Despite the name, flat roofs are not really completely flat. Most flat roofs actually have a slight incline built into the underlying structure to help prevent water from pooling. This slight gradient difference helps prolong the life of a flat roof. Years past flat roofs garnered a bad reputation because of a limited lifespan, due to water pooling (water can actually be corrosive). However, in the last 20 years, Bryan roofing contractors and roofing materials have been great strides in improvement, lengthening the life of a flat roof. Of course with most roofing, flat roofs are a great option, assuming that the roof is built, flashed, and maintained correctly.
Frame the Roof Properly
Making sure that there is a slight incline, usually 1/8 of an inch or more will help keep water from pooling. Most professional Bryan roofing contractors will have special underlayment materials, like specialized foam made by a 3rd party, made to spec. As long as all specifications are properly met, the flat roof will be a success. A sign of a quality in Bryan roofing is the ability to fabricate on demand and a complete system of materials specially designed for flat roofing. By vertically integrating such roofing requirements under one firm will allow you to get the lowest cost possible and help to control the quality of the project.
The material used should allow for proper expansion and contraction, due to temperature changes. Plywood tends to be a material of choice. However, the properties of the plywood also account for the success of the project. Typically, you will see 5/8 inch thick plywood with around 1/8 inch spacing to allow for the contraction. The flexibility and elasticity of the material greatly helps to achieve this property.
Underlayment materials used should relevant to the roof conditions. Usually a rubber based material, adhered to a fiberglass backing. Materials should be attached using galvanized steel. Additionally the backing should be fit tightly together as it usually does not expand and contract like plywood. This property helps to keep moisture out.
Edges and Corners
Corners and edges are usually secured using a rubber glue product that will properly seal the vulnerable edges of the roof. Terminal stops and flashing will help keep exposed parts of the roof covered and protected from the environment. Galvanized drip edges can also be substituted in the place of flashing for certain flat roofs.
Reasons for Flat Roofing
Flat roofing goes far beyond commercial installations. Other common installations for flat roofing are apartment complexes, residential living above retail space, condos, and many multi-level homes. For home owners, flat roofing options allow for neat amenities like roof gardens, outdoorkitches/dining, and solar installations.
Schulte Roofing is a Bryan Roofing Contractor that specializes in flat roofing. They can help you design out your new flat roof or repair with your specific materials, layout, and design style.