Common Roofing Problem: Pitch Pockets

May 5, 2015

Problems with pitch pockets, a type of roof flashing used to seal penetrations, prevail on all types of roofs but are most typical on built-up or modified bitumen roofing systems. Manufacturing facilities, due to the large number of rooftop penetrations, are plagued by pitch pocket problems.

There are many reasons a pitch pocket fails. The sealer can dry out and shrink. Structural movement may also be to blame. If the penetration that is wrapped by the pitch pocket moves or vibrates, the pitch pocket seal could be compromised.

Premature failure may be due to improper installation (e.g. incompatible materials) or lack of maintenance. Regardless of the reason, all pitch pocket problems mean leaks.

Prevent Pitch Pocket Failure

Routine inspections and basic maintenance (e.g. refilling the sealer) are the best course of action to keep pitch pockets in working order. If your roof has a high volume of penetrations, have it inspected every three to four months.

Repairing a Pitch Pocket Failure

If pitch pocket metal is completely corroded, contractors will remove the existing pitch pocket, put in new metal, and clean the old solution. Lastly, they’ll mix a two-part epoxy and install the new pitch pocket.

Eliminate Your Pitch Pocket Issues

D. C. Taylor Co. has locations in Iowa, Illinois, Arizona, and California ready to assist you with commercial and industrial roofing maintenance. Get in touch with the office closest to you and we will come take a look at your pitch pockets and more.


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