10 Rounds with Shawn Brannan

10 Rounds with Shawn Brannan

1. What is one thing you would like building owners to know about (making repairs to) their roof?

Just do it, a stitch in time saves nine. We see small things that could be repaired for a fraction of a re-roofing project. Look at your roof, all the corners and crevices at least once per year and you will extend the life of your roof.

2. What’s the most common problems you see?

#1 service call on a flat roof is for corners opening up on a rubber or asphalt built up roof. Leak calls for rubber roofs are number 1, leak calls on built up roofs are number 2, TPO and PVC roof leaks are a fraction of the first two.

3. What are the worst things to put off repairing?

Tuckpointing, yep a masonry repair. On old buildings the mortar has deteriorated and falls out of the little space between the bricks then when you want to re-roof the roofer doesn’t have a wall to fasten the new roof to and you suddenly need to find a tuckpointer to do the repair as the roofer waits with your roof partially done. It’s difficult to find someone to do the work and it’s expensive but when a roofing project has started it becomes an unbudgeted repair.

4. How long have you been in roofing?

A little over 8 years.

5. What is the thing you’ve done at All Elements that has made you feel the best about doing it?

Documenting our procedures. We’ve always done things a certain way because they are successful, but if one person was out other people didn’t know what, how or when to do something. We have developed, documented and been disciplined enough to implement procedures which makes our daily activities much easier. With the growth All Elements has had in the 8 years I’ve been here I can’t imagine how we would be able to handle the volume with our old practices.

6. What’s one roof “hack” you want to share?

Not really a hack, but easy advice for anyone responsible for building maintenance. There are few products that will keep your building dry temporarily, until a proper repair can be done and half of them work on other exterior area’s as well. Contact me if you want the list, anyone who has been in the CRMT class I teach for the MHA has seen them.

7. What project is the one you will always remember?

I will remember many projects. In my position I have behind the scenes things I get to solve. Things like how to support our crews on a project in Watford City, ND, how to get enough 7/32” by 12” black oxide drillbits for American Crystal Sugar in Crookston, MN, but the number one will always be North Education Center for ISD# 287, it was my first large project and boy, did I learn lessons.

8. What’s one piece of safety advise?

You always have time to be safe. Everything we do can be unsafe, it’s up to you to make it safe. Everyone I know tells me not to fall off a roof but it’s everything, dropping a 40 lb. bucket of screws and crushing a toe, lifting something too heavy and injuring… something, crushing a finger, tripping on a pipe, falling through a roof deck, even the number 1 work related injury in America, cutting your non-dominant hand with a utility knife. You have more time to be safe than you have for a trip to the emergency room.

9. What’s your favorite lunch spot you’ve discovered?

Val’s Hamburgers, St. Cloud, MN! If you haven’t experienced it, you haven’t lived a full life. Make it a destination.

10. What’s your favorite song on the radio right now?

The last song that lit my lamp was “Trip Around the Sun” by Kenny Chesney.


Kari Switala