Flat Roofs: The Good And The Bad

Flat roofs are becoming increasingly popular in both commercial and residential construction. A well-maintained flat roof can last for decades with proper maintenance and care. However, like everything else, there may be cases that can lead to a shorter lifespan. The movement of the roof structure, missing treatment plans like reflective coatings, and ponding water are all examples.

Before investing in a flat roof, there are a few things to think about. Today, we will discuss the good and the bad of flat roofs so that you can make an informed decision for your home.

What is a Flat Roofs Built of?

The material of a flat roof is one of the things you must consider. The most common materials used for flat roofs are asphalt, gravel, single-ply membrane, and EPDM rubber.

Asphalt is the most popular type of flat roof. Mineral fibers, asphalt, and tar make up this type of roof. They are easy to install and are not very expensive. However, they have a shorter lifespan than other materials and require more maintenance.

How Often Does a Flat Roofs Require Inspection?

Certain factors may call for a roof inspection. Some of the most common ones are:

  • Sagging or ponding water
  • Leaks
  • Missing, damaged, or loose materials
  • Cracks or splits in the surface

Regular roof inspections will help you catch these problems early and prevent them from causing further damage. We recommend getting an annual inspection in milder climates with little rain or snow and bi-annual inspections for areas with severe weather conditions.

Advantages of a Flat Roof:

The growing popularity of flat roofs is a sign that something about them works. They are popular in both commercial and residential construction for a variety of reasons:

Easy Construction: Flat roofs are easier to construct than pitched roofs. It is because there is no truss work or rafters required. Less material is also needed for a flat roof, making them less expensive.

Durability: Because a flat roof is water-resistant, you won’t have to worry about water damage. If you’re using a flat concrete roof, you have something that can withstand strong winds.

Easy Maintenance: Flat roofing is easier to access than most systems, making upkeep simple. You should clean your flat roof regularly to avoid debris from accumulating. Pressure washing is the best method to clean your flat roof without damaging it, especially if you have a concrete roof.

Disadvantages of a Flat Roof:

It will be an overstatement that flat roofs are disadvantage free, but their cons are certainly nothing to scoff at.

Exposed to the Elements: Because flat roofs don’t have a slope, they’re more exposed to the sun and other elements than pitched roofs. It can cause the roofing material to degrade quicker.

Pooling Water: Poor drainage is one of the most common problems with flat roofs. If water isn’t draining correctly, it will pool on the roof and apply pressure on the roofing material, leading to leaks.

Increased Risk of Fires: One of the most dangerous disadvantages of flat roofs is that they’re more susceptible to fires. Due to the lack of ventilation, flat roofs are at higher risk of fires starting and spreading.


Proper installation and regular maintenance can help flat roofs last as long as pitched roofs. If you’re considering a flat roof for your home, contact us at Palmer Construction in Liberty Lake.

We offer roof repair and roof replacement services to help keep your roof in tip-top shape.

Get a free estimate today!

Palmer Construction

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