Old roof tiles

No matter what kind of roof you have, there is always the possibility it may get damaged.

Built with tiles, felt, fibreglass, or even a green roof, every kind of material comes with issues that can arise.

While there are ways you can slow down the occurrence of issues, there is no real way to eliminate them altogether.

So, with that in mind, the team at Roofpro have written this guide on everything you need to know about roofing repairs, and what to do if you find issues of your own.

Let’s take a look.

Signs Your Roof Needs Repairing

We’ll start at the beginning.

How do you know if your roof needs repairing?

Well, there are two ways you can find this out.

Firstly, you can find the problems yourself, or alternatively, you can wait for the problems to come to you.

While the former is the best way of doing things, it’s not always possible.

How to Check for Problems Yourself

This is much easier when you have a flat roof, as you often have a vantage point from which you can look down onto the roof and assess it for damage.

If you have a pitched roof, it is trickier. While you may be able to see issues (broken tiles for example) you won’t be able to get a close look from the outside. If you can access your loft, you will be able to visit this though and look for signs of water dripping through or bursts of sunlight that are obviously breaking through a gap.

A roof should be clean, so if you are noticing build-ups of things such as moss, this can be hazardous and can lead to a build-up of moisture.

Similarly on flat roofs, if water is pooling in one spot, it is a sign your drainage isn’t working and this needs dealing with before the water causes real damage.

Depending on when your roof was built, it is a good idea to keep the lifespan of your roof in mind, and getting a professional check when the time is up is always a good choice to make sure your roof is still in good health.

Signs of Roof Damage That Come to You

Of course, you may not have the means or the time to check your roof thoroughly, and in this case, you may find the signs of damage come to you.

If you’re laying in bed and hearing a dripping noise coming from the attic, or you can hear the wind whistling, this could be a sign of cracked or broken tiles.

You may also find your gutters looking blocked and damaged, or you may even wander past your home today and spot some loose or broken shingles.

Some signs of damage are obvious, and some are harder to spot. All of them are hazardous though, and the longer they’re left, the worse the damage may get.

Flat Roof Repair

While flat roofs are a lot quicker and more cost-efficient to install, they can often be harder to fix.

Some common problems with flat roofs are caused by the fact that materials such as GRP expand in the heat and shrink when the weather turns colder. It is vital you keep an eye on your roof and get a professional team to install it so to avoid the changes in temperature causing issues.

Some other issues you find on roofs made from felt and GRP fibreglass are tearing and bubbling, which can both be caused by extreme weather conditions.

For roof repairs on flat roofs, you must try and use as similar a material as you used on the original build.

While green roofs do come with plenty of benefits, they can be tricky to repair.

There is a lot of weight and moisture on a green roof, and it is a big job to repair as the area that contains the damage needs to be removed and the repair needs to be made before laying the roof again.

Whilst the common issues on flat roofs may be slightly more damaging than on a pitched roof, the fact that you can access the roof to carry them out is a big positive.

Pitched Roof Repair

Pitched roofs are often seen as a luxury, especially when using tiles made from slate or concrete.

While these do come with huge life expectancy, often around 100 years, this doesn’t mean problems can’t arise.

Most of the problems here come from the tiles.

If these have not been secured down properly, are too old, or have been subject to extreme weather conditions such as wind or snow, then they may become loose or cracked.

When this happens, the tile may need replacing or securing back into place.

While this sounds like a simple job, the logistics of getting on top of the roof make it difficult, and safety measures such as installing scaffolding are often needed.

If you can access your loft, this is a great place to look out for rotting timbers, and with some professional help, you may be able to make some changes to your roof from the inside as well.

If you have a window on your roof, this may also need repairing at some point. If this does happen, this is another tricky job and may require professional help to make sure it is done in a safe manner.

The Importance of Regular Checks

There’s nothing more important to keeping a roof healthy than performing regular checks.

Whether your roof has a lifespan of 30 years or 100 years, something can go wrong at any time, and it is vital that you react quickly when it does.

If left unresolved, bubbling and blistering on a flat roof can burst and lead to a much bigger job. Broken or loose tiles are not just hazardous to the roof as they let the elements in underneath, but they’re also dangerous to the public who may be unfortunate enough to be passing under the roof when the tile eventually comes loose and drops.

A check can be in the form of standing outside your home with a pair of binoculars, looking down on your roof from a higher vantage point, or even wandering around it in the case of a flat roof. If you can’t do either of these, it’s worth getting in touch with a professional team to help you.

Roofpro London Roof Repairs

If you think you may have an issue with your roof and want some advice or a free, no-obligation quote on fixing it, then get in touch with Roofpro today.

With years of experience working with many different types of roofs, we’re sure to be able to provide a quick and cost-efficient response if you live in the London area.

We look forward to hearing from you.

If you’re looking to extend on your home, or simply looking for something a bit different, then you’re going to need the help of some professional roofing contractors.

But before you ring in a quote, you first have to decide which roof is best for you. There are plenty of options of different materials that can be used to build your roof, but when it comes to the shape, there are two main ones to choose from.

Flat or pitched.

So how do you choose which shape is best for you?

Well, we’ve created a handy guide to help you, so let’s take a look.

Pitched roofs

Pitched roofs are roofs that are built to slope downwards. These are often seen with a ridge in the middle, where two or more opposite facing slopes point outwards from the centre towards the end of the roof.

To get technical, a pitched roof is any roof that slopes at an angle of 10 degrees or more. Any less than that and the roof is classed as flat.

Materials Used on Pitched Roofs

If you’re looking for a pitched roof extension, then chances are you will be using roof tiles.

Some common materials these tiles are made out of in the United Kingdom are slate and concrete, although other common tile materials are clay, metal and asphalt.

These tiles are often laid in rows and each one should be secured down with a nail. Each row will overlap the one in front to stop rainwater from getting into the tiles and for increased security and durability.

Benefits of Pitched Roofs  

1. Easy to Maintain

One thing you definitely get with a pitched roof is a strong and durable structure.

The shape of the roof means that water and snow will fall off it and also leads to a pitched roof needing minimal cleaning.

When it comes to issues with the roof, a lot of these can be fixed relatively easily, such as replacing cracked tiles or securing more tiles down.

2. Maximise Inside Space and Light

A pitched roof provides space underneath. This can be ideal if you are looking for extra storage space, or even want to add an extra room to a house in way of a loft extension.

Not only does this create more room, but it can also increase the value of your home.

Pitched roof windows can also bring in some extra light and air to your home. And if you’re looking for skylights for pitched roofs, here’s a guide to help you choose the perfect kind for you.

3. Long Lifespan

As mentioned earlier, pitched roofs are often covered in tiles.

These can offer great long-lasting protection for your home.

Slate and concrete tiles have a lifespan of 100 years or more, and this makes installing these on your pitched roof a great investment.

Not only that, but due to the shape and lack of maintenance required, a pitched roof shouldn’t need regular checks to ensure it is staying strong.

It is often strong enough to care for itself.

slate roof

Negatives of Pitched Roofs

1. May Need Added Support

A pitched roof is a big structure and this can put some strain on a building.

This added pressure can be so large that extra support is needed on the framework of a building to make sure it is safe.

This can mean that installing a pitched roof isn’t always an option unless footings for your property are deep enough to withhold the structure.

Not sure on if it will work with your home? Get in touch with an expert who will be able to give clear guidance.

2. May Block Views

A pitched roof by nature is a large structure that takes up much more external space than a flat roof.

While this can be visually appealing, there is the chance that it could block some of the view from your, and your neighbour’s, homes.

This can lead to a lack of direct sunlight and disputes with nearby homes that also suffer the same fate.

Planning permission is required when installing a roof so make sure that everything is okay to go ahead before getting to work.

Flat Roofs

The alternative to a pitched roof is a flat roof.

This is an option that is becoming increasingly popular as a versatile way of installing a low-cost and accessible roof.

A flat roof is often actually not completely flat, as they do have a tiny slope that helps to drain away rainwater. This slope is often unnoticeable to anyone looking or standing on the roof though.

A flat roof can be quick to install, and if you want to know more about the structure of a flat roof, why not read our handy guide.

Types of Flat Roof

There are many different types of material used for a flat roof, and they are used all over the world.

Some popular flat roofing methods are single ply roofing, felt roofing, lead roofing, GRP fibreglass roofing and green roofing.

Flat roofing can be used as an outside space, or can be inaccessible, and are often found on structures like garages and sheds.

Benefits of Flat Roofs

Hugely Versatile

However you want to use it, having an outdoor space on which you can walk can be a huge benefit to a homeowner, especially one who lives in a city and has limited outside areas in their house.

Whether you want to have a green roof which can act as a garden, or you just want somewhere for extra storage or to dry your washing, the fact you can have a door or window that opens up and allows you to access your roof can make a big difference.

A Quicker Build

A flat roof can be a lot quicker to build, with less framework needed to install a roof. Of course, the times vary for which type of material you are using.

For example, if you’re installing a green roof this will take longer to build and implement than a felt roof, but you could assume that all of these options are quicker than building and tiling a pitched roof.

Easily Accessible

Being able to access a roof isn’t just a benefit for versatility as mentioned above, it also makes it much easier to maintain the roof and fix any issues that do arise.

A flat roof is also a lot easier to inspect than a flat roof, which is important as this kind of roof needs regular checks to make sure the roof isn’t bubbling, cracking, and that water isn’t pooling.

All in all, the accessibility of the roof makes things easier. If you want to change something, fix something, or alter the look of something, you can get on and do your work without the need for as many safety measures.

commercial flat roof london

Negatives of Flat Roofs

Higher Chance of Damage

While it is easier to fix a flat roof, there is more of a chance of damage.

Despite the fact that flat roofs are built with a slight slope, there is still the possibility of drainage issues, much more so than when compared to a pitched roof.

There are also issues with tearing and cracking as many materials that are used to build a roof expand and contract depending on the weather.

While the roof may be less cost to build, this kind of damage will cost you a lot more to fix than a few broken tiles.

Require More Maintenance

A pitched roof can be pretty much left alone, but the same can’t be said about a flat roof.

With a lifespan of around 15 years, this kind of roof will not last anywhere near as long as a pitched roof.

It will also require much more maintenance, especially if you have something like a green roof which will constantly have to be watched.

This extra maintenance can be a burden if people are looking for something low-maintenance and long lasting.

Repairs can be More Costly

Surprisingly, fixing a flat roof is often more costly than fixing a pitched roof.

This is because the common issues with flat roofs are a lot more damaging than the common issues on a pitched roof, such as loose tiles or cracks.

If your roof is bubbling, or sagging, or your material has ripped, this can sometimes require a lot of work to fix and therefore can be costly.

With the shorter lifespan also factored in, over the years the cost will add up for a flat roof, much more than it would for a pitched.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for an extension, both flat and pitched roofs come with plenty of benefits.

If you’re looking for something quick and low-cost to build and easy to access, then a flat roof may be for you. Alternatively, if you’re thinking more long term, then maybe a pitched roof is the best option.

Whatever your needs, Roofpro will love to hear from you.

Get in touch for more information or a quote on your project.