Flat roofs have many advantages that make them the preferred roofing style for many homes with current design trends. They give the properties clean finishes and can help you reduce the amount of energy you spend on heating and cooling, which reduces your overall monthly costs and helps you save a lot of money. The low slopes are also great for multiple functionalities. You can use the roof as an additional relaxation space or a garden.
Although most homeowners in Toronto didn’t like flat roofs before, now they are increasingly being demanded. However, getting them is not a very easy process. Those who are used to steep-sloped roofs in the GTA experience a lot of challenges during the first few months with flat roofs. One of them is regular cleaning that is necessary for keeping the roof in an optimally functional state. Unlike a traditional roof, debris can gather on flat roofs and stay there until you clean them.
Regular inspection of the roofs is also necessary, especially during spring. If possible, have the inspection done by a professional that has experience with such services to ensure they uncover all potential problems.
Trades by Jack is one of the best companies to call for roofing and exterior services. We make sure we discover all damages winter may have caused on the roof to check their severity. You can also try the following ideas to get your roof ready for the warmer weather.
1. Remove Debris
Toronto may get too cold or hot during winter and summer, but in spring, it is one of the best places to be. The natural beauty makes the city very attractive, but it can also be a nightmare for homeowners with flat roofs. The greenery provides serenity and a breathtaking environment and, at the same time, deposits a lot of dry leaves, twigs, and branches on roofs close by. You may not have the power to remove that debris during winter, but once the snow starts to melt away, you get a chance to clean up your roof.
This cleaning process is crucial whether you experienced problems with the roof during winter or not. Don’t wait until a major problem like a tree falling over the roof occurs before you clean because smaller matter and dirt can also cause serious drainage problems if not cleared.
2. Clean All Outlets
Flat roofs usually have slight slopes that allow water to drain from the roof. The slope must lean towards drainage outlets on the roof side, but sometimes they can be in the middle, depending on the house design. Since these roofs don’t drain water as quickly as traditional pitched ones, they rely on drainage to keep the house safe. As such, you must always clean these outlets whether it’s the rainy season or not.
If water pools on the roof surface, it will exert pressure on the roofing material and cause it to wear off. Eventually, it will affect the structural integrity of the property as it seeps into the internal elements. In some cases, the water will reach the inner walls and ceiling, resulting in common moisture problems like the growth of fungi.
The necessity of regular cleaning is one of the reasons why most people shy away from flat roofs. Even if you have the best protective measures for the drainage outlets, you will still have to clean them.
You should still install leaf guards to keep most debris away from the gutter system, but you should also have inspections and schedule cleaning routines regularly. The cleaning frequency should increase during the rainy season when debris accumulation also increases. In spring, you will have a lot of gunk depositing on the surface, and without cleaning, they’ll eventually clog the drains.
If you need to unclog the drains urgently, you can use the normal drain snake, pipe brush, or high-pressure water. If this fails, call a professional for emergency cleaning services.
3. Check For Punctures
Checking for signs of damage on the roof can also help you enjoy a stress-free spring. Find out whether the membrane has been torn, ripped, punctured, or cracked, depending on the type you have. Most homes in Toronto use EPDM, PVC, and modified bitumen membranes, so you should expect one of these on your roof.
The membranes are usually layered for adequate protection from water and snow. However, intense winters can still take a toll on the layers and damage the water-resistant seal used to create a barrier between the weather elements and the internal roof structures. The longer the roof stays in place, the more those membranes become weak and susceptible to damage. You can only avoid more damage if you identify and repair the puncture before it becomes extensive. Call Trades By Jack – your trusted roofing company in Mississauga immediately you start suspecting that the roof has a puncture.
It also helps to have a superior roofing solution instead of choosing a material based on its popularity. Trades by Jack can help you get a more durable roofing material like Spray Polyurethane Foam or SPF instead of the regular membrane materials.
The durability of the material comes from its ability to harden when installed on the roof, making it a better protective layer. It is also more economical and safer for the environment.
You can always replace your roof membrane even if it isn’t punctured. Your goal should be to have a roof that you won’t spend a lot of money repairing. For more information about SPF and its benefits, contact us today.
4. Inspect Parapet Wall Seams
Many properties with flat roofs also have parapet walls, which are usually installed on the roof edges that are near alleys and streets. Although their primary role is usually to enhance safety, they also add a sleek finish to the house and serve other architectural roles.
Despite their advantages, parapet walls can also cause a lot of problems in spring. They are known to hinder proper maintenance of the roofs, which compromises flat roofs when it rains. Keeping an eye on them can prevent more problems.
Roofing membranes used on the parapets differ from the ones on the roofing surface. The contractor will install a seam to connect the two and ensure the membranes run continuously on both sections. These seams will be the weakest links and can cause extensive damage if not rectified early enough. Their placement on walls means they can easily allow water to pass through.
You need to stop leaks on seams as soon as possible, no matter how small it may seem. You should also consider preventive measures like making sure they are tightly sealed and have no gaps between them and the walls. SPF membranes can keep your parapet wall seams in perfect condition for as long as you want. They seal the seams tightly with the walls when they harden, making sure they don’t experience leaks.
5. Install a Flat Roof Deck
After cleaning your flat roof, unclogging the drains, and keeping the parapet wall working, you need to get more value from it. You can turn it into a relaxation area where you unwind or an ideal space for entertaining guests. Just make sure it is properly equipped to handle the kind of foot traffic you will have up there. Pressure from many people walking on the roof can also cause it to wear off and become damaged before reaching its intended lifespan.
One of the best ideas is to have a floating roof deck. You will still have a pleasantly usable space, but the deck will not be attached to the roof, which will relieve some of the pressure. The floating option also allows you to conduct the maintenance or repair procedures necessary for keeping the roof in perfect condition.
It’s easy to find a befitting floating deck design since various styles are available. Some of the factors you may want to consider when selecting one are durability, installation procedure, and moisture or water resistance. You can also consider how long it takes to install one, though it normally doesn’t matter if a professional is handling the installation.
Get Your Flat Roof Ready For This Year
Don’t get stuck with a traditional house design when you want a modern one. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve had the house; you can still make the necessary changes on the roof to get the clean finish that modern architectural designs are known for. These roofs will help you increase the usable space in your home while reducing the amount of money you spend on energy. However, you must also be ready for the responsibility that comes with keeping those roofs clean and draining properly throughout the year, and especially during spring.
Start the processes early this year, so you’re not overwhelmed once the weather changes. Clean, unclog, and repair the roof early enough, so you can have a pleasant rooftop to enjoy the warm sunny weather when summer sets in. These processes are tedious, but they give you a long-lasting roof that will serve you and your loved ones for the longest time.