What Causes a Flat Roof to Leak?

Contractor Working on Flat Roof Repair

Dealing With a Leaking Flat Roof

For those considering owning a commercial property, you more than likely know the dangers that come with it. We’re not talking about business dangers, but rather building dangers. Most commercial buildings will have a flat roof, which can be a very good thing or a really frustrating thing. Flat roofing is often known for how difficult it can be to maintain. The majority of that issue, however, has to do with the installation. When installed incorrectly, a flat roof can allow water to pond, which is a major issue in and of itself. If you are in need of flat roof repair in Montgomery, AL, rely on Innovative Construction Pros. Call us at 855-529-7663 to learn more about our services.

Waterproofing a Roof During the Flat Roof Repair Process

Reasons a Flat Roof May Leak

Unfortunately, flat roofing is often notorious for leaks and other general damage. That’s not to say that flat roofing is advantageous. It is great to store larger units like HVAC systems and more. Realistically, this structure can be very beneficial when installed correctly. Even knowing that there are several reasons why a flat roof may leak.

  • Water Ponding: One of the main reasons for flat roof leaks is water ponding. This is when water is standing for consecutive days at a time. When this happens, it is an indication there is little to no proper drainage occurring.
  • Damaged Membranes: While single-ply membranes are in fact very durable, they aren’t impenetrable. Hail and other sharp objects can puncture the material allowing rainwater to seep beneath the membrane, thus resulting in a leak.
  • Cracked and Peeling Seals: Over time, caulking can become worn and damaged by the sun. When that happens, another area for water to seep beneath your roof becomes present. 
  • Flashing: This is meant to provide better water draining around areas that penetrate from the roof, like vents and such. The flashing is often made from metal, which can rust, corrode, and generally become less effective at directing water away. Instead, it leaves gaps for water to leak through.

To ensure your flat, commercial roofing is always in the best condition, make sure you are working with experienced flat roof repair contractors. These men will have the necessary knowledge needed to accurately install, repair, or replace your roof. Because ultimately, that is what it comes down to. Accuracy with a flat roof is more important than efficiency.

Flat Roof Repair Leak Tips

Now that you know what can cause a roof to leak, there are several things you can do to help prevent future leaks. The most important piece of advice we can offer to is pay attention to your roof. Look for obvious signs of damage and contact someone immediately to begin repairs. You don’t neglect your water heater when something goes wrong. You hire someone to provide water heater service when there is no hot water. Do the same with Innovative Construction Pros when you start to notice damages to your roof. 

  • Inspections: The number one tip we can offer everyone is to schedule regular inspections. This is the best way to find possible problems and even get ahead of them. Waiting can only result in further damage and costly repairs.
  • Patch Work: If you notice a hole or an area of damage that you want to immediately address, there are a few options for you. You could just place a tarp over the area or you could use a temporary patch. These are easy to purchase but they are not a permanent fix. Always contact a contractor to completely fix a damaged roof.
  • Waterproofing: If you want to fix a current problem and prevent future ones, waterproofing is the best way to go. Installing waterproofing membranes, like EPDM, will help prevent damage if and when water ponding occurs.  

Taking care of your roof means you won’t have to decide between a flat roof repair or replacement. There is a difference. When debating flat roof repair vs replacement, consider the cost. Repairing your roof will cost significantly less, financially. It will also more than likely require less time and energy as well. Replacing a roof that could have easily been repaired will require more time, money, and resources.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do you stop a flat roof from leaking?
    • Regularly cleaning your roof to remove leaves, debris and more. Check the flashing to be sure it has not rusted or been damaged. The best thing to stop leaks from occurring is investing in waterproofing membranes like EPDM, TPO and more.
  • Do flat roofs leak more?
    • They don’t inherently leak more, but they are more likely to leak when compared with a pitched roof. That’s because flat roofing can’t always shed water as easily as a roof with proper drainage and pitch.
  • Why is my flat roof leaking?
    • The most likely culprit is lingering moisture. Flat roofing will often experience standing water or water ponding. This can cause materials to deteriorate, resulting in water damage and the eventual possibility of leaks.
  • Should a flat roof have standing water?
    • No, water should never pond or stand on a correctly installed flat roof. If or when that is happening, your roof was not correctly installed. That means there is a lack of drainage which can result in serious damages and problems, such as leaks.
  • How do you protect a flat roof?
    • You can protect a flat roof with regular cleanings, maintenance, and repairs. The best way to protect a flat roof, though, is with a waterproof or water-resistant membrane installation.
Flat Roof Repair and Waterproofing Tools

Schedule an Appointment With Innovative Construction Pros Today!

Rely on Innovative Construction Pros for all your commercial roofing needs, like flat roof repair in Montgomery, AL. We’re available now at 855-529-7663 to schedule appointments or just discuss our services.