Living with a flat roof is a bit like living with a moody teenager. Everything can be going just fine for ages; you go on holiday together, talk about your days, watch television and laugh about things, until one day they suddenly turn around and bite your head off and start causing your life no end of stress.
Like with most roofs, we tend to forget about them, which is a good thing and a sign they are doing a good job, but when they go wrong they can totally disrupt your life.
Well again, just like a teenager, flat roofs have their benefits: they should last about 10 years without too much maintenance (how old is your flat roof incidentally?); they look great, giving your home a distinctly minimalist feel while traditional roofs can look old fashioned in comparison; and they offer you another outdoor space for parties and romantic suppers.
A flat roof is unlikely to let you down, unless (as the title suggests) you don’t give it the care it deserves.
Your flat roof is basically a membrane laid across a kind of deck, with metal seals, guttering and a vapour barrier underneath to make sure the water never gets through. However, being open to the elements (and perhaps your moody teenager’s roof top pogo stick obsession), it is going to take some punishment that may result in any of the following:
By checking your roof regularly (maybe once a month) and more often after high winds or particularly bad storms, you can spot these issues before they get any worse. Standing water in particular is a common sight and should be removed immediately as it may eventually penetrate the membrane if left to sit and soak. If the problem persists you should check your drainage for any blockages, check the slope of your roof is adequate and perhaps install a pump to keep it clear.
One thing you can do to add an extra layer of protection, is to install a polyvinyl coating. This provides an extra layer of protection and will make water damage much less likely. You should still check it regularly though as you never know what the weather can do.
Hopefully this information will ensure you can avoid any nightmares with your roof in the future so that you can enjoy flat roofing fun for years to come.
How often do you check your flat roof at the moment?