Leak detection for flat roofs

Category: Detect & Inspect Property Defects, Flat Roof Surveying, Infrared Technology

Leak detection on flat roofFlat roofs are an inexpensive and safe way to get your building covered and your internal assets dry during the rainy season. Do you have one over your head just now?


A roof has an essential role to play. It keeps you, your staff, your tenants and your premises dry and weatherproof. It also protects your expensive internal assets.


Leaks and other flat roof defects

If your buildings are covered with flat roofs, there is a high risk that they will develop defects. Read the 5 common flat roof defects.

When a leak does occur on a flat roof, damage often goes unnoticed for considerable time as water penetrates and soaks the decking, insulation and/or structure beneath. This can lead to extensive damage. If left unattended and no leak detection surveying takes place, it can weaken the whole structure and have catastrophic operational and financial consequences for you.

Poor leak detection – The Facilities Manager’s viewpoint

As a Facilities Manager, the first sign you will notice is the brown patch developing on the ceiling. Then the dripping will start, until the ceiling starts to fritter away. According to Sod’s Law, this is likely to happen right in the middle of the autumn or winter. Brollies at the ready!

You will then have to contend with all or some of the following:

  • staff complaints and disruption to their work,
  • health & safety warnings: buckets, “slippery surface” signs, electrical hazards
  • unplanned expensive repairs to arrange, even equipment and stock to replace.

Poor leak detection – The Asset Manager’s viewpoint

As an Asset Manager, if your property is occupied, you will get a call from your unhappy tenants threatening to stop paying rent, looking for someone to repair and pay for their damaged equipment and stock.

If your property is unoccupied, you’ll only know about a leaky roof when your building surveyor does his annual visit or at time of renting and selling.

Your problems will certainly be:

  • Depreciation of the building, worsening as each day goes by
  • Delayed rental or sale opportunities
  • High cost of roof repair and corrective maintenance costs
  • Tenants complaints and non-payment of the rent

Whoever you are, don’t wait for the leak to show up internally. Your solution: get your roof surveyed for leak detection.

Flat roof surveying for leak detection – 3 methods explained:

There are several flat roof surveying techniques to ease leak detection:

  • Flood or Dye Testing,
  • Core Sampling,
  • Nuclear Survey,
  • Electronic Leak Detection,
  • Infrared Surveys.

We compare nuclear surveying and electronic leak detection with infrared surveys. They each have their advantages and can sometimes complement each other.

Click on the following links to learn about each flat roof surveying technique and how they compare with each other.

Electronic Leak Detection

Nuclear vs Infrared Survey

If you suspect or know of leaks from your flat roof, don’t wait for the winter season to be upon us for a leak detection survey. Contact us by clicking on the button below.

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