For many years, the most common method of testing for flat roof leaks had been flood testing. This testing technique is messy, time consuming and can actually damage the roof (shear weight of the water). Over the years, new technology has been developed that saves time, money and equipment, and can locate the smallest breach in a membrane/bitumen roof.
Roof Survey can test your roof using the following non-invasive techniques:
1. Dry Test (spark test) – This method is commonly referred to as a spark test or high voltage testing. Basically, the surveyor uses a charged push broom to ‘sweep’ the surface of the roof. Any moisture or breach in the membrane will complete the circuit between the device and conductive roof deck, signalling to the surveyor where the problem(s) are located on the roof. Roof surface should be as dry as possible to get effective results.
2. Wet Test (Low voltage) – This method uses lower voltage, and works on ‘wet’ roofs such as ballast and green roofs. Using specialised probes the surveyor can detect the direction of the electrical current, leading to the breach in the membrane. This method works well on most flat roof types (especially if the roof ponds).
3. Thermography – This method involves infrared thermal cameras and is based on the principle that water and wet insulation change temperature more slowly than dry roofing components. Using the camera, the surveyor can see which areas are ‘warmer/colder’ than the surrounding components, which usually indicates wet insulation. A closer visual inspection of the area will generally locate the point of water ingress.
4. Moisture Meter – Using electrical impedance, this method can detect moisture within the roof assembly. We use TRAMEX products (Deckscanner, RS Kit) which are world leaders in this technology. Roof Survey generally employ all four methods of the above testing on your roof (depending on the assembly & type) for a comprehensive analysis and corresponding results.