Is a flat roof a good idea?

January 6, 2022
"Are you planning an extension? Converting your garage? Building your dream home? Whatever your house project, you’re going to need a roof and this begs the question: is a flat roof a good idea?"

Pitched or flat – which roof should you choose?

If you are in the planning stages of a house project, you may be wondering: is a flat roof a good idea? Pitched or flat – which roof should you choose?

Are you planning an extension? Converting your garage? Building your dream home? Whatever your house project, you’re going to need a roof and this begs the question: is a flat roof a good idea? 

A pitched roof has long been the ‘classic’ option. However, flat roofs are increasing in popularity when it comes to modern design. So what are the benefits of a flat roof?


Is a flat roof a good idea? Cutting-edge materials

Flat roofs haven’t had the best reputation in the past; in fact some insurers refuse to provide cover for traditional bitumen felt roofs as they can be negatively affected by the elements over time. 

However, advances in technology means that flat roofs are being manufactured using cutting edge materials, which provide exceptional protection from heat, rain, snow and ice,, impervious to damaging UV rays, algae and moss, 100% watertight and virtually maintenance-free. It is hardly surprising that more flat roofs are being installed in contemporary property design. 


Is a flat roof a good idea? Speedy installation

Flat roofs take far less time to install than their pitched roof counterparts. This means that you will likely save money when it comes to construction; you may also be able to utilise your new space earlier if you opt for a flat roof. 

Is a flat roof a good idea? Compact design 

Is a flat roof a good idea Pitched or Flat roof

Are you planning to convert a garage or add an extension to your existing home? Flat roofs are compact, requiring far less head height than a pitched roof. If your project is subject to planning regulations and height restrictions, a compact design could result in far fewer headaches. 

Other benefits include:

  • Easier to access
  • Potential to convert into a roof garden or other outdoor living space 
  • Easy to clean
  • Considered aesthetically pleasing when it comes to contemporary building projects 
  • Creates a versatile interior space – no sloped walls or ceilings 
  • If repair/re-roofing is required, re-roofing is fairly simple and fast
  • Energy efficiency: less overhead space for warm air to escape 

Is a flat roof a good idea? Potential drawbacks 

It is always important to consider any potential issues and as with all projects, without the correct planning and a reputable installer, a flat roof can have issues. 

Flat roofs can be unreliable in cold weather. Ensure you choose a roofing specialist that understands the importance of weatherproofing as some materials are more durable than others. Our personal recommendation is uPVC, which is famed for its high performance in extreme temperatures. 

Certain flat roofs have a limited lifespan. For example, traditional bitumen felt flat roofs tend to last around 10-15 years. Again, by choosing a modern material such as single-ply UPVC membrane roofing, you will enjoy a far greater lifespan. In fact, we are so confident in our products that we provide a rock solid, no-quibble lifetime guarantee on all of our flat roof installations. 

Drainage can be an issue. Incorrectly installed flat roofs do not drain as efficiently as a pitched roof, leading to pooling; this standing water can end up degrading the roofing material. Therefore it is essential that you choose an installer who will ensure that your flat roof is very slightly pitched and sealed. 


Is a flat roof a good idea?

As with almost every choice, there are pros and cons to a flat roof. But by doing your research and working with a specialist that delivers the highest quality flat roofing system, you will enjoy a durable, value-for-money solution that will last for years to come. 

Steve Thornton – Author

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