Are your products aluminum or steel?
We use both steel and aluminum. Steel is much stronger than aluminum so for our products that need very high structural values, steel is our choice. Aluminum is a great choice for more complex shapes and when strength values don’t need to be quite as high.
How much does a RoofScreen system cost per linear foot?
This is one of the most common questions we get - and probably the hardest one to answer. The problem is that there are so many variables that can change the cost dramatically. The best we can do without knowing anything about the project is to say it will most likely be between $90 and $350 per lineal foot. That’s a big window – we get that. To try to figure out where you are in that range, you can think of it this way: the biggest cost-driving factors are screen height, building height and wind speed. So if your project is in Sacramento CA, on a 12ft tall building, and your screen height is 4ft, you may be on the lower end of the cost range. On the other hand, if you project is in Miami FL, on a 30ft tall building, and your screen is 8ft tall, you may be on the higher end of the cost range.
There’s a lot more that goes into it than that, but we’re just trying to help you get an idea. Please visit our Pricing page for more info and to see some pricing examples. You also might want to check out this very detailed Technical Article for more information: How to Get the Best Price on a Roof Screen
What we really want you to do is give us a call. We’ll talk you through it and provide you with a much more accurate and realistic quote.
Do your Roof Attachments work with all types of roofing?
Yes, the RoofScreen Attachment systems work with any type of roofing system including Built Up, TPO, PVC, EPDM, Liquid Applied, Foam and Metal. RoofScreen Attachments are designed to be installed using industry approved techniques that are considered best practices in roofing. For that reason, any roofing materials manufacturer will approve the attachment with their system without compromising the roofing warranty. We have over 65,000 roof attachments in service across the United States, and have never been rejected by a roofing system manufacturer. Oh, and by the way - we've never had a leak.
To learn more about how we attach to roofs, visit our Roof Attachments page.
For more information about the flashings, get our Product Data Sheet.
Do you provide engineering?
Absolutely! And we’ll even stamp it for any state in the US and Canada. We’re not talking about generic data sheets with all kinds of caveats that have been rubber stamped for general use, but rather a full set of shop drawings and calculations tailored to the specific project and location. We do this every day and we’re good at it. So you can be sure the project is designed correctly and in the most economical way possible. Value engineering is job one with us. For more information please see our Engineering page.
How do you deal with thick or tapered rooftop insulation?
Roof attachments must mount to the decking and fasten into structural members below. Base Supports need to be tall enough to extend through rooftop insulation far enough to allow proper roofing to take place. To accommodate different thicknesses of rooftop insulation, RoofScreen Base Support Systems are available in various fixed heights, adjustable heights and include optional extensions when applicable.
Our Square Attachments with RotoLock™ include Base Supports that are available in 5", 9" and 12" fixed heights. We also offer 3" and 4" Extensions for these Base Supports. The Bases and Extensions can be mixed and matched to achieve just about any height desirable. However, the taller they are, the weaker they become so they really should not be stacked higher than about 16" to 20".
Our Round Post Supports are completely adjustable with an upper sleeve that telescopes to any height desired.
With these height options available, any insulation thickness can easily be accommodated. For tapered insulation systems, you can either use the worst case base height (where the insulation is at its thickest point) and adjust the flashing heights as necessary, or use different Base Support heights for the varying insulation thicknesses on the roof.
For more information, please visit our Roof Attachments page.
Do your bases need to be shimmed level to account for roof slope?
Nope. That’s one of the coolest parts of our design. Our Square Base with RotoLock™ attachment system has adjustment built in. The bases can be mounted directly to the roof with no concern about whether they are plumb or level. Instead of going into all the detail on how we do this here in the FAQ page, you should take a look at our Roof Attachments page. Make sure to watch the video on that page as it specifically shows the answer to this question.
How tall of a RoofScreen can you design?
How tall do you want it? Sometimes, we jokingly say, “it’s a simple matter of engineering.” The truth is that there’s nothing simple about building a huge sail on a rooftop. The forces from wind loads can be massive and it takes some ingenuity to make that work. But that’s where you benefit from working with us. We know how to engineer for difficult and challenging situations.
Most of the rooftop screening systems we design are between 4 ft and 12 ft tall, which are usually not challenging at all and easily accomplished with our standard frame configurations. It’s important to understand that wind loads vary greatly by location and building height. So the maximum reasonable height for a roof screen will be limited by the design wind pressure calculated for the project. We’ve designed screens as high as 18 ft with our standard frame configurations in areas with relatively mild wind loads. But we have also custom designed screens as tall as 22 ft in higher wind areas. For more information on our standard roof screen systems, please see our RoofScreen™ System page. To learn more about our versatile framing system, please see our Steel Tube Framing page.
What wind speeds / loads are you rated for?
We’re actually not rated at all, but that’s a good thing. Products that claim a rating for a certain wind speed are playing marketing games. Basically they are dumbing it down for the public by referencing wind speed as the criteria for product strength. But the truth is that wind speed is only part of the equation for calculating wind loads on a building or product. This means somewhere in the fine print, they talk about the other contributing factors like building height, wind exposure, risk factor, etc. This approach would be like a car dealer saying “Model X gets 48 mpg.” Then in the fine print you see that to get that kind of mileage you have to have a tail wind and be going downhill.
RoofScreen won’t dumb anything down for you, and we don’t sugar coat the truth. We would rather provide you with a just-right-engineered solution. So we look at each individual project with our value-engineering colored lenses, and provide tailored shop drawings and engineering calculations that match the specific conditions of your project. To learn more about how we engineer individual projects, please see our Engineering page.
Will using your louvers reduce wind loads on the structure?
The quick answer is yes, but here’s the caveat: the louver blades need to be spaced so there is a visible gap when looking straight-on at a 90° angle to the face of the louver system. As the gap increases in size, the wind load decreases on the structure.
Unfortunately, the International Building Code (IBC) and ASCE7-10 won’t allow a load reduction if the blades cover 100% of the area when viewed at 90°, even though wind can theoretically pass through the louvers at an angle. But we don’t make up the rules – we just follow them. Other manufacturers may claim wind load reductions even when the blades are closer together (no visible gap) but they are just playing marketing games. The fine print reveals they are not following the Building Code.
For more in-depth information on this with illustrations, please see our Technical Article titled The Truth About Louvers and Wind
How does RoofScreen pricing compare to Div 5 structural steel?
The quick answer: RoofScreen is less expensive. But it’s not always that straightforward. In a retrofit situation if you compare the RoofScreen system to having a structural steel company come out and erect structural steel into the building, it’s a no-brainer; RoofScreen wins. However, for a new construction project it becomes more convoluted. If everyone is honest and takes the time to consider all the real costs, RoofScreen still wins. Check out our technical article titled 5 Types of Equipment Screens Compared for a more in-depth discussion on the subject.
Have you worked with DSA or OSHPD?
Yes, we’ve designed and engineered many jobs through both DSA (Division of the State Architect – California) and OSHPD (Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development – California). We can provide a list of completed jobs upon request.
Do you have product approvals like ICC, ICBO, Miami-Dade, etc?
Our systems are capable of being designed to thousands of variables so it’s not practical to test and pre-approve them. Products that typically obtain pre-approvals are the type that can be applied the same way on many different projects in different locations. This allows the product to be used on the project without engineering calculations to support the specific application. Pre-approval is not required for our products since we provide wet stamped, site specific engineering, tailored to the project conditions including local codes, wind loads, exposures, etc.
Check out our Technical Bulletin for Miami-Dade Compliance.
Can you dismantle the RoofScreen system for roof repairs or replacement?
Yes. That’s one of the great features of our modular, bolt-together design. The system could be completely dismantled and re-installed if desired. So for a major remodel or re-roofing project, the system could actually be taken completely apart and stored elsewhere while the construction takes place. Afterwards, the system could be re-installed. The only items that cannot be re-used are the Base Gaskets and Base Cap Sealing Bolts (both minor and inexpensive parts). Of course, roof flashings may or may not be re-usable depending on a lot of factors.
Alternatively, re-roofing could take place by removing one frame at a time. Each frame can easily be removed temporarily while the roofing takes place in that spot. The adjacent frames can handle the extra span for a short period of time, assuming you're not working in a wind storm!
Where and how do you ship?
We ship our products via flatbed trucks, and enclosed common carriers to destinations all over the United States on a routine basis. We can also handle more challenging shipments when necessary, including Canada, Hawaii and other destinations. Most of our products are shipped from our facility in Santa Cruz, CA. However, some items like panels and Hat Sections may be drop shipped from vendor locations closer to the project if possible.
Depending on the size of the order and the mix of products, shipments may arrive together or in multiple deliveries . Products are heavy and usually require a forklift to unload. Lift-gates are not included in shipping estimates and will result in additional fees if required. We cannot guarantee when an order will arrive. Consider any shipping or transit times quoted to you as an estimate only.
Do you install?
We do offer installation services in California. We use subcontractors for this as we do not maintain our own installation crews. The advantage to using this service is that we have the experience and expertise to get the job done fast and accurately. We use trusted subcontractors who have experience with our products, so you can be assured the project will get done right. It can also be much more convenient for you to provide one contract for material and labor, and not have to deal with managing the subs.
Give us a call if you need a quote! Contact Us
Who installs your products?
Our products are fairly intuitive and easy to install. Our installation manuals with step by step instructions and illustrations, along with our detailed shop drawing sets makes the installation straightforward for anyone with basic construction skills. Our products have been successfully installed by roofing, architectural sheet metal, HVAC, electrical and general contractors. We can provide lists of contractors familiar with our products for many cities. We also offer installation services for California projects. For more information please Contact Us.
How do I estimate my labor cost?
Obviously there are many things that can affect the time it takes to install RoofScreen products like site conditions and crew speed, but we assume you already understand all that. To get you in the right ballpark, we have several things to help you out. First, you should check out our Pricing page. On that page you will find a useful chart with average installation speeds we have gathered from our own testing as well as feedback from trusted contractors. Another place you can find some good information is our Downloads page where you can find installation manuals and our Design Guide. These documents will give you greater insight into the products and how they are installed, which should help you properly estimate labor.
What is your lead time?
Here is a list of some average lead times for different products and services. These are subject to change at any time and can be affected by work load, so if you really need to pin down a schedule, please call us.
- Get a quote: Anywhere from same day for a simple project when all the information is provided, to a week for a more complex project when we have to do the take-off and/or ask a lot of questions.
- Engineering & Shop Drawings: Typically about 2 to 3 weeks but we've done it in a matter of days before when we've had all the required information and our engineers were not on other projects.
- Material shipments: Most our products are in stock at our facility in Santa Cruz, CA. We can usually package and ship within a week of order release. Hat channels and panels have a longer lead time because we source them from vendors located at various locations across the country. The timing on these items can range from 2 to 12 weeks depending on the type of panels being ordered. Contact us for more specific information.
Where and how can I buy your products?
We have a lot of good information about this on our Pricing page, but here's a quick summary. We sell direct without the use of distributors, so you can just simply give us a call and we can set you up to buy whatever you need. We take major credit cards, or we can set you up with 30 day terms on approved credit. We can work with you on a project basis, which we call a "System Order", where we provide all the engineering and project management necessary, or if you simply want to buy parts without engineering or project management, you can provide us with a parts list for us to fulfill.
Can I supply my own panels?
Yes. We don't try to hold you hostage by making you buy our panels for your roof screen. However, you may find it more convenient to get them from us. If you source through us and we’re providing an engineered project design, you get the benefit of having the panels and trims detailed and integrated into the shop drawings and engineering calculations.
You are also free to source panels anywhere you want and mount them to our framing system. This may be the best method for certain specialty panels unavailable for us to source for you. In this case, details and wind calculations would need to be performed by others.
Do you have perforated panels?
Perforated panels are not a standard item but can be provided if requested. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you are considering perforated panels.
- Using perforated panels for an equipment screen can provide a very attractive architectural look, but as a general rule, they are more expensive than standard solid panels.
- One advantage in using perforated panels is that they can help reduce the overall wind load on a roof screen. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean lower cost. As the free open area of the perforated panel increases, the wind load applied to the panel decreases due to less surface area. But as the free open area increases (i.e. larger perforated holes) the panel also gets weaker and cannot span as far. To compensate for weaker panels, the panel material may need to be thicker or more supporting frames may need to be installed, thus increasing the system price.
- Perforated panels do not include finish warranties. This is because the metal is perforated after it is painted as it is not practical or economical to post-paint perforated sheets. The edges of the holes where the perforations take place are susceptible to chipping and peeling. If the base material is steel, rust will form where such paint failures occur.
- Due to potential for rust with steel panels, perforated panels should be aluminum or stainless steel, both of which are more expensive than steel.
What information do you need to quote a RoofScreen System?
The more details and information we have about your project, the more accurate a price we can give you. You’d be amazed how the smallest things can have a big impact on the pricing of a RoofScreen system. So the best thing to do is provide us with project drawings if you have them. If you want, just send us the whole set of architectural and structural plans and we will find the information we need. At the very minimum, we’re going to need the roof plan, elevations, sections, and roofing details from the architectural drawings, and the roof framing plan from the structural drawings.
If there are no project drawings, we would need as many of the following items as possible.
- Project address so we can calculate local wind loads.
- Height from the ground to the top of the screen.
- Occupancy use (school, office building, church, retail, etc.)
- Sketch of the roof screen layout with dimensions.
- Desired height of the RoofScreen.
- Type and height of the face panels.
- Panel orientation (vertical or horizontal).
- Roofing type (BUR, TPO, PVC, etc.)
- Thickness of rooftop insulation (if applicable).
- Type of roof framing structure (concrete slab, open web steel joist, wood beam, etc.)
- Spacing between roof structural members.
For a much more detailed explanation, please see our technical article titled How to Get the Best Price on a Roof Screen.