five pound box, the price is $30.

What fastener to use in construction


Another explanation for using a screw instead of a nail is that you can easily take a screw back out, especially in a temporary situation. Nails are quite permanent, at least without some major destruction.

Of course, the type of nails and screws can make a difference, because galvanized fasteners are more expensive since they are made to resist rust. All in all, you probably want to consult with a Denver builder contractor to discuss what materials will work best for your situation.



What to Expect When Building a Home in Denver CO

Posted on: September 1st, 2017 by Lori Smith

Prosperous Growth in Colorado

2017 is has been a productive year for Colorado construction, with new buildings going up everywhere and bringing a lot of job opportunities to the area. Denver has seen unprecedented growth, ranking on the Top 20 Forbe’s list of fastest growing cities in the United States.

Colorado’s economy is also doing well this year, in part due to construction as one of the largest contributing sectors. There is still a shortage of construction workers along the Front Range because of the current expansion and hot real estate market.

Construction Materials Consistently Rising

What to Expect When Building a Home in Denver CO

Wikimedia Commons

The average cost per square foot is around $150 depending on how fancy you finish the home. The next explanation is provided by a former construction contractor now real estate agent in the Denver area concerning the cost of building a home:

1. It is wholly dependent upon material selection. You can get ceramic tile for $.50 psf and you can get custom tile materials for $100+ psf.

2. Pricing is a curve based upon size, larger homes cost less than smaller homes per square foot with similar finishes. This is because the high fixed costs, can be absorbed into the space, and a carpeted family room is much less expensive to build than a kitchen or bathroom.

3. Multi-level homes are less expensive per square foot than ranches, as excavation, foundation work and roofing materials are more expensive than walls and flooring.

What are the current costs for building a custom home in the Denver suburbs?

Some reasons that Denver is experiencing ongoing growth is that mortgage rates have stabilized, job availability has increased, and the housing inventory is at a record low. On average, Denver homes go under contract in just six days and the sale finalizes in around two months, which in May of this year was the fastest in the U.S.

Figuring Cost Per Square Foot

This video reiterates the cost per square foot of building a home in Denver CO:

Roofing Materials Can Be Expensive Too

As with general construction square footage, the cost of roofing is also based on the type of material used. Asphalt shingles are the least expensive option but aren’t as durable, whereas clay or slate tiles are pricey but last a long time.

Whether on a new home or an existing home that needs repairs, a roof installation is something that just about every homeowner experiences at some time or another. Even though the quality of roofing materials have improved over the years, Denver’s unpredictable climate can cause issues with any property.

If you are curious about the cost of roofing your Denver home, check out this graphic:



Your budget is key when it comes to the cost of investing in a new home, and you need to have a good income to build in the Front Range area. Efforts are being made to construct more lower income housing, but when the demand is so high, the options minimal.

Suburban areas are becoming more popular, driving the prices up all around the metro area. If you are willing to commute, there are smaller cities that still have more affordable homes, but it may be a long drive.

Adding on a Conservatory – Is it Worth The Cost?

Posted on: August 26th, 2017 by Lori Smith

What is a conservatory? It’s a room that can be an additional living area during any season, which offers an open view to the world because it is made of glass.

Also known as a sun room or a solarium, it is accessible from the inside of the home as well as to the outside, basically like a glassed-in porch. Because it is made of glass, choosing the optimal location is critical to planning this addition.

This article discusses this portion of the planning:

What to Know Before Adding a SunroomAll season sun room

In northern climates, a southern exposure is best because it will receive the most light each day. In the South, however, a southern exposure means additional cooling will be necessary, which could be costly.

An eastern exposure will ease cooling needs by providing sun in the morning and shade the rest of the day — not so great for after work. A western orientation, on the other hand, will expose you to harsh afternoon sun that will need to be shaded.

A northern exposure will provide lower levels of light and partial shade most of the day. In the North, this can cause the room to be too cool and damp, but it can work fine in the South, where it may eliminate the need for window treatments or additional cooling.

Read the original post here:  What to Know Before Adding a Sunroom

There are some common misconceptions concerning adding on a conservatory: Is it considered habitable space as far as square footage in a home? Will the glass make the whole house warmer? Will it block light from other rooms?

These questions are answered in the followed video:

If the sun room is fitted with high performance insulated glass, it will make a huge difference in the usability of the room. Another consideration is whether to add central heat/air to the conservatory so that will definitely be considered part of the home’s square footage.

Adding ceiling vents can also help to mitigate the heat produced by the glass enclosure. Depending on all of these factors, the cost of the room can rise significantly.

This article discusses the potential price tag for adding a solarium onto your home:

How Much Does a Conservatory Cost? Free Conservatory Prices and Estimates

Conservatory Average CostAdding on a Conservatory

The cost of a conservatory varies widely depending on the design, local labor and material costs, and other factors. Before you begin conservatory construction, check with the local planning department to find out what permits you may need.

  • Conservatory costs start at around $7,500 to $15,000.
  • The average cost of a conservatory is $10,000 to $30,000.
  • A conservatory could cost as much as $40,000 to $80,000 or more.

Read the full post here:  How Much Does a Conservatory Cost? Free Conservatory Prices and Estimates

The addition of a conservatory will boost the dimension to your home with its bright open design. It will be a sanctuary that you and your family will enjoy together, and it is great for entertaining guests.

It can also increase your resale value when done correctly as it’s a unique feature that most homes don’t have. Plants love the atmosphere of a sun room and it is very therapeutic and soothing for bolstering your mood.

Roof Inspections – How Often and How Much?

Posted on: August 19th, 2017 by Lori Smith

Understanding the Different Types of Roof Inspections

Along with regular maintenance, a roof inspection is key to safeguarding your investment. Whether you do your own inspections or have a professional do it for you, don’t put it off.

Roof inspections - how often and how much

Wikimedia Commons

As a homeowner, you would be wise to only check your roof from a ladder. Leave the complete roof exam for a professional Denver roof inspector.

If you decide to check your own roof, a couple times a year is plenty unless you have a bad storm. Be sure to follow these safety precautions when using a ladder to check your roof and if you aren’t comfortable, find someone who is.

Here is a checklist for do-it-yourself types:

Roofing Inspection Checklist | Roof Inspection for DIYers | HouseLogic

Here’s what to look for:

  • Cracked caulk or rust spots on flashing.
  • Shingles that are buckling, curling, or blistering.
  • Missing or broken shingles.
  • Cracked and worn rubber boots around vent pipes.
  • Missing or damaged chimney cap. (OK, that’s technically not part of your roof, but since you’re looking anyway.)
  • Masses of moss and lichen, which could signal the roof is decaying underneath. Black algae stains are just cosmetic.

See the full post here: Roofing Inspection Checklist | Roof Inspection for DIYers | HouseLogic

There are a number of ways to have a professional survey your roof and the visual examination is the most common. If your roof can be accessed safely, a qualified roof inspector can take pictures and inspect the surface more thoroughly than automated equipment can.

Other methods are using an extended camera, core sampling, a thermal roof survey, and becoming more and more popular are drone inspections of your roof.

Another technique that requires fairly sophisticated equipment is electronic leak detection, as seen in this video:

Having your Denver roof inspected isn’t cheap. Some of the main costs when hiring a roof inspector are the services requested by the property owner or the buyer.

A typical roof inspection, besides the shingles, will include checking the condition of soffits and fascia, gutters and downspouts, rooftop vents and flashing.

Most inspectors charge a flat fee for their services, but additional fees can apply depending on the type of roof. Factors such as if the roof has a steep pitch, multiple levels, is larger than average, or is more than 50 years old will increase the price.

The information below is from Home Advisor:

Cost of hiring a roof inspector

Performing regular roof inspections can lower your overall repair and replacement costs by almost 50% and extend the life of your roof up to 25 years.

If you have asphalt, composite, or wooden shingles, you should schedule inspections every 3 years. Tile or clay roofs are more durable and only need to be surveyed every 5 years.

However, some sites will tell you to have it checked twice a year. It will partially depend on the age of your roof and the severity of weather in your area.

Purpose of a Cupola in Roof Design

Posted on: August 11th, 2017 by Lori Smith

I’m sure you seen one, but maybe you didn’t know the name of it or why it is there. I’m referring to that protrusion off the top of some buildings that almost appears to be a lookout for a fortress.

It’s called a cupola, and is pronounced kyou’puh luh. According to Wikipedia, “it is a small, most often dome-like, structure on top of a building. Often used to provide a lookout or to admit light and air, it usually crowns a larger roof or dome.”

If you are wondering where the idea came from, it can be traced back to 8th Century Islamic architecture. They were many times placed on top of a minaret, which is a tall slender tower that is part of a mosque.

Here is more about the history of the cupola:

Architectural History of The Cupola

Purpose of a cupola

Wikimedia Commons

These first cupolas placed atop minarets, were large and sometimes ornate structures with one or more balconies from which the daily call to prayer would be announced. These early cupolas are very significant because they are believed to be the inspiration for the dome which led to massive achievements in architectural design. These bold new designs that emerged, were used as symbols for proof of cultural superiority. During the renaissance, most major European cities and Islamic states were building a plethora of these magnificent buildings. The cupola had evolved to allow architecture to become a very artistic and creative status symbol and today, the cupola stands as a statement of a major achievement in architecture.

Read more here:  Architectural History of The Cupola

So basically, back in the day if you had cupola, you were the upper crust of the neighborhood. Eventually, cupolas became more common, though, and are as much functional as they are symbolic.

As far as the purpose of a cupola in roof design, they can act as a vent, allow more light into a structure, and serve as an observatory. They also help to provide insulation and add to the overall beauty of the building.

Many times you see them on churches, some having a bell to announce the service is beginning. There is a variety of cupola styles, and the one that is located in the International Space Station is quite impressive.

You can see a tour here:

Quite the view! I can’t imagine what that must feel like being 250 miles away from solid ground.

America’s first cupolas were first introduced during the post-Revolutionary period. They helped people tell one farm from the next because the cupola stuck up in the air high enough to be seen from a distance.

They have always been an aesthetic addition to any structure, but when you see them on a barn they are mostly utilized for light and ventilation. As mentioned, they allow hot air to escape and let cool air in, which can be a problem in barns, sheds, and sometimes a garage that don’t have much cross ventilation.

How do you know what size cupola is appropriate for a building? This post gives a general guideline:

How to Properly Size a Cupola

Function of a cupola

Wikimedia Commons

The old “rule of thumb” is:
‘For every foot of building width, you should have at least 1.25 inches of cupola’ .
So, measure the width of your building and times that by 1.25.

Example: 24 foot roofline
24 x 1.25 = 30
So your roof would require a 30 inch cupola.

Read the full post here:  How to Properly Size a Cupola

The above post also provides diagrams to help you visualize what size of cupola is needed. You can also talk to an architect or roofing contractor in Denver to find out how to go about adding a cupola to an existing property.


Proper Flat Roof Drain Installation

Posted on: August 4th, 2017 by Lori Smith

There are many types of roofing systems, but flat roofs require a unique set of skills and maintenance. They can essentially have a long life span, but only if they are properly managed.

Most people think a flat roof is just that…flat. Actually, they do have a pitch but it is less than 15 degrees, which still allows water to drain away.

Since you don’t want your flat roof to become a swimming pool, there are three main types of drains that are installed:Maintaining a Flat Roof

  • Gutters – The most common drain system used for all types of houses
  • Inner Drains – Many times located toward the center of the roof, they attach to pipes that drain the water down through the building’s roof.
  • Scuppers – Openings in the outer walls along the roof line that allow water to run through the wall via a metal box surrounding the scupper.

If you have a flat roof, you need to have an inspection a couple times a year. Many suggest having one in the fall and again in the spring. Keeping an eye on certain factors will help deter major repairs, as outlined in this post:

Tips on maintenance to avoid flat roof repair


Splitting can be caused by freeze thawing, stress or pressure, water ponding or simply poor workmanship.

PondingInstalling a Flat Roof Drain

Ponding will show as standing pools of water that do no drain or in dry conditions you will notice a concave area with a water mark surrounding it.


Blistering happens when air is trapped between the layers of felt or the felt substrate.

Find the full post here:  Tips on maintenance to avoid flat roof repair

When using an inner drain on a flat roof, if you don’t install it correctly you might end up with even more problems. Water can pool and debris can collect if the drain sits up even slightly higher than the roof.

The substrate is the underlayment to which the waterproofing membrane is applied. You have to make sure that there is a depression around the drain to promote water flow.

This video shows how you can manage proper drain installation:

Proper flat roof drain installation is an important factor for any commercial or residential structure. Choosing to have a flat roof in an area that gets a lot of torrential downpours isn’t a great plan, but the drainage system will overcome much of the lack of slope.

When you have your roof inspected and it’s time to update your current drain, the cost is always a worry for most folks. You would think that your insurance would help pay for such expenses, as it protects the asset from further damages.

However, the way insurance works doesn’t always make sense, as noted in this post:

Homeowners Insurance – Understanding Water DamageStorm Damage to a Roof

A homeowners policy covers water damage, but with significant exclusions and limitations. Typically a policy will pay for sudden and accidental water damage from inside water sources but will not pay for losses caused by water that finds its way into your home from the outside.

Read the rest of the post here:  Homeowners Insurance – Understanding Water Damage 

So, if you aren’t sure if you can afford the cost of fixing your roof and the drainage system, be sure to check with your insurance company first to see what is covered.


Adding On A Room To Your Home

Posted on: July 15th, 2017 by Lori Smith

When you first purchase a home, you are basing your investment criteria on your current income and your amount of space needed. Maybe you just got married and aren’t sure about kids yet, but you want to stop throwing your money into the wind with rent and instead invest your hard earned money into something substantial.

Adding on a room to your home


Before long, though, your family begins to grow and you need more space. The two questions you have to mull over are whether or not to sell your current property and buy something bigger, or expand your current square footage.

Adding on a room to your home is a great option depending on the potential for increasing your spread, but other concerns would be assuring access to the new room, securing it to the current structure, and including the utilities to connect it all together.

Another question is will an addition bring value to your home? Read more about this factor in the next post:

Questions to Ask Before Adding On | HGTV

Will the addition add value to your home? Even if you have no plans to sell anytime soon, you (or your family) will sell someday—and you might also refinance or take out a home equity line of credit, for which you’ll want the best possible appraisal of your home. So always consider the resale value of your project. It’s not that you’re going to turn a profit on your investment. So you might as well go into the job with realistic expectations about payback.

See the original post here:  Questions to Ask Before Adding On | HGTV

Planning an addition has to start with a budget parameter, and if you live in the Denver area it can be a pricey endeavor. If you don’t consider every aspect of adding on, such as lighting and windows, your project might go over the amount you can afford to spend.

Other aspects such as needing an architectural engineer and a plumber will add up quickly. You also need to have targeted goals to manage the whole process and stay on schedule.

This video is by a home contractor explaining what has to take place as you consider a remodel:

Which is a better direction to expand:  Up or Out? The cost difference is the one factor, but available real estate is another consideration.

When building up, you don’t need to include foundation plans as part of the cost, and that is a pretty big ticket item. However, building out is typically easier and and less likely to necessitate the need to include architectural design to assure stability. Labor costs are generally lower when adding a ground floor addition as well.

This post explains the key concepts to consider:

What Is Cheaper — Adding a Second Story Addition or a Ground Floor Addition? – Budgeting Money

Ground Floor Additions

Bump Out Addition

Wikimedia Commons

If you’ve got the yard space for it, ground floor additions are generally easier. There’s far less disruption of your house than when adding a second story. Depending on the configuration of your house, an addition might be built off an existing doorway, lessening the expense of taking down walls. You might also save on architectural design costs that would be required for building up. If you have to move power lines or work around sewer lines, that can add to the expense.

Building Up

Adding a second story means there’s already a foundation in place. You must make sure the existing foundation and the footings are strong enough to carry a second story. If your building inspector finds the foundation can handle it, this can be a cheaper way to go. If you need to reinforce the walls or foundation, building an addition is likely less expensive. Going up rather than out can save money for heating and cooling ducts, pipes and other necessary materials. Up rather than out tends to be a shorter route for ducts or piping, although it all depends on the home’s construction. However, the more involved work of building up means higher labor costs.

See more here:  What Is Cheaper — Adding a Second Story Addition or a Ground Floor Addition? – Budgeting Money

Another option is adding what is called a bump out addition, which is a combination of both. It is an addition that hangs off the side of the house and requires no foundation and very little roof work. You can save 15 to 30 percent as opposed to a full-blown addition.

Budgeting for an addition is critical, as there are always costs that you might not initially think of. The following graphic from Home Advisor shows the average cost, including the potential low and high end amounts for the United States. If you want to know more about your specific area, you can enter your zip code.


Shingles That Stand Up Against Hail

Posted on: July 8th, 2017 by Lori Smith

Depending on where you live, hail can be a big problem when it comes to protecting your property. A bad hail storm can wipe out a whole neighborhood, damaging windows, plants, siding, and, of course, the roof.

Along the Front Range of Colorado, we have plenty of weather extremes. Even though you hear a lot about the crazy weather in Texas, our state came in right behind the Lone Star State for highest number of hail damage claims for 2016, according to the Denver Post:

Colorado ranks second to Texas for number of hail-damage claims – The Denver PostShingles that stand up to hail

Colorado ranks second only to Texas for the number of insurance claims filed due to hail strikes on homes, property and cars the past three years, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau.

Hail-related insurance claims in Colorado numbered 182,591 between 2013 and 2015, accounting for 9 percent of the U.S. total. That’s high for a state with only 1.7 percent of the country’s population.

Texas, which could fit three Colorados within its borders, had 394,572 hail-related claims, or 19 percent of the U.S. total, making it the top state.

Read the original post here:  Colorado ranks second to Texas for number of hail-damage claims

With this in mind, it would be wise to find the best shingles that stand up against hail. There are a number of options that will fit the bill, but it does depend on how much you want to spend.

Shingles made of clay and concrete are higher in cost, partially due to the necessary infrastructure to support their weight, but are extremely durable. Dimensional shingles, also known as architectural or laminated shingles, are becoming more popular because of their wind, fire, and hail resistance, but again they cost 20 – 40% more than 3-tab asphalt shingles.

Metal is another good option for hail resistant roofing, but it really comes down to initial cost vs durability. Insurance companies, such as the one in the next video, report that impact resistant roofing materials, sometimes referred to as Class 4 materials, will not only last longer but they can save you money with potential insurance premium discounts:

So let’s get down to the bottom line, which is the cost based on your insurance policy.  Will your insurance company pay for the damages? There are some factors that will influence the answer.

Events such as disastrous “acts of God” like tornadoes or hurricanes are usually covered along with unpreventable issues like vandalism and fires. However, hail and wind can be a little different, as there are outlying components that will decide the percentage of damage that is covered.

One big factor is the age of your roof. If your roof is older than 10 years, then you need to have regular inspections to check for problems, and more than likely you may only be reimbursed for the depreciated value of the damaged roof.

The following post discusses how depreciation works:

Does My Insurance Policy Cover Roof Damage? | Homesite InsuranceHome Insurance

Some policies take the age of your roof into account at the time it is damaged. For example, if your roof is under 10 years old, you may be covered for the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged section of your roof at the time of the claim. If your roof is over 10 years old, you may only be reimbursed for the depreciated value of the damaged roof. The depreciated value takes the aging and wearing of your roof into account, meaning its value has decreased prior to any damage occurring. Depending on where you live, some policies will only offer roof damage coverage up to the depreciated value, regardless of the age of your roof. Other policies will cover the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged section of your roof at the time of the claim, regardless of the age of your roof.

See more here:  Does My Insurance Policy Cover Roof Damage? | Homesite Insurance

No matter what, your insurance provider will send an inspector to your property to verify your claim and give you an estimate of the damages. You’d be wise to take some before and after pictures of your roof as proof.


Do All Buildings Need A Gutter System?

Posted on: June 30th, 2017 by Lori Smith

Building a home is a humongous undertaking. There are so many details to contemplate and decisions to make that it can make your head spin.

One component that might be lost in the confusion is whether you need a gutter system for your property. It’s not a glamorous part of your home, but it has an essential function that can mean major problems if it isn’t included in the planning.

gutters on a new home


If water collects at the base of your home and seeps down into the foundation, it can lead to some big concerns for your real estate. A gutter system is there to help divert the water away from the foundation, potentially saving you thousands of dollars in home repairs.

Some of the complications with water permeating the base of your home are expansion and contraction of the soil, leading to problems like cracks in your sheet rock, doors and windows that don’t close right, and uneven floors.

This post explains more about this issue:

Foundation Issues from the Outside – What Causes Them

Backfilled soil around the foundation is looser than the natural soil, meaning it’s more porous than the surrounding area and collects much more water.

Additional water will collect around your foundation if it’s located near bedrock. Bedrock naturally drains water to springs and other water sources but can be blocked by the presence of your home, causing it to collect around your foundation.

As the backfilled soil settles around your home, it can create a dip in the area where water will pool and collect. If the soil is not regraded so the water runs downhill away from your house, the pooling water will drain into the soil around your home

Read the original post here:  Foundation Issues from the Outside – What Causes Them

If you live in an area that gets quite a bit of precipitation, rain gutters can prevent some of these headaches. With a properly installed gutter system, the water is channeled off the roof, into the downspout, and away from your property.

On the other hand, if your gutters don’t have the correct slope toward the downspout, which is 1/2 inch for every 10 feet, then you are asking for problems. They also require some maintenance to keep them functioning properly.

This video shows a gutter system that isn’t installed or maintained correctly:

The amount of water pooling at the foundation of the house in the above video is a nightmare waiting to happen. That area of the home could have problems with soil deterioration and settling, causing the foundation to shift.

Do all buildings need a gutter system? You can probably get away without one if you live in a location that has a very dry, arid climate. In the Denver Metro area, even though the average rainfall is only 8 to 15 inches, you are still going to want some sort of drainage to direct water away from your home or business.

What does it cost to have gutters installed? If you are willing to do it yourself, the materials aren’t overly expensive. Most people, however, don’t have the time or knowledge for installing a rain gutter correctly.

The following post gives a general idea of the expense:

Cost to install gutters – Estimates and Prices at Fixr

Rain gutter

Wikimedia Commons

The average cost to install galvanized or aluminum gutters is approximately $4 to $9 per linear foot. There are also vinyl gutters which are much easier to install, and which run at roughly $3 to $5 per linear foot. Therefore, installing from 125 to 200 feet of gutters will cost $1050-$2400.

These prices, however, tend to apply strictly to the DIY homeowners. When a professional gutter company is hired for the work the prices will climb a bit with averages ranging from $1050 and $2400, and with separate prices assigned to downspout installations.

See the full post here:  Cost to install gutters – Estimates and Prices at Fixr

You are always wise to consult with a Front Range builder to get their opinion. Another consideration is whether there are specific codes in a your location for what is allowed and what isn’t.

Commercial vs Residential Roofs – How Are They Different?

Posted on: June 24th, 2017 by Lori Smith

Most people think that a roof is a roof, whether it is a commercial building or a home.  However, there are some fairly big differences between the two.

It mostly comes down to the sheer size of the building itself and how much more area the roofing structure has to span. Also, commercial buildings many times have either a flat roof or a low pitched roof line, so this requires more maintenance and inspections.Commercial Building

The amount of load a commercial roof can handle is another factor when considering the distinctions.  The following post gives a good explanation of the contrasts of commercial vs residential roofs:

What Is the Difference Between Commercial and Residential Roofing?

First, the structural needs of a commercial roof are different than a residential roof. Obviously, commercial roofs may be considerably larger – imagine the size of a roof on a shopping mall compared to the size of the roof on your house and you’ll get the picture. In addition, the load requirements, fixtures, and even materials will vary significantly between commercial and residential roofs. For example, commercial roofs must have a larger load-bearing capacity than residential roofs often just because of the materials involved in their construction. Similarly, installation of a commercial roof requires a much larger crew than residential roofs simply because it’s a bigger job.

See the original post here:  What Is the Difference Between Commercial and Residential Roofing?

The formula used to calculate the span of a roof and what type of support is needed is rather complicated. This is what a structural engineer is trained to understand, and commercial construction plans start with this expert analyzing, predicting, and calculating the stability, strength and rigidity of a structure.

In this video, the structural engineer discusses load bearing and how to calculate it:

As a business owner living on the Front Range of Colorado, the weather can sometimes be harsh. Because of this, your commercial  property takes a beating by the sun, wind, moisture, fallen trees, etc. Knowing this, it is important that you protect your investment.

Regular inspections are essential in guarding against the extreme heat and cold. Also making certain that you have a good warranty on the new roof of your commercial building will save some headaches.

Roofing materials and installation may be covered by product warranties, but your property insurance is a different subject altogether. There are some factors that you need to stay on top of  so your insurance company can’t claim negligence, as noted in the next quote:

Make Sure Your Insurance Covers Your Commercial RoofCommercial Roof

No insurer will pay out on a claim if negligence on your part caused the damage. This means you must keep careful records demonstrating:

  • Annual or semi-annual inspections
  • Routine maintenance and repair
  • Logs of visitors to the roof and their purpose
  • Due diligence in addressing problems
  • Warranties for existing materials and labor

See the original post here:  Make Sure Your Insurance Covers Your Commercial Roof

Make sure any updates on the building are added to the insurance policy so that are covered as well, such as a new sign or HVAC components. Check your policy regularly and ask questions to assure that the entire roofing system is covered, what damages it will guard against, and that it will be completely replaced if something happens.