If you think of your roof as an investment, you’re more likely to pay attention to it and its upkeep. There is no truly maintenance-free roofing; any product requires a periodic inspection to make sure nothing has damaged it. That’s especially true of flat roofs. Flat roofs have some unique maintenance needs which differ from pitched-roof installations. Here are some tips to help you take good care of it and spot problems early on so they can be repaired before real damage takes place. Early spring is a great time to do this, because you can spot anything that may have happened over the winter and get it repaired before the rains begin.
- General Inspection on the Ground: Walk around the base of your building looking for debris or loose objects. Anything not fastened down has the potential to become a projectile when a high wind hits it, and that could mean some roof damage. Pay special attention to dead tree branches – trim them back. Loose trash can lids? Tether them to the trash can.
- Rooftop Inspection – Edges: Make sure the edges of the roof are tight-fitting and well-sealed all the way around. Pay special attention to the corners because they are the most vulnerable. Anything loose should be repaired.
- Drainage: Check all drainage points for blockage, and clear it where necessary. If you have leaf grates, remove them and reinstall after cleaning.
- Overall Integrity: Check the entire roof for signs of cracks. Repair and seal as needed. Make sure any components on your rooftop such as HVAC units, antennae, and satellite dishes are well-secured. Check seals around anything that penetrates the membrane and re-seal where it appears compromised.
Add a routine roof inspection to your maintenance schedule. It’s a good idea to do it twice annually – once in the spring to repair any winter damage, and then just before winter to make sure your roof is ready for the snow. Keeping a flat roof intact means protecting the structure beneath it from water damage. Your property is a major investment, and your roof is a major part of protecting that investment.