Flatlining…Chicago style

“….Life in the Flat lane, surely you can lose your mind…”

Sounds familiar, right?  Well, that’s our little lyrical spin on the well known Eagles tune as it pertains to flat roof ventilation.   It a challenging topic and one we are seeing more and more roofers and builders getting wrong.  So what can we do to get them back into the fast lane?

The first step would be–know what you are trying to accomplish!  There are so many new building materials and installation methods that even the brightest group of building professionals and roofers take to the best website forums to ask questions and seek answers from equally bright building professionals and roofers.  There are dozens of ways in which you can ventilate a flat roof.  And probably dozens more on how NOT to ventilate a flat roof.  Both can work.  Both can fail.  So what is one to do?

The answer is it depends.  We see vintage flat roofs here in Chicago that have never been vented and show no signs of deterioration or attic moisture damage.  We see 5  to 10 year old ‘new’ roofs that were so-called ‘vented’ and ready to be torn off and replaced due to internal moisture damage to rafters or trusses and insulation so wet you can wring it out with your bum hand.   We’ve seen perfectly good vintage roof systems altered and then develop delerium tremens;  and woefully poor new construction roofs brought back to life just like Frankenstein (sometimes they are as ugly too!).

There’s a lot going on at the roof level and there’s a lot to consider regarding its function, performance, longevity, and interaction with the space and materials below it.  We can help you fix these problems by using the space between our ears first and then understanding the space between your ceiling and roof.   With over 200 years of building and construction experience behind us, we’ve just about seen it all.  Is it time to see yours?


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