Flat Roof Inspections: Common Issues and Australian Building Standards

Flat roofing is a popular choice for commercial and residential buildings due to its cost-effectiveness and versatility. However, it’s important to have your flat roof inspected regularly to ensure it remains in good condition and to identify any potential issues before they become major problems. Let’s take a look at the most common issues found during flat roof inspections, how often you should have your flat roof inspected and Australian building standards that pertain to flat roofing.

Common Issues Found During Flat Roof Inspections

Ponding Water:

Ponding water is one of the most common issues with flat roofing. This occurs when water accumulates on the surface of the roof and doesn’t drain properly. This can lead to leaks, damage to the roof’s membrane, and structural damage to the building.

Cracks and Leaks:

Cracks and leaks in a flat roof can lead to water penetration and damage to the building’s interior. These issues can be caused by extreme weather conditions, poor sealing of roofing attachments, or natural wear and tear over time.

Punctures and Tears:

Punctures and tears in a flat roof can be caused by foot traffic, falling debris, or improper installation. These can lead to water penetration which is to be avoided at all costs and will typically result in more costly damage being done internally.

UV Damage:

Flat roofs are exposed to direct sunlight, which can cause the roofing materials to break down over time. We will often run into silicone that has been applied incorrectly which results in it being more susceptible to UV damage. This can lead to cracks, leaks, and other issues.

Poor Installation:

Poor installation can lead to a range of issues with a flat roof, including leaks, ponding water, and internal damage. It’s important to hire a reputable roofing contractor with experience in flat roof installation to ensure the job is done correctly. This also applies to the installation of roofing fixtures.

Flat Roof Inspections
Flat Roof common issues
Flat Roof Inspections

How Often to Have a Flat Roof Inspected

The recommended frequency of flat roof inspections varies depending on a number of factors, including the age of the roof, the type of roofing materials used, and the building’s location. As a general rule of thumb, it’s recommended to have your flat roof inspected at least once a year. While this is more often than other roofing types, we base this recommendation on decades of experience carrying out roof inspections.

If your roof is older or has a history of issues, more frequent inspections may be necessary. The same goes for flat roofing on industrial properties where foot traffic is a frequent occurrence. Part of a proper roof condition report is to recommend ways to extend the longevity of your roof which makes finding a qualified, experienced roofing inspector a must.

Australian Building Standards for Flat Roofing

There are several Australian building standards that pertain to flat roofing, including:

  • AS/NZS 3500.3 Plumbing and Drainage, Part 3: Stormwater Drainage
  • AS 1562.1 Design and Installation of Sheet Roof and Wall Cladding
  • AS 1170.2 Structural Design Actions – Wind Actions

It’s important to comply with these standards to ensure your flat roof is structurally sound and safe. Non-compliance can result in fines, legal issues, and potential harm to people and property. Our roofing inspectors possess a thorough understanding of all building codes that pertain to your particular style of roofing. If any infractions are found during your roof inspection, relevant snippets will be included in your roof inspection report.

flat roof australian building standards

Talk To The Trusted Experts In Flat Roof Inspections

Regular flat roof inspections are essential to maintain the integrity and safety of your building. No matter the outcome, a roof inspection is always a prudent financial decision as the low cost of hiring a professional roof inspector pales in comparison to the costs of repairing water damage resulting from unchecked leaks. The invaluable insights contained within the resulting roof condition report are designed to improve the lifespan of your roof, adding another layer of value.

To talk with a trusted roofing inspector about the condition of your flat roof, call Roof Inspection Reports on 0418 677 524. You can also click here to contact us online and we will get back to you as soon as possible.