How To Extend The Lifespan Of Your Industrial Roofing

Your industrial roofing probably doesn’t get a second thought in the day-to-day running of your business. It’s easy to take for granted – until disaster strikes. Replacing industrial roofing is no mean feat; it means shutting down your business for the duration of installation, a huge expense in replacement costs, and not to mention the other issues that may arise from re-roofing your building.

And while you can’t avoid replacing your industrial roofing, there are some easy to implement steps you can take to extend its lifespan so you get the most from your investment. Here are our top 5 tips to make your industrial roofing last longer…

Keep It Clean

Your industrial roofing is going to get dirty – it is a roof after all! But the type of dirt and extent of the dirt can impact the lifespan of your roof. 

The dampness of the weather in the UK means that industrial roofing is prone to organic matter growing on it. Roof gardens are a thing of beauty but unintentional ones can wreak havoc on your industrial roofing. Algae, moss and fungi thrive in gutters and sheltered areas of your roof, and with them comes a whole host of problems.


Algae might be minuscule, but that doesn’t mean the damage it can cause is. Algae is usually harmless, but there are some types that can be harmful to animals and humans. Removing algae build-up is important, but the right safety considerations must be taken. 


Moss is a common feature on roofs throughout the UK, and in small patches, it doesn’t pose much of a threat. But moss grows very quickly, so small patches don’t stay small for long. Some varieties of moss can hold up to 30 times their weight in water and it’s that additional weight that carries the most danger for your industrial roofing. After every rainy day, your roof is being put under enormous strain – plus pieces of moss get washed into your guttering, causing blockages in your pipework. Keeping your roof free from moss should be a priority. 



Mould LOVES damp, dark spaces and your industrial roofing offers lots of ideal places to grow. The trouble is, mould can seep through damaged roofing and into the structure of your roof, causing much bigger problems. Black mould is toxic, and cleaning it requires specialist knowledge and equipment, so if you suspect your industrial roofing has black mould always call for expert help. 


Dare To DIY?

You might think that giving your industrial roofing a once over with a pesticide and a bit of hot soapy water will do the trick, but the truth is, roofs are difficult to clean. Quite aside from the fact that you need insurance to work at height, using the wrong chemicals can create more problems in the future. 

It’s best to leave roof cleaning to the professionals – that way you know that your industrial roofing is going to be completely free of organic matter, treated with the appropriate biocides and carried out by highly-trained professionals. 

Inspect Your Roof

Once you have a clean and clear roof, you will need to inspect it for problems. This can be really obvious splits and tears to the roofing membrane or it might be more subtle, less obvious damage. Knowing what to look for is key – a cursory glance from the ground now and again may mean that you miss a significant issue. 

To really spot issues early, you need to be up close and personal with your industrial roofing – which means getting up there. These are the most common industrial roofing problems that we come across; 

Missing Or Damaged Flashing

Flashing is the thin, waterproof material that is applied to your industrial roofing to protect joints from water ingress. All roofs have flashing – it’s an essential element that needs to be well cared for. Flashing can become damaged through age and weathering – and if you have lead flashing on your building, there have been cases where this has been stolen (it has a high scrap value). 

Split Or Blistered Roof Surface

Your roof is (obviously) exposed to all weathers, from the hottest midday sun to the coldest midnight frost. These changes can have an effect on your industrial roofing. You’ll see things like; 

  • Blistering (pockets of air between the roof and the membrane) 
  • Alligatoring (small cracks and peeling)
  • Rips and splits 

Pooling Water

Puddles of water on your industrial roof aren’t a red flag unless they don’t drain away after a few hours. Prolonged standing water is a sign that something is wrong with the levels of your roof, and the water can cause some serious damage, if left.


Following your inspection, you might find yourself in need of roof maintenance. Even if you think your roof looks fine, having a regular maintenance schedule is highly recommended to ensure that there’s no concealed damage or issues that might develop further down the line. 

Roof maintenance is damage control – it allows you to limit the impact of problems so you can avoid more costly repairs or in the worst case, total replacement.

Protective Coatings

Like laminating an important document, adding a protective coating to your roof just helps to keep it good condition for longer. 

Things like minor corrosion can be halted with the application of a specialist coating, meaning that you won’t have to fork out for repairs for a while. At GI Sykes, we use the most advanced coatings on the market so that our clients benefit from the latest developments. 

These coatings will work hand in hand with your roof cleaning as they make it quicker and easier to remove organic matter, bird mess and dirt.


Invest In Quality

Our final tip for prolonging your industrial roof is this: don’t scrimp. From products to clean, to the materials used for repair, always go for the best quality. You might feel the pinch in the outlay, but when your roof requires fewer repairs, your cleaning takes less time and your roof looks as good as new years down the line, you’ll see the investment was worth it. 

If your industrial roofing needs a little TLC, we’d be happy to provide a quote for cleaning, maintenance or roof coatings. If you don’t know which service is best suited for your roof, give the team a call and they can help you identify the best course of action.

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