While problems like a leaking roof is common among all types of roofing, there are problems unique to flat roofs that require equally unique solutions.
Alligatoring — Alligatoring is typically seen on built up roofing (BUR) systems and happens when the top layer shrinks from temperature changes. The cracks that develop on the surface resemble alligator skin, hence the name. Alligatoring usually happens when the roof is at or near the end of its service life so you will need to look into getting a new roof.
Displaced Flashing — On a flat roof, flashing protects areas that transition from the main roofing to the areas, such as walls, parapets or even a skylight. Certain types of flashing is also installed where penetrations like vent pipes and air conditioning ducts meet the roof. Flashing may get dislodged by wind or impact from debris. Conducting regular roof inspections, ideally twice a year and once after every storm. Have a roofing professional replace or repair displaced flashing as soon as you find it.
Buckling Membrane — Adhered roofing systems like BUR may appear to be buckling, which is usually not caused by the roof, but rather by the house foundations. As the building shifts and settles, the roofing surface buckles. Excessive movement can cause severe buckling and splitting. If you suspect your property has foundation issues, consult a foundation specialist immediately.
Pooling Water — Flat roofs are not perfectly level, but rather have a slight slope that lets rainwater flow towards the drains. If water tends to pool on the roof and doesn’t dry out after 48 hours, you need to have it addressed. Pooling water can cause many problems: it promotes algae growth, it can weaken roofing seams, and it may lead to roof leaks. Your commercial roofing contractor can repair the slope problem; however, it may require removing most of the outer roofing layer.
Tedrick’s Roofing is your leading provider of roofing and gutter installation services. Give us a call at (877) 212-9355 and (253) 499-9660. You can also fill out our contact form. We serve customers in Seattle, WA, and surrounding areas.