How to Make Sure Your Commercial Roof Drains Properly––Tips from Experts in Industrial Roofing in Springfield, MA

August 17, 2017 2:28 am Published by Leave your thoughts

It’s dangerous to let your roof fall into disrepair, and so easy to avoid that it’s inexcusable. To properly maintain your roof, you must learn about how it is built and how it drains, and know what common problems look like so that you can easily spot them and fix them.

We’ve put together explanations of the three most common types of roof drainage systems, along with tips for how to inspect and maintain them. If you’ve got a very large roof, it’s pretty likely that it employs all three systems for drainage, which makes this information even more important for preserving your commercial roofing in Springfield, MA.

Gutters and downspouts

The most common drainage system (probably because they’re the easiest and cheapest to install), gutters and downspouts help buildings shed water, and control the flow of water as it moves away from the building, keeping it from draining down into windows and doors and from pooling up at the base of the building or soaking through the walls.

Their largest downside is they are easy to clog. You may need to clean your gutters a few times a year, and even then, you may still run into issues with cracking gutters, or, with enough snow and ice, your gutters may become too heavy and break away from the building.

The only way to maintain your gutters is to keep a constant eye on them. Change out sections when they crack, regularly muck out leaves and other debris and check the brackets and fasteners regularly to make sure your gutters are still safely secured.


In their simplest form, scuppers are holes cut in the wall of your roof that help shed water either directly off the edge of your roof or down a downspout. Scuppers rarely break, and are far less prone to clogs than gutters, though when they’re hooked into downspouts for drainage, clogging can occasionally be an issue. If you check your scuppers when you’re inspecting your gutters, it’s likely you can head off any clogs or drainage problems before they even have a chance to form.

Internal drains

Internal drains are often necessary on large, flat commercial roofs, because their slope is not great enough to ensure water from their whole surface is carried to the edge of the roof, where it can be shed by your scuppers and gutters. Internal drains are placed into your roof’s surface where they serve the most purpose, where water is otherwise likely to pool. Water enters the drain and is carried by pipes below the surface of the roof, down the building and away from the foundation.

Internal drains are the least susceptible to harsh weather, rarely freezing or cracking the way gutters can. Because of the rain and snow we get each year, internal drains play a part in a lot of commercial roofing in Springfield, MA. And while debris is still the main issue for internal drains, they can be fitted with strainers that help keep any debris from being pulled too far into the drain and clogging its pipes, which makes cleaning the drains much simpler.

Internal drains can be expensive, which means they should be inspected by an industrial roofing professional every so often. Repair work can get expensive, but preventative maintenance is a bargain and can save you so many headaches in the future.

We’ve worked in industrial roofing in Springfield, MA for 30 years. Whether you’re having an issue with your roof right now, or could use an inspection to help head off a problem before it starts, give us a call here at R & H Roofing LLP.

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