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What Makes a Good Flat Roof?

Flat roofing sounds like the kind of roofing that would be inherently quite simple to construct, thereby not requiring much forethought by those needing to ensure the best such roof for their own property. Alas, this isn’t quite the case, with flat roofing actually often associated with a wide range of problems when it isn’t installed by well-trained and reputable professionals.

With that in mind, here are the qualities that you should make sure are apparent in your own choice of flat roofing.

flat roofingThe ability to withstand the elements

It’s easy to presume that the less complicated outward appearance of flat roofing would make it a relative doddle to maintain compared to pitched roofing, but unfortunately, these roofs are no less vulnerable to damage over time from rain, snow, sun, frost and wind.

This is a big reason why so many flat roofs aren’t actually flat, but instead slightly inclined, in order to allow any water or debris to run off. Draining the roof to one or two edges is advisable, with conventional gutters preferable to internal outlets. If you do opt for internal outlets, they should be the right size to cope with storm conditions, in addition to being fitted with leaf and gravel guards.

The National Federation of Roofing Contractors (NFRC) recommends that the waterproofing for flat roofs extends no less than 150mm (6in) up adjacent walls from the roof surface in all cases, as well as that the waterproofing system’s top edge is protected by a cover flashing appropriate to the membrane.

You can learn more about the NFRC’s guidance on how flat roofing can be made to withstand a wide range of environmental conditions in its informative The Householder’s Guide To Flat Roofing.

A robust choice of covering

This is an especially renowned aspect of our own flat roofing here at ELC Roofing Ltd! Our choice of felt ensures maximum durability and longevity, with the three layer ICOPAL Lasergold mineral that we use being guaranteed for 15 to 20 years and insurance backed.

Not only are three layers of felt used, but your flat roof’s longevity and strength are further ensured by high tensile polyester re-enforcements with low melt SBS bitumen modifications.

Although you could theoretically minimise the price of your flat roofing by using the cheapest felt for the aforementioned layers, the relative affordability of even the best quality felt compared to other material options – together with the longevity factor – often makes it advisable to opt for the more expensive materials.

The structure of your roof is also key

While the covering for your felt roofing is an important factor, the underlying structure is even more so, with timber roof joists needing to be sufficiently substantial to resist sagging over time. If this does occur, your flat roof can become more vulnerable to standing water that makes its way into your home through the smallest pin-prick.

For similar reasons of sagging over time, we would suggest that you do not use chipboard as a decking material – this being a particular problem when it is softened by condensation from below.

So, there you have it – a rundown of the qualities that you should expect in any flat roof that you invest in for your property. If you want to ensure that all of those expectations are met, you know what to do – simply contact ELC Roofing Ltd’s professionals today for a discussion about your needs, followed by a competitive, free, no-obligation quote.

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