Commercial Roof Maintenance and Repair

Once a roof has been fully restored or replaced with a roofing system, the most important part of the project lies ahead: this is at least annual inspections and in some parts of the country (high UV exposure, coastal climates and areas subjected to high winds) semi-annual inspections.

It should be noted that the best time for these inspections are spring and fall (just after the winter and just before the next rainy season). These inspection agreements should take the form of a contract, which specifies a time frame for these inspections.

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Our professional commercial roof contractors provide:

  • Roof maintenance & repair
  • Inspections & leak detection
  • Energy efficient roof systems
  • Complete roof replacement
  • Roof life-extending solutions
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These inspections will allow the owner immediate access to view what has been done to the commercial building and will allow for precise budgeting for repairs. In the event that an insurance claim needs to be filled, it provides leverage should any disputes arise.

An inspection need not take an entire working day but these key components need to be verified and documented:

  • Refill the pitch pockets
  • Repair leaks on a warranty roof
  • Strip in pitch pockets
  • Recaulk & seal flashings
  • Clean and check drains
  • Secure copings and counter flashings
  • Coat entire roof with White Acrylic or Aluminum as appropriate (These will ensure that the proper reflectivity is being maintained)
  • Clean loose debris including branches, leaves and dirt
  • Add granules

The building owner also has obligations in this process:

  • Maintain accurate and historical roof records
  • Control roof access
  • Report leaks or other roof damage immediately
  • Ensure routine maintenance
  • Use professional roofing contractors for all major maintenance
  • Collaboration with one of our commercial roofing contractor before the addition of new penetrations or equipment

There is not one solution for all roofs as all roofs are not created equally. As professionals, our commercial roof contractors know about the potential problems with any given roofing system and can share this expertise with the owner, so that he or she can make an informed decision.

When considering solutions to the owner’s problem, a Conklin coating may not always be the best answer for repair. The coatings solutions should be focused on these three categories:

1. Functional (traditional) coatings are considered low technology. Similar chemically to the original roofing material, they are designed to prevent direct exposure to UV, atmospheric elements and water. Examples of functional coatings are fibered asphalt, coal tar coatings and bituminous emulsions. One of their benefits is that, typically, in-house personnel can perform these function to minimize the cost and potential scheduling issues.

call2. Reflective Coatings protect and extend the life of the roof system by reflecting the solar radiation before it reaches the roof surface, potentially reducing the building energy costs. A Florida Energy Study indicates that cool roofs – those that reflect the sun’s rays – can reduce energy costs by ten to twenty percent for large buildings with moderate insulation. These materials use either aluminum metal or white titanium dioxide pigments and are considered moderate to high-tech products. Please keep in mind that these materials tend to be more sensitive to the exact type of roof membrane they are applied to, the cleanliness and preparation of the roof surface, and to weather conditions while the coating cures. These acrylics are not intended for areas that will be or are subjected to standing water. This is also the category of coatings that contains those materials that retard flame spread.

3. Maintenance Systems are professionally applied combinations of coatings and reinforcing fabrics that essentially create a secondary waterproofing membrane attached to the first.

Even maintenance systems cannot fix a failed roof. By utilizing a proactive, regular maintenance program that includes the judicious use of appropriate coatings, managers can extend the useful life of a new or existing roof membrane at a much lower life-cycle cost than an approach of neglect, repair and re-roof.

Repairs of Conklin Systems

As part of the Maintenance program, repairs to an existing Conklin Roofing System will need to be done. Below are some general recommendations for typical repairs.

Acrylic Coatings

callPreparation of the Conklin Roofing System coatings would essentially be the same. Our Choice Roof Contractors would first apply (undiluted) Conklin Weathered Acrylic Cleaner (WAC II) at a rate of 400 to 500 square feet per gallon taking care to thoroughly agitate the surface to remove all contaminants. This should be done with water, and a stiff bristle brush.

The delaminated area should be allowed to dry and additional coating applied in all of those areas that are damaged, and thinner or not coated overlapping the damaged or delaminated areas at least 4” on each side.

If the original substrate was a BUR or asphaltic material Prime Time, at the prescribed coverage rate, would first need to be used on those exposed areas. If pinholing or splits have occurred in the coating, the pinholed areas should be cleaned with WAC II, treated with Kwik Kaulk and recoated with the appropriate Conklin Top Coat at a rate of one gallon per square. A coat over the entire surface will bring back the reflectivity values, save energy and ensure the maximum energy savings.

Sheet Goods

The repair of Flexion would:

  • Utilize a thorough cleaning of the existing membrane with WAC II cleaner.
  • The patch is then placed over the top of the damaged area (with at least a 3” overlap) and heat welded in place.

The repair of a Hy-Crown system has a couple of options:

  • Utilize the patch kit of cut the appropriate size patch from the Hy-Crown that is available.

a. Clean the area to be patched with Xylene.

b. Cut a patch from the material provided (circular) with no notched edges and at least 3” bigger than the damaged area.

c. Wipe the existing area with xylene solvent as many times as necessary until the Hy-Crown membrane has developed a “tack.”

d. Liberally apply seaming adhesive to the back side of the patch and utilize the heat welder to finish the job.

For more information, talk to your Choice Roof Contractor, a senior mentor, or one of our support representatives.

How to Tell if a Roof can be Restored with a Coating System

Before you decide if you would prefer coating your commercial roof rather than replacing the entire thing, it is important to make sure that your roof is suitable for a restoring project. If your roof is not suitable, your entire property can get damaged in the long run. You will also need to make sure that the company you hire has a reputation for excellent services. If not, their shoddy work will cost you money and ruin your property at the same time.

Important factors to consider before roof restoration

Here are the factors that determine whether your roof can be coated or not:

Is moisture present?

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One of the most important things to do before restoring a roof is to check whether there is any moisture trapped under the current roofing system. This is a problem that is caused by improper re-cover. If moisture is present, further investigation will be required; if moisture is present and its level is high, replacing the entire roofing system could be a more effective and cost-efficient option.

How many roof layers are present?
This is a question that roofing companies often ask before they attempt to coat a roof. It is an important factor in determining whether a roof can be restored. Building codes nowadays permit two roofing systems that are non-ballasted on one structure. This has to do with the weight of the materials used for roofing.

Is the roofing layer attached well to the substrate?

Roofing Services

Our professional commercial roof contractors provide:

  • Roof maintenance & repair
  • Inspections & leak detection
  • Energy efficient roof systems
  • Complete roof replacement
  • Roof life-extending solutions
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Ensuring that a roofing layer is well-secured to the roofing substrate is critical for making certain that the existing commercial roof’s integrity remains intact. If the layer is not well-attached, coating a roof can lead to even more pronounced issues with the roof’s integrity later on or even heightened requirements for repairs. The presence of moisture is the leading cause of a roofing layer being detached or less secure than it should be from its substrate counterpart.

Before you opt to restore your commercial roof rather than replace it, ideally you should consult a commercial roofing contractor and get a quote from him. Doing so will ensure that you can get the best service for the roof of your property. Once you have asked the above-mentioned questions, it is advisable to consider the following questions to determine whether roof replacement or restoration is the better option.

Asking your contractor these questions will be a great way of assessing his expertise and being aware of the options at your disposal. If you would like one of our contractors to provide a free inspection and estimate, visit our interactive map to find a commercial roof contractor in your area.

What will be the impact on your business operations?
Roof replacement can dirty, noisy, and time-consuming, therefore disrupting normal business operations quite handily. For instance, if a building has specialized electronic equipment underneath its roofing, it might be optimal to opt for coating the roof. Applying a roof coating system is much less disruptive to operations as it is usually completed within a very short time frame without any interference.

What type of roof restoration system is best?
rr1Different restoration solutions will be applicable to your roof based on the type of roofing system you already have. For instance, a rusting metal roof may simply require a simple, multi-layer coat application without any need for components replacement . Another roofing system may be found to require application of a membranous roofing layer on top of it for best results. It is ideal to clear up with your contractor exactly what your existing roof will demand or what will give the best protection outcomes.

Our commercial roof contractors exclusively use Conklin products due to their reputation and time-tested reliability. Although Conklin is highly respected as the original inventor of acrylic roofing systems, it also provides the best TPO roofing systems on the market. For more information, visit our Conklin Roofing Systems page.

What are the advantages, disadvantages, and costs?
Any savvy business owner knows the general importance of knowing the pros and cons of any option that is available to him or her. The same especially applies to roofing, as the roof is arguably one of the most important parts of a building, due to the protection it provides. Having all information accounted for, including the costs of both, will greatly aid you in making your final decision.

Why Roof Restoration is a Better Option than Replacement

If your roof is damaged and needs to be taken care of, you might want to consider restoring it rather than replacing the entire roof. Many commercial property owners have benefitted greatly from opting to restore their existing roofs with a Conklin coating.

Here are some of the benefits of roof coatings:

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Lower expenses: Everyone is looking for ways to save money in this day and age. When it comes to your roofing system, coating it with a Conklin roofing system rather than replacing can save you a lot of money as the current roofing membrane does not have to be removed and disposed.

No dumping in landfills: One of the major environmental concerns today is the growing amount of garbage disposed in landfills. With roof restoration, you do not need to be concerned about the remains of your roofing system going to landfills. You also save money as transporting the waste materials to landfills is quite expensive and you also do not need to pay for labor.

Roofing Services

Our professional commercial roof contractors provide:

  • Roof maintenance & repair
  • Inspections & leak detection
  • Energy efficient roof systems
  • Complete roof replacement
  • Roof life-extending solutions
Request Free Estimate
Thermal performance improvement: Another advantage of Conklin roofing systems is the improvement of your roof’s thermal performance. When a roof is restored, a section of insulation that is installed is a part of the package. This insulation section is what separates the membrane of the new roofing system from the one that has been there all this while.

Little upkeep and maintenance required: Traditional roofing systems require maintenance and upkeep to avoid costly repairs in the future. Opting for a Conklin roof coating means that you get a roofing restoration solution that will require little maintenance or upkeep for optimal performance. That will save you time and energy in the long run.

Savings on maintenance and repairs: With their maintenance and upkeep requirements reduced, re-covered roofs give you savings in maintenance and cost repairs. That is money you can reinvest in your business or put aside for other building improvements that you have been waiting to upgrade.

rr1Greater environmental responsibility: Yet another advantage of a coating an existing roof is the environmental stewardship you will espouse. As the roof is restored, the Conklin coating that is installed over it has tremendous reflectivity properties, meaning it will bounce back almost 90 percent of the sun’s energy. That will be less taxing on your air-conditioner, so that it emits less carbon dioxide into the air.

Longer roof lifecycle: When restoring your roof, you get a layer of protection that is leakproof, stays resistant against hurricane-strong winds and harsh inclement weather, and performs well year-round. It has been tested and confirmed to last for 40+ years or longer, whereas a traditional roof might be at greater risk for needing expensive repairs in the future.

Easily repairable: Should your reinforced roofing system require any repairs, they are easily applied and in a short time frame, cutting down on disruptions to your business. In addition, you will enjoy the benefits listed above and more with the reapplication, while adding even more years of life to your roofing protection.

How can you go wrong when a Conklin roofing system has so many advantages? Take a cue from the many property owners who have opted for roof restoration rather than replacement and enjoy all the benefits that come with it.

Commercial Roof Inspection Tips

The on-site roof inspection should be completed as soon as you have determined that the job is one you are qualified and prepared to perform. For more information on bidding on new construction and retrofit projects, consulting with the business owner, building a roof history and more, view last week’s blog: The Bidding Process. After obtaining satisfactory answers about the building’s construction and history, begin an investigation of the building itself.

Your objective is to get a clear picture of the condition of the building and existing roof so that the bid you submit accurately reflects the costs involved. If extensive repair and construction work appears necessary, you will need to figure in the extra time, labor and materials. You may need to obtain estimates if subcontractors will be providing reconstruction or repair work.

Taking Photos or Video

During this physical inspection stage, using a camera or video camera is strongly recommended. Useful in putting together your bid, the photos or video you take during inspection also serve to document preexisting problems and conditions. In the event that a building owner later discovers damage to the building or property, your pre-inspection pictures are evidence that damage was in existence prior to the presence of you or your crew. Photographs or video protect you and your reputation.

Interior Inspection

When inspecting the inside of a building, begin by looking at the ceiling. Is there evidence of leakage? Look for sagging suspended roofing, water stains, and wet tiles, and make a note of their location. Later, in the actual roof inspection stage, you will check to see if they corresponded to flaws visible from the exterior. With metal ceilings, rust stains from condensation can be your clue. Up-close investigation will determine if the deck is still sound enough to roof over, or will require complete tear-off.

Take note of the building’s ventilation provisions. While this is important in any case, it is of particular concern in buildings with metal roof decks. Voids or seams in the deck may currently be serving as building ventilation. Continuous roof membranes such as Conklin roofing systems tend to seal off these voids, preventing vapor and moisture escape. Serious condensation problems (which owners may interpret as a leaking roof) could result if new ventilation provisions are not made. This factor must be considered in your bid.

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Next, take a close look at the interior support walls. Look for signs of moisture seepage, which could indicate flashing leakage on the roof. Appropriate repair or replacement of the defective flashings may need to be included in your bid. Also, watch for cracks or buckling as an indication of serious structural movement. If you suspect this may be occurring, it is advisable to notify the owner and consult a structural engineer before proceeding. This consultation should be at the owner’s expense, since any reroofing project attempted on an unstable structure is a risky venture.

Exterior Inspection

Once you have assessed the building’s interior, an exterior investigation is in order. Follow the same procedure as before, taking pictures of the building grounds and exterior, noting any structural problems such as cracks in the walls or foundation, or evidence of settling or erosion. If such problems exist, bring them to the owner’s attention and request an engineer’s inspection to determine the building’s stability.


You may want to go beyond the building itself and take a look at the parking facilities, sidewalks and landscaping surrounding the structure. It is an unfortunate fact that in the past, roofing contractors have been held liable for damaged sidewalks and shrubbery, which were, in fact, preexisting conditions. With documentation in the form of photographs, video and dated notes, you can help protect yourself against such claims.

Inspecting the Roof

In looking at the roof itself, there are several factors, which will affect your bid. First and foremost, consider the general condition of the actual roof. Evaluate its appearance both in the center and around the perimeter.

On a built-up roof, look for signs of:

  • Checking, splitting, blistering, gravel turnover
  • Ply separation, ridging, bare felts

In areas of the roof display severe blistering, splitting, or alligatoring, the substrate must be repaired or replaced before any coating can be applied. Failure to do so could result in later complications with the roof and coating, requiring you to make repairs at your own expense.

Be sure to check the exterior parapet walls for deterioration. This can be the result of either flashing problems or structural instability. Also, check all roof protrusions such as skylights, vents and air conditioning units for signs of leakage. If the flashing or seals around any of these are defective, they will need to be replaced.

On a roof of plain galvanized metal, look for evidence of rust and check out the method or attachment to the structure below. Examine the condition of the screws and nails holding the metal panels in place. Are they still secure, or have they worked loose? Any loose screws or nails will have to be retightened or replaced.


callBesides the general condition of the roof, one of the most important things to note is the drainage provided. Minimum industry standards call for slope of at least ¼” per foot. However, even with this degree of slope a roof can settle and weather into depressions, which collect water.

This commonly occurring problem, known as “ponding,” is a result of ineffective drainage. Ponding is defined as thirty-six or more square feet of water at least ¼” deep forty-eight hours after a rain. A ponding problem can threaten the life of the roof and the building underneath. This problem cannot account for more than 5% of the entire roof surface.

Any roof you work on should shed water completely. If it does not, you must remedy the problem. This means either the addition of a new drain wherever ponding occurs of the installation of crickets, tapered boardstock or polyurethane foam to build up the low areas and guide water toward existing drains.

Structural Load

Due to the weight of roofing felts and bitumen, the maximum allowable layering is two built-up roofs. Frequently, you may encounter situations where more than two complete built-up roofs have been layered in an effort to solve chronic leakage problems. This places a tremendous load on the supporting deck. Also, roofs exceeding the two-roof limit tend to be unstable and should be removed to two built-up roofs or less. Some local building codes may also prohibit more than two roof layers due to weight loads.

If the owner wishes you to put down new material, it is important to know the present roof load. If it is already near the building’s structural limits, the old roof must be completely removed and a new one installed. Tear-off and reconstruction involve a tremendous amount of time and labor, so it is important to determine this before you submit our bid.

Taking Core Samples

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Since each kind of substrate presents a different issue, it is necessary to identify a roof’s composition. The best way to accomplish this is by taking a core sample with a roof cutter or knife.

Use core samples to determine the type of insulation in place and its thickness. This can help you decide whether additional insulation needs to be added, and at what rate. The sample will also reveal the moisture content of the roofing material. Even if the surface layers of the roof appear to be dry, moisture in the bottom layers can badly blister your new system. Knowing this moisture factor is essential. No Conklin Roofing System may be applied over a damp roof.

Pay special attention to gravel built-up roofs, which can appear on the surface to be dry and level, but may be masking severe ponding problems. Always dig down through gravel or other loose aggregate and make certain the roof is not wet underneath. Core samples provide the best security.

A core sample can also help you assess what the roof deck itself is comprised of. From the interior of a building, looking up, the deck may appear to be metal, but a roof sample may reveal it to be metal topped with wood or concrete.

If the deck is made of wood, you need to determine its moisture content and assess the possibility of rot, mold or insect infestation. With concrete, important clues to look for are cracking, mildew and decomposition. These conditions often call for a complete roof tear-off, so an early diagnosis is critical.

One final benefit of taking roof samples is the discovery of how the substrate was adhered to the roof deck. Since there are a handful of right ways and hundreds of wrong ways to fasten a roofing system to a deck, it is important to know how each substrate is adhered to the deck before you start. Was it mechanically fastened or simply “glued down” with a layer of hot asphalt? If an inadequate method of adhering was initially used, the whole substrate could eventually work itself loose, delaminating Conklin coating.

Assessing a roof’s condition and getting a handle on the costs and risks involved can be somewhat difficult. No two situations are ever exactly the same. If there is ever a question in your mind about the integrity of a roof deck or substrate, or how to go about testing them, do not hesitate to call Conklin’s Building Products Department. These specialists can answer your roofing questions and offer tried and true suggestions.

Nondestructive Moisture Detection

One of the most important reasons for obtaining core samples is the need to identify and replace any areas of trapped moisture. However, should the owner object to your cutting into the roof for core samples, there are alternative, nondestructive methods for locating roof moisture. As the name implies, nondestructive methods provide this information without damage to the roof membrane.

Nuclear Moisture Detection

Nuclear moisture detectors work by identifying the hydrogen atoms in water by means of a radioactive source. The source contains about one milligram of radioactive radium or americium and a small about of beryllium. Neutrons are generated in the detection unit and travel outward until they encounter atoms in the roof system. The neutrons then slow down, and some are bounced back toward the unit. A counter on the nuclear detector records the number of returning neutrons, which translates into the number of hydrogen atoms, i.e. water, in the roof.

These figures are plotted on a grid of approximately four square feet and take from one to five minutes per measurement. The hand-held detector itself is about the size of a lunch box and weighs approximately twenty pounds.

Capacitance Methods

Capacitance methods of moisture detection are based on the fact that most materials have dielectric constants. The capacitance unit has two metal pads, which sit on the roof while an electrical current is passed between them. The curve of the resulting electrical arc determines the dielectric constant present. While the dielectric constant reading of most dry, solid roofing materials is in the one to four range, a constant of nearly eighty is expected for water. Thus, elevated readings indicate both the presence and severity of the moisture problem.

The capacitance equipment can take these readings within two minutes, but the roof surface must be completely dry for accuracy. Measurements are made on a grid, just as in nuclear detection.

Infrared Imagery or “Thermography”

Infrared imagery, or thermography, detects the loss of heat through the roof. When a roof becomes wet, its insulation properties are reduced. The most areas of the roof conduct more heat through the roof than the dry areas. This is revealed through light and dark areas on the film or video.

This form of thermography is most often accomplished by flying over a roof at night while taking aerial infrared pictures. A lack of detail, however, often occurs when the images are recorded from such altitudes.

Greater accuracy is actually achieved when hand-held equipment is used while the roof is walked. The wet areas are documented on film or video, then marked off on the roof with spray paint. With this type of close-range thermography, the entire roof is scanned, generating data on every square foot. Best results are achieved at dawn or dusk, when the temperature differential is greatest.

To follow up any nondestructive test method, areas which indicate moisture should be core sampled as previously described to verify the degree of wetness. The results of the core sample will show if any material replacement is necessary.

Evaluating the Job: Some Cost Considerations

In addition to all typical major costs, such as the product and labor required, other factors will need to be considered before you submit our bid. One is “bucket loss,” the five to fifteen percent of the product, which remains on the sides of the product container. From a five-gallon container, therefore, you can expect to fully utilize only 4.25 to 4.75 gallons. Also, when using the spray application method, count on a wind loss of anywhere from 5-15%. The surface texture of the area to be coated also factors very strongly in the amount of product needed for adequate coverage.

Equipment costs vary from job to job, depending on the Conklin system used, the condition of the existing roof and the specific substrate preparation required.

Other costs, which are sometimes overlooked include:

  • Transportation of crew and equipment to and from the job site, with allowance for fuel and vehicle wear.
  • Wear and tear on rollers, brushes, ladders, and spray equipment. Also, figure in any fuel costs of operating your equipment.
  • Special insurance costs, which may apply when working around or above expensive equipment.
  • Costs to further inspections and repairs if a warranty agreement or maintenance contract is sold.

These are just some of the “hidden costs” of the roofing business. As you gain more and more experience in a greater variety of roofing jobs, you will no doubt develop lists of such expenses and develop a greater ability to accurately estimate each job. Accepting small jobs and working with your sponsor initially will help you gain this experience while minimizing your financial risk.

Many new construction and renovation projects run over-budget. Unfortunately, this roofing portion of the project is a common scapegoat for cost overrun. Because the roof is less noticeable, it is often the first area to suffer in a budget pinch. As you bid, bid specific work for a specific price. If either price or service change in the middle of a job, do not accept verbal changes. To protect yourself contractually and financially, keep every agreement exclusively in writing.

Whether your project involves reroofing, retrofit or new construction, insist on a pre-job conference with all interested parties. Get a clear picture of what you are expected to provide and at what price, which area of the project your proposal addresses, and what materials and labor are covered in the proposal. This coordination between parties will help ensure a high-quality, timely project with fewer disputes over costs and areas of responsibility.

The Bidding Process

Because this topic is so important, we have broken it up into two parts. In next week’s blog, we will focus on inspecting the roof, taking core samples, detecting moisture, evaluating your costs of the job, and more.

Bidding on New Construction

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New construction can be bid in several different ways. Typically, an architect is hired by the development firm or owner to design a building, meeting requirements for occupancy, fire and safety, and national and local building codes. The actual construction of the building is then jobbed out. The work can be handled by a general contractor or by a design/build firm, which both designs the project and builds it from the top to bottom.

In this case, the project architect is responsible for specifying the roofing portion of the project. If a job interests you, it is up to you to demonstrate to the general contractor or project architect that Conklin’s systems match or surpass the specified product. The long-range goal, of course, is for a Conklin coating to become the specified product.

The architect’s specifications will sometimes list one of more manufacturers, with a qualifier such as “Product X or approved equal.” “Approved equal” generally means that in order to bid a different product, you need approval from the architect. If the wording “or equal” is used without “approved,” you must simply show that the material submitted equals or exceeds the specified product. Even when Product X is specified without the qualifiers, “equal” or “approved equal,” it is still common to submit voluntary alternatives. Architects and owners will usually consider these alternates if they are presented in a professional manner and promise cost-savings for the project through less expensive materials and/or labor.

contractor-biddingIn the case of the General Contract award, as mentioned previously, subcontractors submit roofing proposals to the general contractors bidding on the job. The general contractors each evaluate their numerous subcontractor bids and submit a comprehensive bid to the owner. The winning contractor then awards the individual subcontracts for each different part of the job. Thus, a roofing subcontractor is contracted with, and employed by, the general contractor for the roofing portion of the project.

These contracts can involve much interaction with architects and owners, and legal language, which binds the subcontractor to certain regulations and conditions, including possible union labor stipulations.

Bidding on Retrofit

While the bidding documents for new construction may sometimes be intimidating to a new roofer, in retrofit they usually take the form of a more straightforward proposal, submitted by the roofer directly to the owner of a commercial building. While your responsibility in retrofit is certainly no less than in new construction, the contracts and legal language are likely to be less complex. And, you will probably be dealing with the building owner unless your roofing project is part of a large-scale, overall building renovation. In this case, the job may more closely resemble a typical new construction project with more complex legal documents and regulations.

Importance of Accuracy

While consulting a lawyer to interpret contracts is not usually necessary, it is imperative that you fully understand all the requirements in the documents, and feel confident you can meet them. Carelessness in reviewing specs and contracts can lead to your liability for failing to follow stipulations. Your reputation and future job prospects depend greatly on this professional attitude toward your work.

Since a majority of Conklin roofing projects involve retrofit treatment, the remainder of this blog post focuses on the steps and procedures in inspecting and bidding retrofit work.

Consulting with the Building Owner

When you have learned of a retrofit roofing job that interests you, the next step is to meet with the owner to discuss his or her needs and gain a more complete understanding of the job.

To this initial consultation, you should bring a notebook or clipboard for jotting down information, as well as brochures and spec sheets on Conklin’s products. Also helpful are any professional references earned from past jobs. These factors will help maintain our image as a professional contractor network.

Building a Roof History

The building owner should have blueprints and specifications describing the roof’s structure and composition. However, be aware that these plans may have been created before such additions as new wings, penthouse suites, air conditioning, solar units, and other alterations. The city may also have building plans on file.

Check to see if the ownership has been constant. If the building has changed hands, ask if the blueprints and documents are up to date. Do not proceed until you are satisfied that the information given to you is accurate and current. Once your bid is accepted and the actual work has begun, you may have little recourse if “surprises” occur concerning the roof’s structure.

The owner or manager should be able to tell you what, if any, repair work has been done and when it was completed. Knowing how the building was constructed, where supports are located, and what roof deck materials were used can be invaluable, if, for instance, it becomes necessary to install a new drain of lay down boardstock prior to roofing treatment. Different materials, time and labor are required for different roof decks. Knowing all the facts ahead of time can help you make a quick and accurate assessment of the situation.

Intended Use of Building

Another important fact to establish with the owner is the actual and intended usage of the building. For instance, is it used for manufacturing, storage or shipping? Are high levels of humidity present? Are hazardous fumes generated that require special ventilation? Is the interior of the building subject to sudden or extreme temperature changes? All these factors are valuable background information, which can make accurate evaluations during the subsequent on-site inspection.

Choice Roof Contractor Group Partners with Top Roof Marketing

2013 already has been a very exciting year for Choice Roof Contractor Group™, as there has been an upswing in more prospective members expressing interest in our extensive member support and benefits. Recently, however, an exciting development became official: the announcement of our formation of a strategic partnership with Top Roof Marketing™, a nationwide full-service marketing firm that focuses exclusively on the needs of commercial roofing contractors.

Contractors join our group for:

  • Network-backed Guarantees
  • Support from Fellow Roofers
  • Group Discount Purchasing
  • Shared Marketing Strategies
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In the partnership, the marketing firm will empower our network members for greater success by giving them priority treatment, high-quality marketing and sales support, and strategic advisement. Marketing support will consist of giving our members access to first-rate marketing services including direct mail, website development, search engine optimization, print design, telemarketing, video production, social media campaigns, and public relations. These efforts will be crucial in helping our membership drive business growth in their local markets.

Samuel Hostetler, Chief Strategist and Senior Mentor at Choice Roof Contractor Group, made note of the marketing firm’s steadfast commitment to ensuring roofing contractors’ success and extensive track record for getting quality results. “As Top Roof Marketing is the only marketing firm focused exclusively on serving commercial roof contractors, no other company matches its specialized expertise in this complex and constantly changing industry,” he stated. “In fact, the owner himself completed Conklin’s roof systems training program in order to best serve the firm’s growing list of clients who use Conklin products. This high level of commitment to quality service really stands out!”

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To fully support the exclusive advantages and benefits offered by its nationwide platform, Choice Roof Contractor Group chose the marketing firm on account of its service efficacy and seasoned marketing expertise. Top Roof Marketing is owned and led by Jonathan Keim, Marketing Director for Choice Roof Contractor Group and a widely recognized, successful marketing professional in his own right.

Keim’s background includes supporting more than 200 publically traded companies with their marketing strategies as the Communications Director of three investor relations companies. Over the course of his career, he has collectively added more than 2.5 million social media followers to client accounts, developed more than 30 individual brands from conception, executed hundreds of awareness campaigns, overseen countless email marketing initiatives, and helped numerous business owners increase their success.

“Choice Roof Contractor Group’s business model offers a win-win across the board,” commented Jonathan Keim. “Not only are commercial building owners able to find a qualified, fully trained commercial roof contractor in their local area, but roof contractors and roofing companies who join the network are given a long list of tremendous advantages to jumpstart or accelerate their growth in this very profitable industry.”

Both organizations look forward to developing this partnership and giving network members even more opportunities for success.

To learn more about Top Roof Marketing, visit their website at

Roof Decks – Comprehensive Overview

The following blog consists of brief descriptions of the most common types of roof decks encountered, their particular strengths, liabilities and suitability for coating with Conklin roofing systems. To learn why Choice Roof Contractor Group and its commercial roof contractors exclusively use Conklin for all projects, visit the following page: The Conklin Difference.

Steel Decks

Roofing Services

Our professional commercial roof contractors provide:

  • Roof maintenance & repair
  • Inspections & leak detection
  • Energy efficient roof systems
  • Complete roof replacement
  • Roof life-extending solutions
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There are three types of common steel decks:

• Narrow rib (maximum 1”)
• Intermediate rib (1¾”)
• Wide rib (maximum 2 ½”)

The rib is considered the width of the channel between the flat upper sections of the metal sheet. Steel decks are typically installed onto steel framing and fastened by means of welding or mechanical fasteners. Corrugating allows greater spans and amount of load per square inch (psi). Rib style and type are determined by a structural engineer and are given in specifications details. Another type of deck or roof is standing seam metal roofs. These roofs are classified as either structural panels of architectural panels. For specific details on stand seam roofs, contact the Conklin Building Products Department.

Wood and Plywood Decks

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Solid wood boards and plank were a very popular choice in construction many years ago. Today, they are still occasionally used, along with the more prevalent composite boards, but plywood is by far the more commonly used deck material. Plywood is a manufactured material comprised of a composite wood core sandwiched between solid wood veneers, which are “laminated” or glued together. The grades of plywood considered acceptable decking by the American Plywood Association (APA) are APA structural I and II rated sheathing, exterior or exposure 1.

The panels are also assigned span ratings indicating the maximum distance allowable between supporting rafters. To ensure that plywood meets Conklin specifications, an APA rated board, rather than a mill-certified board, is needed. Mill-certified boards are not tested as thoroughly as APA-rated boards and may be more subject to buckling or delamination.

Plywood Under Special Coatings

Chemical coatings for roofs have increased the range of design possibilities, particularly in larger commercial structures where contoured or steel-pitched roof surfaces are exposed to view.

Exterior plywood is recommended for use under special coatings for roofs. When the coating requires a very smooth base, use APA A-C Exterior or APA B-C Exterior plywood. When maximum smoothness is not essential, use APA C-C PLUGGED Exterior. Tongue-and-groove plywood (½” or thicker)or lumber blocking at panel edges is recommended. A 1/8” space is recommended at all edge and end joints unless otherwise indicated by panel manufacturer. If high-performance coatings are to be used for finish, check coating manufacturer’s recommendations for panel joint treatment.

Grades should also be specified when the structural wood deck is to be overlaid with a separate plywood layer to serve as substrate for special roof coatings. A 1/8” space is recommended at all edge and end joints unless otherwise indicated by panel manufacturer. Although minimum ¼” plywood may be used over structural decks, 15/32” or thicker panels should be considered for best performance over uneven surfaces or when rain or high humidity is anticipated prior to application of roof coating.

APA – The Engineered Wood Association has several publications available containing extensive information on plywood and Oriented Strand Board (OSB) and its uses.

They can be obtained at the following location:

APA – The Engineered Wood Association
P.O. Box 11700
Tacoma, WA 98411-0700
(206) 565-6608

Precast Concrete Deck Systems

Typically, precast concrete deck systems are concrete slabs, most commonly found with metal edges or tongue and groove edges. The slabs are reinforced with wire fabrics or preformed steel bars and are either slipped to the steel frame members or welded to concrete frames by means of metal plates. Depending on the design of the slab, they span anywhere from four to twelve feet. The joints between the slabs are sealed with flexible grouts or other seals.

Gypsum Concrete

Gypsum concrete is a poured system composed of a mixture of gypsum, wood chips, and shavings combined with water. After mixing at the job site, the substance is poured over a wire mesh, which is supported on form boards of either fiberglass, gypsum board, or other material. The minimum acceptable thickness of a gypsum concrete deck is 2”. One advantage of this system if the feasibility of varying the thickness to provide slope for good drainage.

One cautionary note: Because the material is applied in a wet state, it is very important to allow sufficient drying time before installing a roofing system over a new gypsum.

Further, gypsum concrete is not suitable for direct application for Conklin coatings because its chalky surface prevents proper adhesion. Before roofing over this system, some method of moisture detection must be used to ensure that the deck is dry, followed by a recommended “divorcing material” to act as a buffer between the concrete and coating.

Cement-Wood Fiber Panel Roof Deck (Tectum)

Cement-wood fiber roof deck panels are composed of treated wood fibers that are bounded together with Portland cement or other binder and compressed or molded into flat panels. The panels provide both acoustical and thermal insulation. They are furnished either as tongue-and-groove planks suitable for application directly to joists or with rooted edges, which must be secured with bulb-tees.

Reinforced Concrete Roof Decks

Reinforced concrete is produced by mixing aggregate (usually stone or crushed gravel and sand) with Portland cement, water, and in some cases, chemical additive. Steel bars, welded steel mesh or both are used to reinforce the concrete. Then, the surface should be finished to a texture equivalent to either a light power-trowel finish or a firm wood-trowel finish. The density of these decks is from 100 to 150 pounds per cubic foot. Reinforced concrete should not be confused with either lightweight structural concrete or lightweight insulating concrete.

Lightweight Insulating Concrete

Lightweight insulating concrete is usually made of perlite or vermiculite and Portland cement. Occasionally, a foaming agent is also added to create bubbles within the concrete, lessening its density. Minimum standard density is twenty-two pounds per cubic foot. This is a poured system, which is installed over wire mesh or form boards much like the gypsum deck. The material used in making these units can also be used as a fill over pre-cast and pre-stressed deck systems at a minimum thickness of 2”.

Note: Lightweight insulating concrete is not suitable for direct applications of Conklin coatings due to its high water absorption properties. Before roofing over this system, use some method of moisture detection to ensure that the deck is dry. Then, use a recommended “divorcing material” to act as a buffer between the concrete and coating. Conklin Building products Department will provide specific recommendations for this procedure.

Do not apply Benchmark or Rapid Roof III where temperatures exceed an ambient of 100o F and a surface temperature of 120o F. Do not apply at temperatures below 40o F, during inclement weather, when temperatures may drop below 40o F within forty-eight hours of when the temperature is not at least 5o above the dewpoint.

The Benefits of White Roofing Systems

White roofs are becoming quite popular these days as they come with a number of benefits. As we all know, energy conservation is a serious issue and it is important to find eco-friendly ways to build homes, commercial buildings, etc. White roofs keep roof temperatures low and can help you save money and energy. The best part is that you would not need to spend more than you would for a conventional roof. In fact, with Conklin roofing systems, the cost could be drastically lower.

Top white roof benefits

Add Decades of New Life
Cut A/C Costs up to 50%
Free On-Site Inspections
Leak-Proof Your Roof
Warrantied Up to 20 Years

Reduced energy costs: When a white roof is used, you can actually lower energy costs by approximately 20 percent during the hot seasons. You can keep heat better insulated in your commercial building during those cold winter months as well. This is an impressive feat as saving energy is one of the most effective ways to protect our environment and lower utility expenditures.

Lower air-conditioner use: A white roofing system that measures just 1,000 sq. ft. significantly minimizes the use of air-conditioners, extending their life and reducing your carbon footprint. Without a white roof, your air-conditioner would emit approximately half a ton of carbon dioxide on an annual basis based on this 1,000 sq. ft. commercial roof example.

Lower levels of smog: White roofs in urban areas actually help in minimizing the levels of smog. Local temperatures are often high due to the large number of paved surfaces. When the temperatures are lowered, the smog levels are affected in the same way.

Extended roof life: Many white roofs easily last for 40+ years or more without any real problems. One advantage they offer is their energy-saving properties. They reduce your roof surface temperature by up to 80°, leading to lower temperature swings and thus minimized commercial rooftop deterioration in the long term.

Little upkeep and maintenance costs: Unlike traditional roofing, white roofs require little maintenance and upkeep to maintain their top performance levels. Cleaning efforts may be needed on a white roof just once or twice a year to protect against dirt build-up or discoloring. Alternatively, a traditional roof such as a flat roof will require more involved, specific, and frequent maintenance efforts for best results.

Tax benefits from energy certification: A white roofing system’s energy-saving properties are recognized by efficiency certification programs such as the EPA’s ENERGY STAR® program. That means that you might qualify for tax cuts, benefits, and rebates, letting you help the environment and save money at the same time.


Additional benefits of a Conklin roofing system

It is clear that a white roof brings many benefits. A Conklin roofing system, however, brings even further value, offering long-term quality protection and being easy to maintain. Below are even more reasons that illustrate why having a Conklin roofing system will benefit you in the short and long terms.

Proven reliability: Independent studies have shown that Conklin roofing systems meet the highest industry standards. Conklin has been setting customer expectations for cost savings, performance ability, roof long-lastingness, and overall roof reliability for 40+ years and counting.

Extensive implementation: Since 1977, Conklin roofing systems have been applied to 2+ billion square feet of commercial, agricultural, and industrial rooftops across America. Many contractors continue to endorse these products for their cost-effectiveness, performance standards, and many other benefits.

Demonstrable effectiveness: Many of the initial Conklin roof systems that were applied in the 1970s are still on the job today. Even more impressively, they are still performing at or near the same levels as when they did when they were first installed.

Excellent functionality: Conklin roofs function as a turtle shell, shielding the underlying commercial building from all types of weather. Their seamless design means no leaks and consequently big savings on expensive leak repairs.

Savings in roof replacement: With a Conklin roof restoration solution, you save huge costs by eliminating the need to tear off the existing roof and install a new one. Should your new roof protection need any maintenance or repairs, it is easily fixed. Alternatively, a new traditional roof can cost much more to repair, maintain, or even replace, and it does not even enjoy the same performance standards.

Lightweight application: Conklin roofing systems offer a lightweight solution with no seams, no leaks, and no trouble of any kind. They add little to the deadweight of a commercial building’s existing structure, cutting back on opportunities for future needed repairs and maintenance.

High-quality protection: Our roofing systems provide excellent protection and can withstand hail and hurricane-force winds with ease. Conklin roofing products are proven to persist in the harshest outdoor conditions, and many can be applied to an existing roof year-round so you enjoy the benefits immediately.

Quality assured: Conklin roofing systems meet or exceed the strictest standards for fire rating and code approvals. Certification from leading organization such as Underwriters Laboratories and Factory Mutual only confirm Conklin roofing products’ efficacy, reputations for safety, and overall quality.

Customer-tested for decades: Our Conklin roofing solutions boast of lab-tested durability and customer-verified reliability. Conklin has emerged as a trusted name in quality roof restoration solutions for thousands of customers nationwide for its product ingenuity, product permanency, and product quality.

Re-appliable benefits: A Conklin roofing system is a renewable roof system, allowing further extension of an existing commercial roof’s life through application of a new roof coating. All of the benefits that come with the Conklin brand are reapplied as well, for even longer periods of benefits and cost savings-reaping.

With so many benefits to using white roofing systems, it is no wonder that more people are turning to them for commercial properties. It is a great way to do your small bit for the environment especially when all it takes is a small investment that is often equal to what you would spend for any other type of roofing system.

Commercial Roof Substrates Overview

A substrate is the surface upon which a roofing system is applied. It can be the roof deck, an insulation system or a complete preexisting roof system. Choice Roof Contractors select particular Conklin roofing systems for roof repairs and restoration projects depending on the substrate that currently exists on the commercial roof.

Built-Up Roofs

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Built-up roofs (BURs) are constructed by alternating roofing felt layers with coats of either coal tar pitch or asphalt. The number of roofing felt layers with coats of either coal tar pitch or asphalt. The number of roofing felt plies varies, as does the weight of the felts themselves. Roofing felts come in weights of fifteen, thirty, forty-five, and ninety pounds – indicating the weight of 100 square feet of one ply of felt. Most often, a roof either has a smooth surface, with a top flood coat of asphalt or coal tar pitch, or a top layer of gravel set into the asphalt while it is still liquid.


The word bitumen refers to either asphalt or coal tar pitch used in creating built-up roofs. Coal tar pitch is a by-product of coal. To successfully install coal tar pitch, a roof’s slope must be ½” per foot or less. This is because pitch tends to liquefy and slide or “sag” off steeper roofs upon exposure to the sun’s heat.

Modified Bitumen

Roofing Services

Our professional commercial roof contractors provide:

  • Roof maintenance & repair
  • Inspections & leak detection
  • Energy efficient roof systems
  • Complete roof replacement
  • Roof life-extending solutions
Request Free Estimate
Membranes are interesting hybrids that incorporate the high tech formulation and prefabrication advantages of single-ply with some of the traditional installation techniques used in built-up roofing. These materials are factory-fabricated layers of asphalt, “modified” using a rubber or plastic ingredient for increased flexibility, and combined with reinforcement for added strength and stability.

There are two primary modifiers used today: APP (atactic polypropylene) and SBS (styrene butadiene styrene). The type of modifier used may determine the method of sheet installation. Some are mopped down using hot asphalt and some use torches to melt the asphalt so that it flows onto the substrate. The seams are sealed by the same technique.


Asphalt is a by-product of petroleum. There are four types of asphalt, which are selected according to the slope of a given roof.

Type I asphalt (also known as dead level asphalt) can be used only when slopes are ¼” per foot or less. These asphalts are said to be self-healing. On warm sunny days, type I asphalt may soften and even become liquefied. It may fill any cracks or voids that have occurred, which is beneficial, but may also slide off sloped roofs, which is disastrous.

Type II asphalt can be used on slopes of ¼” to 1” per square foot.

Type III asphalt is a sag-resistant material suitable for slopes ranging from ¼” to 3” per foot.

Type IV asphalt is known as “steep asphalt” because it softens only at the highest temperature range. Resisting sagging better than any other asphalt type, it can be used on slopes up to 6” per foot.

Note: A roof showing any evidence of sagging is an unstable substrate and must not be coated until the problem has been corrected. This usually calls for removal of the sagging portions and replacement with sag-resistant roofing materials.

CAUTION: The two bitumens, asphalt and coal tar pitch, cause a strong chemical reaction when they come into contact and should never be used on the same surface. Coal tar pitch is also very hazardous to the mucous membranes and requires great caution in handling. Skin and eyes should be well protected and filtering masks worn when working with this substance.

Surfaces of Built-up Roofs

A built-up roof may have any number of different surfaces. A quick overview follows:

A “glaze coat” (flood coat) or asphalt can be spread over the surface of the roof membrane. To be effective, this must be a thin layer – no more than twenty-five pounds per 100 square foot. Thicker, heavier applications are likely to flow and crack over time.

Installation of “aggregate” (a top later of stone or gravel) is a popular strategy for protecting the black flood coat against the sun’s heat and ultraviolet light while permitting light foot traffic on the roof surface. Common aggregate materials include gravel, sag, crushed stone, limestone, marble chips and volcanic rock. A top pour coat of bitumen, at a rate of about sixty to seventy-five pounds per 100 square foot, is then applied. It is immediately followed by about forty pounds per square foot of aggregate. Although this system has its strengths, its drawbacks include the considerable structural load it places on the roof deck. It is for this reason that “stacking” built-up roofs is a risky practice.

NOTE: Aluminized surfaces offer insufficient adhesion for Conklin coatings. They must be removed by power washing or sandblasting before direct application can take place.


Mentioned previously as a roof decking, plywood also can be used as a substrate over an existing roof. A sound, stable substrate, plywood offers excellent adhesion for Conklin coatings. Plywood panels bearing the American Plywood association stamp are recommended and should meet minimum requirements of 15/32” Exterior – CC plugged or better and rated for exterior exposure.

Because plywood panels have a tendency to expand and contract with changes in temperature, a gap of 1/8” must be left at all panel edges to allow for movement. Failure to leave such gaps can lead to buckling of the panels. These gaps must be thoroughly caulked, then reinforced with SpunFlex, Conklin’s 4” reinforcing fabric. To lend extra strength and durability to the system, a 38” SpunFlex should be embedded throughout the roof.

However, when left unreinforced, plywood is apt to develop “grain checking” (a small crack in the wood grain). This phenomenon is inherent in the wood itself, and is not preventable by the plywood mill. Another common problem with plywood is “delamination,” wherein the individual layers of the panel come unglued and begin to pull apart.

Oriented Strand Board (OSB)

Oriented Strand Board (OSB) consists of panels of compressed, strand-like particles arranged in layers oriented at right angles to one another. Some OSB panels bearing the APA stamp are recommended and must meet the 7/16” minimum thickness requirements. Contact your Conklin product specialists for a current approved substrate list. Conklin recommends several panels and must be approved for application.

Contact the Conklin Building Products Department for a current approved substrate list. Conklin recommends several panels and must be approved for application.

Spray-in-Place Polyurethane Foam

Sprayed Polyurethane Foam (SPF) has quickly grown in the past several years due to its insulation characteristics. However, SPF performs several functions on a roof. Aside from its insulation value, it can be applied to provide slope on a previously flat roof. It also functions as a new substrate for the appropriate Conklin Roofing System.

Since Polyurethane foam degrades quickly and becomes chalky upon exposure to ultraviolet light, the protective Conklin coating must be applied within two to twenty-four hours after foam application. Conklin Roofing Systems are designed to be applied directly over foam, offering outstanding protection against ultraviolet light and moisture. Yet the success of these coatings is limited by the quality of the foam application. Optimum performance is achieved only when the foam substrate is properly applied by a professional.

The Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance was formed to provide information on product development, technology and application techniques to the roofing industry. They are an excellent resource for all Conklin roofing contractors, especially those interested in acquiring the skills needed to apply foam with Conklin jobs. They can be contacted at:

Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance
4400 Fair Lakes Court, Suite 105
Arlington, VA 22033
Phone: (800) 523-6154
Fax: (703) 222-5816

Metal Roofs

There are two basic classifications of metal roofing; structural and non-structural (also known as architectural). Structural metal roofing attaches directly to purlins or lathe boards and does not require any sort of solid support beneath it. Non-structural metal roofing requires a solid substrate beneath it, typically plywood, oriented strand board, or a metal roof deck.

Structural metal roofing is broken down into low slope and steep slope categories. Low slope products are available for roof pitches from 1/4:12 to 3:12 while steep slope products are designed for roof pitches greater than 3:12. Low slope structural metal roofing consists of interlocking panels, commonly called standing seam roofing, that run vertically on the roof surface. These products can have a painted, mill-finish, or clear acrylic finish. To ensure a watertight seal on roofs of less than 3:12 pitch, some products will require machine seaming during installation. These special machines are rolled along the panels to crimp the panel seams together.

Steep slope structural metal roofing is available in both vertical and horizontal profiles. The vertical panels include standing seam systems that are fastened to underlying purlins with hidden clips or fastening flanges. A wide variety of corrugated or tile facsimile metal roofs that are attached with exposed fasteners directly through the metal roofing panels are also available. These products overlap or interlock on their side and end laps to form a watertight seal. Special seaming machines are typically not required. Most non-structural metal roof panels are designed for roof pitches of 3:12 or greater. Rather than transmit gravity loads through to purlins or lathe boards beneath them, non-structural systems transfer gravity loads to the roof deck beneath them.

Non-structural systems are available in a variety of styles including vertical standing seam, corrugated, and tile profiles as well as a wide variety of horizontal panels. The horizontal panels simulate the look of standard shingles, wood shake, slate, and tile. Most non-structural metal roofing will have a coating for aesthetics and durability. Coatings include various paint finishes, such as Kynar or siliconized polyester. Other coatings or treatments include galvanized finishes, galvalume or stainless steel.

Single-Ply Membranes

Single-Ply Membranes are flexible sheets of compounded synthetic materials that are manufactured in a factory to strict quality control requirements. This is in contrast to other roofing, typically known as BUR (built up roofs), which utilize hot asphalt and other hazardous components as the roof is constructed in place. Single-ply roof systems provide strength, flexibility, and long-lasting durability. The inherent advantages of pre-fabricated sheet are the consistency of the quality of the products that are manufactured, the versatility in their attachment methods, and therefore, their broader applicability. The Single Ply Roofing Industry (SPRI) identifies three major categories of single ply membranes: thermosets, thermoplastics, and modified bitumens.

Thermoset membranes are compounded from rubber polymers. The most commonly used polymer is EPDM (often referred to as “rubber roofing”). Another thermoset material is neoprene, although this particular formulation is no longer widely used for roofing. Thermoset membranes are successful for use as roofing materials because of their proven ability to withstand the potentially damaging effects of sunlight and most common chemicals generally found on roofs. Hypalon is a unique material because it is manufactured as a thermoplastic, but because it cures over time, it becomes a thermoset. Hypalon materials are heat sealed at the seams.

Thermoplastic Membranes are based on plastic polymers. The most common thermoplastic is PVC (polyvinyl chloride) which has been made flexible through the inclusion of certain ingredients called plasticizers. Also available are TPO (thermoplastic polyolefin). A number of different products in this category are available, each having its own unique formula. Thermoplastic membranes are identified by seams that are formed using either heat or chemical welding. These seams are as strong, or stronger, than the membrane itself. Most thermoplastic membranes are manufactured to include a reinforcement layer, usually polyester or fiberglass, which provides increased strength and dimensional stability.

Single Ply membranes offer the flexibility of three means of attachment: Ballasted, mechanically-fastened and fully-adhered. If the structural part of the roof (the deck) can withstand the weight, a ballasted roof may be the best option. But if the slope of the roof is greater than 2” in 12,” then this system may not be appropriate. There may be other limitations to the use of a ballasted system, such as roof height, proximity to shorelines and other high wind zones, and availability of ballast. A deck that accepts fasteners easily, such as steel or wood, makes a good substrate for a mechanically fastened membrane. These systems can be designed to provide the necessary resistance to known wind forces and are not subject to slope limitations. Another alternative is the fully adhered system, in which the membrane is attached to the substrate using a specified adhesive. Depending on the membrane, the adhesive may be solvent or water-based. The finished surface of an adhered roof is smooth. Colored membranes may be used, which may make an attractive aesthetic contribution to the building’s appearance.

For additional information on single-ply membranes, the Singly Ply Roofing Industry (SPRI) is an excellent resource for objective information about various products and systems. SPRI offers many valuable documents and publications to help educate contractors, architects, and building owner and maintenance personnel about roofing and the many options that are available today. SPRI publications range from generic technical guidelines for design and application to general information about roof maintenance and emergency repairs.

Single Ply Roofing Industry
77 Rumford Avenue, Suite 3B
Waltham, MA 02453

Conklin Master Contractor Programs

In addition to the benefits and incentives offered by the Choice Roof Contractor Group, Conklin itself offers a number of strong motivators and accolades to those who achieve great success with their commercial roofing businesses. All the benefits of being a Conklin Master Contractor, as well as qualifications that need to be met, are fully explained below. If more information is needed, contact Conklin’s building product specialists using the information at the bottom of this page.

Master Contractor Title

Conklin recognizes contractors who have established roofing businesses with a reputation for integrity, commitment to quality, and excellence in application, sales, service, and professionalism.

Preferred Contractor Title

Applicants qualifying for the program for the first time will earn the Preferred Contractor title for a minimum of one year before being recognized as Master Contractors.

Prerequisite Qualifications:

Contractors join our group for:

  • Network-backed Guarantees
  • Support from Fellow Roofers
  • Group Discount Purchasing
  • Shared Marketing Strategies
Learn More
  • Personal purchase and shipment of a minimum of $125,000 (Qualifying Volume), $160,000 (Gold Level) in Building Products during the Qualifying Period.
    • 3-year average can be considered if personal volume for the Qualifying Period is greater than $93,750.
    • Foam and/or boardstock purchases may account for up to 25% of the Qualifying Volume.
  • Conklin credit account is in good standing.
  • No active warranty issues.
  • Personally completed Roof Systems Training in the last five years.
  • Ownership or legal business partnership (with a minimum of 33% ownership) in a roofing business. Proof of business ownership must be submitted with application.
  • Agreement to roof evaluations conducted by Conklin Building Products staff.
    • Preferred Contractor applicants must agree to an evaluation of a minimum of three roofs.
    • Previous Master Contractors may also be subject to evaluations at the discretion of Conklin’s Building Products staff in order to maintain the Master Contractor title and benefits.
    • Evaluations must be completed between September 1 and October 14, 2013.
  • A formal review process will be held by Conklin’s Executive team to determine program eligibility. Conklin reserves the right to withhold the Master or Preferred Contractor title at its discretion.
    • Notification e-mails will be sent to contractors meeting all requirements. Current e-mail address is required on application.
Master & Preferred Contractor Benefits:
  • 2% discount on acrylic products during the Benefits Period.
  • Conklin Master Contractor Logo for use on vehicles, trailers, websites, letterheads and business cards during the Benefits Period only.
  • Priority to receive roof quote requests from Conklin’s website.
  • Master Contractor Destinations trip for the qualifying Independent Business Owners and spouse, or Independent Business Owner and legal business partner (proof of 33% ownership required).
  • Invitation to participate in the business meeting during the Master Contractor Destinations trip and provide input into the future direction of Conklin’s Building Products Division.
  • Preference for field-testing privileges on new Conklin building products.
  • A press release from the Conklin Company, announcing your Master Contractor status.
  • One year free VoiceLink service or $149 credit towards a Conklin Business website upon yearly application, effective January 1, 2014.
  • $100 transferred to Independent Business Owner’s deposit account for the purchase of sales literature, effective January 1, 2014
  • Anniversary awards:
    1st year qualifying :         Jacket with the Preferred Contractor logo
    2nd year qualifying :        Jacket with the Master Contractor logo
    5th year qualifying :        Choice of a gold ring or watch with Master Contractor logo
    7th year qualifying :        Diamond insert for ring/watch
    10th year qualifying :      Diamond insert for ring/watch
    12th year qualifying :      Diamond insert for ring/watch
    15th year qualifying :      Diamond insert for ring/watch
    20th year qualifying :      Carhartt jacket with the twenty-Year Master Contractor logo

Advanced Level Master Contractor Titles

Sterling Level Eligibility Requirements
  • Meet all Master Contractor prerequisites.
  • Qualifying Volume of $250,000.
  • Minimum of two consecutive years holding the Master Contractor title.
  • Advanced Level Master Contractor application received by September 14th.
    • Proof of liability insurance with a minimum coverage of $1,000,000.
    • Conklin Company Inc. listed as co-insured.
Diamond Level Eligibility Requirements
  • Meet all Master Contractor prerequisites.
  • Qualifying Volume of $1,000,000.
  • Minimum of three consecutive years holding the Master Contractor title.
  • Advanced Level Master Contractor application received by September 14th.
    • Proof of liability insurance with a minimum coverage of $1,000,000.
    • Conklin Company Inc. listed as co-insured.
  • OSHA and SPFEA (optional) trained staff.
Platinum Level Eligibility Requirements
  • Meet all Master Contractor prerequisites.
  • Qualifying Volume of $500,000.
  • Minimum of three consecutive years holding the Master Contractor title.
  • Advanced Level Master Contractor application received by September 14th.
    • Proof of liability insurance with a minimum coverage of $1,000,000.
    • Conklin Company Inc. listed as co-insured.
  • OSHA and SPFEA (optional) trained staff.
Advanced Level Master Contractor Benefits
  • All Master Contractor benefits.
  • Conklin-hosted customizable training events.
  • Reimbursement of a contractor-hosted event and/or Destination trips in the following amounts:
    • Sterling: $2,500
    • Platinum: $5,000
    • Diamond: $7,500
  • Incentives can be applied to one or more of the following events:
    • Crew training at Master Contractor’s location, crew appreciation event, Silver or Gold Destinations trip, meeting to introduce Conklin systems to building owners, customer appreciation event, and/or architecture luncheon.

Honorary & Emeritus Master Contractor Titles

Honorary Master Contractor Eligibility Requirements:
  • Master Contractor title earned in any previous program year.
  • Current status as a Conklin Sales Manager, District Manager, or Director.
  • Development of at least one Preferred Contractor during the Qualifying Period.
  • Honorary Master Contractor application received by September 14th.
Master Contractor Emeritus Eligibility Requirements:
  • Held the Master Contractor title for a minimum of ten years.
  • Master Contractor Emeritus application received by September 14th.
Honorary Master Contractor Benefits:
  • Invitation to the Master Contractor Destinations trip and opportunity to attend the business meeting along with spouse.
    • Travel & lodging accommodations will be at the Independent Business Owner’s expense.
  • Upon the qualification of two or more Preferred Contractors in the previous three years, Honorary Master Contractors will earn the Gold Level Master Contractor Destination Trip.
    • Conklin covers all travel & lodging accommodations.
Master Contractor Emeritus Benefits:
  • 2% discount on acrylic products during the Benefits Period.
  • Invitation to the Master Contractor Destinations trip and opportunity to attend the business meeting along with spouse.
    • During the first five years of qualifying as a Master Contractor Emeritus, Conklin will pay for 50% of lodging and meeting expenses.
    • After five years, the Master Contractor Emeritus will be responsible for all expenses.
  • Upon the qualification of two or more Preferred Contractors in the previous three years, Master Contractor Emeritus will earn the Gold Level Master Contractor Destination Trip. (Conklin covers all travel & lodging accommodations)
For information please contact:
Tom Gravenstreter
Building Products Specialist II
[email protected]
Sean Molby
Building Products Specialist
[email protected]
Aaron Wagner
Building Products Specialist
[email protected]

*Conklin reserves the right to alter this document at any time.