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Columbus Roofing: Article About Flat Roofs

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One of the unique roofing options available to homeowners are flat roofs. If someone already has a flat roof and needs a new one, or if a homeowner chooses to build his or her home, there are a number of flat roof options that Columbus roofing contractors can offer. On average, these roofs come with a 10 to 20 year lifespan warranty, but they can easily last for more than a quarter century when properly maintained. There are a few main types of flat roofs that homeowners can consider.

The first type of flat roof is known as a built up roof, and this is the flat roof that comes to mind when people hear the term. Made of hot tar and gravel, this roof type is built up of layers of waterproof materials that are placed between layers of river stone and tar. Gravel makes this roofing type resistant to fire, and it is generally more affordable than other types. The disadvantages to built up roofs is that they can be quite heavy, and some structures cannot support the weight. Since it is made of tar, this roof emits an odor during installation, which can last for several days. Since gravel is a built up roof component, some homeowners claim that gravel can clog the gutters of the home.

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Another type of flat roof is known as modified bitumen. This is a single ply roof that is made with a mineral based chemical to shield against water and ice. Modified bitumen roofs come in peel and stick versions or torch down systems, which make them easy and inexpensive to install. These roofs are light in color, which gives them energy efficient properties, as they reflect the rays of the sun. However, the roof is not as tear or scuff resistant as other materials, and applying torch down systems come with a fire hazard.

A rubber membrane flat roof is a durable material. It can resist damage from the sun, and it is applied with glue or anchored with stone ballast or fasteners. This is an easy roofing type to apply, and it is light, resistant to scuffs and any leaks are easily patched up. This is a black material, so it absorbs heat, which makes is less energy efficient than other flat roofs. However, a light coating is available to reduce this effect, but it adds up to 30 percent to the total cost. This roof material is also prone to punctures.

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