Flat roofs are ideal choices for many building types--especially commercial and industrial buildings. Some homes these days even have flat roofs. However, because they don't slope like a traditional roof, they also require a little bit more special care and maintenance when it comes to avoiding water damage and other issues. Fortunately, there are some simple ways building owners can go about extending the life of a flat roof.
Know How to Avoid Surface Damage
A lot of times--especially with industrial and commercial buildings--heavy equipment is mounted on top of flat roofs. A common example of equipment often found on flat roofs is that of a large HVAC system. And while there isn't anything inherently wrong with this, it's important for building owners to make sure that any equipment placed on a flat roof is mounted properly. Furthermore, inspecting the flashing around the equipment and repairing damage as needed is a must for avoiding unnecessary surface damage.
Schedule an Annual Roof Inspection
Having regular roof inspections is important regardless of the type of roof you have at your home, but it's especially vital for flat roof owners. During a flat roof inspection, a professional roofer will look for evidence of potential damage, such as:
- open seams
- holes or ruptures
- cracked drip edges
An inspector will also check for signs of water damage or leaks. If any problems are detected, you can have the necessary repairs made now, rather than waiting until the problem gets worse and costs a lot more.
Limit Foot Traffic on a Flat Roof
All too often, damage to flat roofing occurs because of the carelessness of people walking on the roof. If you hire any contractors to perform work on top of your building, request that they lay down some sheets of timber to walk on, rather than walking directly on the roof. Sometimes, it's unavoidable that foot traffic will need to occur on the roof, but it's all about protection.
Check for Standing Water After Rain
Unlike a traditional roof that slopes to carry rain water away from the home, flat roofs are more prone to water damage and leaks. After heavy rains, it's always a good idea to take a look at the top of your flat roof and make sure there aren't any pools of standing water. If you see any, be sure to contact a flat roof maintenance or repair expert (such as one from spray foam roofing by Cozifoam) to further assess the situation.