How much does it typically cost to repair a commercial or industrial flat roof? This question is like asking, how much it is going to cost to repair your car. It depends on what is wrong with it.
Basic punctures are common and the easiest and least expensive to fix. In most cases the cost to repair a small puncture is between $400-500.
Beyond punctures, most roof leaks break down into three different categories including flashing issues, end-of-life cycle, and improper design.
1. Flashing Issues
Flashing issues are probably the most frequently occurring cause of larger leaks on commercial and industrial rooftops. Wind uplift can damage existing flashing and create a leak. The flashing around curbs may need to be addressed. Flashing around penetrations might also need to be redone.
These types of repairs can cost anywhere between $500 and $2,500, depending on the extent of the damage.
2. End-of-Life Cycle
Roofs at the end of their life cycle will leak consistently. Some building owners are not in a financial position to do a full replacement, so they will opt for extensive patching. This will generally knock out the worst leaks, bring it from a gushing wound to a trickle. Repairs will last about 6 -12 months. In this situation, you are buying time so that when you can get the financing, you can replace the roof.
Repairs like this generally run between $3,000-$6,000.
3. Improper Design
The last category of problems that cause larger leaks on commercial and industrial flat roofs include issues arising from an improperly designed roof. Generally, the design causes problems with water drainage. Depending on the issue(s), the solutions vary and can include lowering roof drains, creating sumps, enlarging gutters, adding drains, adding scuppers, and so on.
On larger roofs, where you are adding multiple drains, for example, the cost to repair improper design issues could be over $20,000. Here again, the cost is going to depend on the type and extent of damage that needs repairing.
Repair VS Replace
While the cost to repair a commercial or industrial flat roof can be upwards of $60,000, the alternative (a new roof) can cost 10 times that. That’s why we always recommend you consult with an independent roofing expert before deciding whether to repair or replace your leaking roof. We also suggest you speak with an accountant because you may be able to deduct up to $1 million when you install a new roofing system on your commercial or industrial building.
Jared Van Vranken is Vice President and lead estimator at Flat Roof Solutions in Malvern, PA. Jared has directed the installation, repair, recovery, and replacement of commercial flat roofs for more than a decade at Flat Roof Solutions. He guides clients in selecting the best roofing material for their needs and budget.