Flat roofs are very common on commercial and industrial roof systems due to their ability to maximize space inside a building. Despite their versatility and functionality, flat roofs are potential victims of bad weather, especially during the winter. A minor defect may not be problematic in good weather, but it could be catastrophic in bad weather.

In many cases, flat roofs are out of sight, out of mind. As long as it doesn’t leak, many building owners and facilities managers won’t spend time or money on their flat roof. This allows minor problems, like clogged drains, loose rooftop panels and small surface scratches, to turn into major problems. As the old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. In the case of industrial flat roofing, this is especially true, as a small amount of money spent on maintenance can prevent a far larger repair cost, restoration cost, or even replacement cost.

We advise that you observe the following preventive steps in protecting your flat roof:

1. Complete a general roof inspection.

The first step of any maintenance program is completing a general walk around of the roof. Check for roof damage, such as slits, slices and openings. Look for loose rooftop doors / hatches and other areas that may create damage down the road. If something looks problematic, take care of it before it becomes a problem.

It’s advisable to conduct routine roof check-ups, maintenance, and repairs, at least once a year. Twice a year is better if possible.

2. Complete maintenance items.

There are a lot of small miscellaneous maintenance items that are important to stay on top of. Keeping pourable sealer pockets topped off and making sure any exposed caulking / sealants are in good condition is important. Also, make sure that any new items added to the roof, such as vent pipes, were installed properly if your roofing contractor did not complete the work. Many times, non-roofing professionals will install rooftop units with incompatible products that may damage your roof and void your warranty.

3. Remove Leafs / debris from the roof

Removing leafs / debris goes vis a vis with conducting fall cleaning. Cleaning out drains, scupper boxes and gutters is essential to having your flat roof function properly. Aside from removing water weight from your building, it is crucial to removing stress / strain on your flat roof system.

At a minimum, this should be completed once a year during the fall. However, in an ideal situation, it would be completed twice a year, once during the fall and again during the Spring. This ensures that all water outlets on the building are clear and functioning properly.Contact Chaffee Roofing for solutions on how to protect your commercial flat roof.