What Is a Core Sample on a Commercial Flat Roof?

by | Mar 20, 2023 | Flat Roof Inspections

​Flat roof maintenance inspections maximize the health and lifespan of your existing roof system. They help you assess wear and damage, give you an opportunity to avoid unforeseen and potentially costly problems, and help you plan for the future.

When evaluating an existing commercial or industrial flat roof, it is a best practice to take one or more core samples (core cuts) of your existing roof system.

What Is a Core Sample?

A core sample or core cut is when a roofer uses a specialized tool to remove a 2-inch diameter cross-section of the existing roof system’s layers and materials. The sample helps roofers assess the composition of an existing flat roof system and the extent and nature of roof wear and damage. If a repair, restoration, or replacement is needed, this same information is used to drive the identification and pricing of options.

Core samples help property managers and building owners understand the health of their existing roof system and why a repair, restoration, or replacement might be recommended. It helps them assess their options and plan for the future.

Lastly, core samples can sometimes be used to support an insurance claim for a new roofing system and/or any damages that might have occurred inside the building.

Will a Core Cut Cause My Roof To Leak?

Some building owners are apprehensive about a flat roofer taking a core cut (core sample). They fear it could cause a roof leak.

A properly sealed core cut will not leak.

Every reputable flat roofing company is fully aware of this concern and trained to ensure the process is harmless. Materials are put back in place and the core is repaired and resealed with high-grade roofing caulk, roof cement, fabric, or silicone to ensure your roof has a watertight surface again.​

Expert Advice

Whether you’re a beginner, need advanced information about flat roofing topics, or a refresher,  this is where you can learn everything you need to know about commercial and industrial flat roofing.

Contact us for more information or pricing.




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 materials for their needs and budget.

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