Flat roof reseal with skylights

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Resealing a flat roof with skylights can present several challenges. Being aware of these issues can help you better prepare and address potential problems effectively. Here are some common issues and solutions:

Common Issues:

1. Water Pooling:

  • Problem: Flat roofs can suffer from water pooling, which may lead to leaks and structural damage over time.
  • Solution: Ensure proper drainage by checking that the roof has an adequate slope towards drainage points. Consider installing or cleaning existing drains, and if necessary, apply a tapered insulation system to improve drainage.

2. Inadequate Seal Around Skylights:

  • Problem: Skylights are potential weak points for leaks. Improper sealing around skylights can lead to water infiltration.
  • Solution: Use high-quality, skylight-specific sealant. Pay extra attention to the corners and edges, ensuring a continuous and thick bead of sealant. Reinforce with flashing tape if needed.

3. Thermal Expansion and Contraction:

  • Problem: Flat roofs and skylights expand and contract with temperature changes, which can cause the sealant to crack or pull away over time.
  • Solution: Use a flexible, high-quality sealant designed to accommodate thermal movement. Regularly inspect and reapply sealant as needed to maintain a watertight seal.

4. Improper Surface Preparation:

  • Problem: Failure to properly clean and prepare the roof surface can prevent the sealant from adhering correctly, leading to premature failure.
  • Solution: Thoroughly clean and dry the roof surface before applying sealant. Remove any old sealant, dirt, and debris. Use a primer if recommended by the sealant manufacturer.

5. Poor Quality Materials:

  • Problem: Using low-quality or incompatible materials can result in a less durable seal.
  • Solution: Invest in high-quality, compatible sealants and roofing materials. Ensure they are suitable for your specific roofing type and environmental conditions.

6. Improper Application:

  • Problem: Inconsistent or incorrect application of sealant can create weak spots and gaps, leading to leaks.
  • Solution: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Apply the sealant evenly and ensure complete coverage, especially around seams, edges, and skylights. Consider hiring a professional if you are unsure about the application process.

7. Blistering and Cracking:

  • Problem: Blistering and cracking of the roof surface can occur due to trapped moisture or improper application.
  • Solution: Ensure the roof surface is completely dry before applying the sealant. Address any existing blisters or cracks before resealing. Apply sealant in favorable weather conditions to avoid moisture entrapment.

8. UV Damage:

  • Problem: UV rays can degrade the sealant and roofing materials over time.
  • Solution: Use UV-resistant sealant and roofing materials. Regularly inspect and maintain the roof to address any UV damage promptly.