Hey! Don’t Blame the Roof

July 19, 2011

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Many roof leaks are caused by mechanical equipment.  Best Roofing has been in business since 1978, and since that time we've walked A LOT of roofs.  Our field staff and account managers can easily walk over 500 roofs a year to review their condition, specify repairs, and provide maintenance.   We know what works and what doesn't. We know where leaks come from, and why they are many times never fixed.  Most building owners and property managers are surprised about what they are sending their roofing contractor out to fix.  Did you know only 21% of leaks come from roofs?

HVAC equipment on the roof requires careful monitoring by maintenance personnel

The rooftop  is a working platform, often a drop stop for every construction trade (mechanical, electrical, plumbing, etc.) and many times the equipment itself is not waterproof.  Overtime this can often lead to  roof leaks.  Sometimes we see interior water damage to wet ceiling tiles and  in reality it's not the roofing membrane that is no longer waterproof, but improperly installed equipment on the roof.  This dilemma is compounded  on poorly maintained roofs where there are always roofing problems to fix and nothing else was ever considered.  Even on well-maintained roofs, the first place we look when detecting the source of a leak is  around the air-conditioning units or skylights, as they are notorious in taking in water.

equipment on the roof is often the cause of leaks

this a/c unit was one of the causes of a leak call we received

improperly sealed joints, seams, holes

concrete wall leaks

When calling a roofing company make sure you are hiring a knowledgeable, full-service roofing contractor that offers an annual maintenance program that takes rooftop equipment into consideration. Our crews are adept at discovering and documenting these types of leak sources from other trades.

our maintenance crew fixing a leak caused by HVAC equipment

Common Leak Spots for Rooftop Equipment

  • Poorly designed filter access covers on HVAC duct work
  • Improperly sealed joints, seams and holes on HVAC ducts
  • Bent, loose or missing filter access panels on HVAC units
  • Holes and loose edges on HVAC fresh air intake hoods
  • Holes and poor weather stripping in HVAC air intake panels
  • Wind-blown rain through skylight louvers
  • Concrete wall crack leaks above the ceiling line reported as roof leaks