Maintaining A Flat Roof

Flat Roof Maintenance

There is no perfect roof, but for some reason flat roofs never seem to get any respect!  The sloped roof is far and away the choice for residential construction, and more and more builders are putting them on commercial and industrial buildings as well.

Advantages Of A Flat Roof

The flat roof has many advantages and offers unique options that are too often overlooked and underrated.  For instance:

  • A flat roof is considerably cheaper to build than a sloped roof.  They can be built quicker saving money on labor, and they have less surface area requiring less expense for materials.
  • They are more easily accessible and far less dangerous than sloped roofs.
  • They offer more uses than just keeping the elements out (i.e. a flat roof can be used for storage or as a roof top garden and terrace.
  • Compared to a sloped roof, a flat roof provides you maximum functional cubic volume for your construction dollar.

Care & Maintenance Of A Flat Roof

Assuming a flat roof is constructed of high quality materials and skillfully installed (especially at the edges), the key to avoiding problems is regular inspection and maintenance.

  • Inspect your flat roof seasonally and even more often if you have trees nearby that can drop leaves and debris which clog drains and create water puddles.
  • Drainage is vital!  Always make certain drains are clear.
  • After heavy snow or a freeze-thaw cycle look for, and break up, ice dams which cause water build up.
  • Look for signs of “ponding” after rain.  “Ponding” means a low area must be built up with rigid insultation and resurface to ensure proper water flow.
  • Blistering or mushy areas mean that water has gotten between roofing layers.  These areas need to be cut out and replaced.
  • When the surface looks cracked or “alligatored” consider a new fresh application of roofing tar.
  • To extend the life of a flat roof consider applying reflective aluminum paint.  It will prevent ultraviolet light from breaking down the roofing material and keep the building cooler.
  • Make certain edges are sealed and all flashing is in good repair.

Flat roofs have many advantages and offer unique architectural and living options.  They can serve you faithfully for many years, but the key is regular inspection and simple maintenance when required.

Most important of all is that a flat roof must be designed and installed by a professional roofing company with the expertise, skill, equipment and materials to do it right.

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2 Responses to “Maintaining A Flat Roof”

  1. Our Garden Blog » Blog Archive » A Guide To Flat Roofs Says:

    […] Maintaining A Flat Roof « Stormdamagerepairmn’s Blog […]

  2. Our Garden Blog » Blog Archive » The Importance Of Roof Inspection Says:

    […] Maintaining A Flat Roof « Stormdamagerepairmn’s Blog […]

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