How to Waterproof a Flat Roof

England is not known for its sunny weather. We are more likely to be doused by rain, sturdy winds and the occasional Beast of the East. And even though there are a lot of people who really enjoy a sprinkling of snow, the challenging weather causes problems in many areas.

Slippery slopes to which traffic has no answer. Frozen pipes causing floodings. Elderly people who cannot leave the house to go to the shops or to socialize.

And even though we think we are probably one of the best equipped and prepared nations, we are often still caught out. Not only by the more severe weather spells but also by the relentless rainfall.

Flat roofs are more prone to water trouble than sloping roofs. But they are also more economical to construct. So still, many people opt for them above slanting roofs. Flat roofs are never 100% flat though. There is always a tiny slope to them, to allow the rainwater stream away.

Nevertheless, water often finds places to sit and then start working on degenerating the material on which it sits. And it will always find its way through if there are any tiny imperfection or roof damage.

Therefore it is important to protect your roof properly. There are many different ways of doing so.

On a flat roof, it is not possible to use tiles. When using tiles, rainwater will need to flow down at a steeper angle to avoid the drops from wiggling their ways into the roof under the tiles.

So what can be done?

First of all, we would strongly recommend using simple and easy methods that prevent water from pooling on your roof. Keep your gutters clean, so the water can stream away as intentioned. Especially leaves can create obstructions and mayhem in your gutters. So clean them out regularly.

Besides preventing measures, there are quite a few different options that can be used to waterproof your flat roof. See below a few examples.

Liquid Coatings and Paint

One of the quickest, easiest and probably most cost-effective ways to waterproof your roof is to paint your roof with for example a bitumen based roof paint. These paints adhere to most materials, such as asphalt, concrete, cement, metal sheeting and slate. They are also available with a Solar Reflective quality to it. Easy and quick to apply.

Glass Reinforced Plastic Systems (GRP)

These are systems build up from several layers of different materials. This is also used for boats and pools. This system is contemporary, strong, waterproof and durable. Whilst keeping water in and out, these also aesthetically pleasing. The top layer is sleek and available in many different colours.

Reinforced Membranes

There are many different types of membranes available. With different textures and finishes. These are supplied on rolls. The installation process often involves using flames to heat up the material to a minimum of 200 degrees, so it becomes adhesive. Then by applying pressure to the different layers, the membranes are put in place. This option is also often used to make repairs.

Asphalt Roof

Asphalt is applied by pouring the hot concoction on the area you want to cover. And then spread it out evenly. The best thing about using asphalt it that there are no seems at all.
The buildup of leaf mulch in gutters or even a lost ball can be the beginning of stagnant water build-up. So a regular preventative cleaning spree is highly recommended.

Something different

Besides protecting your flat roof, there are also different options to use the space you have more efficiently. For example, you can have solar panels fitted. Some flat roofs are even used to grow vegetation on. Think outside the box.

Feel free to contact us if you would like to find out what we can do for your roof. We happily talk you through the best options.

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