While most homes in Toronto don’t have a flat roof (primarily to help roof drainage, particularly in winter), increased urbanization and housing density in the city has seen an increase in the use of flat roofs for new home construction.
As more young people and families chose the downtown lifestyle, builders are using flat roofs to create additional living space, like walkouts from living rooms and bedrooms, or full roof-top decks, in the absence of the larger backyards found in the suburbs.
But, regardless of what type of roof they have, homeowners tend to pay very little attention to it. With the sloped roofs covered in asphalt shingles that are most common in Toronto, the neglect might lead to a leak that lets water in when it rains or when there is snow melt.
But flat roofs can suffer catastrophic leaks from a single symptom that is exclusive to them.
Water pooling on the roof
A pool of water on your flat roof puts you at risk of a number of roofing problems.
1. Structural Damage
The weight of the water on the roof adds extra stress to its supporting structure. The problem can get a lot worse in ‘mild’ winters, when the snow on the roof accumulates, melts and refreezes without draining. That means you could have many weeks or months of precipitation sitting on your roof and straining its supports.
2. A Major Leak
While some water leaking in during a rain storm can cause significant accumulated damage, collected water that suddenly enters all at once can cause significantly more damage in an instant.
3. Faster Roofing Material Deterioration
Even the most durable flat roofing material weakens faster in the presence of water. And the moisture can lead to vegetation growth, which will also decrease your roof’s life.
Do You Have a Water Pooling Problem? Generally, if water is still present on your roof 72 hours after the last precipitation, there’s a good chance that you have a pooling problem and it should be repaired as soon as possible. If you suspect your flat roof has a pooling problem, call us here at Chouinard Bros.. We will do a thorough roof inspection and advise you of your options.