Flat roofs can be a better alternative to a traditional sloped roof for homeowners, in some cases. However, it's important to understand the issues that sometimes come along with flat roofs. For a look at flat roofs, their benefits, and some precautions, read on.
Benefits of Flat Roofs
Flat roofs are more common in warmer climates but, if done correctly, they can top a home in almost any climate. People turn to flat roofs because they are
Less expensive—Flat roofs are not built on a slope, so they take up less space. That makes the material outlay a lot more affordable. Since they are less expensive to do in the first place, they also cost less when it's time to make a repair.
Energy efficient—Traditional sloped roofs have (often unused) space beneath the roof. This space can trap cold or hot air inside, making your cooling and heating systems work harder to make your home comfortable. A flat roof has no empty space for air to accumulate.
Useful—Flat roofs are popular choices for a covered deck because of their affordability. They also tend to blend in better with the existing lines of the home. Many people with flat roofs put them to work though. These large, flat spaces are great for rooftop gardens, particularly for those with less space in their yards. Water for the plants can be captured and reused on the plants and that reduces the homeowner's water consumption.
Flat Roofs Merit Precautions Too
There are a few things to be cautious about when dealing with flat roofs.
They need more weatherproofing—In colder climates, water can be trapped on a flat roof and freeze. That adds weight to the roof. Consult with your roofing contractor about additional measures to deal with this issue if you live in an icy climate.
Garden roofs need monitoring—A garden on your flat roof makes good use of space and creates a pleasing appearance. However, be aware of plants that may have invasive root systems. They can create problems with the integrity of your roof and could produce holes in your roof and leaks. Check with your local gardening center to find out about plants with less aggressive root systems for your flat roof garden.
Longevity—Flat roofs may not be as long-lasting as traditional sloped roofs. They may need replacing more often and that can mean the initial savings on the flat roof could be lost. Be sure to work out the cost per year when you speak to your roofing contracting about sloped vs flat roofs.
Contact a local roofing service to learn more.