when to replace a flat roof

When do you actually NEED to replace your Flat Roof?

By now, you probably have a few opinions from roofing contractors recommending a complete roof replacement. You might be wondering who’s interest they have in mind. So, how do you know when you actually need to replace your Flat Roof?

3 COMMON FLAT ROOF PROBLEMS LEADING TO COMPLETE REPLACEMENT

These common flat roof problems, if left unattended  will surely lead to a complete replacement.  Is your roof at the point of no return?

STANDING/POOLING  WATER

Those puddles that remain for more than 48hrs after the rain ends, are a bigger problem than you think. With time, they will not only result in  leaks, but the added stress will cause the roof to shift. Your Flat Roof will then be uneven and compromised.

When water pools, it doesn’t just stay there. 

Not so visible problems such as unproperly adhered seams  will allow moisture to creep in. When water pools, it doesn’t just stay there, it will always find the path of less resistance. Flat Roofs need channels and drains in angles that facilitate water runoff.  If regular maintenance and keeping the drains clear form debris is not keeping your roof puddle free, there is a bigger problem underneath.

VISIBLE DAMAGE

There are three main types to watch out for:

a)Bubbles or Blisters

Air or water filled bubbles are evidence of a Bad Roof Installation. Poor workmanship, bad insulation or insufficient ventilation are generally the cause. No matter which one of these is the culprit, your roofing system will not last as long as it should.

b) Cracks and tears

They are the easiest to spot and the product of weathering. it’s a clear sign that your roof is near it’s performance life expectancy.

Ignoring them gets costlier  and costlier as time passes.

Be it bubbles or cracks, they are all water entry points. What you can’t see is all the damage happening bellow. These water entry points allow more than enough water to turn the wood under it into mush over time. 

c) Moss and Mold

Yes, this is actually damage. Unfortunately for Flat Roof owners who neglect regular maintenance, water will always find its way down. When you can see moss  top of your roof, there is excess moisture. Mold forming on your ceiling, is the same…unwanted water retention..

When you spot organic growth of any  kind, the best thing you can do is have a professional inspect your roof.  He might be able to find the problem early enough to avoid having to replace the entire roof.

FLASHING PROBLEMS

Don’t forget the edges of your roof. Flashing is the term given to the pieces of metal strips that are applied at the points where a roof meets another surface.  Most roofing materials need some allowance for a little give and take. Depending on the weather, flashing will expand or contract. If it was improperly installed, this will result in space for water intrusion.

Do you have water leaking down walls, but no visible tear or crack on you roof? Look at the edges.  Again, timing is everything. Unattended for too long, this may lead to a much more expensive problem.

What now? SECTIONAL ROOF REPAIR or TOTAL REPLACEMENT

Ask for two estimates… That is, request a repairs only estimate and a roof replacement also.  Have a conversation with the Roof Specialist about what your real expectations are. There is also a THIRD OPTION  roof restoration.

Many Flat Roofs are great candidates for restoration with GE Enduris Silicone.  A cutting edge roofing system that prolongs the life of your roof for 20yrs at a fraction of the cost (repairs included).

Making a good decision takes time, and making a great decision takes information. Once you have all of your facts, think long term. Repairs can be an option for some cases. An honest Roof Specialist will take the time to provide information an empower you to make the right choice for you.

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