man fixing leak on commercial roof phoenix

Dangers of a Leaking Roof in Your Commercial Building

Any building with a leaking roof is bad news. However, the issue is exacerbated when the leaky roof is attached to a commercial building because more people may be affected. Everyone from your staff to your customers might suffer from effects of the leakage. Below are some of the main dangers from a leaking commercial roof.

Mold and Mildew Growth

One of the problems with commercial buildings is they tend to be larger than residences. As such, they feature more roofing space, and you may not notice right away that the roof is letting in water. The water can pool in a forgotten dark corner. When left long enough, the humid area can sprout mold and mildew.

Mold and mildew will present as a discoloration. You’ll notice it on walls or ceilings. Mold usually looks black, though it can range from light to dark brown. Mildew usually presents as a brown stain. Unfortunately, depending on the location of the mold, it can get into the HVAC system and spread throughout your business.

Customer and Employee Health Concerns

A big issue with the growth of mold and mildew in your commercial building is that it can have an adverse effect on the people in your building — your employees and customers. Mildew and, especially, mold are major allergens for even healthy people. Those who suffer from respiratory illness or who are immune-compromised are especially susceptible.

The water itself can also be a hazard. A small pool of water tends to be nearly invisible. Therefore, an unsuspecting customer or employee can step on the puddle, resulting in a slip and fall. If they’re injured, you could be facing a lawsuit.

Ceiling and Wall Damage

For being a natural substance, water does wreak havoc on building materials. First of all, the discoloration from mold or mildew doesn’t just disappear when the surface becomes dry. You usually have to clean the area and repaint. Before you get to it, you may even notice that the paint is bubbling and peeling from the moisture underneath.

Excess moisture can also cause issues with the structure of the materials. For example, drywall is essentially compressed plaster. When it gets and stays wet, the plaster starts to lose cohesion. Eventually, it will start to sag and eventually fail. The ceiling might cave in, or the wall might come down.

Rotting Wood

A lot of wood goes into the construction of any building, including commercial buildings. You may not have the same wooden framing as a house, but the decking of your roof is likely wood. Ceiling joists and rafters may also feature wood. Well, wood doesn’t like excess moisture any more than drywall does.

Wood naturally absorbs moisture. When the equilibrium of the moisture content is disrupted, the wood starts to expand and contract. This movement affects its structural integrity. Eventually, the wood will buckle and even rot. When this level of damage occurs, you have no choice but to replace the wood.

Electrical Shorts

Another aspect of your commercial building that prefers dry housing is your electrical wiring. Now, the wiring itself is cased in moisture-proof coatings. However, the coatings might be compromised. What’s more, the areas where the wires connect might not be as well-protected. So, the electrical wires themselves might come in contact with excess moisture from a leaking roof.

The danger here is that the wet wires start to short out. If you’re lucky, all that happens is it triggers the main breaker. However, if the wires keep shorting out, they can throw sparks. You’re then facing the danger of fire in your commercial building.

A leaking roof ultimately leads to lost revenue in your commercial building. Don’t lose money because of a leaky roof. Contact SUNVEK to have your leaking commercial roof repaired or replaced.

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