About 40% of the nation’s population inhabits coastal zones, making many commercial and residential structures vulnerable to destructive natural events including earthquakes, storms, and hurricanes.
Various stakeholders have come up with considerations regarding the threat disasters pose to properties and assets. The list includes possible routes to take to mitigate secondary post-storm damage as well as ways to implement a more resilient building design in the future.
Resilience, as a concept, refers to a building’s ability to withstand severe weather conditions and remain habitable despite the absence of power, at least for a short period.
A building’s resilience starts with a solid, well-constructed roofing system. This is because once the roof gives way, moisture will come in through even the smallest leak. Regardless of how well-built the core of the building is, it’s likely to be inhabitable or usable as long as necessary repairs or replacements are made.
In making roofing systems resilient, it’s essential to integrate these elements:
Resistant roofs, ultimately, can withstand high winds. Designing roofs to exceed the wind speeds specified in building codes provides more significant protection against blow-offs.
As most wind-related damage happens near the corners, designers and builders can enhance the metal edge details using higher fastener density and thicker metal.
For instance, installing fasteners 8 inches apart instead of 12 inches, and using 22-gauge metal as opposed to 24-gauge, can deliver long-term protection that’s also cost-effective.
Impact resistance refers to the roof’s ability to withstand weather events or objects. To improve impact resistance, your contractor may install a tough membrane with a heavy-duty cover board between the membrane and insulation layer. High-density cover boards offer significant resistance, as they tend to absorb the impact and they do not crush. While pavers make another excellent option, these may get a bit too heavy.
When the power in the building is out, daylighting systems can help keep the building functional. Remember, however, to maintain a balance between daylighting and the trade-off between reducing the roof’s R-value.
Roof insulation and color are vital to keeping occupants comfortable in a resilient building. A roofing system with a high R-value keeps the heat transfer into and out of the building to a minimum, letting it maintain a suitable interior temperature even when the power is out.
For building resiliency that lasts longer, solar panels can be added to the roof. Solar energy can help keep the key components of the building running during a power outage. If your home or office stores massive amounts of refrigerated and frozen food, however, a battery-backup photovoltaic (PV) system can be well worth the investment.
A resilient roofing system incorporates all of the above elements, and a reputable roofing contractor should be able to provide you with options to upgrade the performance of your roof accordingly. For more than three decades, SPC Construction & Roofing has been providing commercial and residential clients with roofing systems that stand the test of time, elements, and changing weather.
Talk to one of our knowledgeable consultants about our heavy-duty roofing options. Call us or fill out our form today to learn more.