Common Problems With Flat Roofs

February 21, 2020

When most people think of a roof, they think of a pitched roof decorated with shingles. And while most residential homes are built with such roofs, most commercial buildings have flat roofs. Flat roofs, as the name suggests, appear flat, and require different installation methods than pitched roofs. Because they are designed differently, they have their own set of roofing issues to watch out for.

Leaks, Moisture, and Standing Water

Flat roofs are not designed to shed water, snow, and ice as easily as pitched roofs. Although they have “flat” in the name, flat roofs are still slightly angled so that water can flow into designated drains. It’s possible, however, for pools of water, or standing water, to collect in shallow areas of your roof. We can help repair these areas by using roofing plaster so that water properly flows towards the drain.

It’s crucial to not let standing water sit on your roof for too long. Excess moisture could seep into your roof, causing organic growth, mold, or fungus. It could also cause your roof to start leaking. If you notice a water leak under your roof, get it repaired right away before it causes more expensive damage to the rest of your structure.


Call a professional for a flat roof repair any time you see signs of cracking or impact damage. Flat roofs take on more pressure than slanted roofs, which can cause cracks over time. It’s important to get these areas repaired so that it doesn’t cause further structural damage.

Blistering or Alligatoring

When a flat roof is approaching its end of life, it starts to blister. Some roofers call this “alligatoring” because your roof will look like crackled like alligator skin. At this point, it’s better to get your roof replaced rather than replace it.

Buckling Asphalt

This is another sign you’ll need a flat roof replacement. Most flat roofs are sealed with an asphalt membrane that is installed in one piece. As a building shifts, settles, and moves around over time, the asphalt membrane may start to buckle and will need to be replaced. This is very normal as a flat roof gets older!

IBEX Roof has worked on flat roofs in both residential and commercial settings. Because many residential properties have both flat and pitched roofing, our technicians are experienced in knowing when to install asphalt shingles and rolled roofing in the appropriate places. In addition to using top quality materials, we also add ISO insulation to increase energy efficiency, install tapered foam to avoid puddling, and custom fabricate drains for unique drainage situations. 

To learn more about our flat roofing services, give our office a call today at 360-218-3104!

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