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How to Spot Signs of Damage on a Flat Roof

4 Ways to Spot Damage on a Flat Roof

Roof maintenance is crucial for both residential homeowners and commercial building owners. If your home or business has a flat roof, you should know what to look for if you suspect roof damage. Here are four ways to spot signs of flat roof damage if you are able to access your roof safely. 

  1. Roof leaks: A roof leak is one of the most obvious signs of roof damage. If your flat roof is leaking, you will probably hear dripping water or notice water spots and discoloration on your ceiling. 
  2. Ponding water: No “flat” roof is truly flat. All flat roofs are built with slight slopes to allow for proper water runoff and drainage. If you climb on top of your residential or commercial flat roof after a rainstorm and notice puddles of standing water, it’s time for a roof inspection. Ponding water on a flat roof can indicate there is a drainage issue or sagging. Ponding water can also be spotted on a dry roof. The puddles of water will leave rings of sediment and dried mud behind. Flat roofs with ponding water are susceptible to rapid deterioration as the standing water can actually magnify the sun’s rays, leading to uneven areas of excess damage. If allowed to freeze, standing water can also cause additional roof damage when it expands. 
  3. Ripped or cracked roofing materials: Cracks and tears are common signs of damage on flat roofs. If you have an EPDM rubber roof with visible tears or a cracked TPO roof, it’s best to call a roofing professional as soon as possible. Cracks and tears indicate that your roof is no longer watertight and roof leaks can soon follow.
  4. Loose or damaged flashing: Metal flashing is used to prevent leaks and protect the vulnerable areas of your flat roof. These strips of metal can be found on seams and where your roof and another surface meet. High winds or hail can cause flashings to come loose. If you notice any loose or damaged flashing on your flat roof, you should call a professional immediately for repair. Damaged or loose flashings can allow water to seep into your roof, causing leaks and water damage. 

If you suspect that your flat roof has damage of any kind, it’s best to call a professional roofer for an inspection. Making repairs as needed can help you save money on costly replacements or even larger repairs later on. If you are interested in a roof evaluation, give us a call at (719) 487-7663 or contact us online.