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8 Signs of Flat Roof Damage You Can Find Yourself

While commercial roofing is often something best left to the professionals, you can look for the signs of commercial roof damage on your own. If you discover any of these signs throughout your own inspection, contact an experienced commercial roofing expert immediately for a second opinion and repair.

Here are the 8 most common signs of commercial roof damage.

Commercial Roof Damage Checklist

roof with ponding water

While you’ll be able to notice some of the most severe signs of commercial roofing damage in your building, finding the majority of these clues requires you to get on the roof yourself.

  1. Rips in EPDM Membrane — EPDM rubber roofs are one of the most common types of commercial roofs on the market. If the protective rubber roof membrane of your EPDM roof is visibly ripping, that means it is no longer watertight and won’t be offering the same protection. If you see this type of commercial roof damage, serious roof leaks likely won’t be far behind.
  2. TPO Roof Coating Cracks — White TPO roofs offer energy efficiency as well as lightweight roof protection. As your TPO roof ages, the TPO coating can crack. If you see cracks in your white roof, get assistance to protect your roof before serious damage can occur. This is one of the most common causes of failure on TPO roofs and tends to happen at around the 15-year mark. Learn more about common commercial roof lifespans.
  3. Ponding Water — To look for ponding water on your commercial roof, you’ll need to climb a ladder and examine your roof after a heavy rain. If you see puddles of water across your roof — called ponding water — that’s a sign the built-in roof drainage system has failed. This needs to be addressed by a skilled roofer immediately, otherwise, that ponding water can eventually infiltrate your roof and cause damage.
  4. Flashing Separated from Roof — Roof flashing does an important job on both commercial and residential roofs. Since the seams of most roofs can potentially act as an area of water infiltration, flashing is added to cover them. If the protective flashing looks or feels loose, that means water is infiltrating the vulnerable roofing seams. If you catch this issue early, it can be solved by a fairly minor repair. If you miss or ignore loose flashing, it can result in the entire roof rotting out.
  5. Membrane Waving in the Wind — Another clue that your EPDM roof membrane is not providing sufficient protection. To look for this sign of commercial roof damage you’ll need to get on your roof when the wind is blowing — just be careful. If you see the rubber membrane catching or waving in the wind, that’s a sign it’s not giving sufficient protection and water can be infiltrating. Once again, this is often simple to repair, but dangerous to ignore.
  6. Loose Fasteners — One of the hardest signs of roof damage to identify on your own, when roof fasteners come loose they show up as bumps on the roof membrane itself. If you see or feel the fasteners through your roof membrane that is the first sign that the membrane will need a repair down the road.
  7. Water Spots on the Ceiling — If you see water spots on the ceiling, that’s a clue your commercial roof might need some assistance. While water spots can come from other sources like air conditioner condensation, the most common reason is a leaking roof. Seeing water spots should encourage you to examine the roof closely or call a professional.
  8. Roof Leaks — The number one, tell-tale sign your roof is damaged. If water drips from your roof after a rainstorm, that’s the only proof you need to see your roof is damaged. Don’t wait — contact a professional immediately.

Commercial Roofing Solutions

commercial roof repaired

Did your roof pass the eye test? Fantastic. Although your analysis isn’t as good as a professional commercial roofing inspection, this should still give you some confidence.

If you noticed one of these signs of commercial roofing damage on your building or buildings, contact us immediately. We can examine your roof and confirm whether what you saw is really damage. If your roof is damaged, we offer a variety of commercial roofing solutions, including full tear-offs as well as cost-effective alternatives — backed by an up to 30-year warranty.

Learn about our alternatives to a complete roof tear-off.

Whether you need to discuss commercial roof repair, or you just want to schedule a professional inspection for total peace-of-mind, contact us today.

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