Flat Roof Inspections on Commercial Premises
Commercial roofs should ideally be inspected twice a year – performing these regular roof inspections can decrease overall repair and replacement costs by up to 45% and extend the life of a commercial roof by 13 – 25 years. Here at D-marc we are in the business of providing safe access solutions for rooftops, particularly on commercial premises, with a range of roof walkways and demarcation barriers that can be used for inspections and for maintaining plant and machinery situation on the roof.
We’ve put together a handy, easy to use checklist for you to use when carrying out a flat roof maintenance inspection.
- Water Ponding – while the odd pool of water on a flat roof may not appear to be much of a problem, if you have a lot of standing water (water pools remaining 48 hours after rain stopped), it may saturate the flat roof membrane and eventually cause it to degrade. This will allow leaks to enter your property and lead to structural damage.
- Debris – check for debris that may puncture or damage the flat roof membrane and remove all debris. Any small piles of debris left on a flat roof can trap moisture which is likely to damage patches of the flat roof membrane underneath the debris.
- Ridging – look out for any long, narrow cracks in the roofing membrane. These are a sign that moisture has condensed around the insulation joints under the felt. If you see a lot of these ridges, it’s a sign that your roof may need recovering.
- Blisters or Bubbles – check the entire flat roof for any sign of raised areas which are “spongy”. These blisters or bubbles are probably caused by trapped air or moisture in the layers of felt. Any t rapped air or moisture is separating the layers and will reduce the waterproof properties of the flat roof covering material.
- Guttering – a flat roof inspection is a perfect opportunity to inspect the guttering at the same time. Check the state of the guttering and downpipes and clear away any debris (such as leaf mould, other vegetation) to make sure that the water can easily drain away from your flat roof when it rains.
Once each inspection is complete, you have the information necessary to make an informed decision on whether any maintenance is required. If you’ve seen signs of damage or ponding, you may need to consider having the roof recovered. As we’ve pointed out, a regular preventative maintenance check can save you a lot of money by prolonging the life of the roofing membrane.