Do you ever spend time thinking about the things that contribute to your smooth-sailing daily operations? More specifically, the structures that make up your facility? Most likely, your answer is no.
We’ll go straight to the point. The roof is an essential part of your business. It acts as the barrier between your investments and the weather. Nobody could ever live and work comfortably without a roof!
Roofs on buildings usually hold equipment such as cooling units, skylights, and more. The fact that they’re situated on the roof means that the material is prone to foot traffic roofing damage. Now, this is one major risk for roofing failure.
There is, however, a solution to this… A rooftop walkway system. This post discusses everything you should know about this roof access walkway:
- What a rooftop walkway system is
- How it benefits you
- Some considerations in choosing a rooftop walkway system
So, let’s begin.
What Is a Rooftop Walkway System?
Basically, a rooftop walkway system is a pathway that allows people to traverse the roof in a safe manner. It can be made of various materials.
There are walkways made of rubber. They easily stick to rooftops and are great for EPDM roofing systems.
On the other hand, there are walkways made of metal. We install non-slip plank grating walkways from METALS, INC. Check out this roofing service of ours.
Benefits of a Rooftop Walkway System
Why should you invest in this structure as part of your roofing system? Here are some advantages worth considering:
1. Protection from potential slips and falls.
It’s no secret that walking up on the roof is a dangerous task. The danger increases especially if the roof is sloped. It doesn’t matter if your roof is corrugated, a standing seam, or is made of a single-ply membrane.
Manufacturers design rooftop walkway systems so that their surfaces remain slip resistant. The surface is either grated or ribbed. At Central Roofing Solutions, we provide non-slip plank grating walkways.
Whatever maintenance work your workers have to perform, you rest easy because you know that nothing bad will happen to them. In fact, you’ll find safety walkways with optional handrails. Handrails are necessary if there are potential fall hazards.
Because you made your roof safer to walk on, you reduce the chances of legal action against you. A safety walkway for the roof doesn’t just protect workers. It also protects you as the company owner.
2. Prevents roofing wear and tear.
Does a rooftop walkway protect the roof? Yes, definitely – because it serves as a path for people to walk on, foot traffic on the roof is reduced. Foot traffic, especially repeated traffic, speeds up wear and tear.
If you have a single-ply membrane system as your roofing, expect a crushed insulation. You already know that roof damage from foot traffic results in a costly repair or replacement. We can say that safety rooftop walkways make a great long-term investment. They result in higher savings.
Aside from maintaining your roof through inspections, roof walkways maximize roofing lifespan.
3. Enhance the work efficiency.
A roof that’s easy and safe to walk on translates to higher productivity and efficiency among workers. Whether people need to fix the HVAC or install holiday lights, they can do the job with minimal disruptions.
Overall, rooftop walkways provide a defined route for everyone. This is especially true if it’s normally harder to work around ducts and pipes without the walkways.
Things to Consider When Designing Roof Access Walkways
Before you hire a qualified contractor to install a roof walkway, here are some aspects or features to consider. Knowing them helps you get the best walkway for the roof.
1. The weight of the material
How much the roof walkway will weigh matters. Of course, you wouldn’t want it to damage the roofing material over time.
Experts highly recommend aluminium. Aluminium is lightweight. It safely supports the weight of your workers. At the same time, its weight doesn’t impact the roof. The best part is that aluminium is durable.
2. Non-slip surface
As we mentioned earlier, choose a rooftop walkway that reduces the chances for slips and falls to occur. That said, make sure that the walkway has a grated or ribbed surface. It can also have a combination of both.
3. Prevents pooling of water
Part of roofing maintenance is making sure that your roof doesn’t accumulate water when it rains. The same thing goes for rooftop walkways. Speak with your contractor about a built-in drainage system for the walkway. This prevents water from pooling, causing accidents among personnel.
4. Presence of handrails or guardrails
Rooftop walkway systems come with handrails or guardrails that are optional. At Central Roofing Solutions, we install these handrails if your roof slope is greater than 5 degrees. These handrails serve as an additional safety feature. More importantly, our handrails meet OSHA specifications. With handrails or guardrails in place, the potential for falls is further minimized.
5. Zero penetrations
Your roofing contractor should make sure that when they install the walkway, it won’t compromise the roof. While rooftop walkways attach to the roof, they should not pierce it. To ensure sturdiness and stability, we’re going to tether the system to your roof in the right areas.
6. Ease of installation and maintenance
We know that facility owners want to save as much time as possible. It only makes good business sense to invest in things that won’t require a lot of care. Our rooftop walkway system resists rust and corrosion so you won’t have to worry about the walkway deteriorating in a few years.
And yes, we can assemble the parts easily without disturbing other roofing equipment.
Thank you for checking out our post on a rooftop walkway system. Again, this important roofing structure increases workers’ safety on the roof. It also protects your roof from foot traffic that creates damage. We should also mention that with rooftop walkways in place, you preserve your roofing system’s appearance for many years to come.
Thinking about a rooftop walkway? Learn more and call Central Roofing Solutions at 330-359-1727.