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Think Standing Water Isn’t A Problem? Think Again

Ponding on a roof is no laughing matter, even if you have a great sense of humor. When water does not move off the rooftop, it can create a pool of shimmering disaster if left to linger. Thankfully, Colony Roofers services in Atlanta can help alleviate the issue.

What causes such pooling? Generally, high levels of precipitation and flat roofs are the leading culprits; if there isn’t enough slope, water accumulates as it has nowhere else to go. Similarly, an improperly constructed roof can allow water to seep around the edges and create standing pools. Debris, such as leaves, can also cause blockage, leaving standing water in its wake.

In the roofing world, ponding means water that hasn’t drained 48 hours after a rainstorm. Take action immediately if you wake up to signs of ponding on your commercial roof. Otherwise, you could be staring at an expensive repair bill or a complete replacement. Let’s break down the issue further to paint a clearer image of the potential consequences.

The Lurking Danger

Standing water may appear like an unexpected nuisance, but if you do the math, you’ll realize it’s far more than that. For starters, your roof is designed to withstand a certain weight. The longer the standing water remains, the more it compromises your roof’s integrity as it struggles to support the additional weight.

When inundated with standing water, every square foot of your roof’s surface holds an astounding 5 pounds per inch. Now, picture a 20′ by 20′ roof with 1 inch of standing water, and you have a whopping 2000 pounds of extra live weight.

Now that’s enough to make anyone worry. Simply put, your roof could collapse under the added strain (in the worst-case scenario). If this occurs, it can claim lives, damage your inventory, and ruin equipment. Plus, the legal ramifications of such a catastrophic event…you get the point. Mostly, though, you have to contend with the following issues:

  • Structural damage – standing water causes accelerated wear. Over time, it can damage and erode your roof’s structure, leading to costly repairs.
  • Growth of algae and mold – this is probably the most common consequence of standing water on a roof. These organisms are unsightly and can quickly turn your roof into a mini-swamp (not a pleasant site on a commercial or residential building). Plus, mold can break down the protective barriers on your roof, further exacerbating your issues. And that’s before we discuss the unpleasant odor you would have to deal with, the slimy mess on your roof, and the safety risks such as slipping and falling.
  • Leaks – The pinhole imperfections on roofs are usually the first point standing water seeps through, leading to an even bigger problem. As far as surprises go, nothing is more unpleasant than coming home to the sound of dripping water. And you thought the standing water on your roof was bad! Should we even mention the resultant damage? Let’s spare you the disappointment by saying that your roof, walls, furniture, and everything else could be damaged if you don’t act against the standing water.

How to Alleviate the Problem

After noticing standing water on your roof, what you do can make the difference between a minor inconvenience and a major disaster. So, address the issue immediately before it spirals out of control by:

  • Draining the mess – Clear the water off your roof before considering a long-term solution or repairing it. To this end, a pump might come in handy. While at it, unclog drains, clear gutters, ensure downspouts are directed away from the building, and check for the slope – it could be inadequate, contributing to the issue.
  • Repairing your roof – standing water can become a cyclical issue that haunts your flat roof like a ghost whenever it rains. Consider hiring a professional to patch up imperfections and add a protective barrier on your flat roof at the first sign of trouble. That said, the roofer may offer a solution based on the issue. Typical approaches may involve re-pitching your roof, incorporating additional drains into the design or use of prefabricated drains, and installing crickets.
  • Addressing other causes of leaks – coolers, drain lines, or HVAC condensers may also contribute to standing water. Inspect the units installed on your roof for leaks and have them repaired to prevent a recurrence.

While you might prefer the DIY approach to clearing standing water, consider getting a professional for the repairs your roof needs. They can advise you on the best solution and reduce your roof’s vulnerability to further issues. Plus, chances are they’ve tackled similar problems and have the know-how or expertise to address yours adequately.

Don’t risk your property by letting standing water on your roof go unchecked. Tackle it head-on to avoid the pain, hassle, stress, and cost of dealing with the aftermath.

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