Planning Ahead Sets Up Warehouse Re-Roofing Project for Success

Citizens Service Center is the primary document storage facility for El Paso County, Colorado. When the roof had to be replaced, protecting the interior of the facility was critical. Photos: Exterior Solutions Group

The most crucial decisions on a project are often made before work even begins. According to Ken Flickinger Jr., president of Exterior Solutions Group, that was the case with the recent Citizens Service Center re-roofing project in Colorado Springs. Owned and managed by El Paso County, the building is the primary document storage facility for the county. The building’s historic documents — some dating back to the 1800s — were under threat of damage due to an active roof leak. The existing roof also had extensive hail damage, so the roof replacement project was put out for bid.

With offices in Colorado, Iowa and Oklahoma, Exterior Solutions Group does all types of roofing work, but its focus is primarily on commercial roofing, both re-roofing and new construction. Flickinger, who heads up the location in Parker, Colorado, was definitely intrigued by the project.

The scope of work involved removing old HVAC equipment on the roof, which would be done by a separate party in coordination with the roofing contractor. The HVAC equipment was obsolete; it had been replaced and relocated a few years earlier. “It was an interesting project because there was equipment everywhere on this roof,” he says. “It looked like an automotive manufacturing plant. For us, we like those types of projects. We like ones that are a bit out of the ordinary and require a little bit higher level of project management. So, that’s what drew us to bidding the job.”

Tim Hicks, the salesperson at Exterior Solutions who sold the job, explains that the original spec called for white EPDM, with TPO as an accepted alternate. “Oddly enough, they didn’t require you to do the base bid to bid the alternate,” he notes. “We chose to just bid the TPO. We ended up being the low bidder on that, and that’s how we got the project.”

After obsolete HVAC equipment was removed, crews from Exterior Solutions Group installed a TPO system from Johns Manville.

The logistics of the removal and roof replacement would be complicated, and it became obvious that access to the roof would also be an issue, as it was a high-security building. “This is a multi-story building, and the amount of security we would have to go through to enter the building and get up to the roof hatch would’ve created all kinds of problems,” Hicks explains. “So, we suggested putting a stair tower up and giving us complete access from the outside. We’d never have to enter the building. They had never even considered that option, but as we walked them through it and said, ‘This is how we’d like to set the job up,’ they replied, ‘We love it.’”

The next step involved coordinating equipment removal with the HVAC contractor. Again, a suggestion from Exterior Solutions helped increase efficiency and cut costs. The HVAC contractor’s original plan called for roofing crews to take out the roof system around the HVAC units, allowing HVAC crews to cut out sections of the steel decking below the equipment. The deck sections would have to be replaced before temporary roofs could be installed to keep the building watertight. The team at Exterior Solutions pointed out that there was no need to remove the decking. Instead, the equipment supports could be cut off as close to the deck as possible, and the ends of the supports could be buried in the insulation of the new roof system.

Equipment Removal

In the end, that’s the plan they executed. A fire watch was set up inside the building as equipment was removed. Crews from Exterior Solutions removed the existing roof to give the HVAC crews access. “We basically created a hole in the roof for them so they could see what they were doing,” Hicks explains. “We would slice the existing TPO back and take out the insulation. They would put down welding blankets in the area and then use cutting torches to cut the I-beam and L-beam steel supports off. Our roofers were on site to make sure supports were cut down to the proper length. As soon as the supports were cut off, we basically filled the hole.”

The deck was left intact, making it much faster and easier to patch the existing roof. It was critical to ensure the roof was weathertight every night to protect the documents inside the building. “We put the insulation back, we replaced the membrane, and we used an Eternabond product or welded a small cover strip around it, depending on the size of the hole,” notes Hicks.

The HVAC equipment was taken off the roof with a crane. Once the equipment was removed from one side of the roof, crews began installing the new system.

Roof Installation

With the equipment gone, the rest was clear sailing. “In all honesty, the roof was easy,” Flickinger says.

The existing roof system was torn off down to the deck and a TPO system from Johns Manville was installed. New polyiso insulation was topped with a fully tapered system to ensure proper drainage. After DensDeck cover board was installed, the 60-mil TPO membrane was adhered into place.

“We worked from one side to the other,” Hicks says. “The high point of the roof with the tapered system was in the center, and water is pushed to both sides where there are internal drains and overflow scuppers. We started at the low point and roofed up the hill to the center on one side, and then turned around and did the exact same thing on the other side.”

Details were minimal — just a few penetrations and a curb around the roof hatch. The edge metal installed was the Anchor-Tite system manufactured by Metal-Era. “We offered an upgrade on the metal edge,” notes Hicks. “Instead of a shop-fabricated metal edge, we recommended Anchor-Tite all the way around. After all, the area is subject to high winds. We felt that was a better way to go.”

The TPO system installed was ideal for the project, according to Flickinger. “I’ve been a thermoplastic guy my entire career,” he says. “I’m a big believer in heat-welded seams. We thought the heat-welded seams and adhered walls offered a better approach. We think it’s a very good-looking roof, and with the addition of a cover board — which the original roof didn’t have — it would definitely improve its hail performance.”

Hicks credits the manufacturer for assistance on the project. “Manville was very supportive,” he says. “They were local, and their technical support is excellent. We thought that for a project like this, to have a partner who was right there with you was important.”

The project was completed in less than a month, and Flickinger believes the key to executing the job efficiently was the decision to set up the stair tower. “That was the suggestion of our project manager,” says Flickinger. “Our company likes using stair towers, especially when we’re talking about long ladder runs. For us, it’s partly about safety for our own people, but because the building was secured, and as they talked to us about the steps we would have to take on a daily basis to just get access to the roof, we realized it was just going to kill us on production. We were going to waste so may man-hours on a weekly basis just getting to and from the roof. That was one of the driving factors that got the owner to agree to the stair tower, and we got a change order for it.”

The cost of the change order was minimal compared to the time and money it saved. “We have some really bright people,” says Flickinger. “They are all really good at looking at something and seeing if there is a better way. One of our strengths is we are really good at creative solutions, whether it’s something as simple as avoiding the grief of going through a secured building or taking a step back and asking, ‘Why cut holes in the deck? Why can’t we just cut these supports off above the deck because we are burying them in 6 inches of insulation anyway?’”

“The other piece for us is that we focus on the safety side of it, not only for our own people, but also the site safety and the safety of the people inside the building,” Flickinger continues. “We are very aware of that as we set our jobs up and decide where to set our materials and those types of things.”

The last component of a successful project is top-quality workmanship. “We focus on doing it right the first time,” Flickinger says. “Getting that customer satisfaction, not only at the end of the job with a great roof, but also during the project by trying to minimize the pain that an owner typically goes through in a roofing project, that’s one of our strengths that this project demonstrates.”

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Exterior Solutions Group, Parker, Colorado, www.exteriorsolutionsgroup.com

MATERIALS

Roof Membrane: 60-mil TPO, Johns Manville, www.jm.com

Cover Board: DensDeck Prime, Georgia-Pacific, www.buildgp.com

Edge Metal: Anchor-Tite, Metal-Era, www.metalera.com

IMPs Are Key to Construction of New Warehouse at Manufacturing Complex

The new warehouse at the Komatsu manufacturing complex in Longview, Texas, features insulated metal panels from Metl-Span in both the roof and wall systems. Photos: LMCurbs

When a warehouse at the Komatsu manufacturing complex in Longview, Texas, sustained extensive tornado damage, the company decided to build a new, state-of-the-art warehouse in its place.

Komatsu turned to a trusted business partner, Transet Co., a Longview-based design-build contractor, to demolish the old structure and construct its 81,438-square-foot replacement. The new warehouse features insulated metal panels (IMPs) from Metl-Span in both the roof and wall systems, as well as a permanent rooftop walkway system from LMCurbs, which was installed to facilitate ongoing maintenance of the rooftop HVAC units.

According to Dale Pickard, project manager for Transet Co., the IMPs not only made for smooth construction, but they helped the warehouse meet building envelope energy requirements.

Challenges on the project included a tight schedule, unseasonably rainy weather and accommodating nearby manufacturing facilities that were continuously operational.

The LMCurbs Roofwalk System was installed to facilitate ongoing maintenance of the rooftop HVAC units and protect the roof.

The scope of work included the removal of the previous structure and subgrade remediation. After the footings and slab were in place, the Pre-Engineered Metal Building (PEMB) was erected. The system was supplied by Houston-based Mid-West Steel Building Co. and erected by Cannon Steel Erection Co., located in Tyler, Texas.

After the metal frame and roof purlins were in place, Cannon Steel Erection installed the IMPs to complete the wall and roof systems. “You basically go in sequence from left to right with the IMP roofing panels,” Pickard explains. “You just start at one end, work to the other end, and then come back and install the panels on the other side. It’s basically a straight line process from one end to the other.”

The roofing panels were 42 inches wide and 4 1/2 inches thick and incorporated a standing seam. “The panels attach at the purlin with a concealed fastener clip,” says Pickard. “The IMP has a finished skin on the upper and lower sides.”

The seams were hand crimped and then mechanically seamed. At the eave, a gutter system was installed after the roof and wall panels were tied in together.

Workers on the roof were tied off with personal fall arrest systems and retractable lifelines attached to non-penetrating temporary anchor points. “All facets of construction safety were of paramount importance to Transet Co.,” Pickard states. “Safety was and is the first order of business for everybody.”

Completing the Roof Installation

The roof system features Kingspan skylights, which were installed using custom curbs supplied by LMCurbs, headquartered in Longview, Texas. LMCurbs also supplied curbs for the HVAC units, as well as the rooftop walkway system.

The LMCurbs Roofwalk System was installed using H90 clamps from S-5!

The walkway was installed after all of the HVAC equipment was in place and the roof system was completed. The LMCurbs Roofwalk System was designed to provide a safe way to access HVAC equipment while protecting the roof. “It’s basically a roof access area for the maintenance personnel to enter,” Pickard says. “It’s a railed walkway gated at one corner of the building for access, and it goes to each one of the rooftop units (RTUs). In all, there is more than 1,400 linear feet of walkway.”

The system was mounted using S-5! H90 clamps. “There were no penetrations in the roof,” Pickard points out. “It’s a durable system that will protect the owner’s investment in the roof.”

According to Aaron Combs, product manager at LMCurbs, the project was one of the first to use the company’s redesigned LMCurbs Roofwalk System with upgraded handrails. “It was designed to be both a better looking, more professional end product for the building owner, and a more user-friendly system for the installers in the field,” Combs says. “The new handrail assembly utilizes Speed-Rail fitting by Hollaender and is now down to four pieces — from 28— so the number of man-hours needed to install the system is drastically reduced. It also streamlined the warehousing and distribution process because the redesigned support plates eliminated multiple manufacturing processes. With this redesign and stackable plates, we are able to maintain better stocking levels and provide our customers with a faster shipping timeframe.”

Field installations often present unique and unforeseen obstacles. On this project, when the location of some HVAC units was adjusted from the initial layout, Combs was ready to help ensure the walkway would be installed correctly. “We are always available to offer advice and technical support, and that can be especially important with a first-time installer,” Combs says. “They can contact us any time and we can help walk them through it and assist with any issues that might arise.”

Work began in April 2019 and wrapped up February 2020. “We had a wet start, which made soil remediation difficult,” notes Pickard. “In the latter part of our project, we had an extremely wet January and February, and that presented challenges in erection and finish out. Despite the bad weather, the building came together ahead of schedule.”

Coordinating all phases of the project at an active manufacturing campus also posed some logistical hurdles. “The existing plant, of course, was in operation the entire time,” recalls Pickard. “The site where the new warehouse was being built was where the old warehouse facility was, and the existing loading dock had to remain in operation until they were in the new building. That encroached on the footprint of the new facility.”

Final touches included new loading docks, interior offices and restrooms. “This project shows our ability to deliver an outcome that meets the client’s needs from design to finished product — safely, under budget, and ahead of schedule,” notes Pickard.

“It demonstrates our ability to provide a first-class warehouse facility for the owner. We’ve been doing it a long time. Our company has been in business for 38 years. We are a safety-oriented company with vast experience in most phases of commercial, industrial, and institutional construction, and we are there for our customers.”

TEAM

Design Builder: Transet Co., Longview, Texas, www.transetco.com

Engineer: Johnson & Pace Inc.,Longview, Texas, www.johnsonpace.com

Steel Erector: Cannon Steel Erection Co., Tyler, Texas, www.cannonsteel.com

PEMB Supplier: Mid-West Steel Building Co., Houston, Texas, www.mid-weststeel.com

Rooftop Curb and Walkway Supplier: LMCurbs, Longview, Texas, www.lmcurbs.com

MATERIALS

Roof and Wall Panels: Insulated Metal Panels, Metl-Span, www.metlspan.com

Rooftop Curbs: LMCurbs, www.lmcurbs.com

Rooftop Walkway: LMCurbs Roofwalk System

Rooftop Walkway Clamps: H90 Clamps, S-5!, www.s-5.com

Skylights: Kingspan, www.kingspanlightandair.us

Sensitive Re-Roofing Project Necessitates Durable System, Flawless Execution

The 250,000-square-foot Pepper River data center project would pose challenges including a tight schedule and difficult weather conditions. Utah Tile and Roofing Inc.

Utah Tile and Roofing Inc. prides itself in its ability to tackle difficult projects. When Okland Construction approached the company to help prepare budgets for a bid on a roof replacement on a building that would become a data processing center, they immediately knew this one would fit the bill.

Founded in 1948 in Price, Utah, Utah Tile and Roofing (UTR) relocated to Salt Lake City in 1966. The company handles all types of commercial roofing projects, as well as waterproofing, sheet metal, and wall panels. The current owners are Paul and Andrew Seppi, who took over from their father, founder Herman Seppi, in 1977. According to J.C. Hill, vice president, the company continues to build a reputation for craftsmanship as it works on some of Utah’s iconic buildings. “We’ve done a lot of high-end work here in the state of Utah,” Hill says. “A lot of the architectural gems here locally have our fingerprints all over them. The higher-end, more difficult work is where we’ve found our niche.”

The Aligned Energy data facility known as Pepper River in West Jordan, Utah, would also have its challenges, including a tight schedule and difficult weather conditions. Approximately 250,000 square feet of existing roof would have to be removed and replaced, but the sensitive nature of the building would require not only a durable temporary roof to keep everything dry during construction, but a resilient, long-lasting finished roof to protect the equipment below. The answer was a hybrid roof system from Sika with a vapor barrier set in hot asphalt. It would be topped with insulation, a cover board, and an 80-mil Sarnafil PVC membrane.

The design for the roof system was developed by UTR in conjunction with the architect, roof consultant, general contractor, and the manufacturer. “The vapor barrier would be set in hot asphalt as a temporary roof. The insulation and the tapered insulation would also set in hot asphalt,” Hill says. “That gave them some redundancy, which is a term those tech guys like.”

Roof Removal

The building’s original gravel-surfaced built-up roof had been covered over at some point with a mechanically attached white TPO roof on one side and a mechanically attached black EPDM roof on the other.

“We had to keep the building watertight as we tore it off,” says Hill. “We put the temporary roof down and crews would do a nightly seal to keep everything watertight as they progressed across the building.”

The existing roof systems included the building’s original gravel-surfaced built-up roof. It was cut into sections and pried off the metal deck.

Work was done in sections, beginning on one half the roof and then finishing up on the other. The expansion joint in the center of the building was the dividing line.

The safety plan included a perimeter flag system, and those outside the warning line were tied off 100 percent of the time. A scaffold stair tower was built to provide safe access to and from the roof.

Debris from the tear-off was removed using chutes and dumpsters. First the roof membrane was sliced up into manageable sections, rolled up, and deposited into a dumpster, along with the cover board. Then the built-up roof was cut into 3-foot-by-3-foot squares and pried off the metal deck.

The deck was swept clean of debris and inspected. Some of the decking had to be replaced, including sections where skylights were eliminated. A 5/8-inch DensDeck cover board was then screwed down to the metal deck. The vapor barrier sheets were unrolled and allowed to relax in the hot sun, and then set in hot asphalt. “We were able to do about 2,000 or 2,500 square feet a day with the tear-off and dry in,” notes Hill.

One unusual obstacle was a Canadian goose that had set up her nest in the expansion joint. “We had to leave that section undisturbed while she was waiting for her chicks to hatch,” says Hill. “Actually, there was a pretty good-size section of the roof in the middle that we weren’t able to address until she left. Luckily there was plenty of roof to work in, and we didn’t want to disrupt her. Even after she left with her chicks, she would come back and chase the guys around every once in a while.”

After the temporary roof was installed, the existing parapet walls were raised. The durable temporary roof allowed carpenters other trades to work on the roof without excessive fear of damage. After the trades completed their work, the finished roof system was installed right over the temporary roof.

The PVC System

First a layer of polyiso insulation was set in hot asphalt. Next the tapered insulation layer was also set in hot asphalt, followed by another layer of insulation to achieve R-30. Half-inch DensDeck Prime was then set in low-rise adhesive and the white PVC membrane was fully adhered.

To provide the durability the project needed, a hybrid roof system from Sika was specified. It included a vapor barrier set in hot asphalt and an 80-mil Sarnafil PVC roof system.

“We actually had two crews for that phase: a hot crew and a single ply crew,” Hill states. “The hot crew would be laying the insulation out in front, and then the single-ply crew would lay the cover board in the low-rise foam and start fully adhering that membrane down. It took a coordinated effort with the guys we had out there to make sure that there was no asphalt contamination of the PVC membrane and that white roof remained clean.”

As work continued on the second half of the roof, cold weather set in. Due to the temperature limitations of the membrane adhesive, the decision was made to switch to a self-adhered membrane. “We were having production issues with the cold weather, and we went back to Sarnafil and they recommended putting the SA down,” notes Hill. “It was the first time we had ever installed the self-adhered membrane. It saved our production, and we were able to install nearly as much as we were doing in the better weather days.”

The last steps on the project included installing edge metal. “We did a Sarnafil high-wind edge detail with their clad metal and a pre-finished metal fascia plate over the top,” says Hill. “It gave the building a nice finishing touch from the ground and also from the roof side.”

Meeting the Challenges

The biggest challenge on the first phase of the project was the tight schedule. “We had to get that first phase operational so they could get the data hall up and running,” says Hill. “We had to get the first section dried in so the trades — electricians, drywallers, painters, and tech guys — could get in there and do their work.”

Work began in April of 2019 and wrapped up in December of the same year. After the first phase was completed, the weather posed the greatest difficulties. “The winter was quite heavy,” Hill says. “We had to remove snow quite often to be able to go back to work.”

In the last phase of the project, cold weather and heavy snow affected the schedule.

Hill credits the teamwork between all of the principals and the excellent craftsmanship of job foreman Rudolfo Garcia and his crew for the success of the project. He also cites durability of the temporary roof and the extra protection the hybrid system provides as critical components in the design. “With carpenters and steel guys working over that temporary roof, the typical peel-and-stick vapor barriers simply wouldn’t have been durable enough,” he says. “This building has to remain dry. That temporary roof with a cap sheet over the top of it could have been a completed system, so it gave them the backup that they needed. If there ever is a problem on the top layer with that single ply, there is still that temporary roof underneath to keep them dry.”

Utah Tile and Roofing received first place in the 2019 Sika Sarnafil Project of the Year Awards in the Low-Slope Re-Roof category. “The award is a testament to how good our guys in the field are,” Hill says. “Because we have such good field mechanics, we are able to take on these tougher projects that take more critical thinking and more experience. They are the best at what they do, the engine that drives this thing. They are the ones that make it happen.”

TEAM

Architect: HKS Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah, www.hksinc.com

General Contractor: Okland Construction, Salt Lake City, Utah, www.okland.com

Roofing Contractor: Utah Tile and Roofing Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah, www.utahtileandroofing.com

MATERIALS

Roof Membrane: Sarnafil G410 80-mil PVC, Sika, https://usa.sika.com/sarnafil/

Insulation: Sarnatherm ISO, Sika

Vapor Barrier: HA-87 SBS Ply Sheet, Sika

Cover Board: DensDeck Prime, Georgia-Pacific, www.buildgp.com

Illinois Manufacturing Facility Incorporates PV Panels With Roof Re-cover

McElroy Metal’s manufacturing facility in Clinton, Illinois. Photos: McElroy Metal

After completing successful solar panel installations with roof re-covers at plants in Peachtree City, Georgia, and Adelanto, California, McElroy Metal recently completed a third solar conversion at its plant in Clinton, Illinois.

The original R-panel metal roofing on the plant, constructed in the 1970s, was re-covered using McElroy Metal’s 238T symmetrical standing seam roofing. The 238T metal roofing panels were roll formed on site, run directly on to the roof and installed by Prairieland Roofing of Arthur, Illinois. After the new roof sections were complete, Inovateus Solar installed 1,116 Hanwha Q-Plus L-G42 350W panels on the facility using roof attachment solutions from S-5!

The large-scale, multifaceted solar installation at the Clinton plant required a two-pronged approach, as the facility consisted of two different metal roof types: a face-attached trapezoidal profile on one section of the facility and a standing seam profile on another.

S-5!’s engineering team collaborated with McElroy Metal to determine which clamps and brackets were most appropriate based on the two different types of roofs, their respective load capacities, resulting load distribution and best fit of mounting components. They analyzed roof-specific data and CAD drawings to determine precise attachment points across the massive solar array and to determine the bill of materials, including clamps, brackets and PVKITs.

This photo shows S-5!’s S-5-T Mini clamps and PVKIT 2.0 MidGrabs and EdgeGrabs mounted on a McElroy Metal 238T standing seam roofing system.

S-5-T Mini clamps were selected to attach the solar panels to the facility’s new 238T symmetrical standing seam roof system. Featuring a two-piece design to allow easy installation anywhere along the length of the panel seam, S-5-T Mini clamps are specifically designed to fit profiles with a T-shaped seam configuration like the 238T. Beyond the fit, this clamp, in tandem with all S-5! attachment solutions, was specifically load tested on the 238T in the gauge used for the project, enabling comprehensive system engineering specific to this project. This process is routine for S-5!, and the company has more than 500 individual load test results published and accessible on its website.

The solar installation on the facility’s existing Multi-Rib Panel roof system required S-5!’s RibBracket II. These brackets are specifically designed to attach to this type of roof profile. The RibBrackets offered the best fit and provided more than enough tested holding capacity for the dimensions of the rib.

In addition, the entire solar array was mounted using S-5!’s PVKIT 2.0 Solar Solutions, comprised of MidGrabs and EdgeGrabs, which enabled solar installers to mount the solar panels directly onto the clamps and brackets. The pre-assembled components reduced installation time and cost for PV mounting, eliminating the need for an elaborate rail system, while also providing better load distribution into the roof and substructure.

“As a leader in the metal construction industry, we have had the privilege of working alongside McElroy in many venues, industry trade groups and supply relationships, now spanning almost 40 years,” says S-5!’s Founder and CEO, Rob Haddock. “We are proud industry partners and look forward to continuing working together in expanding the use of solar.”

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Prairieland Roofing, Arthur, Illinois

Solar Installer: Inovateus Solar, South Bend, Indiana, www.inovateus.com

MATERIALS

Metal Roof Panels: 238T, McElroy Metal, www.mcelroymetal.com

Solar Panels: Q-Plus L-G42 panels, Hanwha, www.hanwha.com

Clamps and Solar Attachments: S-5-T Mini clamps, RibBracket II, and PVKITs, S-5!, www.S-5.com

Boulder Lumber Warehouse Needed a Roof Built to Last in Tough Conditions

Boulder Lumber’s 19,512-square-foot warehouse needed a roof that could withstand high winds and extreme weather. Photos: Versico

Since 1927, Boulder Lumber has served the building contractors of Boulder, Colorado, providing lumber, millwork, doors, windows, decking, and other building materials. In 2019, Boulder Lumber’s built-up tar and gravel roof needed to be replaced, largely because of damage caused by wind events. The wood nailer at the perimeter had become dislodged and the built-up system had begun to peel back from the concrete deck.

The city of Boulder is located in the Boulder Valley where the Rocky Mountains meet the Great Plains. Wind uplift is a major concern for buildings in this area, as high winds come off the canyons from the Rocky Mountains. The wind intensifies as it travels over buildings, which creates high pressure at roof perimeters. Winter conditions in Boulder range from mild to bitterly cold, with an average of 88 inches of snow per season.

The unpredictable weather in northern Colorado shortens their roofing season compared to other areas in the country. Winters can be very cold, and the Boulder area receives an average of 88 inches of snowfall per season.

Key Priorities

When selecting a new roof for the 19,512-square-foot warehouse, Boulder Lumber was looking for something with excellent wind uplift resistance to avoid the problems they’d experienced in the past. They also wanted a system that could be installed quickly in a variety of temperatures, since the weather in Boulder can be very unpredictable and the labor market is tight. Lastly, they wanted to work with a skilled, dependable roofer who would get the job right the first time around.

Boulder Lumber enlisted Black Roofing to install a tough, durable roofing system that would be able to withstand the high wind uplift pressures at the perimeter of the roof. Black Roofing suggested Versico’s RapidLock Roofing System due to the ability of this roofing system to perform well in this environment.

The RapidLock Roofing System uses Velcro Brand Securable Solutions’ hook and loop attachment method to provide a fully adhered system without adhesives. The backing on the VersiFleece membrane attaches to a specialized facer on the insulation boards.

RapidLock roofs are designed to be quick and easy to install and there are no installation temperature restrictions, making this system an ideal fit for the Boulder Lumber project. According to the manufacturer, RapidLock installations provide up to 80 percent labor savings compared to traditional bonding adhesive and up to 25 percent labor savings compared to a traditional VersiFleece system.

The Installation

The 20-year-old existing built-up roof system had to be torn off to the structural concrete deck, including scraping residual asphalt.

Because of the damage to the concrete deck, the existing wood nailer was deteriorating. Black Roofing decided to use Metal-Era’s Eliminailer to provide a strong connection on the perimeter and protect the roof against high winds.

Black Roofing used CAV-GRIP 3V to prime the deck. The product promotes adhesion and can be used in temperatures as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit when used as a primer.

Flexible DASH Adhesive was used to adhere a layer of 1-inch SecurShield Polyiso insulation to the concrete deck. Alan Nedelea with Black Roofing says, “We used Flexible DASH to eliminate any of the fasteners that would have been needed to penetrate into the concrete deck, and also to provide a good adhesion for the wind uplift required for this system.”

A layer of 6-inch SecurShield HD RL was then adhered to the base layer. The product has a specialized facer that allows for membrane attachment without using adhesives.

VersiFleece RL EPDM was attached to the SecurShield HD RL. Black Roofing simply positioned the RapidLock EPDM sheets, removed the release liners, then broomed and rolled the membrane into place. Once the job was complete, a 15-year, 55-mph wind speed warranty was issued.

Nedelea cited the roof system’s wind uplift resistance and the lack of temperature restrictions for installation as the key reasons it was chosen for this project. He also pointed to RapidLock’s labor-saving benefits, which allow the roofing system to be installed in far less time than a traditional roofing system.

“This is the first RapidLock roofing system that Black Roofing has installed,” Nedelea says. “We really enjoyed doing this project.”

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Black Roofing Inc., Boulder, Colorado, www.blackroofing.com

MATERIALS

Membrane: 115-mil VersiFleece RL EPDM RapidLock, Versico, www.versico.com

Insulation: SecurShield HD RL Polyiso RapidLock Insulation and SecurShield Polyiso, Versico

Metal Nailer: Eliminailer, Metal-Era, www.metalera.com

IMPs Provide Aesthetics, Durability for Houston Renovation

A 70-year-old manufacturing facility in West Houston was transformed into The Cannon, an entrepreneurial hub, office complex and event space. Photos: Metl-Span

Renovating and transforming a 70-year-old manufacturing facility into a contemporary office building with impressive amenities requires some imagination, careful planning and a lot of communication. The Cannon, an entrepreneurial hub in west Houston, also called for more than 90,000 square feet of insulated metal panels (IMPs) for walls and roofing.

The Cannon, a 120,000-square-foot modern, flexible workspace, provides innovators with everything they need to establish a home base for their companies. Home to more than 500 of Greater Houston’s most talented and accomplished entrepreneurs, creatives and small business owners, The Cannon includes 131 offices, 300 open and dedicated desks, a movie theatre, game room, event space, full-service kitchen, a health and wellness room, and a courtyard with outdoor seating. The facility is marketed as “a citywide ecosystem for Houston’s entrepreneurs, small businesses, freelancers and creatives.”

The renovation incorporated more than 90,000 square feet of insulated metal panels for walls and roofing.

Insulated metal panels from Metl-Span helped achieve the desired appearance, inside and outside. “We could have gone the conventional route, with insulation and drywall, but we really wanted to maintain some of the original look of the building,” says Ken R. Harry, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, Principal of Abel Design Group of Houston. “With the insulated metal panels, we were able to leave the interior beams and columns exposed. Plus, we got the levels of insulation that were required for the roof and walls. Right from the start, it seemed like the logical way to go.”

The original building was stripped down to the steel structure. Some of the 70-year-old purlins and cross members had to be replaced. “We had to verify every dimension of all the beams so shop drawings could be accurate,” says David Baldwin, Sales Manager at FSR Services of Houston. “The beams were painted, and the insulated metal panels were installed. The bright blue beams against the white interior finish of the insulated metal panel is a very modern and clean look.”

The project called for approximately 67,775 square feet of Metl-Span’s CF42R insulated metal roofing panels, with 4 inches of urethane insulation, in the color of Burnished Slate. The exterior panels were 24-gauge Galvalume. The wall panels were two profiles and colors: 37,858 square feet of CF7.2 InsulRib in Burnished Slate and 9,437 square feet of CF36A in Chestnut, both with 22-gauge Galvalume exterior panels. All interior panels were 24-gauge Galvalume in Igloo White.

Baldwin says FSR needed 180 working days to install the IMPs, but crews ran into weather delays during the rainy Houston summer of 2019, which pushed back the original completion date approximately 90 days. The project was completed in August 2019.

“We were basically working in a mudhole all summer,” Baldwin says. “There were a lot of days we couldn’t get anything done. Our equipment was buried in the mud.”

The Cannon is the largest IMP project completed by FSR Services. Baldwin says his team, led by owner Steve Seibert and project manager Tommy Pavlicek, did its best to keep the project moving along. Seibert says it was a challenging project, retrofitting an existing structure, but the end product turned out amazing.

“Insulated metal panels are easy and quick to install,” Baldwin says. “The larger panels cover a lot of space in a single pass. It’s a lot easier than making several passes for the exterior system, interior system and insulation.”

TEAM

Architect: Abel Design Group, Houston, Texas, www.abeldesigngroup.com

IMP Installer: FSR Services, Houston, Texas, www.fsrservices.com

MATERIALS

Roof Panels: CF42R in Burnished Slate, Metl-Span, www.metlspan.com

Wall Panels: CF7.2 InsulRib in Burnished Slate and CF36A in Chestnut, Metl-Span

Roof of Texas Business Gets New Life After Hailstorm

After the damaged roof system was removed, CIMA installed a self-adhering SBS modified bitumen roofing system manufactured by CertainTeed. Photo: CertainTeed

Large hailstorms are a common occurrence in Northern Texas, so when the roof of CMS Magnetics Corporation in Garland, Texas, started to leak, the company suspected hail had something to do with it.

When CMS purchased its building in 2012, the company applied to its existing roof system a roof coating designed to strengthen the system and protect it from water intrusion. In 2018, however, the roof started leaking to the point that expert guidance was needed to address the situation.

To help CMS consider its options, Plano, Texas-based CIMA Contractors, LLC, was called in to find the source of the leaks and recommend an efficient, affordable solution. CIMA Contractors is a CertainTeed-credentialed roofing contractor with more than 20 years of experience in commercial roofing and storm damage restoration. After analyzing the roof’s existing PVC membrane, CIMA determined that the roof leaks were indeed the result of hail damage from a 2014 storm.

CMS leadership worried it would have to fix or replace the entire roof system at great expense to the company. Trusting in its expertise, CIMA stood by its findings and went the extra step of presenting additional findings to the insurance company so their hail damage claim could be covered.

CIMA met with adjusters, roofing contractors and engineers from the insurance company and conducted a joint assessment. During the assessment, the team conducted forensic work to determine that recent hail had compromised the roof system and was the cause of recurring leaks. This inspired the insurance company to agree to restore the roof to its pre-storm condition.

The existing roof assembly was comprised of a 22-inch intermediate-rib steel deck supporting a 60-mil PVC roof system along with a spray-on coating. CIMA decided to take a different approach — one that would offer a solution with greater energy efficiency, better tolerance for the foot traffic required for facility maintenance, and superior impact and weather resistance.

This photo shows the damaged roof before it was replaced. Photo: CertainTeed

After removing the old roof system, CIMA mechanically attached CertainTeed’s FlintBoard ISO insulation to the building’s steel deck. In addition to helping the structure meet city building code requirements, the insulation provided year-round indoor comfort. CIMA also installed tapered FlintBoard ISO-T insulation to reconfigure the cricket geometry and sumps in the roof’s corners and redirect water runoff to a new drainage system, eliminating standing water on the roof’s surface.

CIMA then applied CertainTeed’s Black Diamond Base Sheet, a self-adhering SBS modified bitumen roofing membrane designed to provide durability, strength, ease of handling and resistance to moisture and wind-driven rain. A torch-applied layer of CertainTeed’s Flintlastic GTA cap sheet topped off the system, providing additional puncture and tear resistance. The new, more resilient system delivered a combined 220 mils of protection.

Thanks to CIMA’s professional expertise and high-quality roofing products from CertainTeed, the CMS facility is dry, safe and comfortable for its employees. For additional peace of mind, the new roof is backed by a 15-year NDL (no-dollar limit) warranty from CIMA and CertainTeed. With their roof problems addressed and their storage areas dry, CMS has expanded its capacity and inventory, paving the way for greater operational bandwidth and profit.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: CIMA Contractors, LLC, Plano, Texas, www.cimacontractors.com

MATERIALS

Base Sheet: Black Diamond, CertainTeed, www.certainteed.com

Cap Sheet: Flintlastic GTA, CertainTeed

Insulation: FlintBoard ISO and FlintBoard ISO-T, CertainTeed

Symmetrical Standing Seam Roofing System Installed Without Interrupting Operations

Northwest Distributors was able to keep operations running without interruption while a new seam roofing system installed was installed a re-cover application. Photos: McElroy Metal

The versatility of a symmetrical standing seam metal roofing system has given birth to a new way of dealing with damaged metal roofing.

Northwest Distributors in Hays, Kansas, is a busy warehouse, dealing with auto parts and supplies. The R-panel roofing on the original building and an addition both sustained damage in several hailstorms over the years. After a 2017 hailstorm, the insurance company for Northwest Distributors agreed a new roof was needed and it would cover the damage.

The tried and true method of replacement involves complete roofing tear-off and replacement. Obviously, this would expose the valuable contents of the facility to the elements. Roofmasters Roofing & Sheet Metal of Hays proposed the patented 238T tall clip re-cover using the 238T symmetrical standing seam roofing system from McElroy Metal.

The roof re-cover would not require the removal of any existing roofing panels and therefore, would not interrupt any activity inside. It would be business-as-usual at Northwest Distributors during the install.

The owners at Northwest Distributors decided to go with the re-cover. Project manager Andrew Bizzell and project superintendent Andy Littrel headed up the assignment for Roofmasters.

“The tall clip re-cover cost is about the same as a removal, but the benefit comes from the contents of the building not being exposed to potential damage from rain or wind or hail,” says Bizzell. “Plus, they were able to keep working without interruption. That saved Northwest money as well.”

To eliminate the problem of standing water behind curbs above the skylights, transverse panels were installed above the skylights using floating purlins that lift the transverse panels and skylights above the field of the new roof. Photos: McElroy Metal

Panels for the 58,000-sqaure-foot re-cover were produced onsite and stacked on the roof. Roofmasters owns its own roll former that produces the 238T symmetrical standing seam panel. The 24-gauge panels are 24 inches wide with striations in PVDF Regal White. Panels were approximately 64 feet long.

“It really was a straightforward job,” Bizzell says. “We have installed several re-covers with the 238T. We like the ease of installation. It provides a great benefit to the building owner because if a panel is damaged, a single panel can be removed and replaced anywhere on the roof. If a panel is damaged with another type of standing seam system, you have to start on an end and remove all of the panels up to and including the damaged panel. Obviously, that is a much greater expense.”

Bizzell says not all insurance policies cover cosmetic damage sustained in weather events like hailstorms. The symmetrical standing seam system allows for the replacement of a single panel or only damaged panels the owner feels the need to replace, reducing his financial hit.

Roofmasters installed 3 1/2 inches of batt insulation between the original roof and the new panels to eliminate the possibility of condensation forming between the two metal systems. It also provided the owner with an added R-value of R-12, which will help reduce heating and cooling costs.

Photos: McElroy Metal

It should be noted the Northwest Distributors warehouse roof includes 36 skylights, a feature the owner wanted to keep. To eliminate the problem of standing water behind curbs above the skylights, Roofmasters installed transverse panels from the top of the skylight to the ridge. Transverse panels are installed perpendicular to the slope using floating purlins that lift the transverse panels and skylights above the field of the new roof. This system lifts the leak-prone skylights out of the water plane. None of the exposed fasteners used for this detail penetrate the roof.

Beneath the center of the transverse panels, a center support was installed. In addition to support, it adds a little pitch to the transverse panels to aid water flow.

Roofmasters installed a polycarbonate skylight panel from MWI Components over the original skylight hole.

“We use transverse panels with skylights and other roof penetrations,” Bizzell says. “We also use the traditional curb. Installed correctly, they both do what they’re supposed to do.”

Contractor Conquers Tough Weather, Tight Schedule

The roof on the new Goodman Logistics Center (the building on the right) encompasses more than 1 million square feet. The roof system installation met an aggressive timeline that spanned the winter months. Photo: Goodman Carlisle LLC

Goodman, an international commercial and industrial property group, approached Donald B. Smith Inc. of DBS Roofing in November 2017 to support the roofing of the company’s new Logistics Center in central Pennsylvania.

Founded in 1948, DBS Roofing is a second-generation, privately held company whose principles of quality and workmanship have earned the team countless awards. Among those honors include the Firestone Master Contractor recognition, the Baltimore Builder’s Exchange “Craftsman of the Year Award” and numerous industry publication recognitions for notable projects.

The Logistics Center roof was 1,010,000 square feet and was established on a very aggressive timeline that spanned through the tough Northeast winter months. The initial specifications of the job called for a mechanically fastened TPO roof system, which was going to be challenging with the size and timeline of the project. Additionally, the condensation levels in central Pennsylvania are not ideal for mechanically fastened solutions, as it would require applying a vapor barrier and foam around all perimeters, exceeding the original budget and schedule.

To save time and keep the project moving forward during the unfavorable winter conditions, DBS Roofing elected to use one of the company’s favorite “box world” solutions — Firestone Building Products (FSBP) UltraPly TPO SA with Secure Bond Technology.

Photo: Goodman Carlisle LLC

The TPO roofing system is comprised of a self-adhering membrane with factory applied, pressure sensitive adhesive and technology designed to ensure uniform adhesion coverage across the entire membrane. According to the manufacturer, the system can be installed in weather as cold as 20 degrees Fahrenheit.

“Commercial roofing in central Pennsylvania can be very challenging during the winter season, but Firestone UltraPly TPO SA allows our business to continue working through those conditions and prosper,” says Donnie Sanders, president of construction, DBS Roofing. “Being able to apply the Firestone TPO SA at 20 degrees resulted in a successful year for us.”

The Goodman Logistics Center roofing project began on November 1, 2017 and was completed on time March 1, 2018.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: Donald B. Smith Roofing Inc., Hanover, Pennsylvania, www.dbsroofing.com
General Contractor: ARCO Design/Build Northeast, King Of Prussia, Pennsylvania, http://arcodbi.com

MATERIALS

Membrane: UltraPly TPO SA with Secure Bond Technology, Firestone Building Products, www.firestonebpco.com
Insulation: 2.5-inch ISO, Firestone Building Products

New Roof Helps Maintenance Facility Live on as Transportation Museum

Originally built in the 1930s to serve as a maintenance facility for electric-powered cable cars and train cars, the Interurban Electric Railway Bridge Yard Shop (IERBYS) is now a transportation museum for the Oakland to San Francisco Bay Bridge. Photo: CertainTeed

A transportation museum located along the Bay Bridge Trail in Oakland’s Gateway Park required roofing with a classic look plus the benefits of modern materials to protect its exhibits far into the future.

Built in Oakland, California, in the 1930s as a maintenance facility for electric-powered cable cars and train cars, the Interurban Electric Railway Bridge Yard Shop (IERBYS) was transformed into a transportation museum for the Oakland to San Francisco Bay Bridge that opened in 2013.

Due to the IERBYS being a historic landmark, the installing contractor — Westech Roofing of Richmond, California — was required to have the building exterior match the same look the building presented when it was first constructed, as documented by historic photos of the building available through the Library of Congress.

Classic Look, Modern Materials

The original roof was a hot-process built-up roof, and considerations were given to try to match that look by installing a hot asphalt roof system. However, because of factors such as roof access, wind from the bay, and number of times the kettle would need to be moved to access the structure’s 17 separate roof decks, the decision was made to use a different application method.

Photo: CertainTeed

The contractor chose CertainTeed’s Flintlastic SA self-adhered modified bitumen system along with SmartFlash liquid flashing to overcome the project’s challenges and replicate the look that was required by the client. The three-ply system consists of Flintlastic SA Nailbase, Flintlastic SA Midply and Flintlastic SA Cap FR Capsheet.

Another challenge for the Bay Bridge Museum was completing the roof flashing. On each of the numerous roof decks there were locations where the roofing needed to be flashed to the siding on the outside of the building. However, the siding is constructed of asbestos panels, which required the Westech Roofing team members to complete the roof flashing without disturbing the panels. In order to accomplish this task, they used CertainTeed’s SmartFlash liquid flashing with excellent results.

TEAM

Architect: Einwiller Kuehl Inc., Oakland, California, www.einwillerkuehl.com
Roofing Contractor: Westech Roofing, Richmond, California, www.westechroofing.com

MATERIALS

Modified Bitumen Base Ply: Flintlastic SA Nailbase, CertainTeed, www.certainteed.com
Modified Bitumen Mid Ply: Flintlastic SA Midply, CertainTeed
Modified Bitumen Cap Sheet: Flintlastic SA Cap FR Capsheet, CertainTeed
Liquid Flashing: SmartFlash, CertainTeed