The typical life expectancy of flat roofing can be anywhere from 10 to 50 years. That huge difference is attributable to the type of covering the roof uses. Asphalt lasts the shortest (10 years), while rubber or thermoplastic can last for 40 to 50 years.
However, it’s vital to note that a flat roof’s life expectancy is just an estimate, so it can fail sooner or last longer. You don’t want to pay for premature roofing replacement, so it’s a must to maintain your existing one.
This guide enumerates some of the steps to proper flat roofing maintenance, so be sure to read on.
1. Keep It Free of Debris and Water Buildup
Flat roofing systems need careful maintenance as debris and water can build up on them. By contrast, the slant of sloped roofs makes it easier for debris and water to slide down to the gutters.
For that reason, be sure to get your flat roof cleaned at least once or twice every season. Its drainage system must also remain clog-free at all times.
2. Check for Signs of Roof Damage after Bad Weather
Inclement weather can damage even new or the most well-maintained roofs. For example, strong winds can break off, carry, and drop large tree branches on your flat roof. The branches can then crack, dent, or knock away part of the covering of your roofing system.
From there, you may see roof parts strewn over your yard after heavy rains or storms. So, as soon as you notice your roof needing repair services, be sure to call a local contractor ASAP. The sooner the pros can inspect your roof, the sooner they can patch it up to prevent the damage from worsening.
3. Widen the Gap between Your Trees and Roof
Speaking of trees, it’s a smart idea to remove their diseased, damaged, or dead branches as soon as possible. This can help prevent them from falling onto and damaging your roof or causing injuries. More than that, experts say that pruning trees in the late winter to early spring can keep them healthy.
When you trim your trees, make sure the tips closest to your roof are at least six feet away. This is enough distance to keep branches from scraping off your flat roof’s covering.
4. Add a Layer of Sun Protection
Flatter roofs can have shorter lifespans because of their direct ultraviolet (UV) exposure. UV exposure, in turn, is one of the biggest factors that cause weathering in roofs. The sun can cause roofing materials to degrade, crack, shrink, or become brittle.
While there’s no escaping the sun’s intense energy, you can protect your roof with a roof coating. You can think of the coat as some sort of sunscreen, protecting your roof from too much UV exposure. It also acts as a shield against other climactic factors, such as moisture and wind.
What’s more, most roof coats can last up to a decade or longer, only needing bi-annual inspections. Their upkeep also involves the same maintenance steps as that of a flat roof.
Extend the Life of Your Flat Roofing System with These Tips
While flat roofing requires more TLC than sloped ones, all that maintenance would pay off in the long run. This is especially true for a high-quality flat roof, which can give you at least 40 years (or more) of service. That’s way longer compared to asphalt shingles, which usually last for only 15 to 30 years.
So, as early as today, start following our maintenance tips to extend the life of your flat roof.
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