20-40 Minute Assessment

Built-up Asphalt Roof

Built-up asphalt, used on flat or low-slope roofs, provides excellent waterproofing and sun protection. It’s ideal in warm climates.

Standing water is a concern. Usually, a drain directs water off the roof. Walls (parapets) often surround the perimeter, HVAC equipment, and vents. These potential leak points need flashing.


Every spring and after storms

Repair and replacement costs

Typical Costs

  • Repair: $350 – $1,000
  • Replace: $7,000 – $12,000

Life span


15-30 years

Steps to Assessing Your Built-up Asphalt Roof


Step 1: If you have a gravel cover, look for disturbed or stained gravel, which can mean there’s an underlying problem. If the asphalt is visible, inspect the surface. Though small cracks are normal, open joints, blisters, or cracks wider than 1/8 inch are a problem.


Step 2: Check the roof’s drains. They may be located around the edge or in the center. You may have to move debris from grates or screens to allow water to drain.


Step 3: If you clear the drains and still find standing water, you may have a deeper problem with your roof’s structure. Contact a roofing professional for a more in-depth inspection.


Step 4: If your roof has walls (parapets) or HVAC equipment, make sure the flashing prevents water from seeping through joints. Check for corrosion, holes, cracks, missing sealant, or gaps. If you find these issues, address them immediately.


Step 5: Remove anything growing on your roof. Moss, lichen, mold, and vines can damage it.