1. Inspect Regularly
Flat roofs are prone to leaks and surface degradation due to weathering and standing water. Objectively look at the surface of your flat roof for granular loss, ponding, holes, punctures or even blisters in the membrane. Check the drains for blockages and inspect the flashings and membrane seams for signs of wear and tear or corrosion. Flashings are also prone to fungus, which can push the flashing away from the surface of the roof and cause leaks. You or a professional should inspect your roof at least three times a year and also after storms.
2. Clean Off Debris
Once a pile of debris starts to build up, it just keeps growing and growing. A small pile grows exponentially and can get massive within a few weeks. The best way to ensure that doesn’t happen is to get up on top of your roof and clean it up every month or so. This chore will only take a few minutes and will go a long way toward ensuring that your roof is nice and clean all year long. Especially after a storm, you want to check for any fallen debris or anything that could damage your roof system. Debris can scratch, puncture or cause serious damage to your home. Before any big storms, you will want to trim back any branches that have a potential to come down onto your home. While removing any fallen debris, you should inspect for any damage it might have caused. You should also keep a look out for ‘ponding’ or a pooling of water on your flat roof.
3. Check for Internal Damage
The most common symptom of water damage on your roof is the presence of leaks and water stains. They can usually appear as brown spots or rust-colored rings on your ceiling, walls, chimneys, vents, and other affected areas. These signs tell you that your roof has already given way and that you’re already dealing with internal damages as well. You will want to look for any signs of water damage stains on the ceiling caused from leaks. Water stains means you could potentially have a puncture, pooling or something more serious going on. You should take action immediately if you notice any damage on the inside of your home.
4. Get a New Coating
If there are any signs of structural damage or if your roof is 6+ years old, you might want to consider getting a new waterproof coating on your roof before you run into any costly fixes in the future. The most significant advantage of flat roof coatings is that they eliminate the roof tear off process in almost every case. Rather than tearing off your existing roof and completely replacing it, flat roof coatings allow you to simply apply a coating over top of the existing roof and rehabilitate it that way. This reduces labor, job cost, and eliminates waste going to landfills. It’s an inexpensive and green option, which is very rare.