How to Take Care of Flat Roofs

by on September 13, 2011

How to Take Care of Flat Roofs


Whether you need a new roof for your home or commercial premises or re-roofing to include a new room addition, there is no better company to call in the Tucson area than West Coast Roofing. Tucson roofing contractor Ryan R. McDaniel, who owns the business, believes that a quality roof can greatly enhance both the look and market value of your home. Here, he explains how to take care of flat roofs in particular.  


As far as a flat roof is concerned, it is usually installed from an architectural or aesthetic viewpoint. Different from other roofs, flat roofs will be used on a low-pitch designed building. That, in essence, is what flat roofs are designed for. A built-up roof, which is always installed on a flat roof, is the cheapest type of flat roof you will find, for both durability and safety.


There are different types of built-up roofs, and the one we most often use when it comes to Tucson roof installation is the three-ply fiberglass roof system with the Elastomeric roof coating. That is most commonly used when it comes to installation of flat roofs, and it is definitely the best bang for your buck in terms of flat roof systems. This will give your roof the longest life span, and is also easy to install.


Things You Can Do

Maintenance is perhaps the most important aspect of keeping your roof – and your home – looking good for longer.  Generally, flat roofs are very easily maintained. You can make the maintenance just once a year, including a visual inspection. Things you can do to help keep your roof in the best shape for longer include:



Keeping trees, branches and any other objects that can reach the roof from getting to it
Putting back trees or bushes near the roof that could provoke an issue
Cleaning out all debris that may accumulate on the roof as necessary, and making sure there is proper drainage going on. Roofs are designed to catch water and get it off as fast as possible. Ponding water will cause the roof to deteriorate at a faster pace, which will lower the life expectancy of the roof
Being careful if you have to walk on the roof, whether clearing off debris, doing a visual inspection or for other reasons, in case you damage it. Walk flat-footed and don’t clip your feet when you walk or you will flip up the coatings
Keeping all sharp objects such as nails off the roof so as to not puncture the membrane


Thorough Roof Inspections

Before you move into a new property, it is important that you have a home inspection, which includes a thorough inspection of the roof. By law, that will be required most of the time. When a licensed roofing contractor comes up to inspect your roof, he will look for any cracks around the penetration and any pipes that come up through the lifeline and penetrate the membrane. That is usually the fail point.


The inspector will also do a thorough visual inspection on the coating of your roof to see if it has been properly maintained. If it looks faded, cracked, or peeling, that means it probably has not been maintained properly or re-coated recently, which is something you should then look into and fix.


In Arizona, we have a monsoon season that lasts about two months every year. So we recommend that homeowners as well as business owners have their roofs inspected following big storms. This should be done to make sure there is no debris up there that can cause pond issues when the roof drains, and to check for standing water on the roof, as by code it has to be dried out within 72 hours. You will always have some ponding on the roof – that is inevitable due to the low pitch of a flat roof – but you want to minimize that as much as possible to maximize the life expectancy of the roof.


Roofing Specialists in Tucson Area

At West Coast Roofing, we are experienced in Tucson roof installation, and we know that if properly maintained, a built-up flat roof will usually last about 30 years. One way to ensure that your roof lasts as long as possible is to call a licensed, insured and bonded roofing contractor to do regular roof inspections. The good news is that the majority of roofing contractors, including us, do free inspections.


During our warranty period, we will inspect any roof that we actually installed or did work on once a year as well. Our warranties usually last five to six years, and they go up from there. A standard three-ply fiberglass roofing system will have a five to six-year warranty, so if you invest in Tucson roof installation from a qualified roofing contractor like us, then proper roof maintenance should be trouble-free.



Ryan McDaniel is a writer for Yodle, a business directory and online advertising company. Find a <a rel=”nofollow” onclick=”javascript:_gaq.push(['_trackPageview', '/outgoing/article_exit_link/4490547']);” href=”<a rel=”nofollow” onclick=”javascript:_gaq.push(['_trackPageview', '/outgoing/article_exit_link/4490547']);” href=””>”>contractor</a> or more <a rel=”nofollow” onclick=”javascript:_gaq.push(['_trackPageview', '/outgoing/article_exit_link/4490547']);” href=” “>contractor </a> articles at Yodle Consumer Guide.

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