What does a clogged Scupper, Drain, and Gutter mean to your building…

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What exactly is a scupper? The International Building Code defines a scupper as “an opening in a wall or parapet that allows water to drain from a roof.” Roof scuppers provide a pathway for water to flow through parapet walls or any other raised edge around a roof. Primary scuppers will channel water off the roof through a downspout or gutter. 

Since their purpose is to drain water from the roof, if the gutters or scuppers become blocked, the roof structure becomes overloaded by the weight of the water. Overloading can lead to ponding, deformation of the roof structure, or even roof collapse. In addition, cleaning your roof’s gutters and drains regularly prevents leaves and other debris from decomposing and creating mold and mildew issues. This debris clogs your gutters and drains, preventing water from flowing correctly, ultimately trapping the water on your roof, and developing severe problems if left unchecked. 

Most commercial roofs are very vulnerable to standing water or “ponding” water, quickly getting heavy. One gallon of water weighs more than seven pounds. One small area can weigh hundreds or thousands of pounds. Ponding water can cause buckling issues or even a collapsed roof, also attracting insects and mold. 

The photos below are what our crew found after an emergency leak was reported. Over years of ponding, the water caused this issue that slowly put additional stress on the steel structure below.. The cost was around $90,000 due to the structural beams bending from the weight of the water.

With a routine inspection and maintenance schedule, you can extend your roof’s lifespan by years. A roofing partner, like Castro Roofing, can ensure that your gutters and drains are clear while also inspecting your overall roof’s health and identifying potential issues moving forward. 

As our technicians clean up debris, they will also examine the gutter and drain systems for clogs and wear and tear. We also water-test drains and gutters to ensure proper drainage and functionality. Remember, it’s vital to call in a professional a few times a year to ensure everything is working correctly.

If you’re ready to extend the lifespan of your commercial roofing system, contact Castro Roofing of Texas today.

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