5 Signs of Flat Roof Trouble

Flat roofs are common on commercial properties and stratas but can also be found on some residential homes.

It is important for property owners, no matter the type of property, to be aware of the telltale signs of problems with such roofs so that they know it is time to get it looked at and repaired.  It is vital not to neglect such signs so future leaks or a roof failure are avoided.

We highly recommend regular annual roof maintenance for commercial properties and stratas to ensure that their flat roofs have the longest possible life before replacement.  It is also entirely possible to bring an old roof with severe problems back from the dead and extend its useful life which can save a property owner tens of thousands of dollars.

Here are common signs that you should look for:

1. Pools of water

Flat roofs have to be able to hold water without leaking.  So it is common for such roofs to have pools of water after rainfalls.  This is not a problem.

However, if such pools remain for an extended length of time, beware!  It is a harbinger of possible future leaks and roof damage as the roofing materials -- whether a membrane or tar and gravel - can degrade from the continuous moisture.

When this excess pooling occurs, it is important to have the situation looked at by a roofing professional and get a drainage system installed.

2.  Water leaks

This pretty much goes without saying.  If you are experiencing leaks from the roof every time it rains, don't wait around to get it repaired as the situation will only get worse and more expensive to fix.  Again, it will shorten the life of your roof so do it, do it, do it now!

To prevent any reoccurrence, a regular maintenance program should be implemented to keep the roof in great shape.

3. Cracked, broken membrane 

You go up on the roof and you see that the roof membrane is dried out, heavily cracked and broken just like the skin of an alligator.  That's why is called "alligatoring."

Obviously, you haven't been up there for a while because your roof is now done and beyond any repair. It has lost its elasticity and moisture shedding properties and needs to be replaced.

Better luck with the new roof.  Get up there and look at it regularly.  Keep it in good repair.

4. Crack in the membrane

Because of stresses in the building and roof, a crack can develop in the roofing material.  The only thing you can do is get it looked at by a professional who can determine the best course of action - repair or replace.

5. Buckles in the membrane

As you look over the expanse of your flat roof, you notice that the roof membrane seems good but is bunched in places.  These buckles occur because the building has shifted and settled over time.  The roof membrane, being one piece, moves with these shifts so bunches and buckles get created.

Unfortunately, this is a serious problem which if extensive can mean your roof needs to be replaced.  The keynote is to get a roofing professional to assess the situation and work out what needs to be done.

We have the roofing professionals to get your flat roof inspected, repaired or replaced.  So call Absolute Roof Solutions at (604) 263-0334 or fill out our online form.