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Metal Roofs and Energy Savings

red metal roofing on a building

Quality metal roof installation

Have you noticed the trend of having a metal roof for houses these days? At one time, the only time you found a metal roof was on only on barns and workshops in the country, on commercial buildings, etc., Occasionally you’d see metal roofing on houses out in the country. 

Today though, you can see metal roofing on houses in the city, suburbs, and urban areas, even on high-valued properties. There are metal roofs with gutters on houses in these areas too, they are in various colors and match any style and facade of the home. What are the metal roof benefits that have got this trend started? 

How long do metal roofs last? 

Maybe the growing trend of metal roofing in the city, suburbs, and urban areas is because homeowners have discovered it is one of the most sensible ways of protecting your home. For homeowners are in areas prone to hailstorms, high winds, and heavy storms, or fluctuating temperatures, metal roofing is much more durable. It withstands rapid changes in temperature or strong UV rays that can fry an egg on the sidewalk. 

When properly installed, metal shingles, metal tiles, or standing seam metal roofing are a lifetime roofing system. This means that once you have metal roofing installed, that will be the last roofing job your home will ever need! 

Metal roofing with shingles made from aluminum or steel has a 50-year lifespan, even longer. Metal roofing made from copper or zinc has a lifespan over 100 years. Either of these metal roofing materials will last seven years longer than the standard asphalt shingled roof. 

Do metal roofs make the house hotter? 

When most people think of metal roofing, they think of metal as being a hot surface. What they don’t know and understand is the cool properties of metal roofing. Depending on the type of materials and method of construction, metal roofing can be cool and provide energy efficiency.

Metal roofing is non-absorptive, unlike asphalt, concrete, tile, or wood shingles. The heat these roofing materials absorb radiates into your attic and into your home, making your HVAC system work harder, which means it is costing you more money.   

Metal roofing, on the other hand, reflects the sun’s UV rays and the heat that comes from those rays.  Because metal has a low thermal mass, it doesn’t absorb the heat like other roofing materials. With a specialized reflective coating that re-emits heat, the attic stays even cooler during the hot summer, which means your HVAC system isn’t working as hard to cool the house. 

Efficient and proper ventilation with metal roofing is key in getting those energy-efficient benefits too. An experienced metal roofing contractor will know this is key for the results a homeowner is seeking and will make sure that the ridge vents and soffits are installed properly to circulate the hot air out of the attic during the summer. They will assure the venting will work properly during the winter as well to keep the moisture out, eliminating the possible growth of mildew and mold. 

What is the best color of metal roof for energy savings? 

The color choices today in metal roofing are varied and wide.  With that abundance of colors that are available though, it’s easy to get lost and lose your focusing on choosing a color that will provide you the energy-saving you desire. However, that doesn’t mean that you must give up style.

The lighter the color, the more reflective of the hot UV rays the sun casts upon your metal roofing, in fact, it will lower the temperature of your roof as much as 60 degrees to choose a light color over a dark color. Metal roofing experts suggest the following colors:

  • Beige
  • Blue
  • Light bronze
  • Light green
  • Peach White

It is vital to opt for a high-quality paint that can withstand the elements and will look good for years. Request a metal roofing pain that has been treated with acrylic resin especially for metal roofing that will add additional blocking of the UV rays and prevents early corrosion, fading, peeling, rusting, and water infiltration. 

Ask the metal roofing contractor you choose to work with about other types of coatings and sealants that will provide an additional layer of protection that extends the life of the paint.  There are products out there that will do that and you’re your metal roofing more protection from mildew, mold, and UV rays. 

Does a metal roof lower your insurance? 

Think about this for a minute. A business can’t be successful if it is paying money out more than it is taking in, right? For an insurance company that offers homeowner’s insurance, the less damage to your home, especially the roof, it saves them money. If they are spending less, they can charge less. 

In Ohio and other parts of the country, insurance companies are seeing great benefits for them with metal roofing on their client’s homes because it is cheaper on them in the way of claims. When a home needs repeated roof repairs from hailstorms, high winds, or years of ice, snow, and UV rays, it becomes less profitable for them. So, the short answer to this is, yes, metal roofing will lower your insurance rates. 

grey metal roof with small window

What are the disadvantages of a metal roof? 

Metal roofing is attractive to homeowners because of energy efficiency, long lifespan, and minimal maintenance. However, like anything else, there are some downsides to metal roofing: 

  • Expensive – metal roofing can cost up to three times more to have installed than an asphalt roof.
  • Noisy – If not installed correctly, a metal roof will be noisy during hailstorms and rain.
  • The contract and expand with the temperature. If the proper screws and seals aren’t used, that movement can cause them to loosen and begin leaking.
  • Without extra protection added to metal roofing, when a piece needs to be replaced, the color can be inconsistent.

While the disadvantages of metal roofing are something to consider, they can be far outweighed by the positives they offer. It is important to go with a roofing contractor that is experienced in metal roofing, which will minimize, even eliminate, those possible disadvantages. For all of your metal roofing needs in Cleveland, OH, call 330-591-4440 today!

What is a single ply roofing system?

Flat Roof Installation With Black Roof Materials

Single ply roofing for commercial properties

What does single-ply roofing mean? Sometimes it is the simplest things that can do so much and provide the best results, like single ply roofing.  For hundreds, thousands of businesses across the country, single ply roofing systems provide affordable protection. Single ply roofing systems are durable, flexible, strong, and offer an essential advantage over traditional without breaking the budget.

There are various single ply roofing types, each is flexible sheets made of plastic-derived materials compounded together with other materials, like PVC and TPO. They cover flat and low-sloped roofs that have become increasingly prevalent in the field where metal roofing has dominated.

Are flat roofs a problem?

The popular thing about flat roofs is that they are simpler to build than the traditional pitched roof. However, they require regularly scheduled inspections and maintenance to keep them in good condition and functioning as intended, which makes it more important than ever to have a dependable, durable single ply roofing installed by experienced single ply roofing contractors.

There are six problems common with flat roofs, which an experienced flat roofing contractor can repair or replace. Those six problems are: 

  • Alligatoring – This occurs as the asphalt ages that was used to build a flat, it loses its elasticity and begins to bubble and crack.
  • Leaking and moisture – The most common problems, but can be repaired effectively if caught in time, hence the need for regular inspections.
  • Membrane buckles – Soaked in asphalt and laid in one piece. As the building settles and shifts, the membrane does too.
  • Water pooling – With a flat roof, the rains or snow has nowhere to run off to. As the building settles, a flat roof will shift, creating areas for the rain and melted snow to pool.
  • Crack in the roof – Flat roofs have more pressure applied than a slanted roof. When that pressure is excessive, it can crack.
  • Flashing – Flat roofs contract and expands with the weather changes, loosening the flashing, allowing it to curl and pull away.

These problems can be accented by traffic and work performed by an electrician, HVAC technician, plumber, or other service work being performed on a rooftop.  

Is EPDM a single ply membrane?

Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, referred to as EPDM, has been around since the 1960s. This is a single-ply membrane, time-tested, and is a flexible synthetic rubber compound and is common on commercial roofing.  

When business owners are looking to replace the single ply roofing on their commercial building with single-ply membrane roofing, the two types they look at first are EPDM and TPO.  Thermoplastic Polyolefin, TPO has become a fast-growing popular material in the single ply roofing market. This is a single layer of synthetics with reinforcing scrim and has proven it is durable for covering flat roofs. 

There are several EPDM qualities included in TPO flat roofing systems, one being the flexibility to contract and expand with the temperature. Because TPO uses a reflective, white surface like PVC, building owners enjoy energy savings.

What is single ply membrane made of?

When looking at flat roofing, the ‘inverted warm deck’ and ‘warm deck’ are the two types of arranged components. The single ply roofing offers technical flexibility that gives us many combinations of system type and attachment methods to suit various design conditions.

Single ply roofing is a complete roof system that is created from flexible, strong membranes that are predominantly composed of synthetic polymers in various thicknesses. Some are reinforced with glass fiber and others are reinforced with polyester, bringing the thickness to 1.1mm to 2mm.

White roof being installed

How long does single ply roofing last?

A fully adhered membrane, meaning it is completely glued down, including the flashings and seems, is the most common application, offer as a lifespan of 40 years for the material itself with a single ply roofing lifespan from 22 years to 35 years. The seams are not typically included in this expectation. The single ply roofing details of the two most common types are: 

  • Thermo Plastic Olefin (TPO) utilizes a scrim reinforcement between the two plies with the top ply containing components like Cool Roof pigments and UV stabilizers, and others which extend the lifespan. The bottom ply contains the TPO ingredients that provide a consistent weld of the fillers and plies, providing single ply roofing lifespan of from 22 years to 35 years.
  • Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is a thermoplastic membrane that utilizes a scrim reinforcement between two equal plies. The top ply contains various components like Cool Roof pigments and UV stabilizers, others that offer an extended lifespan of the membrane. The bottom ply contains the ingredients that make for a consistent weld of top and bottom fliers and plies, thus providing the ability to warranty the material up to 25 years for commercial structures and lifetime for residential structures. The lifespan expectancy of PVC single ply roofing system is a minimum of 30 years.

There are many single ply roofing details with many single ply roofing pros and cons that can be better explained by an experienced single ply roofing contractor. A main factor for most commercial building owners and maintenance crews is budget, not just to install but to maintain it and keep repaired. Finding a roofing contractor with a solid reputation is key in choosing the right flat roofing material. For your single ply roofing installation in Cleveland, OH, choose Pro Trade Services! Dial 330-591-4440 to learn more about our quality services.

What Does Roof Coating Do?

Roofers Apply a Roof Coating.

What are roof coatings

As your business’ roof ages, instead of replacing it, if it is still in relatively good shape, you may consider applying a roof coating. Roof coatings provide an additional layer of protection to your roof, and can extend an older roof’s lifespan by as much as a decade or so. You can apply roof coatings to both old and new roofs. Usually sprayed or rolled on like paint, roof coatings become an additional seamless membrane covering your. Not only do roof coatings protect your roof from problems like leaks and extend its life, they help increase its overall energy efficiency. They tend to be highly reflective and defend against the impact of the sun’s heat, as well as protecting the roof from weather such as rain and hail.

Among the many types of roof coatings available are silicone coatings. If you are searching for experienced professionals for roof coating, including silicone roof coatings, Pro Trade Services is the team to call at 330-591-4440.

Is roof coating any good?

A roof coating can be very beneficial, especially if you want added protection for your roof. Outlined below are some benefits of a roof coating.

  • Protects against roof leaks: The coatings are seamless, which aids in protecting most roofs from leaks. Coatings also protect roofs from problems like standing water, or ponding, which can cause leaks or issues like mold growth. 
  • Extends life of roof: The added protection from sun and weathering can extend the roof’s life for decades.
  • Helps keep roof cool: Coatings are highly reflective. They can lower rooftop temperatures, which in turn reduces heat transfer to the rest of the building. This can lower energy bills, especially in the summer or in warmer climates.
  • Protects from sun and weather damage: Along with reflecting heat, coatings protect roofs from the sun’s damaging rays, as well as from severe weather like hail and high winds.

Does roof coating stop leaks?

The seamless application of roof coating makes it particularly effective against leaks. The coating can prevent new leaks from developing, especially small pinhole leaks. Leaks present before the roof coating is applied need to be repaired in order for the roof coating to be effective. Some roofing contractors also advise against putting coatings on shingle roofs because the coating can inhibit the ability of the shingles to dry naturally, and allow water to collect under the shingles.  

Does roof coating reduce heat?

Roof coatings do reduce heat. It serves the roof as the first layer of UV protection. The coatings are highly reflective and lower the rooftop’s temperature, as well as reducing the amount of heat transferred to the rest of the building. How much the roof coating reduces heat will depend on the type of coating used and the type of roofing material. Some roofing materials are designed to be much more energy efficient than others.

Which roof coating is best

There are several types of roof coatings available. Among the most common are acrylic, silicone, and polyurea. All are highly effective, and the kind you select will depend on your needs. 

Is silicone roof coating worth it?

Some consider silicone roof coatings among the best because they are much more effective against standing water or ponding, a serious problem with flat roofs. Silicone coatings also do not require a primer to apply.  If you are comparing silicone roof coating vs acrylic, both are similar in that they come in a variety of colors, though most people choose white because white coatings tend to be more reflective than the other colors. While silicone coatings require no primer, acrylic coatings often require less material, about 1 gallon per 100 square feet, compared to 2 to 3.5 gallons per square feet for silicone. Acrylic coatings, however, usually need to be reapplied every 2 to 3 years.

How often should a flat roof be coated?

Flat roofs often benefit the most from roof coating. A flat roof that is not coated may only last about 10 years. You can extend a flat roof’s life dramatically by coating it at least every 5 years, even if there are no signs of damage.

Roofers Wash a Roof Before Applying a Coating.

How to apply roof coating

The first step of roof coating is to clean the roof thoroughly. A clean roof will ensure the coating adheres properly. Inspect the roof for any damages. Repairs need to be made before the coating is applied. If the damage is extensive, it may be more cost-effective to replace the roof. (You can also add roof coating to a new roof.) Depending on the type of roof coating you’re using, you may also want to primer the roof. Once you’ve applied your first coat, you’ll want to let that coat dry before applying a second coat.

Before applying a roof coating, you’ll also want check areas like vents, skylights and HVAC systems for any damages. If you find you need a new HVAC system you may want to consider a leading system like Trane HVAC systems.

For added protection and to improve your roof’s energy efficiency, have the professionals at Pro Trade Services come out and apply a roof coating in Cleveland, OH. You can reach us at 330-591-4440 to get an estimate or schedule an appointment.

Cool Roof: Advantages and Disadvantages

A Flat White Roof On a Commercial Building.

What is a cool roof system?

Any roof designed to reflect more sunlight and absorb less heat is a cool roof. These types of roofs can be made from a variety of materials, from metal, to reflective shingles or tiles, or plastic or rubber sheets like TPO and EPDM. Applying a reflective roof coating to existing roofs can also make a roof a cool roof. Cool roofs can decrease roof heat by 50 degrees or more,  help improve a building’s energy efficiency, and reduce energy costs because the air conditioning is used less.

Applying roof coatings are an effective way to turn your existing roof into a cool roof. If you are interested in making your roof cooler in Cleveland, OH, give the team at Pro Trade Services a call at 330-591-4440.  

Cool roof coating cost

Roof coating is an affordable and effective way to protect your roof from damage, as well as save energy. Costs will vary, depending upon your location, the size of your roof, and the type of coating you choose. Typically, coatings costs anywhere between $0.75 to $3 per square foot. Check with Pro Trade Services, and you’ll see how affordable our roof coating services are. You can request an estimate by giving us a call at  330-591-4440.

What are the benefits of a cool roof?

Saving more on energy bills because of decreased air conditioning use is the main reason people choose cool roofs. But cool roofs also benefit you in these ways:

  • Improves indoor comfort of unairconditioned spaces like garages.
  • Significantly decreases roof temperature, which could extend the roof’s lifespan.
  • Reduces heat caused by the urban environment, or the urban heat island effect.
  • Lowers overall electricity demand.

How do cool roofs work?

With most standard roofs, or dark roofs, most sunlight gets absorbed rather than reflected away from the building. Absorbing this much sunlight on a hot summer day can cause the roof’s temperature to soar as high as 150 degrees or more. All that absorbed heat makes the building hotter overall. 

With a cool roof, the roofing material reflects more sunlight than it absorbs. On a hot summer day, the roof will be as much as 50 degrees cooler than a conventional roof. This reduces the heat in the building overall, and put less strain on the air conditioner. Most cool roofs are made with materials that are lighter in color than those of standard roofs. Cool roofs are especially advantageous in areas with warmer climates, though they can still benefit those in cooler climates during the summer months. A cool roof in summer can be made more effective with a roof coating, in particular metal roofs, and traditional types of roofs like modified bitumen and built up roofs.

If you are planning to install a cool roof on your commercial building, you will have to take in consideration your commercial HVAC system, if the system is on the roof. The new roof will have to support the HVAC system and fit around units and vents.

How much does a cool roof cost?

Costs will vary for cool roofs. Much of the cost will depend on the slope of the roof. Flat roofs buildings generally cost less than traditional slope roofs, and flat roofing material like EPDM or TPO is already designed to be highly reflective. Costs will also depend on the type of roofing material you choose. Some materials like TPO are much cheaper than materials like metal, though metal roofs are highly reflective as well.

While solar reflective shingles are available, they tend to cost more than traditional asphalt shingles. Solar reflective shingles usually run about $2 to $3 per square foot, and come in lighter colors such as medium browns and grays. While they are much more reflective than traditional shingles, they are not as reflective as a white roof would be. Many homeowners, however, think white roofs are unattractive, so few homes have them.

What color roof is the coolest?

Traditionally, the coolest of cool roofs are white roofs, but as modern roofing materials evolve, more colors are available. Lighter colors like tan or light brown or light gray will tend to be cooler than darker colors. Of course, no matter the color, how much heat the roof absorbs will also be affected by ventilation and insulation. If the ventilation or insulation aren’t adequate, more heat will be absorbed by the building.

Cool roof or green roof

Cool roofs and green roofs are different styles of roofs, though both help improve energy efficiency. While a cool roof is designed with materials that reflect sunlight, green roofs use plants to absorb heat. In this case, the plants use the heat for energy, so there is still less heat transferred to the rest of the building. Green roofs are slowly becoming trendy in the U.S. They tend to cost more to install than a cool roof.

A Roofer Applying a Roof Coating.

Cool roof vs regular roof

Making a choice between a cool roof and a regular roof will depend on factors such as location and even tastes. For many commercial buildings, cool roofs are standard, and tend to cost about the same to install as a standard roof. In some cases, they may cost less. Cool roofing is less prevalent in residential building, especially because homeowners resist having white roofs, though they can opt for cooler materials like metal or solar reflective shingles that come in varying colors. Cool roofs also tend to be more effective in areas with warmer climates. 

If you are considering a cool roof in Cleveland, OH, let our experienced team provide you with a roof coating. Call us today at 330-591-4440 to find out more.

How Do You Know If Your Roof Is Damaged?

Commercial Metal Roofs Tend to Last Longer Than Most Other Roofing Systems Before They Need to be Replaced.

How often do roofs need to be replaced?

When you are determining whether or not it’s time to replace your roof, one of the first things you’ll have to consider is the material it’s made of and whether it is a sloped or flat roof. Many sloped roofs, especially for residential roofing are, asphalt shingle roofs. Roofs of this type should last you 15 to 30 years before they need to be replaced, if the roof is in good repair and has been well maintained. For commercial roof replacement, and some residential, you’ll have a variety of roofing material options to consider, ranging from metal to built up roofing to modified bitumen to EPDM and TPO.

Flat roofing materials like modified bitumen or EPDM and TPO will have varying lifespans, though most average about 15 to 20 years. Commercial metal roofing is some of the most durable available and the average lifespan for a commercial metal roof is 30 to 50 years or more with regular upkeep.

With the right roof in place and consistent maintenance and repair your roof should last an average lifespan before it needs replacement. Aging and wear and tear will factor into the roof’s life expectancy.

If you are planning to replace a commercial metal roof, make sure to get in touch with the commercial metal roofing specialists at Pro Trade Services. Contact us at 330-591-4440.

If you need a commercial roof replacement, especially for a flat roof, you’ll want to make sure your heating and cooling system has enough space on the roof and is in good repair. OH emergency air conditioner repair is available from several reputable companies when you have an emergency.

How do you know if you need a new roof?

One way to determine if you need a commercial roof replacement or residential roof replacement is to get your roof inspected by a professional. A roof inspection will give you an overall idea of what condition your roof is in. The inspection will reveal any damages or if the roof has any leaks and the roofer can recommend any repairs needed or if a new roof should be put on.

Age and appearance will also play a role in determining whether you need a new roof. Asphalt roofs especially give away their age because as they age they begin to deteriorate and often will stop laying flat against the roof. The shingles may be cracked or curled or some may be missing. When you can see visible signs of age and damaged no matter what kind of roof you have, it’s usually a sign the roof needs to be replaced. Still, a roof inspection by a professional is the best way to determine if you need a new roof.

How do you know if your roof is sagging?

Sagging is a sure sign your roof is failing and it’s time for a roof replacement. Roof sags are generally easy to tell because they are often readily visible. If stand outside and look up along your roof line, it should appear straight. If the roof has any visible dips or buckles, you have a sag. Sags can be caused by a number of things from poor installation to weathering. Moisture build up, however, is the primary culprit. Leaks that have gone unnoticed or unattended can cause rafters to rot and lose the ability to support the roof, causing a sag. Sags need to be addressed as soon as possible to avoid roof collapse.

What are the disadvantages of a metal roof?

If you are considering commercial roof replacement, you may want to consider a metal roof as an option. Metal roofs are certainly very durable and low maintenance. But, while we are commercial metal roofing specialists, we know metal roofs may some disadvantages over other roofing systems, and may not be the right choice for your particular business. One thing that may turn you away from a metal roof is the initial cost of installation, although the cost is often offset because of the long lifespan a metal roof has.

Metal roofs can also be noisier than other roofing materials especially when heavy rain or hail hits it, although improvements in materials and use of wood sheathing and felt underlayment reduces the noise. Denting from hail is of some concern, but many newer metal materials and construction methods help prevent denting. Metal roofs can also be vulnerable to problems when there is heavy snow. Heavy accumulations of snow may slide from the roof, which could cause injuries to those below it or damage to property. This problem is prevented with the installation of snow guards.

Can you walk on a metal roof without damaging it?

Yes, you can walk on a metal roof without damaging it. As with any type of roof, when you walk on a metal roof you have to take precautions. It’s preferable to walk on the roof with soft-soled shoes with clean bottoms. Rubber-soled hiking boots are a good option if you don’t have roofing shoes. If you’re walking on a metal roof carrying tools, you’re more likely to damage the roof from dropped tools than from walking. Generally, walking in low spots whether shake, tiles or even corrugated roofs. You should be extra cautious with standing seam roofs, since they are usually steep sloped and tend to be slippery. A harness and safety equipment should be worn as a precaution

Corrugated Metal Roofs are Commonly Used in Commercial Metal Roofing.

Metal roof for commercial building

If you are considering a metal roof for commercial roof replacement, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from and a variety of materials to work with from galvanized steel to aluminum, copper and zinc. Whether you choose a standing seam roof, corrugated roof or metal tiles or shakes, will depend on the type of building you have. Metal roofs will fit most roofing systems.


Commercial metal roof cost

Costs for commercial metal roofs will vary, depending on the type of material used and whether you choose corrugated steel panels, metal shingles, stone-coated metal tiles or standing seam metal. Corrugated steel is usually the least expensive of types, running about $4 to $6 per square foot. Shingles, tiles and standing seam run about $7 to $13 per square foot.

For the most affordable prices make sure to consult the commercial metal roofing specialists at Pro Trade Services.

Types of commercial metal roof panels

With metal roofs you have plenty of variety to choose from. The most common types of commercial metal roof panels include:

  • Aluminum
  • Copper
  • Steel
  • Tin
  • Corrugated
  • Metal tile
  • Metal shingles
  • Standing seam

Commercial metal roof contractors

When you are considering a metal roof for commercial roof replacement or installation, there are plenty of commercial metal roof contractors out there. But, for top-quality installation and repair services, we are the most reliable.

For all your commercial roof replacement needs in Cleveland, OH including commercial metal roofing, make sure to give our team a call at 330-591-4440.

What is the Best Material for a Flat Roof?

A Modified Bitumen Flat Roof System With Exposed Seams

Finding a Solution That Lasts

For the vast majority of businesses and nonprofit organizations, flat roofing provides a simple means of keeping out the elements. They also provide that oh-so-crucial space that so many buildings run short of. However, flat roofs face a variety of difficult challenges that must be addressed for successful long-term building management.

Today, we’ll dig into several popular roofing solutions to answer the big question: What is the best material to use for flat roofs? Afterwards, you should have a firm understanding of which flat roof covering should best fit your company’s needs. Let’s jump right in!

Types of Flat Roofing

You can find so many types of flat roofing on the commercial market! These systems range from simplistic 15 year membranes to expensive 50 year systems. Some types of flat roofing include:

  • EPDM Rubberized Membranes
  • TPO Membranes
  • PVC Membranes
  • Modified Bitumen
  • Built Up Roofing
  • Spray Foam Roofing
  • and “Living” Green Roofs

To simplify our comparisons, we’ll break these solutions up into two separate categories: single ply, and alternative solutions.

Single Ply Membrane Roofing

Unlike other types of flat roofing, these systems incorporate a single player of protection of the roof base. Because they are manufactured in large rolls of material, single ply roofs often feature long seams. In a way, these seams determine whether or not the single ply system will be successful in the long run. We’ll explain why in a moment.

EPDM Rubber

How Long Do Rubber Roofs Last?

On the low-price end of the single ply category is EPDM. Commonly referred to as rubber roofing, EPDM offers fairly dependable protection against weather hazards. Because of the flexible nature of rubber, the membrane also features excellent expansion and contraction with seasonal temperature changes.

In the roofing community, rubber roofing has a mixed reputation. While premium commercial versions of the material may last as long as 25 years, EPDM sometimes struggles with leaks. What causes a flat roof to leak? Damaged seams. EPDM roofs often rely on seam tape, which breaks down faster than a heat fused seam. Some building owners also voice concerns about extreme heat warping the black material.

PVC and TPO

What is the Difference Between TPO and PVC Roofing?

Both products are classified as thermoplastic membranes
(materials that are moldable with heat). Both typically come with reflective white surfaces, ideal for repelling excess heat from a building. PVC and TPO also share remarkable resistance against UV rays, water ponding, and mechanical wear.

The materials differ in several aspects, however. TPO is a rubber-based material however, while PVC is a commercial grade plastic product. Because of PVC’s proven history, fire-resistance, and superior durability, it comes in at the highest price range of single ply roofing. TPO only arrived within the last 30 years, and manufacturers are still tinkering with the chemical formula. It enjoys a slightly lower price range.

Additional Questions

How Long Should a Flat Roof Last?

Single ply systems may last anywhere from 15 to 30 years. A premium PVC roof installation will generally last the longest (up to 30 years), while EPDM and TPO roofs average about 20 year lifespans. Of course, maintenance and rooftop restoration may add years onto that estimate.

Keep in mind: not every company needs the longest lasting roof on the market. Growing businesses, for example, may wish to stick with a 20 year solution that will expire after they’ve moved to a different location. Your budget and long-term business plans ultimately determine what flat roof is best for you.

Should Flat Roofs Have Puddles?

Because flat roofs frequently suffer from ponding water issues, many people just assume that must be the way things are. That simply isn’t true. While water may get trapped on the rooftop, proper gradient design should ensure your roof drains effectively.

Alternative Flat Roofing Systems

Beyond the single ply solutions, you’ll find a variety of capable solutions. Modified bitumen, especially torch-down varieties, provides very capable mechanical and weather protection for up to 20 years. A built up system (you may know it as “the flat roof with stones”) offers fantastic hail and wind protection, low maintenance, and an average lifespan of 15 years.

SPF Foam & Green Roofing

Should your business have the budget, you can go into more advanced, energy-efficient solutions. You may recognize SPF roofing foam as a cousin of the material that insulates thousands of residential buildings. These foam solutions do a marvelous job of keeping solar heat out and interior heat in. If you want to ride the growing trend of “living rooftops”, consider a beautiful 50-year green roof. You might just score a tax break!

A Flat Roofing System With Some Exposed Seams

Get Your Flat Roofing Estimate!

Is it time for your business or nonprofit to start shopping for your next roof replacement? Our team at Pro Trade Services would love to consult with you on how to find the most ideal option for your budget and functional goals! Give our team a call today at 330-591-4440 and ask about our solutions for flat roofing in Cleveland, OH!