The roof has always been a critical point of consideration while designing a building. In ancient times, humans use timbers and in some areas, grass to roof their houses. With the ever exponential development in engineering and technology, other roofing design concepts have come to limelight. The flat is one of the most common roofing structures. Flat roofs are styled to be a flat or horizontal, covering the house or building.
Flat roofs come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages. This unique roofing style offers much room space, and it easily permits eco-friendly roofing. However, there is a higher chance of your roof developing a leak if it is flat rather than pitched. This is because while water runs right off a slanted roof, it can easily accumulate and cause dampness and leakage in a flat roof that does not have a watertight seal to prevent the same.
Features Of A Flat Roof
The core fact about the flat roof is that it is almost perfectly horizontal in design. Nevertheless, there’s usually a slight inclination so that snow and water can drain off easily. They are very easy to build and have been around for centuries. At the onset, gravel and tars were the most widely used flat roofing material, but in recent times, flat roofs are made from various materials, which are usually a combination of synthetic rubber and polymers. They suit residential buildings better in comparison to commercial buildings, as they can become unstable when the size of the building is considerably huge. The main downside about the flat roof lies in its longevity and strength, which decreases with high moisture concentration on the roof. Also, though the roofs may be effective in warm climates, it could be dangerous in cold climates with steady snowfalls. Constant deposits of snows and ice may result in cracks, as the roof is quite sensitive to large amounts of activity. Ultimately, the cracks will generate terrible roof leaks. This has made the flat roofs not so common in cold climates.
Advantages Of Flat Roofs
- Easy to access
Flat roofs are more accessible compared to other roofing styles because they do not have much slope. There is a reduced risk of slips and falls while on a flat roof. Also, in case of maintenance, your roofing contractors and maintenance workers are guaranteed of no incident pertaining to falls. The roofing company is also at ease, having no worries about compensation claims and potential lawsuits. Flat roofs in organizations give employees a place to go on their break when the weather is nice outside.
- Saves room space in the building
With sloping roofs, a lot of times, space is lost due to wooden beams holding up the roof, which creates dead space. These areas cannot be utilized in any fashion. There is minimal dead space with a flat roof, increasing total space within the commercial building. These spaces can be utilized by the HVAC systems like air handlers, as wells as green roofs, terrace areas, rescue areas, and even helicopter pads in commercial buildings.
- Easy to build
The lesser surface area in a flat minimizes the extent of which raw materials will be used in the construction of the roof. Given that fewer raw materials are required, the business or homeowner purchasing the flat roof does not have to pay as much money as they would with a pitched roof, which requires additional raw material to construct. Flat roofs are also less physically demanding and take up less time to build. These two factors will also greatly reduce the price of building a flat roof on a commercial building.
- Less Expensive
Flat roofs cost less to construct than pitched roofs, which require more construction materials and labor. If you are on a tight budget and the climate of your area permits, opting for a slope-less rooftop could be the most prudent choice.
- Excellent for Green Roofing
The green roof features greenery, walking paths, and sitting areas. Besides the scenic relief, a green roof also reduces leaks by being absorbent and preserving its moisture barrier from temperature fluctuations throughout the year. A pitched roof cannot accommodate a green rooftop as the flat roof.
Disadvantages Of Flat Roofing
More Prone to Leaks
Rooftops with little or no slopes can accumulate water over time. This could lead to damaged decking and leaks that necessitate roof replacement. Instead of opting for zero slopes on the roof, most homeowners should go for a slight inclination of roughly two degrees. This move could reduce the frequency of maintenance and prolong a roof’s lifespan.
Require Constant Maintenance
Flat roofs receive more water exposure and feature coatings that deteriorate faster than shingles, resulting in more maintenance issues than pitched roofs. To minimize maintenance, invest in the best materials, and have your local roofing company that specializes in flat rooftops implement and maintain your rooftop.
Replacement is Labor Intensive
Constructing the flat roofs can prove to be a less expensive venture than pitched rooftops, but it cost more to replace. Consequently, some building owners repair flat roofs well beyond their useful lifespan. The best strategy for extending the lifespan of slope-less rooftops is to make them green rooftops, which can exceed the lifespan of a rooftop.
Inefficient During Hot Weather
As they are quite close to the building’s interior, the need for air conditioning systems will be much high on hot days if you’re using the flat roof. However, there are two ways to minimize this effect: implement a green rooftop, which can reduce air conditioning demand in the summer, or implement a light surface material that reflects heat.
Flat Roof Materials
There are several types of flat roof materials. Such as: Build up roof, EPDM, Modified bitumen, PVC membrane roofing, TPO, etc.
Contact Goldenberg Roofing NYC 1274 5th Ave, New York, NY 10029 (212) 457-1324 for your flat roof repairs and installation. For your wide range of flat roofing services both for commercial and residential properties, including installation, repair, replacement, patching, and more. Call (718) 489-3999 now.