Poured Concrete roof slab inspection tips?

Can anyone with experience give me so pointers as to what to look for on a Concrete Slab roof. They use membranes for waterproofing.

Where are you located?

Yes, typically BUR Build Up Roofing and invert. Saturated Felt Ply’s, Insulation, Ballast. Called inverted roofing. Installed on commercial and some residential in my neck of the woods.
That’s how they did it back in the day. Likely other methods as well today like TPO and Modified…

I am based in South Africa

Andre, since concrete is porous it needs to protected from moisture, otherwise eventually absorbed moisture will reach the steel rebar (embedded steel reinforcement bars). This will cause will corrosion. As steel corrodes it expands causing the concrete to spall (flakes will break off).

You should see some type of waterproof membrane. Here, we like to see even flat roofs with enough slope so that they are dry after 48 hours of no rain. If you can’t be sure that the membrane is waterproof, say so in your report.

InterNACHI has both Roof and Structure courses written specifically for South Africa. You should take those. They also have a final entrance (CPI) exam, but I’m not sure if it’s currently available. If you can’t find it on InterNACHI’s website, as Ben Gromicko about it (ben@internachi.org).

If you have other inspection questions you can email me (kenton@internachi.org), since I wrote InterNACHI’s South Africa content after spending some time there and am familiar with the SA building practices.


Another gold nugget to pick up while sidestepping the turds! :grin:

Agreed :smiley:

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Inspectors here can be a little on the aggressive/obnoxious side, Andre. Don’t take any of it personally. That’s what Larry and Marcel are referring to. They’re two of the good guys. Don’t let it stop you from participating in the InterNACHI message boards.

The thing to remember is that these boards are a huge fund of inspection information, much of it relevant to South Africa. The physics are the same, gravity still pushes falling and surface water downhill and rising water tables still make it move upward from below. The materials are mostly the same (except we don’t have thatched roofs), but the way they are combined can sometimes be different. You might be surprised how often they are the same.

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Thanks for interpreting for us, Kenton.

Andre, we hope you will continue to participate in our forum. :smile:

I feel kinda bad for the South African guys. Despite what you might find online, they don’t have any real good source of education or government approved certification. A few have posted here occasionally but posters on these boards have tended to be unpleasant/rude in their replies for some reason.

Most of us can remember how insecure we were when we first started out, but at least we had professional associations for support. They don’t.

Americans tend to think of Africa as backwards, but within a couple of blocks of where I lived there were multi-story modern shopping malls, a country club with a bocce court, and box stores comparable to Walmart, Costo, etc., plus a fishing gear store that had great stuff, different from ours.

South africa is the largest economy in Africa and there’s a lot of money there.

I see no one being aggressive on this post.
Terrible sublime message to a new member.
Shame on you, Kenton.

I’ve seen several South Africans post once and never come back after people were rude to them. Thanks so much Robert for coming onto this thread and trying to start an argument.

We all know what that means… … …
WAFI Alert
Even had to stain the Member Of The Year Voting Poll.

Being the only Certified Master Inspector In South Africa, puts me in a league like no other. I am privileged to have 2000± agencies within 50km radius and 200 000 Agents in my feeding area. I don’t need to compete for business. I asked the question, to raise collected information from different experiences, as no 2 poured concrete roof surfaces are comparable to others. Some are really well maintained, but poorly built, and some the opposite. I would like to start a training college in South Africa, as there are huge opportunities for the unemployed here. Our unemployment figures are Shocking, and communities are struggling. I am currently busy with developing courses for South Africans, and though that this platform ideal for topics with very little information that are readily available to others.


Good luck and stay safe over there, Andre.

Welcome Andre! Please feel at home here on our forum. :smile:

We look forward to your input/comments all the way from South Africa.

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Welcome, Andre! I enjoy seeing posts from Inspectors from other countries. It can be a learning experience for everyone.
Good Luck

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Welcome, Andre! Great to have you on board! :slight_smile:

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