Business owners who want to save on construction costs while adding a unique spin to their building design opt for a flat roof. It makes sense. A flat roof requires fewer materials to build than pitched roofs, which helps with cost savings. A flat roof can also be used as an extra space, and if well-kept, can last for up to 35 years.
However, despite the many advantages of flat roofs, some problems are impossible to avoid. Here are common issues with this type of roofing and ways you can prevent them or avoid flat roof repair.
The biggest problem for flat roofs is standing water. Even if the roof has a slope, water will always find a way out, and you don’t want it to be through your roof. The moisture can cause divots and dips in your roofing material, no matter how durable it is.
The best way to deal with ponding is to act fast after it rains in your area. Use a squeegee or mop to push water away from your roof. If your roof’s drainage system is clogged, it may prevent water from escaping your roof. Clear the pipes and gutters to prevent this issue.
Every material, no matter how durable, will degrade over time. Degradation accelerates further with extreme heat and cold. The best way to fight the effects of degradation is to do regular inspections. See if the roof material is flaking, drying out, or breaking down every few months. Get them patched up immediately. The sooner you deal with degradation, the better your chances are of minimizing the damage it may cause.
Holes and Tears
Flat rooftops are often used as event spaces and common areas for tenants. If your roof gets a lot of traffic, expect it to get scuffs, tears, and holes. While small scratches aren’t much of a problem initially, they may expand as time goes on.
Like degradation and standing water, the best way to deal with holes and tears on your roof is to prevent it. Create appropriate walking paths so that guests and tenants avoid the sensitive parts of your rooftop. If you spot any scuffs, refill them with roofing material or have a professional contractor fix them.
Over time, your flat roof will collect debris like small tree branches, dirt, leaves, and even trash if people visit your roof regularly. While the occasional litter won’t hurt your roof, debris buildup can be dangerous. Trash and leaves can clog your drains and gutters, causing ponding and damage to your drainage pipes.
Debris buildup is easy to handle. Perform regular cleaning by sweeping, using a leaf blower, or pressure washing to get rid of the debris. Using soapy water to mop off dirt and mud may also be necessary. If the debris has damaged your drainage pipes and gutter, get these components fixed immediately before they’re damaged beyond repair.
Water has nowhere to go but down when it rains. If standing water has nowhere to go, it’ll seep through your roof. This can happen even with the most resilient roofing materials. When this happens, the surface will develop mold and fungus. If it worsens, the water could make its way to your ceiling and create leaks.
Drain standing water regularly to prevent leaks. You should also look for possible holes and tears that may let water seep into your roofing material. The sooner you repair these problems, the better your chances are of preventing leaks on your ceiling.
Get Professional Roofing Maintenance and Repairs
Building a flat roof is a great way to add extra space to your property without increasing your building costs. Now that you know the possible problems your flat roof could have, it’s time to get up there, inspect it, and schedule maintenance or repairs, or have a professional roofer do the job.
You can perform minor repairs, but major flat roof material replacement and deep cleaning require the help of professionals. WaterTight Roofing provides a variety of roofing services, including metal roof replacement, roof restoration, single-ply membrane roof installation, modified bitumen, and flat roof installation. We service commercial properties in Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Arkansas, Kansas, and New Mexico.