If you’re designing a new home and you think that the only option for a roof is the traditional peaked design, the good news is that you have another option. A flat roof provides many benefits over its peaked counterparts, including easier access and better energy efficiency. Before you choose a flat roof for your home, though, there are a few important things you should know. Here’s a list of some of those things so that you can design your new home with confidence.
Unlike a peaked roof where you can see most of the surface of the roof from the ground, a flat roof is largely hidden unless you make your way to the roof. This means that problems can be hidden from view until it’s too late. That’s why frequent inspections of your roof are important to catch problems before they cause major issues. Fortunately, due to its design, accessing your flat roof is far easier than accessing a peaked roof.
If you’ve ever noticed a commercial building with its HVAC equipment installed on the roof, you’ve seen the power of a flat roof at work. If you choose a flat roof for your home, you will be able to put all of the mechanical equipment for your home on your roof instead of in your yard. This helps add yard space and keeps the equipment out of the reach of potential thieves. Plus, the large flat space on your roof makes an ideal space to install solar panels.
Just like with typical residential roofing, drainage is still crucial to the integrity of your flat roof. A flat roof is slightly sloped toward specific drainage areas that are attached to pipes that carry away the rainwater. Therefore, just as you must keep the gutters clean to protect a peaked roof, you must keep these drains clean to protect a flat roof. One way to do this is to ensure that no trees are in a position to release leaves or other debris onto your roof.
If you’re worried that a flat roof will limit your choice of roofing materials, then you’re in luck. There are several different options when it comes to flat roofing materials. If your home has enough structural support, you can choose a built-up roof, which is the kind commonly seen on top of commercial buildings. Otherwise, you can choose a modified bitumen system or a rubber roof, both of which offer excellent waterproofing capabilities.
When it comes to roof choices for homes, a flat roof is certainly different. Different, however, doesn’t mean bad. At the same time, if you live in a neighborhood that is governed by a homeowner’s association, you’ll want to check their guidelines to ensure your different roof doesn’t violate the guidelines. Beyond that, there’s not much standing between you and a great-looking flat roof.