Flat roofing isn’t always the easiest thing to install, but much like other DIY projects, sometimes the challenge is the fun of it. That said, if you find that your particular project is far too difficult to achieve, or that it becomes more complicated as time goes on, then it is a good idea to try and make things as easy as possible for yourself.
Safety First, and recognising your skill level
Always remember that all roofing projects must involve planning and implementation of general safety rules when working at height. Do not assume that DIY projects are safer, or immune to some basic safety guidelines.
If you think flat roofing is out of your skill level, you could consider attending a short training course, or watching some installation videos to see what the process involves. There is a wealth of information to be found online, including downloadable tutorials and video demonstrations. Have a look here for a great selection. Flat roof systems such as EPDM rubber are ideal for DIY flat roofing, with a no fuss, no waste approach.
Safety is a huge deal when it comes to DIY flat roofing. Working on a flat roof, even single-storey can look very different from the roof itself, and it is not for everyone. There are a few simple rules one should follow when using ladders and working on a flat roof surface.
- Use good quality ladders in good condition and of the right height.
- Make sure they are footed by another person to ensure they don’t slip away from the building.
- Do not attempt to carry out DIY roofing tasks when using medication before consulting your doctor.
- Never take risks when working at height.
- Do not attempt to stack the ladders on another object to give additional height if they are not long enough.
- Make sure ladders are kept straight at all times. Never lean away from you, or overreach when you are on a ladder at any height.
- Always carry out a visual inspection of the flat roof surface to identify possible vulnerabilities before putting any weight on it.
- Make sure the roof surface can take your weight. If you are unsure, arrange for a professional survey to determine the condition of the roof deck.
- When on the flat roof surface, always be aware of your surroundings and do not walk backwards.
- Wear suitable protective headwear, such as a hard hat.
To view a guide to Working at Height regulations, click here.
Use an EPDM rubber roof kit
EPDM kits suitable for DIY use are sold because they carry huge benefits for self-installation in terms of no waste, simplified application using single-piece membranes and cold-water adhesives. Suppliers make no assumptions about the skill levels of the homeowner, or their ability to carry out the project.
Don’t be afraid to call in the professionals
Should, at any point, the installation become difficult or you feel it truly is beyond your individual DIY skills, we would always recommend you attend a training course or contact a professional EPDM installer to complete your project. Always call in the professionals if you have
Permaroof UK Ltd runs Firestone-approved training courses for trade and DIY EPDM installers for both EPDM sheets and Liquid rubber roofing. Trade professionals can join the nationwide Permaroof approved contractor network following completion of the training and a vetting process. This means that they can help homeowners to find reliable, trained EPDM installers in their area, offering additional peace of mind.
Homeowners can access the free service here.
There are, of course, considerations to make if you would like to become a DIY flat roofer to save installation cost on your home renovation projects, but if you make your decisions carefully, as suggested, and realise your limitation and act accordingly, then with EPDM systems there is no reason why you cannot install a professional-looking, high-performance DIY flat roof.