Behind The Scenes Of Your Flat Roof’s Lifespan

Flat roofs on residential buildings offer many benefits, and with proper maintenance, they can last for as long as 50 years. There are different types of flat roofing materials with each type offering a different lifespan. With all the choices and newer products coming into the market, homeowners want to know the average lifespan they can expect. Here are the most common residential flat roof materials.

  • Built-Up Roof – Depending on how well you maintain your built-up roof, it can last for 15-20 years. The traditional hot-tar-and-gravel roofing material is built from three or more layers of waterproof material alternated with hot tar and ballasted with a layer of smooth river stone. 
  • PVC – PVC is often reinforced with polyester or fiberglass to create a durable roofing material. PVC roofs can last up to 30 years and are highly resistant to fire and UV rays. 
  • TPO – Thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO) has a wider range but can last for 15-20 years. This versatile roofing material can reflect UV rays and retard flames.
  • Torchdown – A torchdown, or modified bitumen, is a single-ply rolled roof treated with a mineral-based wear surface. However, torchdown roofing systems have a slightly shorter lifespan than PVC and TPO.

Factors Affecting the Longevity of Flat Roofs

There are several factors which determine how long your residential building’s flat roof will last. In general, a flat roofing system can last anywhere from 10-50 years depending on the following factors:

  • Climate
  • Roofing material
  • Installation
  • Roof penetration
  • Proper Maintenance

What this means is choosing the right roofing contractor is just as important as choosing the right roofing material. You need a professional with expertise and experience in installing various types of flat roof membranes. Additionally, proper maintenance involves ensuring efficient draining to avoid ponding which can eventually seep through and cause costly damage to the surface underneath. Consider working with Guardian Homes in the greater Puget Sound Area for all your flat roofing needs. Contact us today for more information!