The roof is the first line of defense against wind and rain and the Fort Lauderdale climate can take its toll on any structure. Commercial structures and residential buildings featuring flat roofs require routine maintenance and inspection. The older the roof is, the more likely it is to have damage from ordinary wear and tear and the more important it is to schedule regular inspections at least every 2 years, and yearly is ideal. Flat roof maintenance is the most effective way to avoid expensive repair and replacement costs.
Flat Roof Physical Description
As the name implies, a flat roof has no slope but instead maintains the same elevation the entire width and length. A membrane made of rubber or some other waterproofing material covers this type of roof. The material aids in water drainage through the gutters. Flat roofs are less expensive than roofs with a pitch, which make them attractive for home builders on a budget. These roofs do not need shingles, a plus for Fort Lauderdale property owners, because the harsh climate causes many materials to rot.
If you are looking for a Waterproof Roofer in the Fort Lauderdale area, contact us now!
Flat metal roofs were introduced to construction during the 1800s and today consumers can choose from three different roofing systems:
- Asphalt Roll: This system consists of cold asphalt cement covered with roof felt and a layer of organic or fiberglass material with a final layer of gravel or some granular material on top for protection against the elements.
- Single Ply Membrane: Installation methods vary according to the material with some having self-adhesive properties and others requiring heat or hot asphalt to complete installation.
- Multiple Ply: This type of construction involves layering asphalt with mats or felt and covering the entire roof with a granular layer for additional protection.
Consumers should count on qualified waterproofing contractors for all installation, repairs and flat roof maintenance needs for the best performance.
Reasons for Regular Flat Room Maintenance
Most property owners choose flat roof installation because it is affordable. Even a flat roof requires regular maintenance to extend the life of the materials. Harsh weather, rigidity and the tendency for joints to fail can cause the following problems:
- tears, cracks and breaks in the roofing surface
- loose fasteners
- flashing with broken seals or rust
- separating seams
- water pooling on the roof
- shedding of granular cover
- a pan roof incorrectly tied in
A small leak will only get worse if left unchecked and eventually it can lead to serious property damage from hard to detect water intrusion. Leaks can be difficult to locate on flat roofs and this means they can go unnoticed for extended periods. When this happens, water seeps through the roof and soaks the insulation. Once the material starts to rot, the environment is favorable for mold growth and can affect the health of the building’s occupants. The roof structure will rot and require extensive repairs or replacement if the damage is severe enough. In many cases, the water pools in an area that is usually far away from the leaky portion of the roof. If too much water accumulates, the roof sags and becomes a major problem.
Experts recommend roof inspections take place twice per year and after any severe storm. The inspection should include:
- inspecting lap seams and flashings to ensure they are not leaking water
- clearing debris off of all roof drains
- inspecting the membrane for any tears
- checking the entire surface for pooling water
- redistribution of gravel to cover all asphalt material
- repairs of any creases or blisters to prevent leaks
- application of roof coating to seal any leaks
If all else fails, the waterproofing expert may use infrared thermography to locate hidden leaks. As long as a professional waterproofer makes repairs early, a roofing system will last for decades.
How Fort Lauderdale Weather Damages Roofs
Fort Lauderdale building owners have to consider the climate when maintaining a flat roof. All roofs are under assault by the elements on a daily basis. Roofing systems in Fort Lauderdale have to be able to stand up to salty air, summer storms and scorching temperatures.
This region of Florida has unique weather patterns that pose a threat to property. Hurricanes and storms are common in this area. Every year there is a 27% chance that Fort Lauderdale and the surrounding cities in the southeast region of the state will be within 75 miles of the path of a hurricane. The high winds and heavy rains associated with these systems can damage a roofing system and require extensive repairs.
Even exposure to a moderate amount of moisture, sun and wind on a daily basis can take its toll on an old roof. A roofing expert should inspect the surface of an old roof and evaluate any storm damage.
Locating a Reputable Contractor to Perform Flat Roof Maintenance
Consumers should find a waterproof roofing contractor who has experience maintaining and repairing flat roofs in Fort Lauderdale. Before hiring a flat roof maintenance expert, like Transcontinental of USA, consumers should:
-verify the contractor is licensed, insured and certified
-request a written estimate
-ask for and check references
-make sure the written estimate details materials, labor, guarantees, cost and payment schedule.
Consumers who do the proper research will receive the desired results when they hire a flat roof maintenance expert, like Dan Jones the original waterproofing roofer, in Fort Lauderdale.