[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Flat roofs are commonly seen around residential dwellings. They may be weathering extensions, porch structures, dormer windows or garages. Whilst they appear to be flat, they are designed to have a ‘fall’ of 1:80 i.e. 1 cm of height across 80 cm of width. This is to ensure that the stormwater is discharged to gutters or pipes.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]The most common covering is that of mineral felt arranged in three layers with heavy duty cap sheet on top. Years ago, felt roofs were clad in stone chippings to reflect solar energy, and to minimize fire risk.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_single_image image=”1583″ img_size=”full” add_caption=”yes”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]These days the cap sheet is often smooth finished and painted with solar reflective paint. Pedestrian traffic over a stone chip covered roof should only be made using crawling boards since the stone finishes can puncture the cap sheet beneath and cause leakage.
The life-span of a felt roof is finite… depending on the quality of materials used, and the skill of the roofer, it may be counted in months, but they can also last 20 years or more in protected locations. The general standard of a re-roofing job may be judged by the ‘sharpness’ of the nosing felt at the perimeter of the roof, and the absence of any ‘pooling’ of storm water after a rain shower.
There a number of other covering materials in common use including sheet lead which may have a life in excess of 100 years, Asphalt with a life span of more than 60 years, Nuralite first used in the 1960’s, Zinc which is mined in the Americas Australia and Asia, profiled plastic-coated steel, copper sheet and rubber (EDPM) covering. All these materials have particular qualities and may be chosen for their appearance, longevity, installation / maintenance cost and useful life expectancy.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Chris Ennis FRICS is a Chartered Surveyor Tel: 01903 261217 email: [email protected] www.propdoctor.co.uk[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]