Flat and low sloping roofs often had problems with leaks because water pools in the centre of the roof and seeps through into the ceiling below. Rubber roofing material can help to prevent this happening to your home because it is highly water resistant.
Advantages of Rubber Roofing
Rubber roofing has many benefits which make it a better choice than flat felt roofs. Felt roofs are easily damaged, and this results in a high risk of leaks. Rubber roofing is far more resilient than felt, and can last for up to fifty years without needing replacing. It is also suitable for a wide range of temperatures and climates, from the freezing cold to the intensely hot. Rubber is very low maintenance, often requiring a simple application of a rubberized solution available at any hard ware store.
Rubber also has a class A fire rating, meaning that it will be favoured by insurance companies and will add value to your home. Rubber can also lower the cost for your heating and air conditioning bills, as its insulation properties allow rubber to absorb heat in winter, and discharge it in summer.
Rubber is also much lighter than slate roofing, and is the cheapest single layer roofing material available, making it highly cost-effective.
Disadvantages of Rubber Roofing
Rubber roofing does have some drawbacks. Modified bitumen roofing, mistakenly described as rubber roofing, has caused builders and inspectors problems in the past. There is also only a very small margin of error for contractors installing rubber roofing. If it is not installed correctly, rubber roofing can have as many leaks as felt roofing. Most manufactures will supply certification to ensure that their rubber products are installed properly, however.
You can also make sure that the contractor you hire is properly qualified. If you are doing the work yourself, the two things to need to watch out for is that every seam is flush, and that there are no holes.
Rubber roofing was first used in the seventies. Those first rubber roofs are beginning to reach the end of their life spans now, so there could be previously unseen problem which will now start to arise. For the time being, however, rubber roofing remains one of the most economical and durable options for flat roofed homes.