Flat roofs are a fairly modern development. Victorian houses featured some areas of flat roof, but it’s only since building extensions have become more popular and as materials have improved that large flat roofs have become common.
Quality is key when it comes to roofing, and this is even more so the case for modern construction methods. It’s generally believed that a felt roof has a lifespan of ten to fifteen years, but this is only true if it’s well maintained. It’s advisable to have a flat roof survey carried out at least once a year to check for damage and spot areas in need of repair. Additional treatments such as adding solar reflective paint or gravel can lead to premature failure.
A flat roof survey should be carried out in the spring or autumn. These are the times when the build up of leaves and other debris can cause deterioration. You can take the opportunity to check drains and external pipes at the same time. It’s also a good idea to have a survey of a flat roof carried out after a heavy storm or a period of very low temperatures. These conditions can affect roofing materials severely, and are the times when leaks are likely to occur.
It’s a condition on some insurance policies that a flat roof survey is carried out at specific intervals, such as every five years. It’s essential that you comply with such conditions, or a claim may be declined if it relates to the condition of a roof that hasn’t been inspected. You’ll need to provide evidence that a survey has been carried out by a suitable contractor, and it’s not just a case of going up a ladder and having a look yourself.
Drones are now being used to carry out flat roof surveys, and this can be a cheaper alternative than traditional methods. A drone can be in the air within minutes and capture detailed photographs and video for inspection.


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Harrison Green