Felt roofing is traditionally found on the flat roofs of tenements blocks and offices, home extensions, commercial units and garages. As the name suggests these are roofs with no slope or sloping of less than 10%.
Flat roofs in the UK are traditionally clad in bitumen felt roofing systems. Felt is a type of roll roofing that applied in strips. Traditional felt roofing is a built-up system with 3 layers as standard – a vapour control, 2mm mid layer and a 4mm high performance capsheet.
Felt roofing is a low-cost roofing option that has a lifespan ranging from 10 years.
Clients often opt for a felt roofing system as they are:
- Recognisable like for like roofing material
- Low cost to install
- Easy to install (minimising disruption)
- Heavy duty, robust and tough roofing option
Additionally, a PIR (Polyisocyanurate, glossary) insulation can easily be incorporated into these roofing systems, which is a great advantage when it comes to renovation work.
Felt roofing tends to fail towards the end of the lifespan especially where it has been poorly maintained.
Felt roof failures can occur due to:
- Quality of materials used
- Exposure to the elements
- Improper installation, such as missing one of the three layers
- Poor joins between applied roll roofing
- Extreme weather conditions including extreme heat and wind
We recommend an annual roofing maintenance check. We carry out an annual maintenance check free of charge. Click to request a free annual maintenance check now.
Replacing Felt Roofing
Felt roofing has one of the shortest lifespans of any roofing material. Like any roof the lifespan will depend on the materials used, wear and degradation. The good news is that a new felt system is easy to replace and cost effective.
Depending on the condition of your existing felt roof the new roof can be installed on top of the old one. At this time an additional layer of insulation can also be installed if required. The state of your existing felt roof is assessed at the time of our survey and we will advise accordingly.
At Advanced Roofing we use a range of felt roofing materials including Bauder felt systems. The Bauder felt systems incorporate the latest technology to provide extended lifespans with guarantees of up to 25 years. Our traditional felt and Bauder felt systems can be installed on both new build and traditional buildings.
An alternative flat roof option is a single-ply membrane by Sarnafil. This premium roofing is applied and sealed as a single sheet to the roof. While this option is initially more expensive than felt roofing a Sarnafil single-ply roof has a life expectancy of 45 years. Click here to find out more about Sarnafil single-ply membranes for flat roofs.
Maintaining Felt Roofing
Flat roofing is notoriously liked to leaks but that needn’t be the case. With some basic maintenance your felt roof can be remain watertight.
- Regular inspections for cracking
- Applying protective solar coatings (if appropriate)
- Ensuring joints are properly sealed
- Ask Advanced Roofing to inspect as part of the annual roof care