How Liquid EPDM Rubber Works on Commercial Buildings

From the Kennedy Space Center to the stadium that houses the New England Patriots, liquid EPDM rubber can be found protecting buildings everywhere. This versatile, durable roof coating offers a host of benefits which increase both the economic and the environmental friendliness of commercial construction.

What Is It?

EPDM (ethylene propylene diene terpolymer monomer) is a synthetically manufactured rubber material which comes in both solid sheets as well as liquid form. It has been used for about 50 years in commercial building applications, making it a time-tested and proven material providing extensive benefits for its users.

Benefits of Liquid EPDM Rubber

One of the main advantages of using liquid EPDM for roofing applications is its versatility. It can be applied to almost any surface, including:

  • Fiberglass
  • Concrete
  • Foam
  • Metal
  • Wood
  • Fabric
  • Rubber

In addition, while most other liquid roofing materials require multiple coats, EPDM liquid rubber typically only requires one.

EPDM liquid rubber offers a host of performance benefits in commercial building applications. Some of the properties of this material that give it the ability to function so well as a protective flat or sloped surface membrane include:

  • The ability to expand and contract – EPDM is very flexible, and can withstand the expansion and contraction which naturally occurs in varying weather conditions. This flexibility helps minimize cracking and other damage that occurs when a substance constantly grows and shrinks.
  • Ponding resistance – ponding water is a major concern for structures with a flat roof. The roof’s outer membrane must be able to tolerate standing water for long periods of time, and EPDM rubber coatings perform exceptionally well in this regard.
  • Weather resistance – this substance is engineered to be extremely UV-resistant, as well as take exposure to hail without becoming damaged.
  • Low temperature resistance – EPDM rubber coatings do not become brittle or crack in extreme temperatures, due to their superior flexibility. In fact, these products can withstand weather as low as -40 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Thermal resistance – maintaining energy efficiency is an important aspect in large building design. Liquid EPDM rubber membrane material has outstanding thermal resistance, ideal for hot climates, particularly in the summer months.
  • A long history – EPDM rubber coatings have been around more than twice as long as TPO. This material has a proven history of durability, longevity, performance, and ease of care.
  • Low maintenance – typically all that is required to keep this kind of roof coating in good condition is occasional debris removal.
  • Weight – because liquid EPDM rubber may be applied in one coat, weight concerns are minimized.

Environmental Impact

In this era of environmental responsibility, the eco-friendliness of construction materials is coming under intense scrutiny. Liquid EPDM rubber coatings are – comparatively speaking – superior in terms of sustainability and environmental impact. Not only does the production of the membrane have a low embodied energy number (representing the amount of energy required to manufacture and install a product), but it also offers low lifecycle costs due to its longevity (up to 50 years).

Commercial Use of EPDM Rubber Roofs

EPDM – or ethylene propylene diene monomer – has been used in commercial roofing applications for half a century. This lab-fabricated material provides benefits over asphalt roofing in both installation and performance. More than one billion square feet of EMPD rubber roof sheets have been installed on buildings worldwide since the material came into use.

How Does It Work?

An EPDM rubber roof is made up of sheets as large as 50 feet wide by 200 feet long. Narrower sheets can be used as well, in order to meet the application’s specific needs. These sheets vary between .045” and .090” thick, and also come reinforced if necessary.

This type of commercial roofing material is commonly used for both steep and low slope roofs, and is useful for geometrically shaped building such as domes as well. It comes in black (which is closer to a slate gray) or white, with either carbon black or titanium dioxide added according to whether UV rays need to be converted to heat or deflected from the surface.

EPDM rubber roof sections can be mechanically spliced, or adhered using a splicing adhesive. Using narrower sections which are manufactured without seams is a good way to avoid having weaker t-joints where the seams would meet the spliced area.

Benefits of an EPDM Rubber Roof

EPDM is resistant to ponding, hail, moisture, and temperature extremes. Due to its resistance to moisture absorption this material can be used in lower slope applications for which built-up roofing would not be appropriate.

One of the main benefits of a commercial EPDM rubber roof is that it can withstand extreme temperatures without suffering from expansion and contraction. Lab testing has put EPDM under the stress of 240 degree conditions for a month, and shown that it offers superior resistance to heat aging.In addition, there is no organic material in the formula, which can decay due to exposure to moisture. It does not become brittle, and has high resistance to cyclic fatigue.

Another benefit of this commercial roofing material is that it requires little maintenance. No sealants are necessary – all that is required is occasional removal of any leaves or other debris which have gathered on the surface.

As environmental concerns have moved to the forefront of the building industry, eco-friendly materials have become highly desirable. An EPDM rubber roof is a good choice in commercial applications because it offers sustainability, a long life cycle, and lower environmental impact. The white version also reduces interior energy costs by deflecting UV rays. In terms of installation, the components used to apply this kind of roof were specifically developed to reduce VOC emissions.

An EPDM rubber roof has a long life expectancy in comparison to other commercial roofing materials. It can last up to 50 years without undergoing severe degradation. This further increases the both the eco-friendliness and the economic viability of this material.

An EPDM rubber roof offers a versatile, durable, economically and environmentally sound choice in commercial roofing applications.

Prepare the Roof for EPDM Rubber Coatings

One of the nice things about EPDM rubber coatings is the fact that you don’t have to be an expert roofer to apply them. As long as you have some time, the right tools, and the willingness to do it correctly, it is possible to do it on your own in most cases. Of course, if there is a massive roof, you will likely want to hire someone to take care of it for you. However, if the roof is less than 5,000 square feet or so, there’s no reason that one or two people can’t do it on their own.

Plan Your Application Days

While you can technically apply the EPDM rubber coatings in cold temperatures, or in very warm temperatures, you have to keep in mind that they require an ambient temperature of 55 degrees Fahrenheit or greater to cure. Ideally, you will choose a day when it’s sunny and between 70 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. This ensures that it will be comfortable enough to work, the product can cure, and you won’t have to worry about rain. Before you can get to work though, you need to prepare the roof for the EPDM rubber coatings.

Preparing the Roof

You need to inspect your roof to look for signs of damage. Look for things such as corrosion, gaps, cracks, and tears. If there is rust on the surface of the roof, you can sand it away before you get started. Make repairs to any holes or tears before you apply the EPDM rubber coatings. You also need to clean the roof to remove any grit or grime that might be up there. Clean dirty areas with soap, water, and a stiff-bristled brush. Make sure that you let the roof dry completely before you start to apply the coating of Liquid Rubber. Different types of roofs will require different types of cleaning, naturally.

For example, if you have a concrete roof, there is a chance that it could be too porous for the EPDM rubber coatings to adhere to properly. This doesn’t mean you should give up the idea of these coatings though. First, test out a small patch. Apply the rubber coating and let it cure for about a week. Examine it and look for any indications that it isn’t adhering properly, such as bubbling. If that’s the case, you will want to apply a coat of epoxy onto the concrete first. This will fill in the pores. Let that dry, and then you can use the EPDM rubber coating to cover the roof.

The Application

Once you have prepared the roof, you will find that the application is actually quite simple. You add the catalyst, mix the product according to the instructions, and then use a roller to apply it to the roof. It goes on just like paint, and you will find that it can dry in about the same time. It’s a good and easy solution for those who need to protect their roof.

Using Liquid Rubber for Your Commercial and Residential Roofing Needs

Liquid Rubber is one of the simplest and best ways to get your roof into better shape. If you have leaks, if you have any small cracks or holes in the roof, or if you just want to improve the quality of the roof and to provide some preventative measures, then the Liquid Rubber is a fantastic option. You can use it on both residential and commercial roofs of many different types. Let’s look at the different materials that can work well with the EPDM so you can see just how versatile it really is.

Types of Materials Where You Can Use Liquid Rubber

If you have a roof made of metal, whether it is coated or galvanized steel, or weathered aluminum, you will find that the product can work very well. It works well with copper too, provided that the copper has been weathered for at least five years. Those who have a rubber roofing system will be able to use the Liquid Rubber as well.

What if you have a concrete roof? As long as the area doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic, then you can use Liquid Rubber without a worry. It can work well on foam roofing, as well as with wood, so long as it has been primed using something such as ProFlex primer first. It works with other EPDM roofs, fiberglass that’s been aged at least three years, PVC, and vinyl.

As you can see, this provides you with a wealth of different options, as it can work with just about any type of roofing system that you already have in place. Keep in mind that the roof should be flat, or nearly flat, for this to work properly.

Using the Liquid Rubber for the Roof

When you choose to use the product, you can apply it on your own, or you could have someone do it for you. Fortunately, it is a very simple product to use, and you will likely be able to do it on your own. If you have a roof that is less than 5,000 square feet, then you can apply it with a squeegee and roller, or a large paint roller. However, if it is a larger job, the easiest way to apply the Liquid Rubber will be to use an airless sprayer. You would likely have to rent the equipment. It’s generally only going to need a single coat. Of course, you could always hire someone to take care of the application for you.

When you apply the coating to your roof, keep in mind that even though you can apply it at any temperature, you will need to have daytime temperatures of at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit for it to cure properly. The warmer the temperature, the faster it will cure. Once you have the Liquid Rubber on your roof, it goes to work protecting it immediately.

It’s a great product, and it could be just the element your roof needs for protection, whether it is a commercial roof or a residential roof.

What You Need to Know Regarding Liquid EPDM Rubber

Does your roof need repair, or perhaps just a little bit more protection? If you are looking for a better way to get your roof into shape, one of the options that you might have run across and are probably considering is liquid EPDM rubber. This is a very popular choice because it has some excellent benefits. However, if you are just getting started with your research, then you probably want to know a bit more about this type of product before you commit to it. The following are some of the things that you should know when it comes to liquid EPDM rubber.

What Is It and How Does It Work?

The name liquid rubber can seem a bit confusing, but that’s exactly what the product is. It is liquid EPDM rubber, which comes in containers similar to paint. In fact, you will find that it goes on like paint and even has a similar look to it. You apply it when it is liquid, and then when it dries and cures, it solidifies and becomes the rubber barrier that your roof needs.

Where Can You Use It?

One of the nice things about the liquid EPDM rubber is that you can use it in a variety of different locations for commercial and residential roofing. As long as the roof does not have a steep grade – the flatter the better – you should be able to use this product. It works on metal, rubber, wood, and a host of other surfaces. Of course, you have to make sure it is applied properly, and part of that is cleaning the surface where you are going to apply the liquid EPDM rubber.

One Coat Is Usually Enough

The product is high quality, and putting just one coat on your roof is generally enough to provide the protection you need. You will find that the liquid version of the EPDM is the same as the sheet versions which have been popular for years. However, the liquid EPDM rubber doesn’t start to get chalky after a few years as the sheets do.

It’s Durable

People like to use the liquid EPDM rubber because it is so durable. When it is applied correctly and properly taken care of, it has the potential to last for decades. In addition, it can withstand a vast range or temperatures – from -40 degrees to more than 300 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that no matter where you live, you can rely on this rubber coating. It is durable enough and long lasting enough that it can outshine other types of coatings, such as urethane or elastomeric coatings.

It goes to work quickly too. Even if it were to rain right after you apply the liquid EPDM rubber, your roof would be protected from the rain. The waterproofing really does start that quickly.

Now that you have a better idea of what this product can offer, you are in a better position to determine whether it is the right option for you.

Common Issues That Will Require Roof Leak Repair

The biggest investment that most people will make in their lifetime is a home. Finding the right home will take time and patience, but it will pay off in the end. After the right home is purchased, a homeowner will need to find a way to stay on top of any repair issues that may arise. Doing routine inspections of a home is a great way to find out about repair issues early on. Damage to the roofing system of a home can cause a variety of problems. Spotting the signs that roof leak repair is needed can help to reduce the amount of water damage that is done. The following are some of the most common issues that will lead to a roof having to be repaired.

Damaged Flashings

The flashing that goes around the chimney or plumbing vents on a roof are very important. Without these pieces of flashing working properly, the homeowner will face a number of leakage issues. Usually, the cause of flashing issues is the rubberized coating on top of it deteriorating over time.

In order to get this issue fixed, the homeowner will have to hire a professional to come in and reapply the rubberized coating. This is job is very complex and has a large margin of error, which is why letting a professional handle it is the best course of action. Having professionals perform this roof leak repair is important due to the long term damage that an inexperienced homeowner can cause when trying to take it on alone.

Broken or Damaged Shingles

The majority of home roofs out there are covered with asphalt shingles. While a shingle roof can offer the protection that a home needs, it can deteriorate over time. The constant exposure that a shingle roof has to the sun can cause a lot of issues. The sun will dry out the shingles and make them very weak and brittle. When a strong wind blows, it will be easy for the sun damaged shingles to be blown off of the roof. Having damaged or missing shingles can lead to roof leak repair issues. The only way to get this issue fixed is by having a professional replace the damaged or missing shingles.

Clogged Gutters are Problematic

Most homeowners never give a second thought to their gutter system until there is a problem with it. Having clogged gutters can lead to water pooling in one part of a home’s roof. The longer the water stays in one spot, the higher the chance will become of a roof leak repair issues arising. Getting the gutters cleaned or repaired is the only way to restore the functionality that has been lost. Neglecting to get this type of repair done can lead to a lot of water damage being created.

Spotting the warning signs of a roof leak repair issue early on will help to reduce the damage done. Selecting the right roofing professionals is a vital part of getting the repairs needed done the right way.

Liquid Rubber FAQ

If you’re considering fixing your roof or simply adding an extra layer of protection to it, there’s a good chance you’re thinking about using liquid rubber for the job. It’s easily one of the most popular options currently on the market, so there’s even a good chance you know someone who has benefited from it. Still, before you pay to have liquid rubber added to your roof, you most likely have a few questions you’d like answered.

What Is Liquid Rubber?

EPDM is a synthetic rubber made for repairing damaged roofs or creating a barrier to protect them. While it is applied in liquid form, much like paint, it dries in an hour or two and then becomes a solid.

Can I Apply It Myself?

For the vast majority of jobs, it’s really for the best if a specialist applies the EPDM. While it’s true you can find liquid roof coatings for things like RVs or small repair jobs at your local home improvement stores, this type of job is generally better left to the experienced professionals out there.

If you have a commercial building or serious damage done to your home, you’re going to want to hire a specialist for your liquid rubber application needs. This doesn’t just mean your local roofer either. It’s vital that you find someone who has worked with EPDM before. Otherwise, you could end up with a lot of frustrating problems.

How Long Will It Last?

While there are many benefits to using liquid EPDM on your roof, one of the main ones is how long it will last once it dries. It’s not uncommon to hear of people leaving their EPDM roof untouched for 20 years or more. At most, you may want to repaint it after 12 years or so, but that’s an aesthetic issue.

Does It Matter What Kind of Climate My Building Is In?

No. Another benefit of using EPDM is that it’s incredibly resistant to weather conditions of all kinds. It’s even been tested at 40 degrees below zero and 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Hopefully, these aren’t the types of weather conditions you’re anticipating, but it’s still nice to know that nothing Mother Nature can throw at your roof or your repair job will destroy it.

Speaking of extreme conditions, EPDM is great for lowering your utility bill by keeping outside temps where they belong. When you turn up the AC in the summer, this synthetic rubber will ensure that the sun doesn’t heat your building and cost you more money.

Likewise, the airtight seal provided by EPDM will also keep hot air in place during the winter months. As hot air rises, much of it is often lost through the roof, but this won’t be possible if you use liquid rubber to create a membrane that covers it.

Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of what EPDM entails. There are so many benefits of using it on your roof that you can expect to see its popularity continue to rise – for good reason.

Why You Want a Specialist Installing Your Liquid Rubber Roof

Every building has a roof, but not every roof is created equal. In fact, a lot of roofs almost seem like they were added as an afterthought. Obviously, anything but a stable, reliable roof is going to end in huge problems for the structure it sits atop, but the good news is that you don’t have to remain stuck with the one you currently have. A liquid rubber roof coating will add unrivaled protection to this important feature of your property, but be sure you have a specialist do the installation.

Exceptions to the Rule

To be fair, there are some exceptions to this rule. Perhaps you’ve noticed that your local home improvement store has liquid rubber roof coating options, for example. These are usually meant for covering up minor leaks that get below the shingles on your home, though, and other, similarly small jobs.

They are definitely not for large scale jobs like coating your entire home or the top of a commercial property.

Air Bubbles Can Form

For the most part, applying a liquid rubber roof probably seems straightforward. You apply the liquid over the roof and, in a matter of hours, the job is done.

Actually, this isn’t too far from the truth. However, it’s missing a few details. One of the most important ones is that you need a specialist who understands how to avoid creating air bubbles.

Otherwise, at the very least, you’re going to end up with an unsightly finished product. If your roof is in any way visible from the ground, people will think it’s developed blisters. These bubbles can also result in some pretty serious structural damage, which is exactly what you wanted to avoid.

You Need a Complete Coating

Most roofs aren’t completely flat. If they were, it’d be a lot easier to apply a liquid rubber roof coating to them, but this just isn’t the case. Instead, roofs feature different angles; they have pipes, vents and other features that protrude.

These items don’t make it any less possible to benefit from a liquid rubber coating. However, that’s only if you hire a specialist to do the work for you. They’ll know how to ensure there aren’t spaces left over because of the areas where these elements depart from the rest of the roof.

That might seem like a minor thing, but when it comes to keeping rain out or fending off the sun’s heat, it makes a huge difference.

Not All Roofers Are Specialists

Finally, be sure you get an actual specialist to apply your liquid rubber roof. Any roofer might say they understand what the work entails, but that isn’t necessarily the case. Ask for proof this is an area of expertise for them or you could end up with someone who has no idea what they’re doing.

Adding a liquid coating to your roof will keep it protected and save you lots of money, but only if you understand the importance of hiring a specialist to do it.

Tips on Ensuring an EPDM Rubber Garage Roof Installation is Successful

The best part about being a homeowner is the freedom that it will allow them to customize their surroundings. One of the most used spaces in a home is the garage. Most homeowners will use this place for storage, which means that they will need to make concessions to ensure it is safe and secure. The roofing on the garage should be one of the main things that a homeowner thinks about. Having a low-quality roof on the garage may lead to the items inside of the garage becoming water damaged. An EPDM rubber roof is one of the best roofing systems that a homeowner can put on their garage. Hiring professionals to perform this work is essential due to the complexity involved in the process. There are a number of things that a homeowner can do to ensure that the EPDM roofing installation is successful and here are some of them.

It Starts With Choosing the Right Professionals

Before the first bit of work is performed in the roofing installation process, the homeowner will have to take the time to choose the right professionals. Usually, there will be no shortage of roofing professionals in an area, which will require a homeowner to do a good bit of research. Finding out what type of track record a company has will help the homeowner decide if they are the right fit for the job.

The Type of EPDM Rubber Roof Needed

Once the right professionals are chosen for the job, a homeowner will have to figure out what type of EPDM rubber roof they need. EPDM usually comes in a white and black color. If the home in question is in a relatively hot part of the country, they will want to go with the white EPDM roof. The white roofing will allow for the inside of the garage to stay cool due to the low heat retention rate that it has. If the home in question is in a relatively colder climate, then the homeowner will need to choose the black colored EPDM. The professionals that have been hired for the job will be able to help the homeowner figure out which color roof is the best fit for their garage.

Cleaning the Roof Beforehand

In order for the EPDM rubber to adhere correctly, the roof of the garage will need to be cleaned. Having dirt and debris all over the roofing will cause a number of issues, which is why a homeowner will need to figure out how the prep work for this job will play out. In some cases, a homeowner will want to save a bit of money by doing this type of work on their own. Be sure to talk things over with the roofing company doing the installation to figure out what they can offer and whether or not it would be more feasible to let them handle all aspects of the installation.

A quality EPDM rubber roof is a great investment for a homeowner to make. This rubber roofing material will offer a home’s garage the protection from the elements that it needs.

Three Advantages That a Fully Adhered EPDM Rubber Roof Can Provide

The world of roofing is filled with options. Deciding on the right type of roof can be a bit difficult can be a bit difficult for a home or commercial building owner. Traditional asphalt shingle roofs are very common, but can be very problematic over time. For buildings or homes with flat or sloped roofing surfaces, the use of EPDM is wise. Having an EPDM rubber roof can be very beneficial due to the durability and low cost that it has. There are a variety of different installation methods that can be used with EPDM, but none of them are quite as beneficial as the fully adhered method. Here are some of the benefits that come along with getting a fully adhered EDPM roof for a home or commercial building.

Very Lightweight and Flexible

In order to make the roofing material fit on an unusually shaped roof, the professionals will have to use a lightweight and flexible material. Using EPDM that is fully adhered to the structure is the best way for a roofing profession to get the play they need to make it fit properly. Most people have the misconception that just because a roofing material is flexible it must be flimsy and unreliable. In all actuality, an EPDM rubber roof is one of the most durable types of materials out there.

A Very High Wind Rating

By anchoring the EPDM to the structure of the roof, a home or commercial owner will be increasing the amount of wind resistance that their roofing has. If the building in question is very tall, then getting this type of roofing is essential in keeping it anchored down during higher than normal gusts of wind. Due to the method that is used in this type of roofing, it is nearly impossible for the wind to penetrate the underside of it.

A Higher Degree of Aesthetic Appeal

If the building or home in question is visible to the public, then a fully adhered EPDM rubber roof is the best way to keep a high level of aesthetic appeal. Other types of roofing use fasteners or ballasts to anchor the material use down. The fully adhered EPDM roof uses adhesives that are placed on the underside of the material. This means that it will create a flat and smooth appearance for the roof.

Easy to Maintain

Among the biggest concerns that most home or commercial building owners will have when choosing a roof is the amount of maintenance it will require. Due to the highly durable nature of the EPDM rubber roof, a home or commercial building owner will not have to worry about expensive maintenance procedures on a frequent basis.

Taking the time to weigh all of the options in the EPDM rubber roof world will make it easy for a home or commercial building owner to make the right decision. Seeking out advice from a professional familiar with EPDM roofing is the best way for a person to get the information they need.