What is Ponding Water?
The roofing industry defines ponding water to be water that accumulates on the roof and stays pooled in an area more than 48 hours after heavy rain has ended. Ponding water on a flat roof can drastically reduce the roof’s lifespan and often leads to damaging leaks and sagging roofs. Flat roofs also might develop blocked drains due to debris and other materials which cause water to pool in some areas.
How Does Ponding Water Affect Your Flat Roof?
There are several reasons that cause water to pond on a flat roof surface. Most commonly, loose debris can obstruct your flat roof drainage. Ponding water can permeate any defect in your roof structure, including splits or cracks. If the water seeps into your insulation the inner fibers can rot affecting the quality of your insulation and damaging the roof.
Ponding water on a flat roof can also be caused by a sagging roof structure, deflection or inferior roof design. Flat roof drainage that is incorrectly sized or improperly placed leads to ponding water issues. These issues continue to worsen and damage a flat commercial roof as the roof ages.
Ponding water can reduce the roof’s endurance, lead to faster deterioration of rooftop coatings, encourage the growth of harmful vegetation such as moss, algae, and mold and lead to leaking and sagging of the roof system. It can contribute to the premature decline of the roof membrane, coatings and flashing, and compromise the integrity of the roofing structure.
There are ponding water can damage a commercial roof in many different ways:
Dirt and debris will accumulate on the roof. The soiled water starts to rot, causing algae and bacteria to grow. This can impact the integrity of your roofing materials and its coating.
Ponding water is extremely harmful to your rooftop surface. While the water accumulates on your roof, it is in constant contact with your roof coating. As the sun heats the water during the day, it gradually decreases the durability of your rooftop coating.
Ponding water also corrodes your roof’s membrane structure. Over time, ponding water will begin to seep through cracks that occur in your roof’s membrane. As the sun continually heats the water, the roof’s membrane may become damaged, leading to leaks in the roof’s surface.
How to Fix the Problem
In order to correct a ponding water problem on your flat commercial roof, there are several options to consider. Your best option depends on your specific situation.
One option to keep water from ponding on your flat rooftop is to install a tapered roof. This directs the water to the building’s internal drainage system. Tapered roofs are installed at a slight angle which directs the water toward the building’s internal drains or gutters.
Another solution is to optimize the drainage system. If your current drainage is not sufficient, you can fix this by adding additional roof drains. This requires an entire process of opening the existing roof down to the deck. A pipe is then affixed to the existing drain assembly which connects to the roof’s existing drainage system.
If the above options are not financially feasible at this time, you might consider replacing your roof membrane. Several PVC membranes are specifically designed to resist ponding water. Ponding water issues can be avoided when drains and gutters are cleared of debris allowing water to flow through, preventing damage to the structure.
Collected water can cause major damage if you don’t attend to it. In fact, warranties often compel building owners to maintain proper drainage by not permitting water to stand on the roof over 48 hours in dry conditions. Many older roofs were not designed to hold standing pools of water, and can easily become damaged due to the excessive weight. Over time, the standing water leads to deteriorating surfaces, damaged roofing materials and ultimately causing roof erosion.
Preventing the damage caused by ponding water can be a relatively easy problem to fix. After an initial visual inspection to verify the extent of the problem, regularly scheduled roof inspections and maintenance by a reputable local roofing company should be arranged.
For more information about preventing ponding water and to consult with roof installation experts in Miami Oklahoma please contact http://rockingroofing.com/.