Some parts of your building can be particularly prone to leaks and the source of the water damage that results, whether due to water runoff or in areas where different sections of material join up. Flashing refers to the method and the material that protects a structure against the elements, keeping water from entering and thus preventing the interior water damage, structural problems, and mould growth that can ensue.
This type of damage can severely affect the condition of your business premises and potentially compromise the health of your employees and clients, making flashing integrity an important maintenance priority.
Damaged flashing can cause serious structural problems
Flashing is used to prevent water from entering cracks and other openings and to redirect it to an appropriate drainage outlet. It is generally used in roof valleys, chimneys and smoke stacks, pipes, and around skylights and windows, in eaves, rakes, ridges, vents, areas of roof and wall intersection, and areas of intersection and termination of roofing surfaces.
Flashing can be made from roofing felt, rubber, or plastic, but usually the most durable and flexible flashing is made from some rust-resistant metal such as aluminium, copper, or – most commonly – galvanised steel. The metal allows for expansion and contraction with changes in humidity and temperature and is generally a durable and long-lasting material.
However, when flashing gets loose or damaged, this can lead to leaks and long-term damage. It can deteriorate due to oxidisation and weathering or through detaching from the roof surface – in addition, the sealant used can come loose or deteriorate. Galvanic corrosion occurs when the flashing reacts to adjoining materials, causing premature deterioration of the material. Exposure to salty air or to acidic rain can also cause corrosion. Strong winds and storms and extreme heat can have an impact on the flashing shape.
Flashing problems can usually be repaired quite easily, but the main challenge can be access, particularly when it comes to higher commercial buildings.
A professional roofer can create a tailor-made section of flashing by cutting and shaping sheet metal according to the job it’s needed for.
There are various types of flashing, including:
- Roof flashing is used to deflect water away from seams and joints.
- Roof penetration flashing is used in areas where pipes, cables, supports and other protrusions are located.
- Channel flashing is used to catch water at the edge of a tile roof next to the join with the wall, similar to drip edges, which are used on eaves and along rakes.
- Wall flashing is embedded into a wall at any areas of discontinuity like windows and structural supports.
- Chimney flashing applied in sections around the chimney base, up the sides and at the top.
- Pipe flashing is another specialised material.
- Continuous flashing is used in the joint area where a sloped roof meets a wall.
- Step flashing protects the areas where the roof joins with sidewalls or skylights and chimneys, with pieces of overlapping flapping acting as ‘steps’.
- Valley flashing is placed over felt where two roof sections meet.
- Vent pipe flashing is used over pipes and flues.
Causes of commercial roof leaks can include damaged flashing at the exterior edges or interior parapet walls. If installed incorrectly, damaged, loose due to storms or wind, damaged flashing can expose the edges of the roof cover and water can enter the roofing system.
If flashing is damaged around roof penetrations such as vents, pipes, drains, gas lines or others, this may be the source of a leak problem. This can in turn damage insulation materials leading to an increase in heating and cooling costs for the building.
Check your roofs and if any damage is visible, call a professional immediately before it becomes a serious problem. If your roof is difficult to access, request a professional inspection. At Off Your Wall, we have a good head for heights and will respond promptly to assess the condition of your flashing and whether immediate repair is needed.
THE BEST SOLUTION FOR FIXING YOUR FLASHING
At Off Your Wall, our years of experience and professionalism in performing roof inspections and repairs means that you’re in safe hands when it comes to fixing your flashing, fast.
Our work is detail-oriented and directed towards ensuring that every roof we repair goes on to have a long and dependable life.
We offer flashing maintenance and repair for all kinds of properties. Our rope access techniques allow us to easily get access to heights and any difficult-to-reach areas.
This, combined with our exceptional safety record, enables us to do an excellent job at every level.
HOW TO KNOW WHEN FLASHING REPAIRS ARE NEEDED
There are some simple ways to identify when your roof and adjoining areas are in need of flashing repair. The best response to any flashing problems is to act swiftly to repair or replace the damaged area before leakages and the ensuing mildew, mould, and interior damage become a serious and expensive challenge.
Tracking down the source of the leak may not be easy. If possible, examine the underside of the roof to see if any areas look different, darker in colour, with patches of mould, light coming through – this may be where your roof has a leak. If the roof has sustained weather-related damage, is old, worn-out or not in conformity with building codes, it may be a good time to call for a professional inspection.
If you think you may have a problem with your flashing but aren’t sure how to proceed, the experts at Off Your Wall are ready to help inspect and repair any damage.
OFF YOUR WALL: QUALITY, RELIABLE FLASHING REPAIRS
Where possible, we believe in extending the life of your roof instead of forcing you to replace it, and the care and repair of flashing can be key to this.
We inspect your flashing carefully before coming up with the best solution in terms of quality and reliability, while also bearing the cost in mind – saving you time, money, and stress.
Benefits of working with Off Your Wall:
- We have many years of experience repairing all types of flashing, whether complete or partial replacement, repair or refurbishment, in all types of buildings.
- You’ll find it easy to communicate with us and we promise you a prompt response, ensuring your flashing is repaired before more damage is done.
- Our abseiling technique allows us to reach heights and tricky areas and locate the source of any leak.
- Safety is our priority, for our team and for your employees and clients.
- We offer you a free building inspection report.
- Our service is polite and professional, minimising any disruption to your business activities.
- We use the best materials and most reliable techniques for flashing repair.
- Customer satisfaction is our priority.
- We are proud to service all areas of Melbourne.
So if your flashing needs fixing, contact Off Your Wall today.