Over the years, flat roofing systems have grown in popularity alongside traditional sloped (or ‘pitch’) roof designs. Due to high rainfall, pitch roofs were favoured. In recent years, however, flat roofing has improved heavily due to innovations in waterproofing technology.
Flat roofing systems convey a number of benefits to your project. These include moss and lichen resistance, reduced costs due to the fact flat roofing often requires less material, higher functional strength compared to pitched roofing and even solar reflectiveness for cool roofing applications.
However, one of the most useful benefits of a well-planned flat roofing system is the ability to utilise it as a functional surface. This gives a building a huge amount of versatility and adds an entire new useable area. Here are some of the best uses of a flat roof system…
Balcony/ Roof terrace
Assuming the strength of the structure has been assessed, it’s possible to construct a balcony or terrace on top of the roof. This creates a recreation space that is attractive for occupants of the building, but must be secured with balustrades and railings to avoid falls.
Ultimately, this additional and useable space adds value to your property by creating more square metres to take advantage of.
Energy Generation / Air conditioning
Air conditioning systems require condenser systems to be placed outside of the building. Flat roofs give you a functional space in which to install these systems without cluttering the exterior premises. Similarly, you can use a flat roof to create a solar energy generation system by installing solar panels. With SOPREMA’s Soprasolar fixings, you can install electrical components directly to a waterproofing system without the need for a rail or grid, and without compromising the integrity of waterproofing by penetrating it with other fixing systems.
In larger commercial buildings, flat roofing can be used to create car parking spaces. Like roof terraces, the roof strength must be assessed to ensure the roof will be durable and strong enough to withstand the high weight and constant wear and tear of motor traffic, if you select a trafficable surfacing system such as ALSAN PMMA, which is also resistant to chemicals – making it ideal in a car park where chemical contaminants are commonplace.
The most well-known use for flat roofing is the installation of a ‘green roof’. Inverted flat roofing, in particular, suits green roof installations. Green roofs are desirable for a number of reasons- they can extend the lifespan of a roof, reduce energy consumption in the building, provide a new habitat for wildlife, collect rainwater and create a pleasing aesthetic saving. While green roofs are highly sustainable, they demand a fully watertight roofing system, to guarantee a successful installation.
Ultimately, flat roofing gives architects an entirely new space to utilise. Choose a reliable waterproofing system to ensure your flat roof will be durable and dependable.
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