Obvious or foreseen, roof problems are always an inconvenience and many times a significant expense. This post examines five problems that are most common and the conditions that can either cause or be the result of premature failure and reduced service life of low-slope systems.
1) Roof leaks and moisture:
No matter what type of roof you have, if your roof leaks, you have a problem. Leaks occur for a variety of reasons. Built-up roofs, for example, may experience leaks due to flashing details that were not fastened properly during installation. Actually, 95% of built-up roof system leaks occur at the flashing details, anywhere the roof membrane itself is interrupted or terminated.
Leaks can also result when single-ply membrane roofs are installed with poor seams. Seams must be heat-welded or glued properly.
2) Lack of maintenance:
Neglecting one’s roof occurs for a variety of reasons from financial difficulties to business continuity reasons. Catching problems early can prevent their escalation. Lack of education on all levels is an issue in roofing. It doesn’t take a lot of knowledge to perform routine inspections. Things like pooled water, a piece of slipped flashing or base, pitch pockets that haven’t been filled, these things should be obvious whether or not you know roofing or not. Specific levels of maintenance are required to prevent voiding your warranty and addressing mino problems ore the escalate maximizes roof life while minimizing stress and expense.
3) Pooling/Ponding water:
Keeping water off a roof will give the roof a really good chance of performing properly. During the design phase, calculating the correct slope is imperative to prevent pooling of water on any part of a roof.
UV rays compounded by pooled water can have adverse effects on a roof and can void the warranty. Regular inspection of one’s roof can identify potential pooled/ponded water situations and save you tons of money in unnecessary repairs.
4) Improper repairs:
Those guys that stop buy in their little trucks offering incredible deals to repair or replace your roof sounds great at first, until you experience the problems resulting from cheap services. Using materials not intended for application on specific roof types can cause permanent damage to a roof. You can actually make a small problem worse though improper repair. Following the manufacturers instructions for proper use and taking note of products with a shelf life can go a long way in ensuring your investment is protected.
5 )Poor installation and unsatisfactory workmanship:
Fly-by-night and other cheap roofers and unscrupulous roofing companies can charge much less than legitimate companies by using sup-par and other materials never meant to be used on a roof. A faulty installation dramatically increases the likelihood of problems and reduces it’s life expectancy. Poor workmanship isn’t always evident when the job is completed, but becomes obvious as the years go by as problems occur and the life of the roof is substantially reduced.
Educating yourself and researching the roofers or roofing company you use is your best weapon against being a victim of poor workmanship.