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The Importance of Residential and Commercial Building Codes

Building codes have been around in the United States since the time of the Founding Fathers, but only within the last 20 years have they been standardized across all 50 states. Learn more about the importance of building codes—including the difference between residential and commercial codes—below. 

The Purpose of Building Codes

Building codes outline the minimum requirements that must be met to adhere to local health and safety regulations. They keep us safe by preventing disasters and also help prevent injuries if a disaster occurs. For example, emergency exits, proper installation of electrical wiring, and the use of fire-resistant materials are all the result of building codes. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, we spend 90% of our lives inside buildings—whether at home, school, or work—so it’s important to make sure they are safe and sound. 

The Difference Between Residential and Commercial Building Codes

The International Code Council (ICC) was created in 1994 in an effort to standardize building codes across the United States, consolidating the three separate organizations that had existed previously. The International Building Code (IBC) and International Residential Code (IRC) are two of the fifteen I-Codes outlined by the ICC. 

At first glance, it might seem like the IRC refers to residential construction and the IBC refers to commercial construction, however the IRC only covers new one- and two-family homes, accessory buildings (garages), and townhouses that are below three stories. The IBC, on the other hand, outlines codes for commercial buildings, including hotels and apartment complexes. The International Existing Building Code (IEBC) governs renovations, additions, and changes in occupancy on existing buildings.

No matter the job, contractors are required to obtain the proper permits prior to construction. Failure to obtain permits or adhere to codes could result in costly fines or delays.

The Unique Needs of Commercial Construction

Residential and commercial sites have very different needs when it comes to construction, including different building code regulations. Commercial buildings often have unique features such as elevators and accessible entrances, and some spaces may need to take specialized equipment or elaborate IT networks into consideration. 

At K & P Exteriors, we have the qualifications and expertise needed to complete both residential and commercial projects. Our contractors are licensed and insured, so you can be confident your job will be completed to the highest standards. Visit our website, or call (303) 853-0072 to learn more about our services.

The Use of Software in Construction

New advancements are made all the time in construction, from innovative installation methods to revolutionary materials. Every development helps make a contractor’s job easier and provides a better result for our clients. Here are some ways that software and technology have improved the field of construction, especially roofing. 

Project Management Software

At K & P Exteriors, we work on some pretty big projects, including the Johnstown Public Library, and the American Dream Home Project in Colorado. Project management software solutions help us to stay on top of these large projects—we can track inventory and expenses, schedule workers and tasks, and communicate with the other companies involved in the project. By staying on top of these details, we can ensure that the project is completed on time, within budget, and nothing is missed.

Design Software

AutoCAD has been the standard in construction design software since the 1980s, and it continues to be one of the most widely-used programs today. New features have been released over the years, including 3D design options and mobile functionality. 

Design software allows engineers, contractors, and clients to visualize the final project before the work starts, so they can comfortably make informed decisions. Contractors can place bids with accurate estimates, view and save digital blueprints, obtain the correct permits, plan for roadblocks and easily adjust the designs as needed—all on their tablet or computer, no rolled-up sheets of paper needed. 

Database Software

Customer service is incredibly important to us at K & P Exteriors, and we strive to form a strong relationship with all of our clients. Database software, or CRM solutions, help keep all of our client information in one place so it’s easy to find contact information and project details. And when we collaborate with the top construction companies in Colorado, we need to stay in constant communication with each other regarding the status of each project. 

Staying up to date with the latest technology means we can give our clients the best experience. At K & P Exteriors, we’re proud to use innovative methods to manage our projects, no matter the size. If your building needs exterior repairs, or you’re working on a new build, get in touch with us by calling (303) 853-0072 or visit our website for a complete list of our services. 

A Guide to Green Building Materials

We care a lot about the environment at K & P Exteriors, And new advancements in construction materials have made it easier to make environmentally-friendly choices for your home. 

Green Building Myths Debunked

  1. “I don’t want to live in an ugly home” While there are some pretty wild looking eco-friendly homes out there, there are plenty of ways for you to enjoy a green home without living in a Hobbit hole. In fact, many environmentally friendly homes look no different from regular builds. 
  2. “Using eco-friendly materials is too expensive.” Going green has become more mainstream, which means adding eco-friendly materials to your home is a smaller investment than you might think. Investing in high-quality materials reduces the need for future repairs, saving you more in the long run. Choosing green building materials may help improve your home’s resale value, and you could even be eligible for tax benefits too. 
  3. “It doesn’t matter if my home is eco-friendly.” Eco-friendly building materials can help improve your home’s air quality and lower your monthly bills, in addition to reducing your environmental footprint. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that 569 million tons of construction and demolition waste were produced in the U.S. in 2017—by choosing environmentally-friendly materials, you can help lower this number considerably. 

Types of Green Building Materials

  • Recycled and recyclable materials. Metal, clay, slate, and even vinyl are all recyclable, which means they can be diverted from the landfill rather than contributing to the high amounts of construction and demolition waste.
  • Natural materials. You’re probably familiar with cellulose insulation, but some manufacturers are going a step further and using bales of straw and sheep’s wool to keep homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter. 
  • Reclaimed materials. Different from recycled materials, which are often broken down and remade, reclaimed materials allow builders to repurpose ‘perfectly good’ waste rather than discarding it. The use of reclaimed wood has significantly increased with the rise of rustic decor trends. 

When it comes to materials, it’s important to keep our climate in mind. Colorado is known for snowy winters and hot summers, so you’ll want to choose materials that can stand up to the elements. 

K & P Exteriors is your source for home exterior repairs, replacements, and installations in Colorado. We’ll work directly with you to determine the best materials for your project’s needs, and we strive to do what we can to reduce our environmental impact. Visit our website or call (303) 853-0072 to get started today!

How to Keep Your Attic Cool

Colorado is known for amazing scenery, with areas ranging from arid deserts to lush forest and mountain valleys. Along with this stunning landscape, however, comes some intense weather with summers reaching 95°F or above during July and August. Read on to learn more about how this heat affects your home, especially your attic. 

The Importance of Keeping Your Attic Cool

Summer can be hard on your roof, especially your attic. Just like a vehicle, the temperature of your attic is often significantly higher than the temperature outside. On a 95°F day, attic temperatures can be as high as 150°F! 

Without proper insulation, overheating in your attic will lead to excess heat in the rest of your home. Your energy bills will skyrocket as your air conditioner struggles to keep up—for some homes, a hot attic could account for up to 30% of your cooling costs. Attic heat can also bake your shingles, causing your roof to deteriorate faster and fail prematurely

Top Tips to Cool Your Attic 

  1. Choose lighter-colored roofing materials. Lighter colors reflect solar energy rather than absorbing it, and choosing light-colored roofing materials can reduce the temperature of your attic by approximately 20°F. 
  2. Make sure your attic is insulated. While proper insulation might not keep your attic cool, it will help reduce the transfer of heat to the rest of your home.  Check out this resource on home insulation from the U.S. Department of Energy, and always have insulation installed by a licensed contractor. 
  3. Ventilate your roof. Not only will roof vents help cool your attic off, but they’ll also reduce the build-up of mildew in your ceiling. 

Types of Roofing Vents

There are many different types of roofing vents, but they all serve the same purpose—allowing air to flow through your attic. Some vents are passive, relying on air pressure and thermodynamics to draw cool air up through soffit vents and out through your roof. Other styles are more active, using electric fans or wind power to actively pull hot air out of your attic. We recommend using solar-powered electric fans, so you get the benefit of a powered vent without the added electrical cost. 

At K & P Exteriors, we’ll work directly with you to determine the best solution for your home. If your attic needs improved ventilation, or your roof needs repairs, visit our website and get in touch at (303) 853-0072 to see why we’re the top choice for home exteriors in Colorado!

The Importance of OSHA 30 Certification

Whether we’re down on the ground, or up on a roof, we take safety seriously here at K & P Exteriors. Learn more about the importance of the OSHA 30 Certification, and why you should always hire safety-certified contractors for your commercial construction needs. 

The History of Safety in Construction

Chances are you’re familiar with the photo of ironworkers sitting on a steel beam (above) during the construction of the Rockefeller Center in Manhattan in 1932. Eleven men are sitting and eating lunch, their feet dangling 840’ above the ground—with no safety gear to be seen. 

Things have changed quite a bit since that photo was taken. Worker’s rights movements helped to improve the working conditions for laborers, especially within the construction industry. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 led to the creation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, better known as OSHA. And new advancements in equipment and technology have made it easier than ever to stay safe on the job. 

Common Safety Hazards in Commercial Roofing

Construction sites pose many safety hazards, which is why it’s important to have properly trained and certified staff, including site supervisors. Common safety hazards in the roofing industry include: 

  • Falls 
  • Electrical hazards, including working around power lines 
  • Exposure to hazardous materials, especially when re-roofing old buildings 
  • The use of power tools in an awkward setting, such as the nooks and crannies of a roof
  • Working in high temperatures

Additional factors can also play a role, such as the stability of the roof, weather conditions, quality of equipment, and proper training. On large-scale projects such as commercial sites, these hazards are even more prevalent with multiple workers—often from different companies—working at once. 

The Importance of OSHA 30 Certification

The OSHA 30-hour Construction Industry Outreach Training Course, also known as OSHA 30 Certification, offers comprehensive safety instruction for anyone in the construction industry. The course covers topics such as working in confined spaces, the use of cranes/hoists/elevators, ergonomics, scaffolds, exposure to hazardous materials, and fire protection. 

The OSHA 30 Certification course is designed for workers with safety responsibilities, including those in a supervisory role such as foremen, safety directors, and project managers. Having OSHA 30 Certified workers on-site can help make sure all safety procedures are being followed, keeping everyone safe on the job and insurance costs down. This is especially important on commercial sites, where delays can impact other teams or projects.

At K & P Exteriors, all of our experienced installers and supervisors are certified and insured. Visit our website to see a complete list of our services, or call (303) 853-0072 for more information. 

The 2020 St. Jude Dream Home

K & P Exteriors was proud to partner with Oakwood Homes to bring you the 2020 St. Jude Dream Home in Green Vally Ranch, Aurora. Read on to learn more about this amazing home, and how we helped, and see our previous support for the St. Jude Dream Home in 2016, 2018 and 2019

The Importance of St. Jude Hospital

The St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital was founded in 1962 by entertainer Danny Thomas, and his friends Lemuel Diggs and Anthony Abraham. They believed that “no child should die in the dawn of life”. Approximately 7,500 children receive treatment at St. Jude each year, many of them traveling from around the world. The original hospital campus is located in Memphis, TN, with eight affiliate clinics in Louisiana, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Missouri, Tennessee, Alabama, and Illinois.

As a research and teaching hospital, St. Jude has made a significant impact on the treatment of childhood cancer. The survival rate of acute lymphoblastic leukemia has increased from just 4% in 1962 to 94% today, and the overall survival rate for childhood cancer has increased from 20% to 80%. But perhaps the most impactful feature of the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is that no family is ever sent a bill for the care they receive. Treatment, travel, housing, and food costs are all covered by donations so that families can focus on what matters most—their children.

The 2020 St. Jude Dream Home in Colorado

Oakwood Homes has helped raise over $10 million for St. Jude, and they continued their work this year with the 2020 St. Jude Dream Home located in Green Valley Ranch, Aurora. This gorgeous 3,666 sq. foot home is located on a spacious corner lot and features 4 beds, 3.5 baths, and a 3-car extended garage. Additional features include a pet spa located in the laundry room, a wet bar in the basement, and an outdoor kitchen and fireplace. The estimated value of this home is $725,000.

Our Contribution

Supporting our community has always been a priority for us at K & P Exteriors. We were happy to donate the materials and labor to install the roofing and siding, as well as the labor to install the windows. 

Tickets are sold out, but keep an eye on FOX31 and Colorado’s Own Channel 2—the winner will be announced September 3rd, 2020. 

Building your own dream home? K & P Exteriors is your source for quality roofing and siding installation in Colorado and Utah. Visit our website or call (303) 853-0072 for more information.

Drones And The Roofing Industry

Roofing isn’t just shingles and nails anymore. New technological advancements are changing the game for us. Read on to learn more about how unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV’s), also known as drones, are shaping the future of roofing: 

Prior To Construction

Before construction can begin, a series of inspections and checks take place. Drones are incredibly useful during the pre-construction process, as they allow roofers to see the worksite without stepping foot onto the roof. 

More roofers are using drones to conduct roofing inspections and for good reason. Drone inspections can be completed by one person standing on the ground—no need for a team of workers to set up scaffolding! And since the roofer is still on the ground, there’s no concern about the safety or structural integrity of the roof being inspected. 

Drones are also useful during the bidding process, giving both clients and contractors a better understanding of the job site. They’re able to get into hard to reach or tight-fitting spaces, which means contractors are able to predict any unique challenges before starting the project. This allows contractors to get an accurate estimate of the full cost of the project.

During Construction

Once construction begins, drones give visual access to site managers and clients, improving communication and helping establish trust. Clients can see real-time progress of their project, including before and after images if a drone was also used in the pre-construction phase. Managers can easily track progress across a number of projects, without having to physically travel from site to site—improving safety and visibility for the workers, and increasing documentation for the company. 

Top Tips For Purchasing A Drone

Before you purchase a drone, make sure you’re familiar with the local UAV regulations as established by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). For example, some places require special permits before you can fly a drone over a public space. Using a drone for work purposes often requires pilots to be FAA-Certified. At K & P Exteriors, all of our supervisors have obtained the proper UAV pilot license.

Invest in a model you trust, and make sure it has the features you’re looking for—battery life, quality camera, etc. Some drones even come equipped with a thermal imaging camera, allowing contractors to monitor the quality of insulation on a building. 

At K & P Exteriors, we’re proud to stay up to date with the leading technological advancements in our industry. We comply with all local and state regulations regarding the use of drones. To learn more about the services we provide, including roofing inspections and new construction builds, visit our website or call us at (303) 853-0072.

Wind Damage And Your Roof

Your roof protects your home against the elements, and sometimes sustains damage in the process. We covered how to identify signs of hail damage in a previous blog. Read on to learn more about the damage wind can cause, and how to address it: 

What’s A Little Wind?

Damage to your shingles can occur with wind speeds as low as 50 mph. Colorado sees an average of 47 tornadoes each year, while the canyons in Utah are known to produce strong wind gusts, leaving homes in both states susceptible to wind damage.

Signs Of Damage

Asphalt shingles are designed to withstand heavy winds, but intense gusts or prolonged exposure can cause shingles to fail. Here’s what to look for: 

  • Creasing: Negative pressure creates a suction effect on your roof, lifting shingles without completely removing them. Crease lines may be visible where shingles have come loose and bent backward.
  • Curling: Just like with creasing, some shingles may have curled edges or corners. Shingles are intentionally overlapped to create a watertight rooftop, and any lifting can break this seal, leaving your home exposed to potential water damage. 
  • Cracked/broken shingles: This one might be a little obvious, but if your shingles are cracked or broken, your roof needs repairs. Look for pieces of shingles in your yard after a storm, or check for bare spots on your roof by doing a visual inspection.  
  • Damaged flashing or boots: Flashing and boots protect the seal between your roof and other surfaces like vents and walls. Strong winds can damage or dislodge flashing, leaving behind a perfect entry point for rainwater. 
  • Worn-off granules: Granules give shingles their color and also help weatherproof your roof. Over time, strong winds can cause granules to fall off, leaving your shingles bare. 

Preventing Damage

You can’t control the weather, but you can take steps to reduce wind damage on your roof. Choose high-quality shingles, and always have your roof installed by a licensed, certified roofer. Keep trees trimmed to prevent branches from rubbing against your shingles, and cut down any trees that are a hazard to your home.

If your home has been damaged by a storm, K & P Exteriors is here to help. We’ll guide you through the insurance process, and complete all repairs in a timely manner. To learn more about our services, visit our website or call (303) 853-0072. 

COVID-19 Protocols at K & P Exteriors

At K & P Exteriors, the safety and comfort of our clients and team is our top priority. Read on to learn more about the procedures we’ve implemented to help stop the spread of COVID-19: 

In Our Office

Our team continues to work hard to deliver the service and professionalism you deserve while implementing safety protocols in accordance with the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and state health guidelines. 

Our office is operating at a capacity of 50% or less, with employees telecommuting where possible. Any staff who feel ill or have potentially been exposed to COVID-19 are instructed to self-quarantine and return to work only after they have been cleared. 

Masks are worn by all employees, both in the office and on the job site, and daily temperature checks will be taken. All personnel, subcontractors, and customers are required to maintain proper social distancing of at least six feet from one another.

On The Job Site

In addition to the precautions laid out above, we’re implementing on-site training (called Toolbox Talks) to spread awareness, provide accurate information, and ensure our teams can follow the best practices laid out by the CDC. 

We continue to work closely with our vendors and trade partners, to maximize our services with limited resources. Emergency work will be given priority—please be patient as we schedule non-emergency service requests. 

How You Can Help

We sincerely appreciate your patience and continued support during these times. If you are coming to see us in-office, please self-screen before entering. Reschedule your appointment if you answer YES to any of the following: 

  • Is anyone in your home currently sick, or self-quarantined? 
  • Has anyone in your home been in direct contact with anyone with the COVID-19 virus? 
  • Are there any other risks for COVID-19 in your home, such as recent travel? 

We’ll send you a service confirmation/reminder via email or phone 24 hours before your appointment. If you are not feeling well, please let us know as soon as possible and we will reschedule. Our team reserves the right to reschedule appointments if noticeable symptoms are apparent. 

We take the threat of COVID-19 seriously, and we’re committed to protecting the health of our customers and associates. If you have questions, or you need to reschedule your appointment, please call us at (303) 853-0072. Together, we can help keep our community safe.

Johnstown Public Library—Project Update

At K & P Exteriors, we’re proud to be able to support our community. We recently completed work on the Glenn A. Jones, M.D. Memorial Library in Johnstown, Colorado. 


BEFORE:

AFTER:

About The Project

The work took about four months, beginning in August 2019 and wrapping up in December 2019. We replaced the worn-out siding and shingles, giving the library an updated look. 

The existing standing seam siding was replaced with James Hardie ColorPlus® board and batten, which offers superior fade resistance. High-end storm shingles were used to help protect the library from the extreme Colorado weather, and ensure the repairs will last throughout the years. 

Unique Challenges

The pitch of the roof and scale of the project presented some unique challenges for us. The majority of the library’s roof is a 12/12 pitch (or a 45° angle), and it measured over 20 000 square feet. All of the work was completed while the library remained open so that they could continue serving the community. 

Thank You, Fransen Pittman

This project was managed by Fransen Pittman.  Fransen Pittman is a local construction company founded in 1994, with years of experience tackling large scale jobs like schools, healthcare buildings, and community centers. Their company philosophy is to “work hard, but work for others”, and we appreciate the support and perspective they brought to this project. 

The Glenn A. Jones, M.D. Memorial Library

The Glenn A. Jones M.D. Memorial Library, located at 400 S. Parish Avenue in Johnstown, CO, has been a valuable part of Weld County since 1965. The library was designed with its patrons in mind, featuring a themed play area in a tower with dragons and jesters, a large selection of books for all ages, and even an outdoor seating area to enjoy the Colorado sun.

K & P Exteriors has been a trusted roofing and siding company since 2013. We’re happy to work alongside big-name construction companies to help improve our community, from large cultural and community centers to new home construction projects in Colorado and Utah. Learn more about our services by visiting our website or call us at (303) 853-0072.