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Five reasons why your flat roof is leaking – and what you need to do

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Mika, Staff Writer

Friday, 28 May 2021

No one wants to deal with a leaking roof, especially in the height of winter. Not only is it an inconvenience, but it can also cause expensive damage to your property. If you notice a leak in your flat roof, you might be wondering why it’s leaking.

Here are the five most common reasons for a leaking flat roof.

1. Poor installation

If your flat roofing membranes have been poorly installed, it’s likely to result in a leaking roof. This is one of the most common causes of leakages in flat roofs and usually happens within 2 years of the installation. That’s why it’s so important to choose a reliable and trustworthy roofer to install your flat roof.

If you think that your flat roof is leaking due to poor membrane installation, you’ll need to hire a trustworthy roofer to perform a survey. They’ll be able to assess the damage and explain what work needs to be carried out to ensure that your flat roof is watertight and built to last.

2. Roof damage

Flat roofing membrane can be easily damaged if it is walked upon or if sharp-edged equipment such as ladders or scaffolding is moved across the roof. If the membranes become damaged, they will no longer be waterproof, allowing leakage to occur.

If you know that you’ll need to walk on your flat roof in the future, it’s a good idea to opt for a strong and durable fibreglass roofing material rather than a single-ply substrate. This will ensure that you have a robust and sturdy roof that will last the test of time. If you already have a single-ply flat roof, consider applying a polyurethane coating to provide enhanced protection.

3. Aging membranes

Like anything, roofing membranes will deteriorate with age. As a roofing membrane ages, the paint which is designed to reflect UV rays will begin to wear away, allowing the membrane to split in the sun. Cold winters can speed up this process through repeated freeze-thaw cycles.  

If the roofing membrane has aged, it will need to be replaced. Different roofing membrane materials and brands will have different lifespans so it’s important to be aware of the expected lifespan of your roofing membrane.

4. Blocked gutters

Your leaking roof may not be the result of roof damage – it could also be caused by your gutters. If your gutters are blocked, the water may overflow into the adjacent roofing structure, causing your roof to leak.

If your roof is leaking as a result of blocked gutters, you should arrange for your gutters to be unblocked and cleared as soon as possible. You should also arrange for regular gutter maintenance to prevent the problem from reoccurring in the future. You may also find that your roof needs repairing as a result of the damage caused, depending on the severity of the leakage.

5. Leaking lead flashing

Lead flashing is designed to provide waterproofing where your roof joins the walls However if your lead flashing degrades, becomes damaged or hasn’t been installed properly, you may find that it begins to leak.

If your lead flashing is leaking, you’ll need to hire a skilled roofer to inspect and diagnose the issue and to repair the flashing.

Hire a Roofer on Bark

A leaking roof is an unwanted inconvenience that we all want to avoid. However, if you discover that your flat roof is leaking, you’ll need to hire a trustworthy and reliable roofer to assess and repair the damage as soon as possible, to prevent the damage from worsening.

If you’re looking for a highly-rated roofer to repair your leaking flat roof, you can search for a Roofer on Bark. 

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