Elastomeric Roof Coating Explained

With all the advantages out there when it comes to roof coating, it’s understandable that you may want more information before making a decision. Your roof is important, after all, so anything but the best is taking a pretty big gamble. Keep reading to learn more about one option, an elastomeric roof coating.

What is an Elastomeric Roof Coating?

An elastomeric roof coating is one that greatly resembles rubber once it’s applied. One of the main advantages of this particular form of coating is that it can be applied to so many different kinds of roofs.

What are Its Advantages?

There are many benefits to choosing an elastomeric roof coating. As mentioned above, it can be used on just about any surface type. This includes roofs made out of metal, single-ply applications, built-up applications, modified bitumen, and much more. It can even be applied to freshly sprayed polyurethane foam.

The actual angle of the roof doesn’t matter, either. Unlike some other coatings that can only be used on buildings with a flat top, elastomeric coatings can handle those and ones with just about any type of slant to them.

Once applied, an elastomeric roof coating will provide superior resistance against just about any weather condition. As it acts much like rubber, it can stretch when the temperature goes up and then retreat to its original shape when it gets colder out. By doing this, it resists cracking.

Because of the strong seal this coating produces, it’s great for energy efficiency. Cold air and heat stay in, while the outside world is kept at bay.

There are four main types of elastomeric coating. They are as follows:

Acrylic Elastomeric Coating

This is the most widely used elastomeric roof coating. It’s great for roofs with a positive slope, for one thing. It also displays superior longevity and is easy to clean. Furthermore, many people appreciate that it is considered an environmentally friendly option.

Butyl Elastomeric

For flat roofs or those with a low slope, butyl elastomeric is a great choice. It works especially well on roofs that are made from modified bitumen, asphalt built-up, or singleplied roofing. One advantage for flat roofs is that this variety can resist the pressure of pooling water.

Polyurethane Elastomeric

While EPDM roof coatings are considered high quality, adding a polyurethane elastomeric coating will further help ensure the roof’s overall protection. This variety is also especially good for roofs made from modified bitumen or a single-ply application of PVC or TPO.

Silicone Elastomeric Coatings

This is a great option for a roof that was recently treated with polyurethane foam. The main reason is that a silicone elastomeric coating displays excellent weathering. Whether the foam was just recently sprayed or needs a new layer for protection, this is a great choice.

When you’re looking to coat your roof for added protection, it’s hard to think of a better option than the rubber-like elastomeric coating. It can be applied to just about any surface, and it will display excellent durability while adapting to weather conditions. With several different options to choose from, you can find the coating that will work best for your roof.

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The Advantages of EPDM Roof Coatings

There’s no getting around the importance a roof plays in any structure. Whether it be a home, a warehouse, office building, etc. you need a strong roof that can provide shelter from the elements. Leaks do happen, however, at which point, you want to act fast to solve the problem. Despite all the options available, you can’t do much better than having EPDM roof coatings above your head. Keep reading to learn why applying EPDM to your roof is one of the best decisions you can make for the structure.

Immune to Most Climates:

EPDM roof coatings can handle just about any climate condition short of a tornado. They can withstand low temperatures all the way down to -40 F without cracking or becoming brittle.

If you live in the Southern Hemisphere, you’ll be glad to know that a roof covered in EPDM doesn’t mind the warmth, either. While temperatures will never get up to 300 F, EPDM has shown it wouldn’t be a problem if it did.

The really great thing about EPDM roof coatings, when it comes to climate, is how much it can save you in energy costs. EPDM gets a lot of credit for keeping the elements out, but the truth is that it does just as good a job keeping your cold air or heat in, where it belongs.

Repair and Maintenance:

Roof Leaks Repairing

Roof Leaks Repairing

As the above attests, a roof covered in EPDM will have an easy time withstanding the elements. Yet EPDM needs very little, if any, maintenance. While you’ll want to clean your roof periodically, simply to keep things like fungi or algae from growing, the synthetic rubber itself won’t need any help.

This also provides greater savings. The longer you can go without having to fix your roof again, the more of a return you’re getting on your investment. But this can also provide great savings for use on an office building. As that type of building constantly undergoes inspections for worker safety, you won’t have to worry about spending more to keep it up to code.

Longevity:

It’s hard to think of another option that can provide the kind of longevity you’ll get from installing EPDM Roof coatings. The ERA (EPDM Roofing Association) recently conducted a study. In it, they examined a number of EPDM roof coatings that were 30 years old. Their finding was that, even after 3 decades, the EPDM maintained a high degree of tensile strength, almost as if it were new.

Installing EPDM:

Installing EPDM Roof Coatings

Installing EPDM Roof Coatings

Keep in mind that the above advantages are contingent on quality installation. While many people may be successful in installing EPDM on their own, they take the results into their own hands. Many of the benefits listed above will not be a factor if installation is mishandled.

When it comes to putting a roof over your head, you’d be hard pressed to find a better option than EPDM rubber. For added savings, incredible durability, and little-to-no maintenance issues, EPDM roof coatings will deliver. Best of all, you won’t have to think about it again for decades to come.

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Elastomeric Coatings for New Roofs and Retrofits

Elastomeric roof coatings have properties much like those of rubber. They can expand and contract with the surface to which they are applied. Although they will not be guaranteed to last a “lifetime”, they can last 20-25 years, which is longer than other roof coating materials.

What Is a Cool Roof?

Cool roofs are those designed to help home or business owners save money when heating and cooling their buildings. In these cases, roofs are coated with white elastomeric roofing materials that reflect heat away and keep the interior of buildings cooler.

These coatings have properties that help fight roof degradation, according to The Seattle Times. Rain, snow, heat and light will not affect them as much as they do a traditional roof coating. With proper maintenance, elastomeric coatings can last for 20 to 25 years. The only maintenance required is occasional cleaning by using a power washer or hose. The coating is reapplied every 10 to 15 years to ensure longevity.

Even if the service life of a roof is only extended five years, it can reduce the costs of rooting by over 20 percent. It also will create less landfill waste from conventional roof tear offs and re-roofing. The solid wastes in the United States now include almost four percent roofing waste.

Why Use Elastomeric Roof Coatings?

These coatings protect your roof from weather elements like sun, heat, rain, snow and wind, states Acrymax.com. In addition, you can use white elastomeric coatings to reflect back the heat of the sun, so that the interior of the building is more easily cooled. Select a coating that is resistant to dirt, so that buildup of dirt will not cause your roof to become less reflective.

Elastomeric roof coatings can be used to maximize or extend the service life of your roof by reflecting back harmful UV rays. They can be used in an effective way along with roofing repairs to maintain a watertight condition.

If your roof was coated when it was installed, you will just need to recoat the roof every 10-15 years, when the existing coat deteriorates and is no longer protecting the membrane underneath.

Facilities.net explains that light colored or reflective coatings are capable of minimizing solar gain, so they will reduce the cooling load of buildings, and lower utility costs.

What Type of Coating is Best for Your Roof?

Once your building manager has defined the goals of your roof, you will want to specify coating products that will be suitable for your building. Elastomeric coatings can be formulated from various products, including:

• Neoprene
• Hypalone
• Latex/acrylic
• Silicone
• Urethane

Elastomeric roof coatings may be used with most roof membranes today. They are most commonly used on metal and polyurethane foam roof systems.

Acrylic/latex coatings are popular in the elastomeric roofing market. They are relatively low in cost to install and they comply with emission regulations that have become quite stringent.

Neoprene roof coatings are made with synthetic rubber, and they are sometimes used as a base under Hypalon coatings.

Urethane and silicone coatings are somewhat more expensive than most other elastomeric coatings, but they do offer benefits like an enhanced resistance to ponding water, UV radiation and chemical fallout.

Choose Elastomeric Coatings To Protect Your Roof

Your roof will inevitably take a beating over time. Wind, snow, rain, and heat all combine to wear your roof, causing damage and leaking. Therefore, it is important to take measures to protect your roof. In particular, you may want to look into and elastomeric coating.

What Are The Different Kinds Of Elastomeric roof Coatings?

There are four different types of elastomeric coatings: butyl, acrylic, polyurethane, and silicone. Butyl tends to be the best option for flat roof repair or for low-sloping roofs. These roofs are particularly susceptible to water damage and butyl has superior water pounding resistance. An Acrylic roof coating is another option; generally it is the best for over sloped roofs. It also presents several advantages over butyl. Notably, it is more environmental friendly and lasts longer. A polyurethane coating is definitely the best option for EPDM rubber roofs, as it doesn’t require high PH rinses. It is also useful for modified bitumen roofs and single ply roofs. Lastly, the fourth type of elastomeric coating is silicone. Silicone is incredibly weather resistant and is ideal for roofs exposed to extreme weather conditions.

What Are The Advantages Of An Elastomeric Coating?

Elastomeric roof coatings are compatible with virtually any type of roof and present numerous different advantages. In particular, they are resistant to fungi and mildew, which can severely damage a roof overtime. With the build-up of these substances, a roof’s ability to shed water is severely limited. This means that the roof absorbs water, making leaks much more likely. In addition, elastomeric coatings also offer UV and ozone protection. This is particularly beneficial for polyurethane foam roofing, which tend to be particularly susceptible to sun and heat damage. Lastly, the heat reflexive properties of an elastomeric coating inhibit the heat absorption process, reducing your home’s cooling costs. In addition, it is also worth noting that elastomeric coatings are quite environmentally friendly, both VOC complaint and non-toxic. Overall, elastomeric coatings are incredibly long lasting and are a great way to protect your roof.

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.