Other Recent News
Our New Safety Record!
CIRSCO has just posted its 2013 OSHA Form 300A – Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses as required by the U.S. Department of Labor. We are extremely proud to report that our 2013 workplace activity was accomplished with zero injuries and/or illnesses.
This marks eight (8) consecutive years that CIRSCO has been able to post 300A Forms with all zeroes for Deaths, Days Away from Work, and other Recordable Cases, Injuries, Skin Disorders, Respiratory Conditions, Poisonings, Hearing Loss or any other Illnesses.
What makes our track record remarkable is that almost all of the facilities that we service or maintain have ongoing operations, full-time occupancy and day-long visitors along with building finishes, parking lots full of vehicles, landscaping and high risk exposures.
CIRSCO continues to do much more than just talk about our safety record. We practice what we preach and remain as protective of our customers and their premises as we are of our own employees.
CIRSCO Expands Services
Hispanic Executive Quarterly
How To Get The Most From Your Roofing Budget
(From: How To Get The Most From Your Roofing Budget: Repair, Replace or Re-Cover? FacilitiesNet)
During the Great Recession, if you’re like most facility managers, you have been using your superior property management skills to save money where you could. Because of this, you have been putting off reroofing and have been patching as best you can to eke out just one more year. Finally, you have money in the budget to reroof. But should you? How do you know when it is really time to reroof? How do you proceed? Which way do you go — do you tear off the whole thing down to the deck and start fresh or do you re-cover what is already there or do you do something entirely different? Ultimately, the question is when it comes to getting the most from your roofing budget, do you repair, replace or re-cover?
The first question to ask yourself is whether you really need a new roof. Generally, if your roof needed replacing before the recession, it still needs replacing now, and probably even more so. However, if you have managed to stretch the roof’s life the past few years, there may be some left in the old roof. So the first step is evaluate it.
Look at your roof to evaluate the condition. Are there widespread leaks or leaks that just cannot be found? Start by walking around the interior and keeping an eye out for water stains. If you have not been constantly changing out ceiling tiles, the location and size of water stains will help analyze the frequency and pattern of the leakage. It may be that the stains are showing that your leaks are really at your windows, not your roof. If that is the case, you have just saved yourself the cost of reroofing.
Next, take a walk around the perimeter of your building. If you can see all the way to the top of the building (which may not be possible on a downtown high-rise) check to see if there is water staining on the walls. This may show that you have wall problems, not roofing issues.
Then tour the roof itself. Look at the membrane. Is it cracking or blistering? Can you see the fiberglass or polyester reinforcing? Is the surface breaking down? Are the seams loose or open? These are good clues that the roof has aged to the end of its life.
Walk the perimeter of the roof and around mechanical equipment and other penetrations. Are the flashings from the membrane up the vertical sides intact? Are they loose, cracked, absent, punctured, missing surfacing, or otherwise deteriorated? Now examine the metal accessories and penetration flashings. These are items like goose necks, vent pipes, equipment stands, duct stands, ventilator fans, metal edges, copings on parapets, etc. Look carefully at the way they were waterproofed. Is the sealant used intact (regardless of whether it is roofing cement, asphalt, pourable sealer or liquid applied materials) or has it shrunk, cracked or peeled from the, penetration? Are the metal accessories (such as gravel stops, curbs, hoods, ducts, counterflashings, copings, goosenecks, etc.) corroded, punctured, missing, or otherwise deteriorated?
Roof damage generally starts at these perimeter and penetration details, and widespread problems with flashings are also good clues that the roof is in poor condition.
(For more information, go to the full 4-part article.)
10 Good Reasons to Inspect the Roof
Roofs are often said to be like tires. We only think of them when a problem arises, and we only replace them when we absolutely must. But, when we do think of tires and maintain them regularly, we can extend their useful lives. Similarly, we need to ensure that the roof receives the proper maintenance to increase its useful life.
Extending roof life starts with regular inspections. The National Roofing Contractors Association recommends inspecting all roofs twice a year: once after the coldest weather, once after the hottest weather. (And it’s always a good idea to inspect the roof following any major weather event.) But why should roofs be inspected, and what do we hope to discover by doing so?
All roofs should be inspected whether they are low slope roofs or steep roofs. A low slope roof is one with a slope of less than 3:12 whereas a roof with a slope greater than 3:12 is considered to be a steep roof. All low slope roofs should have at least 2 percent slope, which is approximately 1⁄4-inch per foot.
What follows are ten pieces of advices — or the ten most common reasons — to inspect roofs at least twice per year.
1. Weathering and Aging
The benchmark life for multi-ply bituminous low-slope roofs is 20 to 30 years and approximately 15 to 25 years for most single-ply roofs. All roofs undergo normal weathering and aging, and the effects of those factors are usually visible. As roofs weather and age normally, openings may occur, leading to water infiltration. Regular inspections call attention to weathered areas and enable an owner to schedule maintenance on these deficiencies to prevent further damage.
2. Routine Maintenance Damage
If your roof is not protected properly, damage can occur from tradespeople performing maintenance on air conditioners and other systems. This sometimes occurs because of trades failing to close mechanical access panels on roofs or leaving refrigerant containers. In addition, maintenance trades often fail to clean up their debris. Items left on roofs can become flying objects in high winds. A regular inspection program incorporates roof cleaning into the ongoing maintenance cycle.
3. Storm Damage
High winds, hail, and other weather events can create damage to roofs that may trigger repairs or insurance claims. Roofs should be inspected immediately following weather events to prevent further damage due to water infiltration. Damage from winds or hail can be slight and require little more than minor maintenance, or the problems can be major and require roof replacement. Insurance loss adjusters have reported that a significant amount of storm damage is actually caused by material, components, or debris blown from roofs in high winds. Tree limbs and branches can fall on roofs creating significant damage. Roof blow-offs start at the perimeter, and when roofs are not properly designed or installed to provide proper perimeter securement, severe damage can occur. Storm damage may require emergency repairs costing even more money.
Regular inspections are a great way to keep the roof in good shape. Among other things, an inspection can help find leaks, drainage problems, and damage from vegetation.
4. Leak Assessment
Leaks after heavy rain are the primary trigger for most inspections. But a leak is only symptomatic of a problem that may have been building for some time. In some cases, if you’re looking for a silver lining, a leak is actually good news. That’s because without evidence of a roof leak, a festering problem of undetected moisture infiltration may continue to create unseen deterioration, such as rotting wood, mold, wet insulation, or corrosion.
It takes an experienced professional to conduct a thorough leak investigation and diagnosis, because the entry point for moisture may be far away from the visual evidence or detection point. Leaks can be evidence of serious roof problems or minor local issues. Many roofs in excellent condition occasionally have leaks due to minor flashing problems.
As a general rule, low slope roofs rarely leak in the open field of the roof. Leaks tend to occur around discontinuities, such as changes in elevation, penetrations, expansion joints, and flashings. On the other hand, severely deteriorated roofs may not show visible evidence of leakage, particularly over concrete decks where water may migrate a great distance before reaching an entry point through the concrete. When such a condition occurs, damage due to moisture saturation of the roof insulation may be so significant that the roof must be replaced.
5. Proper Drainage
Few characteristics are as important to roof performance as roof slope and drainage. Water standing on a roof increases the likelihood of leaks and moisture infiltration many-fold. Ensuring good drainage is a very important reason for regular roof inspections. Leaves, trash, debris, and thrown objects often clog or obstruct roof drains, thus creating standing water conditions. Regular cleaning of roofs can help remove such obstructions and permit water to drain efficiently, thereby reducing the likelihood of leaks. Moreover, water is heavy — weighing approximately 5 pounds per square foot per inch deep. Poor drainage also accelerates deterioration of roofing materials, leading to a shorter life of the entire roof assembly. If a leak occurs from standing water, insulation can become saturated over a wide area, requiring complete roof replacement.
6. Vegetation Damage
Vegetation can grow on roofs when gutters and other low areas are not cleaned regularly. Birds land and nest on roofs. They also deposit seeds, which promote the growth of vegetation. Gutters are a particular source of vegetation growth because of the accumulation of dirt, seeds, and moisture. In addition, tree branches scraping on roofs during wind can cause significant damage. Gutters should be cleaned regularly, and trees near roofs should be trimmed to prevent contact with roof surfaces.
A further problem with vegetation growth is that roots can penetrate through the roof membrane and create leakage. Root damage to roofs from vegetation can be significant and pervasive. Regular inspection can help draw an owner’s attention to a budding problem before further damage is done.
With the roof, out of sight often means out of mind. That’s unfortunate, since regular roof inspections can help avoid long term costs. A better strategy is for facility managers to make roof inspections a priority.
7. Roof Cleaning
Regular roof inspections also draw attention to the need for regular roof cleaning. No task can provide a better payback than the low-cost practice of cleaning trash and debris from the roof. A clean roof is less likely to have wind damage. Loose trash and debris not only may cause wind damage in a storm, but trash tends to wash to the low points at drains or gutters. Trash obstructs proper roof drainage and creates leak problems that would otherwise not exist.
Thieves often break into buildings through unlocked roof hatches or skylights. Regular inspections can disclose security breaches and enable owners to reduce the likelihood of vandalism or burglary. While a broken skylight is likely to be a source of water leakage, unsecured skylights can also present a security threat.
9. Warranty Repairs
Many owners pay for repairs that are covered under a contractor or manufacturer’s roof warranty. Leaks can be caused by many factors, only some of which are covered under a roof warranty. However, when a leak is detected, an owner should have a qualified person perform an inspection to determine whether or not to file a warranty claim. When a roof warranty claim is filed, the contractor or manufacturer will visit the site and make a determination whether the leak or repair is covered. The key for the owner is maintaining possession and ready access to the warranty document, as well as timely filing of the claim.
10. Needed Improvements
Regular inspections highlight the need for continual building improvements, many of which affect the roof. For example, the increased presence of electronic equipment, computers, security systems, and video displays has encouraged many owners to install lightning protection on older buildings.
Roof access is an important provision for all buildings. It is well known in the industry that roofs that are accessible are maintained while roofs that are difficult to access are ignored. Regular inspections are facilitated with improved safe access to roofs. Installing permanent ladders and safety rails around roof hatches greatly facilitates safe access to roofs.
Establishing a schedule for routine roof inspections should be a priority for building owners. Inspections are inexpensive and can provide valuable information that can prevent expensive repairs later. In addition, regular roof inspections provide a checklist for routine maintenance work and enable owners to prepare budgets for future years. Roof inspections are the first step in a proactive roof management program that can help owners have planned and scheduled repairs instead of emergency leak repairs. Few other building maintenance procedures provide a better return on investment than regular roof inspections.
Edis Oliver, PE, is a principal in the Austin, Texas office of Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc. He is a nationally recognized roofing expert with more than 40 years of experience in the construction and engineering field. Oliver was selected by the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas to write the roofing contractor certification manual, titled “Managing a Roofing Company in Texas.”
(Source: Building Operating Management Magazine, December 2013)
(Copyright: © 2013 TradePress)
CIRSCO has been advised by its Worker Compensation carrier that the experience modification rate now being applied to the WC premiums assigned to CIRSCO is .76. It is important to note that our EM rate is developed by comparing our loss history (in our case no-loss history) to other roofing contractors. Our rate is among the lowest that can be found anywhere in the country.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the Center for Veterans Enterprise (CVE) has verified that CIRSCO has been verified as a service-disabled Veteran-owned small business. As such CIRSCO has been added to the verified Veteran business database at www.vetbiz.gov.
A very well respected agency that serves the small business community nominated CIRSCO to be considered by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce as Small Business of the Year.
CIRSCO was again selected as one of the Top 25 Minority Businesses in a 7-county area along the west coast of Florida. This is the third consecutive year that CIRSCO has been recognized and we derive a great deal of satisfaction from adherence to our business model that has allowed us to sustain our success.
CIRSCO is extremely proud that it’s founder, Hig Rodriguez Dillinger, was selected to serve as a Respected Member of the CertainTeed Advisory Council for the Year 2010. This is an honor extended to those roofing contractors who have made a commitment to their industry and the quality materials and systems offered by the CertainTeed Corporation.
CIRSCO became an Authorized Approved Roofing Contractor for roof systems as manufactured by GAF Materials Corporation. GAF is the largest roofing materials manufacturer in the world and our partnership with them now allows us to install systems with warranties for up to 20 years.
CIRSCO expanded its office capacity and capabilities with a move to a recently built modern office/warehouse complex that is situated closer to the main highways in order to better serve its ever expanding market areas.
CIRSCO participated by having a booth in the Service Disabled Veteran Owned Business Expo that was held at MacDill Air Force Base. This Expo attracts businesses and Federal Agencies from all over the country.
CIRSCO was a very proud sponsor of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Hispanic Advisory Council as they celebrated the 25th Annual Hispanic Law Enforcement Appreciation Awards Dinner. The dinner recognizes personnel of the Sheriff’s Office for their outstanding service and scholarships are presented to deserving students.
CIRSCO is 1st Stop on Minority Enterprise Week Bus Tour
The CIRSCO facility was the first stop on the Minority Enterprise Week Tour Bus filled with public and private purchasing agents from Hillsborough, Pinellas and Polk counties. Passengers were received with a warm welcome when they disembarked and came inside to view firsthand the operations of a commercial contracting business.
Approximately 30 visitors gained a much broader insight into the many different types of roof materials, technical aspects of roof systems and code compliance issues that a roofing contractor faces everyday. Each of the purchasing agents left with a new appreciation of the challenges of running a small business.