Perhaps the simplest roof design available, a flat roof is a great choice for those interested in getting the most out of their living space. Worried about water run-off? Fortunately, new strides in building materials have made this concern virtually obsolete. Here is some more information.
The cost of a flat roof depends on the type and quality of materials, size of your home and the cost of labor. However, the simple design makes them less expensive than other types of roofs. Get in touch with a local roofer for price quotes and more information.
A flat roof must be maintained properly to last a typical 10-year life expectancy. However, interestingly enough, the old fashioned BUR (built-up) roofs that are properly maintained have lasted over 100 years. See More Information below to learn about built-up roofs.
The maintenance required of a flat roof includes removal of pooling water with a siphon that runs regularly. All roofs should be inspected semi-annually and after major storms.
Yes, unlike traditional flat roofs that were made with tar and gravel, modern flat roofs tend to use a continuous membrane covering, which can better resist pools of standing water. These membranes are applied as a continuous sheet where possible, though sealants and adhesives are available for bonding multiple sheets and dealing with structures penetrating the roof surface.
While a few of the famous Modernist architects like Le Corbusier viewed flat roofs as a living area, flat roofs cannot be used that way until the roofing membrane is properly protected. One way to accomplish this is to build a deck or use paving stones to protect the roof membrane.
Another great way to protect your roof membrane is by installing a Green Roof, which uses a layer of topsoil and grasses. However, it is important not to plant anything that has roots that could penetrate the surface.
One of the oldest roof styles around, the flat roof can be traced as far back as the Minoan period around 2000 B.C.
The most common type of flat roof is the asphalt built up-roof (BUR), made of multiple layers of reinforcing plies and asphalt. The reflectivity of built-up roofs depends on the surfacing material used. Gravel is the most common, and they are referred to as tar and gravel roofs. But the degradation by UV-rays of the asphalt, as well as serious air pollution and other substances are becoming more common.
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