Does Your Addition Have a Ponding Problem?

Many homes in the Chicagoland area, including our hometown of Elmhurst, Illinois, have flat roof sections or additions. These additions to your home can give you the extra indoor space your family needs or give you a great three season room for entertaining.

Flat deck additions to your home can enhance its functionality and increase your home’s value. However, given the severe weather in our area, there are a few things you need to know about a flat deck addition:

1. The lifespan of a flat deck roof is significantly less than the lifespan of your steep slope shingle roof.

Your builder might not tell you this, but the life of a flat deck roof is about half that of a steep slope shingle roof. This is because the snow, ice, and water lay on the flat deck until they melt and evaporate. Over time, this wears on the flat deck products. Furthermore, if there are any holes or punctures in the flat deck, water will funnel into the hole, causing leaks into the structure.

2. Standing Water on your flat deck roof can be normal.

The pitch of your steep slope shingle roof allows water to roll right off your roofing system. A flat deck section might have a slight pitch or even a drain, but this might not remove all water from the flat deck immediately. Standing water on your flat deck can be normal and is not necessarily a major concern. The National Roofing Contractors Association’s (NRCA) guidelines state, “NRCA defines positive drainage as the drainage condition in which consideration has been made during design for all loading deflections of a deck and additional roof slope has been provided to ensure drainage of a roof area within 48 hours following rainfall under conditions conducive to drying.” http://docserver.nrca.net/technical/8363.pdf. If your flat deck has standing water for more than 48 hours in dry conditions, your roof may have a drainage problem. Call Feze Roofing, Inc. at 630-530-5944 to discuss your options!

3. Walking on your flat deck roof can cause leaks.

Shoes and equipment on a flat deck roof can cause penetrations into your flat deck roof system. This will allow water to funnel into your roofing system and eventually into the building causing leaks. We most often see penetrations in a roofing system caused by HVAC repair crews. Penetrations in your roofing system will not be covered by a manufacturer or workmanship warranty, so be cautious about allowing repair services on your flat deck section.

4. Annual preventative maintenance may prolong the life of your flat deck roof.

Have a reputable roofing company like Feze Roofing come out to perform regular (if not annual) inspections of your flat deck section and perform any required maintenance or small repairs, especially at the seams.

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