Things to Remember When Applying Liquid EPDM

1)      Catalyst must be added prior to use.  Scrape sides of container with a rubber spatula to ensure catalyst distribution.

2)      Xylene or Mineral Spirits Solvents may be added to adjust viscosity or for clean-up.

3)      Easiest way to spread the rubber on a flat surface is to broadcast material with a rubber squeegee then roll using a short nap roller.  Product is self leveling.  A flat spatula can be used for small areas.

4)      Product has a long pot life after catalyst has been added; 4-6 hrs. depending on temperature.

5)      Only temperature affects the rate of cure.  Relative humidity has no influence. 

6)      Product is hydrophobic (sheds water) so substrate to be coated must be dry initially.  The uncured rubber can get wet or even have ponding water, with only a cosmetic effect after application, and will still cure.

7)      The rubber will penetrate into porous substrates such as wood and poured concrete.  A primer/sealer should precede application of rubber.

8)      The chemical reaction of the catalyzed rubber can be arrested by freezing the material.  This can keep material usable for weeks or months.  To use again simply allow it to reach room temperature and apply.

Liquid EPDM Coatings are aftermarket roof sealants

A number of aftermarket roof sealants are available, including urethanes, acrylics and liquid rubber. Liquid EPDM rubber is by far the most durable of the sealants available and has the widest range of applications.

It is more water resistant than other rubbers, including neoprene. It is more resistant to swelling and has a wider range of acceptable temperatures. It can be applied directly to practically any roofing material other than asphalt and can even be used on wood that has been primed.

Liquids have an obvious advantage over sheets. Sheets have seams. Seam sealers eventually deteriorate and water gets through the seams and under the sheeting.

Liquid EPDM can be used on top of neoprene, although some pre-treatment of the surface is required. Just knowing that the liquid rubber is recommended for use on top of the other type of rubber should be an indication that the material is more durable.

Liquid EPDM can also be used on top of polyurethane after a light sanding. It is somewhat surprising that urethanes are still used as aftermarket roof sealants. It is known that the structure is damaged by UV light and that discoloration occurs relatively quickly. Anyone who has made the mistake of using urethane as a roof sealant should consider applying liquid EPDM to truly protect the roof.

The liquids can also be used to seal existing leaks. They are self-adhering and fill up tiny fractures that let water through. It is a good idea to use a thick coat and cover the entire surface instead of attempting to only cover the leaky area.

When covering the entire roof, the liquid rubber reduces heat buildup. Not only does the roof stay cooler, but the interior of the building or the vehicle will also stay cooler. This benefit may reduce heating costs and keep the occupants more comfortable.

Liquid EPDM has become the most popular choice for RV roofs, because of all the above-mentioned advantages. It extends the lifespan of the roof and requires less maintenance. It lasts up to three times longer than any other aftermarket RV camper rubber roof sealant and also reduces noise from rain.

As far as price goes, most sealants are similar in price. Depending on where you buy, EPDM may be a little more expensive, but because primers and additional coats are not usually necessary, and because it lasts so much longer, owners who choose this aftermarket roof sealant save money in the long run.

Types of elastomeric coatings and uses

The Many Types of Elastomeric Coatings and Uses of Them

The types of elastomeric coatings and uses of them are numerous. Here you can learn a little bit about each type and the purposes for which they are most often used.

Elastomeric Coatings

Elastomeric Coatings

Modified Asphalt

A modified asphalt coating consists of asphalt and rubber-like polymers. This material is most often used on roofs, although there are a few other applications. It is not suitable for sealing driveways or for covering other asphalts, as it does not adhere directly to asphalt.

There are several disadvantages of this material. It is only available in black, which absorbs and transfers heat, making the building hotter if it is used on the roof. Softening and deterioration occurs over time due to exposure to solvents, grease and UV light.

Polyurethane

There are several categories of polyurethane coatings. They are used to cover spray-foam, wooden decking and other building materials. None are exactly waterproof, although they do help to prolong the life of wood by preventing rot.

Aromatic polyurethanes are one type. The disadvantages include discoloration and chalking over time. They are often used as a base coat for other polyurethanes, although when used as a final coat, the appearance is initially pleasing. Modified and single component polyurethanes are also available.

Silicone

Silicone types of elastomeric coatings and uses are limited. They are recommended in situations where “breathability” is desired. Moisture vapor can pass through the coating.

Silicone is not compatible with other materials. For example, an EPDM coating will not adhere to silicone. Since the coating allows the passage of water vapor, it is not recommended for roofing or similar applications.

Neoprene

Neoprene is a type of synthetic rubber made by DuPont. The coating is fast drying and retards vapors, but a top coat is required when the coating is used on exterior surfaces. Thus, there are numerous limitations to types of elastomeric coatings and uses of them.

Hypalons

Hypalons are another type of synthetic rubber also made by DuPont. The Hypalons have more applications than the Neoprene material. They can be used as fire retardant and waterproofing agents. They are often used in roofing and for coating tanks and coolers.

The Hypalons are compatible with other coatings and can be used on top of many of them, but it is necessary to check with the manufacturer about that.

Butyl Rubber Types of Elastomeric roof Coatings and Uses

Butyl rubber is the most water resistant coating, which makes it a good choice for applications that are very wet or very cold. The coating is often used in coolers, freezers and cryogenic storage units, water storage units, ponds, pools and roofs.

There are limitations of this type of coating. It can be damaged by hail, foot traffic or flying debris. It has a tendency to become chalky and is more sensitive to weather than some of the other options.

EPDM

EPDM is yet another type of synthetic rubber. It has the widest range of applications and the highest compatibility with other materials. Only asphalt and silicone cause problems with adhesion. The coating can be used on those surfaces if an undercoating is used.

Flame retardant materials can be added to EPDM if fireproofing is desired. The UL listing on the manufacturer’s label will reveal the fire resistance of the coating.

EPDM is often used in roofing as a waterproofing agent. It is long lasting when exposed to weather and can serve as a top-coat with no additional treatment. EPDM is among the best types of elastomeric coatings and uses of EPDM are nearly unlimited.

THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN USING LIQUID RUBBER

1) Catalyst must be added prior to use. Scrape sides of container with a Liquid rubber spatula to ensure catalyst distribution.
2) Xylene or Mineral Spirits Solvents may be added to adjust viscosity or for clean-up.
3) Easiest way to spread the rubber on a flat surface is to broadcast material with a rubber squeegee then roll using a short nap roller. Product is self leveling. A flat spatula can be used for small areas.
4) Product has a long pot life after catalyst has been added; 4-6 hrs. depending on temperature.
5) Only temperature affects the rate of cure. Relative humidity has no influence.
6) Product is hydrophobic (sheds water) so substrate to be coated must be dry initially. The uncured rubber can get wet or even have ponding water, with only a cosmetic effect after application, and will still cure.
7) The rubber will penetrate into porous substrates such as wood and poured concrete. A primer/sealer should precede application of liquid rubber.
8) The chemical reaction of the catalyzed rubber can be arrested by freezing the material. This can keep material usable for weeks or months. To use again simply allow it to reach room temperature and apply.

How to Maintain Your RV EPDM Roof

With proper care and maintenance, your RV EPDM roof can last for 20 years or more. That’s pretty much equivalent to the life of the vehicle itself. One of the benefits of EPDM Rubber roofing materials is that the care and maintenance required is minimal. Regular cleaning is the first step.

Most manufacturers recommend cleaning the roof at least four times per year. The cleaner used should be one that is specifically designed for EPDM roofing and is free of petroleum distillates.

Products containing petroleum distillates, whether they are designed for cleaning or protecting, will cause the rubber to swell and loosen. There are many chemicals that fall under the category. The easiest way to tell for sure that the cleaner you are using does not contain any of the chemicals is to look for one that states on the label “free of petroleum distillates, safe for use on RV camper rubber roof.”

Cleaning is a relatively simple matter, but you should keep your safety in mind. If you are going to be getting up on the roof, you should be on your hands and knees to reduce your risk of falling.

The first step is to rinse the roof thoroughly with plain water at a relatively high pressure. Any branches or sharp objects should be removed by hand, if possible. While EPDM is tear resistant, sharp objects can cause scratches when they are pushed along the surface. Eventually the scratches can become tears.

Once all debris has been rinsed away, you will need to take a medium bristle brush, a bucket of safe cleanser diluted with water and get up on the roof. You need only scrub in areas where you see stains or dirt.

Keep your hose with you so that you can rinse while you are cleaning. Start in the corner farthest away from your exit point and work backwards to minimize the amount of time you spend on the wet surface.

After the roof is cleaned, you can use an EPDM protectant if you like. The protectant should be specifically designed for EPDM roofing, not for other types of materials. Some EPDM manufacturers also sell special protectants. While using the protectant is not essential, it may extend the life of the roof and reduce your need to restore or repair the roofing material.

Finally, proper care of your EPDM roof includes parking it in an area where the roof is protected as much as possible. Don’t park around fruit trees. The citric acid can deteriorate the material in between cleanings.