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How Do You Fix A Leaking Flat Roof

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  • 29-06-2023
How Do You Fix A Leaking Flat Roof

Are you asking: how do you fix a leaking flat roof? LM Roofing are trusted local flat roofing specialists in Colchester, Ipswich and Essex. This article looks at flat roof leak warning signs and explores if you should apply DIY roof repair or professional roof repairs. 

DIY roof repair or professional?

When it comes to roof repairs, the decision between DIY and hiring a professional roofing contractor requires careful consideration. For confident DIYers with the necessary skills, using an EPDM roofing kit can be an excellent option. 

Some companies offers user-friendly flat roof kits that include all the essentials for a successful DIY repair. EPDM membranes, known for their longevity and weather resistance, provide reliable waterproofing when installed correctly.

However, if you prefer to leave the task to the experts or lack confidence in working at heights, it is advisable to seek professional installation. 

Whether you choose the DIY route or opt for professional assistance, ensuring a high-quality repair is essential for the long-term integrity of your roof.

Flat Roof Leak Warning Signs

Detecting warning signs of a flat roof leak early on can save you from extensive damage and costly repairs. Here are some key indicators to watch out for:

Damp or Dark Brown Patches: If you notice damp or dark brown patches on your ceiling, it's a clear sign that moisture is seeping through your roof. Prompt action is necessary to prevent further damage.

Sagging or Dipping: A flat roof that appears to sag or dip may indicate rotting timbers. This structural weakness can lead to a complete roof replacement if not addressed promptly.

Low Spots and Ponding: Pay attention to areas where water accumulates or pools on your flat roof. This ponding can cause stress on the structure and lead to deterioration over time.

Cracks or Blisters: Inspect your flat roof for any visible cracks or blisters. These openings can allow water to penetrate the roof, resulting in leaks and potential damage.

Water Stains or Mould Growth: Water stains or mould growth on the walls or ceiling beneath the flat roof indicate that water has already entered the roof. Immediate action is necessary to prevent further damage and address any underlying issues.

How Do You Fix A Leaking Flat Roof? Flat Roofing Specialists Colchester and Essex

If you observe any of these warning signs, it is advisable to consult a professional roofing contractor who specialises in flat roof repairs.

They can assess the extent of the damage and provide appropriate solutions to rectify the issues. Remember, early detection and prompt repair can help maintain the integrity of your flat roof and prevent more extensive problems in the future.

How do you fix a flat roof that leaks?

Flat roofs are a popular choice for many homeowners due to their affordability and versatility. However, over time, flat roofs may develop leaks that require timely repairs. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to repair different types of flat roofs commonly found in the UK.

Felt Roof Repair

Felt roofs are common in older properties and can be repaired quite easily. For small leaks and splits, use flat roof sealant designed for leaks. Clean and dry the affected area, then apply two layers of sealant. This simple solution can often take care of the problem effectively.

In case of extensive damage, a torch on a new layer of roofing felt. However, this method requires expertise in working with a naked flame, so it's recommended to hire a professional if you're not confident or insured.

EPDM Roof Repair

EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer rubber) roofs, also known as rubber roofs, are popular for their longevity and weather resistance. For small tears or rips, apply sealant designed for EPDM roofs. For larger holes, use self-adhesive flashing tape designed for EPDM roofs.

Clean the area, apply a suitable EPDM primer, and once dry, use a hard roller to apply the tape. Seal the edges with sealant for added protection. Multiple leaks may indicate deeper issues, so consult a professional for a comprehensive assessment.

Fibreglass Roof Repair

Fibreglass roofs, also known as GRP (Glass Reinforced Polyester) roofs, are known for their durability. To repair minor splits and leaks, you'll need a fibreglass repair kit. Clean the damaged area, follow the instructions provided with the kit, and apply the repair materials accordingly.

This typically involves sanding, cleaning with acetone, applying chopped strand matting, and finishing with a top-coloured layer. For leaks around the flashing, laminate chopped strand matting follows the same process. Hiring a professional is advisable for extensive damage or faulty installations.

Concrete Roof Repair

Concrete flat roofs can develop leaks due to surface wear and cracks. For quick fixes, apply bitumen primer and seal the crack with bitumen-based waterproof sealant or paint.

For larger cracks, consider fitting a torched-on layer of roofing felt to provide a more permanent solution. Regular inspections are essential to catch smaller cracks and address them promptly.

Asphalt Roof Repair

To repair asphalt roofs, address cracks and blisters. For quick repairs, use self-adhesive heat-applied bitumen flashing tape. Clean and dry the affected area, then apply the tape to seal the crack or blister effectively. In case of extensive damage, such as multiple cracks or blisters, consider fitting torched-on roofing felt or torched-on asphalt. Ensure you have the necessary expertise and insurance coverage for working with a naked flame

Regular maintenance and inspections are crucial for all types of flat roofs. Timely repairs can prevent further damage and extend the lifespan of your roof. However, always prioritise safety when working at heights. If you're unsure about any aspect of the repair process or lack the required expertise, it's best to seek professional assistance to ensure a reliable and long-lasting repair.

How to Prevent Flat Roof Leaks

By following these preventive measures, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of flat roof leaks and protect your property from water damage. 

Regular inspections, prompt repairs, and necessary replacements will help maintain the integrity of your flat roof and extend its lifespan. If you encounter complex issues or require extensive repairs, it's advisable to consult a professional roofing contractor to ensure the work is done effectively and to the highest standards.

Remember, investing time and effort in preventive maintenance can save you from the inconvenience and expense of dealing with major flat roof leaks in the future. By taking these proactive steps to care for your flat roof, you can enjoy a watertight and durable roofing system for years to come.

Regular Inspections: Conduct thorough inspections of your flat roof at least twice a year, ideally in the spring and autumn. Look for signs of damage such as cracks, blisters, or loose roofing materials. Address any issues promptly to prevent them from developing into major leaks.

Post-Weather Checks: After severe weather events like storms, heavy rainfall, or strong winds, inspect your flat roof for any damage. Clear debris and remove standing water to prevent water from pooling, which can lead to leaks.

Maintain Gutters: Ensure your guttering system is clean and functioning properly. Clogged or damaged gutters can cause water to overflow and seep under the roof, leading to leaks. Regularly clean and maintain gutters to prevent blockages and ensure proper drainage.

Consider Roof Replacement: If your flat roof has numerous patches or shows signs of deterioration, it may be time for a replacement. Consider installing a high-quality roofing membrane like ClassicBond's cut-to-size EPDM membrane, known for its durability and superior waterproofing properties.

Install Flashing: Properly installed flashing is essential for preventing leaks in vulnerable areas of your flat roof, such as chimneys, vents, and skylights. Flashing creates a watertight seal and helps prevent water ingress, reducing the risk of leaks.

HOW TO PREVENT FLAT ROOF LEAKS - Flat Roofing Specialists Colchester and Essex

LM Roofing provides the best flat roofing services in and around Colchester, Ipswich and Essex. Whatever you require, our professional team can assist you with everything from small repairs to installing a completely new roofs.