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Commercial Flat Roof. Removing the old and installing a rubber roof.

We serve Stamford, Darien, Westport

The days of the Hot tar and gravel flat roofs are gone. There are still some commercial buildings that still have these types of roofs.

The downfall of these roofs was:

  1. Hard to find a leak in between the stones.
  2. They got brittle over the years and started to crack.
  3. Repairing such a roof was almost a nightmare.
  4. More expensive than a rubber roof to install.
  5. Life expectancy is less than that of rubber roofs.
  6. More costly to repair than rubber roofs.

There are two ways to deal with such a roof if it comes time to replacement it.

First Choice.

  1. Rake the stone evenly and remove debris.
  2. Install 1/2″ fiberboard over the stone.
  3. Install a base paper.
  4. Install new metal edging
  5. Install a rubber membrane.

Second Choice. (as the pictures show below.)

  1. Remove the existing tar and gravel.
  2. Clean the roof and flashing.
  3. Install a base paper over the plywood.
  4. Install rubber membrane.

Both these suggestions are equally good. It is how the flashing and other obstacles are on the roof that will determine what method will be followed.

Tar and Gravel roof is removed to prepare for new rubber roof. The stone was to protect the roof from UV’s.

It takes a lot of energy to strip and remove an old gravel roof.

After stripping the gravel roof, all the preparations need to be done to replace it with a rubber roof.
emoving old roofing material takes a lot of effort. After lifting and breaking the old roofing up, it is thrown into a dumpster.

Top view of the roof being stripped. A lot of hands make light work but also costly.
It’s one of the time-consuming parts of the roof – drains and skylights and air conditioners. All of the flashings has to be cleaned and prepared

It took many people to strip this flat roof in Greenwich. Care must be taken not to ruin the flashing around the drains and skylights.

The drains on a roof affect the cost of redoing a roof.

Sometimes you will find that people have used so much tar to fix the roof over the years, that the drains are all stuck with tar.

Finally the kick did it – what did you expect. Roofing is not easy the
kick did it – what did you expect. Roofing is not easy.

All tar and old roofing material must be removed to be able to install the new rubber roof. We use a torch to melt the old tar to easely remove it.
If everything else fails, just kick the drain. After melting the tar around the strainer, we were able to remove the strainer.

Jorge had enough – someone else had to come and finish cleaning the flashing around the roof drains.

Finally, the roof is stripped and cleaned. Some areas of the roof were lower than the drains. We installed 1/2″ fiberboard to build the roof up. Some places we had to build it up as much as three inches. Flat roofs are not very level and causes water to pond.

Since the levels of the roof was too low, we had to lift the skylights also about 3 inches.

After making sure the levels are good, we then fasten the fiber board with long screws and big washers to the plywood.


stripping a roof. The flashing is the most important part of a roof.

It is important to spread a tarp over the lawn and plants for protection against all the roofing debris. It also will help with cleaning up later.

We serve Westport, Fairfield, Redding, Ridgefield

We contract a company to provide a dumpster. The dumpster is placed on boards as not to damage the grass or paving surface. It is very important to have the right size dumpster for removing roofing debris.

While the rest of the roof is prepared to receive the rubber membrane, there are still areas that needs attention – flashing around the air conditioners.

This is what the flashing around the air conditioner  is suppose to look when everything is cleaned. All roofing tar and old wood and debris are removed.

We serve Weston, Westport, Redding and Ridgefield.

After the fiber board is installed, then its time to install a base sheet. This particular base sheet is peel and stick. Very costly. Almost the same price as the rubber membrane itself. But this is the best system for any roof. This system will outlast any other roofing material as in EPDM or TPO.

This is what the roof looks like before a Rubber membrane is installed. All the flashing is clean and ready, all the levels are good. The hard part is over. Even the drains look better.

Finally Jorge can get to what he likes the most – installing the rubber membrane. running the torch and melting rubber is much nicer than cleaning drains.

It is a long time since I had a torch in my hand. To torch down a rubber membrane has some technique involved. To0 much heat and the rubber gets destroyed, too little heat and the seams don’t get welded. You will notice that all our seams are clean. We work with a white granular rubber membrane. The granules are to protect the rubber membrane from the ultraviolets.

Over the years we have improved the installation technique. I believe we have a superior roof technique that will outlast any other roof system on the market.

Finally – this is what the roof looks like when it’s done. Another Flat Roof well was done.

We serve Stamford, Darien, New Canaan, Westport

It is really the biggest issue on a roof. For the installer and for the home owner. The roof surface is already clean and ready for a new rubber roof but the drains are still been worked on.
After cleaning off all the roofing material, it is time to install fiber board. This is where we plan to level areas and make other areas higher to let water run off to the drains.
Sometimes it is necessary to remove the skylights if the roof has to be raised in that area. The skylight is then reinstalled after the levels are good.
On a flat roof Fiberboard is fastened to the plywood with screws and plates. We use fiberboard to build up low areas on a flat roof.
To fasten the fiber board, special screws and washers are used. We have been installing rubber roofs over 25 years.
The most important part of a roof is the flashing. Care must be taken not to damage it while stripping a roof.
When pitching roofing debris over the side of a roof, it is best to spread a tarp. It makes cleanup much easier. We are the flat roof experts.
Make sure you get a big enough dumpster to remove all the roofing debris. Always put boards down for the dumpster to stand on to protect the surface.
Flashing around a air conditioner is always very hard to clean. Care must be taken not to damage the flashing while cleaning the flat roof.
It is very important to remove all roofing debris and material; around flashing on a flat roof.
After the fiber board is installed, then a base sheet has to be installed. The peel and stick base sheet is the best for any roofing system. we are the Roof Doctors.
The roof is ready to receive the final rubber roof. Notice that the base sheet is under the flashing. The best rubber roof system is to have a peel and stick base paper with Modified bitumen Torch down rubber installed.
After all the flashing and base sheet is taken care of, it is time to install the rubber membrane. We used white granulated surfaced rubber material.
This is the best part of installing a flat roof. The hard work is over. All preparations are done. No other roofing system can be as good as this.
A rubber membrane that is torch down have better seems than EPDM that is glued together. attaching the rubber roof to the flashing is very crucial.
This is what the roof looks like when it’s done. The rolls are three feet wide and you will notice the seams. The seams are welded together with heat and will not leak.