You might think all roofs are the same – but that’s not correct. Commercial roofs have maintenance and repair needs that are different from residential roofs. The biggest reason for the difference is that commercial roofs are usually flat. And because commercial roofs are often flat, that means they handle rain, sun, and other elements much differently. For example, roof alligatoring is perhaps one of the most common problems you’ll find when dealing with flat commercial roofs.

Roof Alligatoring Explained
Roof alligatoring isn’t as strange as it sounds. The name refers to sun damage that many flat roofs experience as time passes. The older the roof, the more likely roof alligatoring will occur.

Roof alligatoring is the result of too much sun exposure. Over time, the sun’s rays can dry out the coating of a flat roof. The result is the rooftop begins to crack, and it looks similar to the skin of an alligator.

This problem will not fix itself. If not repaired, the cracks get worse. And several things can cause new cracks to occur, including snow, internal temperatures in the building, and extreme changes from hot to cold outside temperatures. As the flat roof gets drier and develops more cracks, it looks more and more like the skin of an alligator.

What to Do About Roof Alligatoring
You’re more likely to see roof alligatoring as a flat roof ages. It’s easiest to repair the cracks as they occur. If you repair the damage as it occurs, you’re more likely to keep the situation under control. If you allow more and more cracks to develop, you might end up needing to replace the entire roof.

You can also take steps to prevent roof alligatoring from occurring in the first place. As stated earlier, flat roofs require a bit more care than most other roofs. So performing regular inspections can keep a flat roof in good shape for a longer time. In addition to inspections, consider adding a reflective coating or protective UV covering to the roof. This will make the roof more resistant to sun damage.

Is it Too Late for Maintenance?
Regular inspections can help you spot roof alligatoring before it’s too late. But it’s always possible that you won’t spot the damage in time. In this case, making repairs might cost much more than simply replacing the roof.

For example, if you’re seeing extensive water damage because of cracks in your roof, then a replacement roof is probably the best solution. And if upon inspection you see that the entire flat roof is covered with roof alligatoring, then it’s best to get a replacement.

Champion Roofing can Help
Is your flat commercial roof showing signs of alligatoring? If so, consider contacting a professional roofer before the problem gets any worse. Roof alligatoring is a nuisance, but it’s common among flat commercial roofs. Speak with a professional roofing contractor to discover your best options.