Save Money by Choosing the Right Flat Roof
When looking at repairing or replacing your existing flat roof there are a few things to consider. The most obvious is price, but don’t let that be the deciding factor. One must be very careful when choosing a flat roof. There are several options out there to choose from.
Every roofing company has their own opinions on the type of roof they install and what everyone else installs. This is where your homework comes in. Flat roofs, using any roofing materials are not cheap. Learn about your investment before you buy. You wouldn’t buy a house without seeing it, or at least learning about it in some fashion. Why choose a roof you know nothing about? Flat roofing systems are not created equally. Some are designed to be installed very fast by the roofer; which can save you, the building owner money, at the install. But these new fast install systems come with a hidden cost; short life spans and leaks.
Remember when buying a flat roof! DO NOT BUY THE SALESMEN, BUY THE ROOF.
Too many people fall into the trap of the slick salesman telling you everything you want to hear, and when it comes to delivering you a long term flat roof, they fall short. Make sure that the salesman gives you the following items:
- Sales literature about the product they are selling
- A small cut sample of the roof system
- Offers to take you onto local roofs installed by the company that you can look at for yourself to see their workmanship
- Provides the needed insurance and WSIB clearances
- Provides you with good references
- The salesperson should go through all of the steps they will be taking when installing the new roofing system.
A good question to ask is:
Does the company provide an inspection of the roof they installed every 5 years, free of charge – to keep an eye on the new roof installation?
As a customer you are spending your hard earned money and you should be well informed before making a decision on a new flat roof.
Short Term vs Long Term Flat Roofing Options
There are two main categories when discussing flat roofs. Are you looking for something cheap and short term? Or, are you looking for something that will stand the test of time?
Let’s start with the quick Short Term or Band-Aid roof systems:
These usually consist of a single ply membrane. These flat roof systems are usually less expensive in the short term (not lasting very long in comparison to a BUR or Built Up Roof System), and are quick to install and have lower material costs. The single ply membrane roof system is very thin and seamed throughout. They tend to leak either immediately after installation or shortly there after. These new “fast” install roofs are the disposable roof systems of today.
There are also torch applied rubber systems. They too, are thin, (although thicker than single ply) seamed systems and are prone to fast leakage due to seam stresses from Mother Nature. The problems with these types of flat roof systems are they will need to be replaced in as little as three years time, costing the consumer more in the long run.
Long Term Flat Roofing Options:
The die hard hot asphalt roof system is a different story. It has been used for over 150 years now to keep Mother Nature out of buildings all over the world. Hot asphalt or Built Up Roof systems (BUR) are an extremely trustworthy roof system that can last up to 40 years if installed correctly. There are different types of hot asphalt roofs out there. TOUGHROOF is a seamless, multi-layered hot asphalt roof system that uses an ultra white coating that reflects the suns damaging rays back into the atmosphere protecting the layers of asphalt and Polara re-enforcement materials underneath. This type of flat roof system can last forever; because the only layer that ever needs replacing is the top white coating.
You get what you pay for rings true in flat roofing today. Hot asphalt roof systems, while costing a bit more now, will save you thousands down the road.
If you save today by installing inferior roofing products and let salespeople con you into purchasing an inferior roof system, you will inevitably pay more in years to come. You will soon find out that the warranty they provided you doesn’t really cover anything. Many of these low budget roofing companies will pass you on to the manufacturer when there is a problem with the roof they installed – who will not warranty an installer’s work. Interior damage from a leaky roof is another factor to consider. In the end you will need to re-installation a new roof system within a few years, costing you double of your initial costs.
I have been in the flat roofing industry all my life, I am the fourth generation of roofers in my family. I have seen these new age fast install roofing trends now for a couple decades, with their massive failures. I have seen the upset customers that where sold on these new systems. Long term savings wins hands down… every time. When you factor in roof longevity and a leak free roof system the savings over time is in a hot asphalt roof system. Don’t let salespeople pull you away from the die hard hot asphalt roof system. The new age systems don’t stand up to Mother Nature the way a hot asphalt roof does. Do your homework and don’t spend your hard earned money on a new age disposable roof system that will fail you. Choose a hot asphalt flat roof that will stand the test of time, saving you valuable time and money in the end.