You may have envisioned what your home would look like and had ideas of a typical home with a sloped roof. Maybe you wanted a metal roof or tiles instead of shingles, but the idea you had looked like what a typical kid would draw.
Then you found the perfect house, on the perfect street in the perfect neighborhood. And it has a flat roof. So, now you are wondering if it is so perfect after all. You may have heard that flat roofs are bad and to avoid buildings with them.
The reality is that there are pros and cons to these roofing systems so don’t discount that house just yet.
In this article we will go over the advantages and disadvantages of having a home with a flat roofing system by going over the various types.
Single Ply Roofing
This is the most common type of flat roof system you’re likely to see. Although flat is a misnomer as they have a slight decline of a couple of degrees so water does flow down and not pool up on the roof.
Low cost – These are the cheapest to install by flat roofing contractors since the material is lightweight and goes on easy. And you don’t need to reinforce the roof underneath since it is not nearly as heavy.
Easy to repair – Many times these systems can be repaired by the owner. Seals are easy to make and there is no need to use scaffolding. It’s also very safe to repair yourself since you can walk around the roof safely.
Puncture prone – Since the material is thin and made of a rubbery material, if you have lots of trees overhanging the roof, you could see it getting punctured by falling branches.
HVAC is difficult to install – If you are doing aftermarket installations for your heating and air conditioning systems it can be difficult and costly to install.
Modified bitumen roofing
There is a new kid in town when it comes to flat roofing systems that use a more lightweight version of those old bitumen heavy commercial buildings we associate with flat roofs.
Let’s take a look at what they are about.
Very easy installation – Compared to those old bitumen roofs, MBR roofs use rolled asphalt sheets over a membrane. They are then torched into place for a very quick and easy installation. It can be done by most homeowners and is also easy to install even in cold temperatures.
Durable but recyclable – The material is far more durable than the old type of bitumen in flat roofs so you get more life out of your roof. When it is time to replace it you do get the comfort of knowing that the material will be recycled.
Aesthetics – Since you can’t lay gravel on top of the roof, these look a little more industrial to somebody who has never seen one before. As they become more prevalent then people will get used to seeing them however.