When Is It Time For An Apartment Roof Replacement?

Posted on September 20, 2023

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When Is It Time For An Apartment Roof Replacement?

Depending on the type of roof you have installed on your apartment building, you can identify the signs it needs a replacement. Apartment roofs are generally flat, but in certain settings or snowy regions, you may see tall apartment buildings with sloped roofs. 

Unfortunately, there will be a time when your apartment roof will need to be replaced, as it can no longer bear Mother Nature’s wrath. On some roofs, the signs indicating an apartment roof needs replacement are obvious to see, like stains or peeling paint, while others may be subtle and hard to notice. That’s why we have created this blog post to help you know when it’s the right time to replace your apartment roof.

Signs Your Apartment’s Flat Roof Needs Replacement

Flat roofs, while efficient, can be prone to issues. Here are some signs that your flat roof might be in trouble.

Flat Apartment Roof Replacement

1. Leaks and Water Damage

Water stains on your ceiling or walls are a clear indication of a roof leak. Don’t ignore these signs as they can lead to structural damage and mold growth.

When you notice water stains or dampness on your ceiling, it’s a red flag that your flat roof may be compromised. Constant water leaks from different roof sections are clear indicators your roof is severely damaged and needs to be repaired. Immediate action is crucial to prevent further damage.

2. Aging Roof Materials

Like anything else, flat roofing materials have a lifespan. If your roof is nearing the end of its expected life, it’s time to consider a replacement.

Roofing materials age over time due to exposure to the elements. If you’re unsure of your roof’s age, it’s a good idea to find out when it was last replaced or installed. Flat roofs of any material start showing signs of aging after 15 to 20 years. If your roof is that old, it probably needs to be replaced. 

3. Bubbles and Blisters

Moisture can wreak havoc on the health of your flat roof. It can seep under the roofing membrane and result in bubbles and blisters, which pop up on the roof’s surface due to heat exposure. These areas are weakened and prone to further damage.

If you see bubbles or blisters on your flat roof, it’s a sign that moisture has infiltrated the roofing material. Addressing this issue promptly can prevent more extensive damage.

4. Visible Roof Sagging

A sagging roofline is a serious problem that requires immediate attention. It is a sign of structural damage and poses safety risks.

The heavy foot traffic and added weight can cause a flat roof to sag in a specific area. A sagging flat roof can compromise the integrity of your entire building, so don’t delay addressing it.

5. Ponding Water

Ponding water occurs when water collects and pools on your flat roof due to poor drainage. It can lead to water damage, especially if the water has been sitting on top of the membrane for an extensive period of time. If water doesn’t effectively drain off the roof, it can deteriorate the roofing membrane and accelerate aging. 

Ponding water can create stress on your roof’s structure and lead to leaks. If you notice areas where water consistently collects after rain, it’s time to take action. These pools of water also indicate your apartment roof has undergone structural changes due to thermal expansion and contraction, which may have caused depressions and dips along the roofing membrane. 

6. Frequent Repairs

Are you constantly patching up your roof? Frequent repairs can drain your finances, and it might be more cost-effective to invest in a replacement. If you find yourself regularly calling in roof repair professionals, it’s time to consider a more permanent solution. 

Also Read: How Long Does It Take To Replace A Roof?

7. Cracks in the Top Coat

A coating can be applied to flat roofs to protect them from UV rays and consistent heat exposure. The coating is another layer of protection on the roofing membrane that prevents your roof from undergoing temperature changes that can lead to damage. 

Cracks in the top coating of your flat roof can compromise its ability to protect your apartment building. These can occur due to constant foot traffic, lifting, and excess weight, allowing water to seep into the underlying layers. This leads to more significant issues, such as water leaks, bubbles, and blisters. 

Signs Your Sloped Apartment Roof Needs Replacement

Apartment roofs aren’t limited to flat roofs, sloped roofs have equally gained momentum for apartment buildings. Though flat roofs are more commonly used, sloped roofs give apartments a different type of charm and appeal. 

Sloped Apartment Roof Replacement

Here are some noticeable signs that your apartment roof needs a replacement: 

1. Missing or Damaged Shingles

Missing and damaged shingles aren’t frequent problems that your roof should experience. Though shingles come off the roof due to high winds, it happens only when shingles have lost their adhesive property. It can happen due to poor installation and improper maintenance. However, if you frequently find shingles in your yard, it is a sign your roof deck and the underlying materials are exposed. This problem should be addressed immediately to prevent structural damage to the building.

2. Granule Loss

The granules on asphalt shingles give them their distinct look and additional protection against weather and UV rays. They are responsible for making your roof sturdier and resilient. 

Your shingles will lose granules as they age due to constant exposure to the elements. Granule loss indicates shingle deterioration and is a sign you should replace your apartment roof. If you find your gutters filled with what seems to be small stones, chances are your shingles are losing their protection. 

3. Sagging Roof Deck

A sagging roof deck is a serious problem that requires prompt attention. It indicates structural damage, poses safety risks, and can be caused by other minor issues. If your roof is starting to sag or looks uneven, call a roofing professional immediately. 

4. Roof Rot

Inspect your roof for signs of rot, especially if you have a wooden roof deck. Rot can weaken the structure and lead to leaks. Wooden roof decks are susceptible to rot when exposed to moisture over time. Addressing this issue promptly is crucial to prevent further damage.

5. Mold and Mildew Growth

Mold and mildew thrive in moist environments, and a leaking roof can create the perfect conditions for their growth.

Mold, mildew, and algae indicate a roof problem and pose health risks. If you notice mold and mildew, these are the indicators your apartment roof needs to be replaced. 


Your apartment’s flat roof is a crucial component of your living space. Knowing the signs that it needs replacement is essential for your safety and comfort. Whether it’s leaking, sagging, or simply aging, taking action sooner rather than later can save you money and the hassle of emergency repairs. When the time comes, choose the right roofing material, hire a reputable contractor, and maintain your new flat roof for peace of mind for years to come.

Choose Kickapoo Roofing For Apartment Roof Replacements In Wisconsin

Delaying the replacement of your apartment roof can cause more problems for the building and the tenants living below. Kickapoo Roofing, a locally owned and operated company, is here to help you with our comprehensive roofing services, including apartment roof replacements, minor repairs, or roof inspections. We have gained the trust of home and commercial building owners in Wisconsin, and our licensed and insured team is ready to tackle any roofing project. 

Contact us today at (608) 352-8688 and consult a roofing professional about your apartment roof replacement. 

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