Flat roof installation with the use of EPDM rubber is ideal for many commercial applications. If the membrane is being used to replace an existing installation, then there are a number of things that your contractor will need to do before the membrane is installed. Keep reading to learn about a few of the preparation steps.
Much like residential roofs, commercial roofs start with a solid layer of decking material. The deck is constructed from one-half inch plywood and helps to create a strong structure where the membrane can adhere. But, unlike a residential deck, the commercial one is almost never removed when a new roof is installed. A thorough examination is completed instead, and repairs are made if damage is noted. This helps to retain the pitch of the roof as this has been calculated for optimal drainage. Existing drains can be left in place too, and the insulation can be left undisturbed.
During the roofing inspection, the roofers will look for low spots in the roof as well as any deterioration in the deck. Low spots can be filled in with elastomeric materials and new decking can be nailed into place once deteriorated sections are cut out and removed.
Also, flashing will be inspected to see if it needs to be replaced. Flashing sits underneath the membrane, so now is the time to make repairs. Now is also the time to lower drains if puddling has been an issue, so make sure to speak with the roofers about this if you ever see water sitting on the roof for long periods of time.
Flange Replacement and Protrusion Removal
Your commercial roofing professional will also prepare protrusions at this time. If there are any unused vents, old AC units, or other protrusions that are no longer needed, your roofer will remove these items. This is ideal because protrusions can lead to leaks. Once removal is completed, patches are added.
Also, rubber flanges are inspected and replaced. Flanges sit around each protrusion to help guide water away from vent pipes. Since rubber tends to crack when exposed to years of sun exposure, replacements will help to reduce future leak issues. Flashing can be added around the edge of the flange, so speak with your installation professional about this.
At this time, your roofer will start to clean and prepare the roof deck for a final inspection. Make sure that you also inspect the roof before the membrane is secured so that problems are addressed before membrane adhesion.
If you want to know more about the tasks that are completed before a flat roof is installed, speak with a commercial roofing company in your area like Ultimate Choice Roofing.