How architects can tap into the expertise of their metal roof manufacturer, part 3

But how does the architect ensure that he or she gets this essential information on every project?

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May 21, 2015 |
Ken Buchinger
How architects can tap into the expertise of their metal roof manufacturer, part 3

For architects, it’s important to stay on top of the details and specifications, and make sure these are clearly communicated to the roofing contractor as needed.

This is article is part of a series. Visit the Latest in Metal Façades blog page on bdcnetwork for more.

When we last left our hero, a.k.a., the architect, he or she was armed with sound knowledge of what information is needed to get the most from the expertise of the metal roof manufacturer. But, how does the architect ensure that he or she gets this essential information on every project?

This calls for diligence at every turn. First off, the architect must make sure the metal roof manufacturer reviews roof geometry before the project is even put out for bid.  The manufacturer has expert knowledge about its roof systems and can let the architect know whether or not it will perform properly under the circumstances specified. The manufacturer can also advise if certain areas of the roof can’t be included in a weathertightness warranty. Knowing this ahead of time allows the architect to find a work around. And the roofing contractor will have the critical information needed to bid the project properly.

It’s also important to stay on top of the details and specifications, and make sure these are clearly communicated to the roofing contractor as needed.

Some things to consider:

  • Have an example of the manufacturer’s weathertightness warranty on hand.
  • Document evidence of the manufacturer’s application for warranty, its acceptance of the roofer, and of the geometry and details of the project. 
  • Have complete shop drawings and erection details that were either created or approved by the roof system manufacturer on hand, to ensure compliance with weathertightness warranty requirements.
  • Make sure methods, materials and accessories used in the installation of roof penetrations and roof top equipment are reviewed and approved by the manufacturer for inclusion in weathertightness warranty.
  • Make sure the manufacturer has certified the roofing contractor, and the project foreman is trained in the proper installation of the system in question. The foreman should be present when materials are being installed.
  • Have roof curbs and roof jacks for all roof penetrations supplied by the roofing contractor to ensure compatibility with the roof system and inclusion in the weathertightness warranty.
  • Conduct a pre-roofing conference at the project site with all the trades whose work is integrated into the roof system in attendance, along with the architect, contractor and project superintendent. Roof top equipment and roof penetrations must be coordinated with the roofing contractor to ensure compliance with weathertightness warranty requirements.
  • The roof manufacturer’s qualified representative must inspect the roof a minimum of three times during installation (start-up, mid-point and final) and copy the architect on inspection reports.
  • The roofing manufacturer shall have the sole and exclusive obligation for all warranty work commenc­ing on the date of substantial completion. During the warranty period, the roofing manufacturer shall take appropriate actions to cause any non-performing portions of the roof system to perform their proper functions.

Of course, getting all of those detailed specs means nothing if you can’t get them enforced. We’ll take a look at the third point—enforcement of specifications—in our next post.

Ken Buchinger | The Latest in Metal Facades

Ken Buchinger is the General Manager of Technical Services for MBCI. He began working at MBCI in 1988, and throughout his tenure he has been responsible for handling field problems, developing weathertightness warranties, erector training, research and development certifications, and the creation and management of the MBCI installation manuals and catalogs. Buchinger is actively involved in several trade associations and has written numerous articles for various trade magazines and gives presentations for various organizations. Prior to working at MBCI, Buchinger was part owner of Whitehouse Construction Company and erected metal buildings for Brown Erection Company.

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