John F. Shea Professional Roofing Contractor

The Problem With Roof Shrinkage

Resources // Renovation // November 14, 2019

Roofing problems are a property owner’s worst nightmare. While maintenance and repairs are a great way to prolong the life of your roof, it’s also important to consider the pros and cons of certain material types. If you got the property with the roof already in place, then there is little you can do about this until it’s time to replace it. However, if you’re building commercial spaces from the ground up or renovating existing ones, consider the potential for roof shrinkage.

What Is Roof Shrinkage?

Unless you work in the roofing business, you have probably never heard of this term before, but it happens fairly often. Roof shrinkage is the literal shrinking of the materials used in the roofing of your home. This can lead to deformities, cracking, and before you know it, leaks.

What Materials Does This Affect?

Not all roof types suffer from roof shrinkage. It particularly affects roofs that use synthetic rubber membranes. One commonly used roofing material that does contain this is EPDM. This is commonly used to create flat roofs for commercial buildings. Overall, EPDM is one of the most durable and long-lasting roof materials on the market. However, it does naturally shrink over time.

What Makes It Worse?

As you probably already guessed, there are some factors that increase the risk of shrinking for EPDM roofs. One of the most common potential factors that speed up shrinkage is improper application. However, if the EPDM used was not properly manufactured, even the best roofing skills cannot improve the effectiveness and lifespan of the material. The design of the roof itself may also be faulty. Note that improper drainage may worsen shrinkage. This is why it is important to work with a qualified contractor.

When choosing a commercial roof, it is important to consider all the potential perks and problems of each type. An experienced contractor can walk you through the process of selecting an option that suits the building use, climate conditions, and maintenance schedule you have in mind. Contact John F. Shea by calling 617-648-5757 or emailing us today for more information.