Flat rooms are more commonly used in commercial buildings, but you will see that there are some residential homes that have flat roofs installed on them. Somehow, most of these residential flat roofs were installed by contractors with little or no experience dealing with flat roofs so that they need repairs before reaching the minimum life expectancy of the material.
You will experience leaking early on if your roof is installed with a single ply rubber membrane, and more so if it was not properly installed. The material used for flat roofs before was not single ply rubber membrane but it was made up of a base sheet and multiple layers of felt paper and hot asphalt or coal tar. Gravel was used to cover the roof in order to increase its life. This flat roof is called the built up roofing. When used in residential applications, this type of roofing which uses less high tech material outlast the single ply rubber membrane. And the reason for this is because of the inconsistency in installation procedures.
So instead of repairing your flat roof which is really expensive, you decide to replace it with a new one, make sure that the roofing contractor that you will hire has years of experience in installing flat roofs. Before signing a contract make sure you check referrals. It might not be easy to find a competent flat roof installer on a residence. Even those who are experts in installing asphalt shingle roofing may not know how to install a flat rubber roof properly. Most flat roof installers only take on commercial roofing jobs, but if you are patient in looking for a flat roof installer for residential applications, then youwill surely find one.
If you are installing flat roofing, you can use one of several materials. Some still use the single ply membrane which is the most common material for low slope commercial roofing. However, others claim the newer materials like self adhering membrane system, or a PVC membrane which uses hot air welded seams. Roofing contractors would use materials that fits their preferences. So you will need to find a roofing contractor in your area with years of experience. There are materials that work best in extreme heat or cold and this means that your location can make a difference.
If you have a single ply membrane flat roof and you think that it can still be repaired then you have some options for repairing it. You can use a black rubber glue or a peel and stick flashing material with a rubber primer that covers the seams of the membrane which is where the leaks occurs.
Your flat roof’s life can be extended for a limited period with this repair. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money for repair materials since they don’t come in small quantities, you should find a roofing contractor who will sell you the amount that you need.