5 Common Problems That Affect Flat Roofs

Flat roofs have many advantages for commercial and residential buildings. For instance, flat roofs have space for air-conditioning units. However, flat roofs do have some weaknesses that pitched roofs do not. If you haven't inspected your flat roof in a while, you might miss some roofing issues that could cause some costly problems.

Flat roofs are susceptible to several types of problems. Flat roofs are especially susceptible to leaks. If you detect a leak on your flat roof, the following problems are possibly to blame.

1. Pooling water

Even if your flat roof was installed using good quality materials and workmanship, pooling issues can eventually develop. Although flat roofs usually have a pitch to allow water to drain away, vegetation, damage, and poor quality workmanship can cause water to pool. Over time, pooling water can cause leaks and moisture buildup.

2. Vegetation Buildup

Wherever moisture builds up on a roof, vegetation will soon follow. Moss holds onto water, and that water then damages roofing materials further.

3. Blistering

If you see blistering on your flat roof, this is due to moisture or air becoming trapped between the roofing materials. Blisters can expand and burst when exposed to sunlight, which can leave affected roofs exposed to the elements.

4. Thermal movement

Although all types of roofs have a design that can cope with thermal movement, a failing roof won't cope well with thermal movement. Over time, thermal movement can weaken flat asphalt roofs and cause the materials to buckle. One area of flat roofs that is susceptible to damage from thermal fluctuations is the flashing. If the flashing buckles, water will begin to seep into the roof space.

Thermal movement is likely to be a major problem with old roofs or roofs built with poor quality materials or workmanship.

5. Buckled membrane

The roof membrane that sits between a roof and the building below usually contains asphalt. Over time, buildings tend to move and shift due to changes in the soil and ground. This can cause the roof membrane to buckle, leading to cracks and tears that allow water to leak into the building.

If your flat roof has suffered one or more of these issues, urgent repairs are necessary. Find a roofer that specializes in repairing flat roofs today, and arrange for a roof inspection so you can fully ascertain the extent of the problems. Contact a company that offers flat roof repairs to learn more about your options.