SPF Roofing VS. Other Roofing Systems

Do you have a home or business with a flat or low-slope roof and are considering replacing your roofing system? If so, you have numerous options available and choosing which is best may be a little confusing.

Early Investigations into SPF Roofing

In 1974, the experts at the Physical Plant Department of Texas A&M Laboratories investigated the alternatives to the traditional tar and gravel built-up roofing (BUR) systems since they were dissatisfied with the performance of this type of roofing system. The BUR roofs were constantly leaking, and because of the nature of BUR, leak detection was virtually impossible.

The information gathered by the Physical Plant Department from various roofing sources clearly indicated that spray polyurethane foam (SPF) roofs displayed the properties that fit the criteria of the University.

Advantages of SPF Roofing Compared to Other Roofing

The Physical Plant Department found the following:

  1. Unlike BUR roof systems, SPF roofs are seamless which eliminates seams as sources of leaks.
  2. Even if there is a puncture in the two-inch membrane of an SPF roof, the water movement will be restricted to the hole which can be easily repaired.  On the other hand, in BUR roofs or single- ply roofs, water travels laterally, therefore a leak in the top membrane of a BUR or single-ply roof will create the spreading of water, saturating the insulation and causing multiple interior leaks.
  3. Unlike most of the other roofing systems, SPF roofs are lightweight, permeable and fully adhered. Consequently, an old roof does not normally need to be removed in order to apply a new one.  What’s more, if underlying areas of saturated insulation are found, only minimal tear-off may be required to repair the damaged areas.
  4. When the time comes to replace your SPF roofing system, it will be less disruptive since tear-off is minimal.  Additionally, projects are accomplished faster because the application is quieter, quicker and requires far less labor.
  5. More often than not, roofs have roof mounted units, penetrations, curbs, and parapets, in the case of BUR systems and single-ply roofs, it is required that you add flashing materials with sealants which frequently result in leaks.  However, in the case of SPF roofing, the entire roof receives a seamless monolithic application because SPF is spray applied.  Therefore, it is less labor intensive and less likely to sustain leaks.
  6. Finally, another major advantage in an SPF roofing system that is not found with any other roofing system, is that SPF is a renewable system. BUR and single-ply roofing systems must be removed and replaced after their usable lives.  However, SPF roofing can be repaired and recoated to offer an indefinite life expectancy. Also, when we consider, the energy savings and reduction in in-house maintenance costs, the SPF roofing system maintains a tremendous long-term cost efficiency advantage over all other roofing systems.

After their investigation, the Physical Plant Department decided to reroof several buildings on the Texas A&M campus with SPF roofing. One of the earliest roofs done with this system was the Davis-Gary dorm, which after several decades, its roof has not leaked and requires minimal maintenance.

Today, over 90% of the 10 million square feet of roofs at the Texas A&M campus are protected with SPF roofing. In fact, further research at Texas A&M University which looked at 27 buildings, found that the savings in energy costs over 4.5 years can pay for the cost of the roof installation. Another study by the Oakridge National Laboratories reported that cooling and heating energy costs were reduced by 50%.

For more information about SPF roofing systems, please contact us today.  Armstrong has installed more residential foam roofing than any other company in America! And we offer you the best, longest-lasting warranties available!  Before you consider any other roofing system for your flat or low-sloped roof, let Armstrong show you why our Bay Area Foam roofing is your best investment for your home or business!

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