Pitched and flat roofs each have their advantages and disadvantages when compared one against the other, but the bottom line is that either one is going to be rugged and durable, designed to the needs of your home or building and the typical weather you’re exposed to. Unfortunately, sometimes even the best of plans can fail and a storm can cause damage to your roof. The good news is architects understand this concept and design the roof so a contractor can make standard repairs fairy efficiently when damage occurs.
Ice dams are a particular concern for pitched roofs in the northern parts of America. Basically, either the gutter is out of alignment and retains water, which freezes, or else it’s simply so cold the water freezes before fully draining. Once the water turns to ice, it interrupts the normal flow, thereby allowing more water to freeze on top of it. In a worst case scenario, the water freezes to the edge of your roof, but heat rising from your house prevent it from freezing further. Your roof was designed for water to run off, but standing water will soak under your shingles and eventually come through into the attic, causing mold and rot to the form in the structure.
Hail Damage to Metal or Shingled Roofs
Although it can in some cases, hail doesn’t typically cause structural damage to a roof. It will put dents and dings into shingles and especially metal roofs, which detracts from the cosmetic appeal of the building. On occasion a hailstone might hit a vulnerable area, maybe the sealant between a chimney or vent and the roof, and the winds associated with a hail storm can certainly remove shingles, but those damages are easily repaired if you conduct regular roof inspections and address the need promptly.
Flat Roof Considerations
Flat roofs function differently than pitched roofs. Because of the way they work, flat roofs have an inherently stronger design which is intended to hold snow and ice until it melts and allow for some pooling of water until it slowly drains. Flat roofs do require regular maintenance and an annual inspection. The vent pipes for plumbing and exhaust fans have to be resealed fairly regularly, and the gravel has to be re-spread and evened out from time to time. Like a pitched roof, the flat roof will serve your needs as long as you take proper care of it.