A Look at the Different Products Flat Roofing Companies Offer
Over the past few years, flat roofing designs have increased in popularity, and for good reason! In comparison to traditional sloped roofs, flat roofs are generally cheaper to build, they maximize space, they save energy (and therefore, money), and they tend to last longer. But not all flat roofs are created equal. These are the pros and cons of some of the most popular styles:
Modified bitumen systems are a popular choice amongst flat roofing companies and consumers, both for new installations and replacement roofs. Here’s what makes them stand out:
- Modified bitumen flat roofing systems are manufactured into roll materials.
- Their membranes are made up of reinforcing fabrics, which are the basis for the hot polymer-modified bitumen.
- In general, modified bitumen membranes are two-ply systems.
- They are also, with few exceptions, always completely adhered.
Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM)
Roofing companies have been using EPDM systems in Canada since the 1960s. Lasting an average of 15 to 25 years, they are still a very popular option. Let’s look at the details:
- Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer is a synthetic rubber.
- Flat EPDM roof systems are relatively easy to install and are a popular choice for single-ply roofing applications. As a result, they are also known as Single Ply Membranes.
- Roofing professionals typically use EPDM systems for low-slope surfaces.
- It’s the preferred option for roofs that tend to have issues with weathering, failing joints, or inflexibility, since EPDM is known to prevent leakages.
Built-Up Roofing (BUR)
BUR systems, also referred to as “tar and gravel roofs,” have seen a decrease in popularity over the past few years, as a result of more innovative materials and enhanced roofing processes. In most cases, flat roofing companies now tend to install modified bitumen and EPDM systems in their place. Nevertheless, let’s take a closer look at BUR systems and some of the terminology around this option:
- With BUR flat roofing systems the roof membrane is formed through alternating layers of asphalt bitumen and reinforcing fabrics (also known as roofing felts or ply sheets).
- The repetitive layers are fundamental in BUR systems.
- Occasionally, roofing companies install a base sheet as the first ply.
- When secured directly to roof decks and insulation, BUR systems are considered 100% adhered.
Still unsure which type of flat roofing system to choose? Flat roofing companies are able to perform a customized assessment and answer any questions you might have. Get in touch with an industry professional today!