Tips for Maintaining a Flat Roof


Do you have a flat roof? For some, flat roofs can pose several problems, but they don’t have to! By properly maintaining your roof by performing regular maintenance and granting it the attention it requires, it should last and serve you well.


Flat Roof Maintenance Tips


Have it checked periodically.

Many home and business owners neglect to inspect their roofs as often as they should. You should inspect your flat roof at least three times every year. If you have trees nearby, check it even more often. Inspect your roof after a heavy snowfall in the winter and rainfall during the summer. Keep an eye out for pooling water, blisters, holes, soft areas (damaged insulation), and cracks. If you notice any of these issues, contact a professional roofing contractor. Your roof may be able to be repaired, or it may be time to replace it. Note: If you can't inspect your roof safely on your own, call a roofing contractor to do it for you.


Keep it clean.

Because debris more easily collects on flat roofs than on slanted roofs, it’s imperative to keep up on regular maintenance. Fortunately, flat roofs are easier and safer to walk on than slanted roofs, making the chore of clearing debris pretty simple. Make sure you don’t damage your roof as you walk on it, however. Before and after winter are great times to get this job done, gently clearing leaves, dirt, and anything else on the roof with a broom.


Trim back nearby trees.

If you have trees with branches that hang over or touch your roof, trim them back. You don’t want any branches to fall onto or rub up against and scrape your roof. Moss can also make its way from a nearby tree onto your roof and begin to spread, harming your roof.


Deal with leaks promptly.

If your flat roof has a crack or is leaking somewhere, call in a professional to evaluate the situation and perform the necessary repairs. As with any roof leaks, they should be taken care of immediately to prevent further damage. Leaks in flat roofs typically occur around flashing and in seams.


Watch the weight.

If too much snow and ice build up on your roof, the weight could become excessive. If your roof was installed properly, this is unlikely (but not impossible). In an extreme situation, excessive weight could cause a roof to collapse. Generally, flat roofs are built strong enough to hold the weight necessary in particular locations. To be safe, make sure you are aware of how much weight your roof can safely manage.


Make sure you have a good drainage system in place.

If you notice pooling water on your roof, your roof drainage system may be insufficient. It may need to be altered or cleared of blockage.


The most common reason for flat roof issues is negligence on the commercial or residential building owner’s part; the majority of the time, serious issues can be avoided.

Most flat roofs typically last only 10-20 years before they need to be replaced. If you begin to have frequent issues with your flat roof, it may be nearing the end of its useful life.



Roof Repairs in Ames, Ankeny, and Huxley

Do you need a roof repair in Ankeny, Huxley, Ames, or a surrounding area? Contact us! Also download our latest eBook: Roofing Concerns in the Fall and Winter. It's full of great information for homeowners! Learn how to avoid serious problems during the colder seasons and how to deal with common problems as they arise.