By Karen L. Edwards.
The International Roofing Expo (IRE) is the roofing industry’s largest educational conference and exposition. RT3 members took advantage of the opportunity to share their knowledge and educate others while also learning at the same time.
The week started on Sunday, February 2 with National Women in Roofing Day. The opening Turbo Talks featured RT3 board member Anna Anderson, speaking about what RT3 is and sharing a glimpse of the technologies that are currently being used in the industry as well as what is coming.
On Monday, February 3, nearly 50 RT3 members met at the Omni Hotel and were shuttled to fellow member KPost Roofing & Waterproofing headquarters for a technology tour. KPost partners Steve Little, Keith Post and Jayne Williams opened their operations and shared the technologies that they have implemented and the difference that it has made for their company’s productivity and efficiency.
Following the operations tour, RT3 members saw a live demonstration of the Mini Macaden, which automates the installation of modified bitumen membrane, reducing the number of crew needed and increasing the speed and quality of the installation while dramatically reducing the amount of propane used. Steve shared that they learned about the automated machine after losing a phase two project bid to a Canadian contractor that came in $700,000 lower. Knowing the requirements of the project, the KPost team was baffled as to how they could have bid so low. To find out the answer, Steve’s team visited the jobsite to see how they were doing the work. That’s when they saw the Mini Macaden in use.
After touring the KPost Roofing & Waterproofing campus, RT3 members visited and toured Globe Life Field, the new home of the Texas Rangers that features a retractable roof. Steve and his project team shared the details of the roof installation and the challenges of installing the PVC membrane on the curved roof.
Tuesday, February 3 started off with the RT3 Contractor Technology panel featuring Ken Kelly, Steve Little, Michelle Boykin, Josey Parks and moderator Heidi Ellsworth. The well-attended session covered how each of these contractors is using technology in their everyday business, including augmented reality, virtual reality, artificial intelligence and more. The goal was to educate contractors and share their experiences to help others consider and implement the valuable technologies that are elevating the roofing industry.