Case Studies


Preventing Business Interruptions during Roof Replacement
  • Written by: Dawn and Mark Nemelka – Owners of CLEANWRAP Inc. as featured in Chicago Roofing Contractor Associations
  • Produced by: CLEANWRAP Inc.
  • Estimated reading time: 6 mins

Each year many facilities plan & perform a re-roofing project as part of their annual building maintenance budget.  Re-roofing jobs present many challenges on the outside, as well as the often overlooked question of – “How will this work affect the inside?”  The re-roofing process creates the inevitable probability of insulation, metal shavings, bird dropping, and pieces of wood, rocks and old roofing materials falling inside.  When doing their work roofing contractors and their equipment can unintentionally shake the rooftop and cause existing particles to dislodge from structures above and fall.

Protecting under the roof…

With unwanted contaminants dropping from above, internal operations below can be seriously affected. In healthcare environments infection can be spread.  In manufacturing and distribution facilities, especially food plants, production and storage of goods can be spoiled by re-roofing dust & debris falling if the contamination is not contained. 

Options available to building owners and managers to protect the inside of the facility could be…..

–        Shut down operations for the duration of the roofing project.  Drape and tarp the machinery or move any equipment to another part of the building.  This is typically not a preferred choice.

–         Patch the roof, don’t re-roof.   Minor repair work means little rooftop traffic from people and equipment.  Operations may be able to continue below one more year without worry?

–        Protect the interior and stay open for business – Another solution is to have an interior protection system installed prior to any re-roofing work to protect occupants, operations, products, and property from contamination and damage!  

Interior protection systems are designed, created, and installed from different parts using proven installation methods, scissor lifts, articulating booms, ladders, scaffolding, and American made materials such as nylon strapping, vinyl tape, and reinforced engineered poly film.  The most common choice of material is reinforced six mil clear.  The built-in nylon string reinforcement is called Skrim and is laminated directly into the material at the factory.  Other choices include poly films produced with characteristics such as Fire Retardant, Anti-Static, and Anti-Microbial additives.  These alternatives may be chosen if the areas have combustibles, electronic equipment or are considered ‘clean rooms’.

Although interior protection systems typically do not guarantee against water infiltration, unwanted liquids collecting on top of the system can be diverted using a bulk head type drain with a garden hose inserted into the poly.

Many factors determine the final price to install a containment system and later take it all down and carefully remove it after the roof work is complete.  For a budget price or an allowance cost, we’ll ask a series of questions to determine job details needed to estimate the actual cost:

Level of Difficulty – How high in the air is the poly suspended ceiling going to be installed?  Are we installing above or below lights?  How many penetrations through the poly will there be at that elevation of install?  Are there digital pictures of the area that can be shared?

Accessibility – Which lifts are necessary to install the work- scissor lifts or articulating boom lifts?  Can we drive the lifts up and down the aisles of the facility?  Can we safely reach everything from a lift or do we need ladders and/or scaffolding?  Is the floor concrete, carpet, wood, or something else?

Work Hours – What hours are crews allowed to work?  Is this third shift work through the night or are weekdays during a shutdown?  Is the work limited to weekends or can the crew work continuous days?  Will the machinery be operating & will production be running?

Travel & Logistics – Where is this job site located?  What type of lodging for the crew is in the area?  How many hours of travel to and from the job?  How many mobilizations, can we complete this job in one trip or will we be required to travel back and forth multiple times to complete the job?

Miscellaneous – Are there any special conditions that need to be considered?  Which material:  Clear poly or a material with additives such as Fire Retardant, Anti-Microbial or Anti-Static?  Who will provide the dumpsters to dispose of the refuse after takedown?

One of the first questions we typically get asked is, “How much does interior protection cost?”  The real answer is: “It depends.”  Ninety percent of jobs cost between $1.00 – $2.00 per square foot of area protected.  To obtain bid proposal a qualified estimator will most likely have to visit the jobsite to verify measurements and take a look first hand.  Most firms who specialize in interior protection provide this service free of charge.

Why use an interior protection system during re-roofing?

Because you client’s most important asset is their INCOME!  Therefore, the costs of NOT implementing any type of interior protection could be higher than you think.  What could it cost your company or client if you do not propose to contain the dust and debris caused by a re-roofing project with a Temporary Interior Protection System? 

If you are a Roofing Consultant or a Roofing Contractor then it could cost you the job!  Imagine if you submit your bid proposal for a job to the key decision makers and you did not recommend or mention interior protection and your competition did.  When your competition talks about it, discusses it, and provides a solution for the potential problem and you do not… then isn’t it possible that your competitor appears more qualified and it may look as if your firm missed something? 

Consider this as an ‘add/option’ or separate allowance given to the building owner. There is no cost to include the option of interior protection – even if interior protection was not in the specifications.  Including this one additional item may set your company apart from your competition.

If dust and debris does contaminate the inside of the building, who is the facility going to blame?  They’ll definitely ask,” How come the Roofing Contractor or Consultant did not inform the building owner or tenant about this option?”  It typically comes down to, “It’s the Contractor’s fault or it’s the Consultant’s fault!”  And, if the Consultant or the Contractor fail to mention the degree of contamination that may enter the building as a result of a re-roofing project, then who is to blame?

Have you asked your clients if they can afford to shut down or close during a planned re-roofing project? What about a product recall, negative press on their product name and brand ID which they have built over the years – all caused by re-roofing contamination due to not installing an interior protection system.

A temporary interior protection system allows people to work and manufacturing to continue below WHILE the re-roofing project to takes place – all at the same time!

A highly regarded Chicagoland roofing professional once said, “Having a professionally installed interior protection system installed before we start the tear off provides me Peace of Mind.”

Dawn Nemelka, President of CLEANWRAP, and Mark Nemelka, Vice President of CLEANWRAP are hands on Owners who take pride in their company and the satisfaction of their clients.  The firm specializes in the installation of temporary interior protection systems.  Their services include suspended ceilings, construction barrier walls, and High Surface Cleaning.  Working Nationwide, CLEANWRAP’s client list includes roofing contractors and consultants, as well as numerous fortune 500 companies.  No job is too big, too small, or too far away. 

Published on: July 14, 2014

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