Low-slope commercial roofs seem to always be gambling against nature. These economical building solutions tempt rainwater to stay put, resisting gravity’s urge to run downhill. This happens so often, most people think of low-slope roofs as flat roofs, and call them that as a kind of shorthand. Flat roofs and rain, it seems, go hand in hand. Together they also lead to three problem areas for a commercial building manager to monitor.
Across wide expanses of low-slope roofing, natural deflection in steel or wood supporting pieces within the roof deck can cause ponding. Ponding could just as well be called “tiny lake syndrome” or “the Great Fort Lauderdale Sea” but it simply means depressed areas of your flat roof that tend to hold water after heavy rains.
Unfortunately, ponding becomes a self-worsening cycle. Even a small volume of water will compress rooftop insulation. The compressed insulation makes for a deeper, wider depression. The next heavy rain leaves a larger puddle, until a pond, lake, or vast flat roof sea has formed.
You can prevent ponding for your property by working with a local, trustworthy roofer to develop a roof preservation plan. Annual inspections, fast roof repair, and regular maintenance can go a long way toward preserving insulation at proper taper and thickness.
Drains and Scuppers
Internal drains and parapet scuppers are prone to getting debris that clogs strainers and blocks openings. Once the water flow stops, deterioration and rot around the fixtures is, unhappily, common.
Particularly worrisome for property managers is inadequate sealing around these wet areas. Water infiltration is a likely outcome if you do not have your commercial roofer reseal the flashing and seams around drains and scuppers.
Just about anything that mechanically attaches to your company’s roof can become a problem in heavy rain. HVAC curbs and rooftop evaporative coolers are prone to gradually open up the holes through membrane or BUR and leave oblong holes, allowing water infiltration.
Your friendly commercial roofing company can prevent these areas from becoming problems by sealing the areas around mechanical fasteners. Careful roof monitoring of likely trouble spots can counteract any effects from heavy rain.
A quick call to PSI Roofing, or by contacting us online, can get you started on a rainy season that leaves you delightfully high and dry. We know where to look for water problems, and we have the experience, training, and tools to prevent them.