Tips for Maintaining a Flat Roof

Brad GordonFlat Roofs, Roof Tips


If your home has a flat roof, perhaps you’ve heard that they tend to run into more maintenance problems due to the very nature of their construction. While it’s true that flat roofs do tend to require a bit more maintenance than a sloped roof, the fact remains that–with proper care– a flat roof can last just as long as an other style of roof. Read on to explore some tips for better maintaining your flat roof and saving yourself from major and costly roof repairs in the long run.

Clean Gutters Regularly

With a sloped roof, drainage is much more efficient because the slope of the roof itself lets gravity do most of the work. With a flat roof, however, drainage can be a bit more difficult, especially in times of heavy rainfall. That’s why it’s important for homeowners with flat roofs to clean their gutters out frequently.

Typically, it’s enough to clean gutters out every several months. However, with a flat roof, it may be necessary to thoroughly clean gutters every couple of months to avoid debris buildup. It may also be a wise investment to have gutter guards installed.

Inspect for Ponding

Another precaution that homeowners can take to protect their flat roofs is to check for ponding regularly. Ponding refers to areas of the roof that collect standing water after rainfall. Any ponding on the roof is a sign that the drainage system isn’t working properly or that an area of the roof may have begun to sink in. If not detected and repaired as soon as possible, this can quickly lead to more serious damage, such as roof leaks and even structural damage to the home.

Other things to check for while up on the roof include:

  • flashing damage
  • blistering shingles
  • missing shingles
  • clogged scuppers


Trim Nearby Tree Branches

Flat roofs are also more prone to damage from trees. Specifically, as a tree’s branches grow, they can easily get to the point that they extend over the roof and scrape up against it. During times of high winds, the scraping can cause damage to the roof by dislodging or even cracking shingles.

Homeowners can prevent this potential issue by simply taking the time to trim tree branches before they become a threat to the roof. For those who aren’t quite comfortable with the idea of getting up on a ladder and sawing off branches themselves, there’s always the option of hiring a tree care company to complete this task. In fact, for larger trees, this may be the only option.

While flat roofs do require more maintenance than sloped roofs, they can still be a great option for certain architectural styles, both at homes and places of business. With the right amount of care, a flat roof can last anywhere from 20 to 40 years without needing any substantial repairs or replacement.

If you have a flat roof and are thinking it needs to be serviced or repaired, call us or fill out a form and we’ll contact you.