Last Updated on March 18, 2021 by Filip Poutintsev
Because of the unique look and modern aesthetics, flat roofs are becoming a popular choice for homeowners and developers building new homes. Flat roofs, as suggested by the name, is laid horizontally on the top of a building with a slight slope.
These are extensively used in both residential buildings and businesses. The most commonly used area is in outsized structures like outbuildings. Generally made of synthetic rubber and asphalt, this form of roofing isn’t truly flat but sloped between ¼ and ½ inch per foot in order to deplete water proficiently.
You’re likely to have to design your roof at some point if you’ve selected to build your own home. You will have to figure out your necessities and choose between a pitched roof (one with no less than two slopes that rise at an angle greater than 10 degrees each to make a crest) and a flat roof (one with an angle of 10 degrees or less).
Flat roofs offer you an exclusive set of challenges and necessities. If you plan to have a flat roof on a habitation or building here are the fundamental advantages and disadvantages of it that you need to be aware about.
Table of Contents
Pros of Flat Roofing Systems
1. Quick to Install
You do not have to wait for a long time to move in since a flat roof is quicker to set up. Besides, if you ever have to have any repairs down the line or even substitute your roof, the re-roofing method is fairly quick and effortless. You do not require to clear a huge portion of your timetable just to deal with roofers as some jobs can be completed under a day.
Flat roofs lack pitch which is why they are easier to install. This is the factor that allows the installers to navigate the roof easily during the installation process which makes it quicker. It is cheaper to assure a company installing flat roofs than one installing pitched roofs since a flat roof is tougher to fall off of. Flats roof require fewer materials making them less costly, that is, they lack the rafters and engineered trusses required by pitched roofs. On the contrary, these are usually pricier than traditional roofs because of the supplementary constituents to install such as vapor retarders, insulation and a cover board to make it class A fire-rated. They also do not require the engineered trusses that other pitched roofs will need.
3. Useable Space
Having a flat roof eliminates the issue to having walls with extreme angles and can allow for extra space. The walls with pitched roofs, specifically the ones with excess pitches, can reduce the livable space.
Furthermore, flat rooms can facilitate for interesting space with a rooftop deck or patio that will wow your guests over and over again. Flat roofs create room for extra space within the home.
You can use the space to get your air conditioning units up off the floor and pit them on the roof, fit solar panels on the roof that are not as much obvious from the curb, plant a roof top garden and so on. It creates endless possibilities for you to use your space.
Flat roofs are reachable and thus are easy to examine for dent and leaks unlike the sloped roofs. In addition, you can make use of the rooftop in numerous ways like, creating a deck garden, or using it for breaks and amusement such as parties and other get-togethers and much more.
5. Allow Space for HVAC Units
Flat roofs provide sufficient space to hold HVAC units, including the commercial ones. The safer option is to fix your building’s HVAC on its roof to circumvent wreckage or damage.
Due to the membrane system applied on top of stiff sheets of insulation, flat roofs are more energy-efficient than sloped ones. The channel of air is blocked because of the nonexistence of gaps.
Cons of Flat Roofing Systems
1. Heat absorption
A flat roof is premeditated such that it absorbs heat. Due to the lack of pitch, the entire roof is exposed to the sun all day. This might sound tempting for Midwest winters, but not to forget that in the winter the sun is at lowest point so the heating ability can be negligible compared to the escalated energy bills you are to experience in the summer months while your home’s AC has to toil really hard to keep your home cool.
These roofs are more prone to leakage. Taking this into account the insurance companies often raise rates likewisely; whereas, metal roofs are more likely to lessen your insurance premiums because they have higher abilities to withstand fire and hail. Given the way in which metal roofs are engineered, they in fact put off the buildup of snow on their roofs.
The life expectancy of the flat roofs can be as little as a decade due to the beating they take as they do not naturally drain. Even when you haven’t planned on owning the construction for 10 years, a flat roof can also influence your capability to trade the property as the upcoming owner will probably be aware of the roof’s reduced lifespan. Conversely, an asphalt or metal pitched roof can have non-prorated warranties on labor and materials that can possibly last up to 50 years.
Flat roofs require to be monitored more than a pitched roof due to the lack of ways for water to naturally filter away. This can result into standing water, wreckage and blocked drainage systems which consequently lead to the roof’s reduced lifespan. Due to the collection of water over time, flat roofs necessitate more maintenance than traditional pitched roofs.
5. Not Stylish
These roofs aren’t well thought out as stylish because they most probably won’t blend as easily into a neighborhood as that of their pitched complements. Besides, they have more outdoor living space but have relatively less indoor living space because of the nonexistence of loft or attic in the house.