When planning a waterproofing of your flat roof there are several things to consider, such as roof size and style, climate, environmental conditions and damage prevention. You probably what to do a research and look at the product available on the market and even interview a few waterproofing companies to find the best solution for your property. To help make your next waterproofing project a success, here are 6 things to consider.
Do The Right Waterproofing.
When flat roof waterproofing is done right it should prevent the damage from pressure of standing water, also known as water ponding. Water ponding is a big issue for the flat and low sloped roofs. For example, one cubic foot of water that pools can weigh up to 62.4 pounds. So, that means one vertical inch of water in a square foot can potentially weigh about five pounds. And if you have several ponding areas throughout the field of your roof or one large area covered with water, that weight adds up, and the pressure does a number to your roof system i.e. seam separation, lifting, mastics that crack around penetrations and flashing, deterioration at drains and waterways, etc.
Research the Right Type of Roof System.
There are several waterproofing systems on the market today. Traditionally you will see TPO, PVC, or EPDM waterproofing membranes, which are synthetic rubber or thermoplastic membranes manufactured to be UV-resistant, water resistant, fully adhering, etc. and essentially they tote themselves as waterproof. The truth is they don’t end up improving or extending the longevity or lifecycle of your roof, they end up cracking, lifting or leaking anyway. Just because they are lightweight, less expensive, faster or easier to install doesn’t necessarily mean it is so, which leads to our next tip.
Upfront Costs Are Worth It
A roof does more than keep the elements out. It protects your biggest investment – your property. The right product might not be the cheapest upfront but may save you extra money and maintenance in the long run. Look at the products you’re considering for use, what does the real lifecycle look like on projects that have been done? What does the field performance look like? Look for case studies and proof of performance and don’t assume a product will do everything.
We’ve done a couple of posts on how elusive warranties have become in the roofing industry, and we strongly suggest you go back and read them (here and here), but in short, we can’t stress enough how important it is actually to see and read what you’re getting yourself into. A consumer sees the word “warranty,” “consequential damages,” “labor and material,” etc., and immediately thinks insurance policy. The reality is that the buyer is only seeing what the seller wants them to see, aka only sees what the materials do and not what they don’t do. Read your warranty and be able to understand it word for word.