What is the Most Durable Roof Coating?

Roofer Applying a Roof Coating.

Most of us, if not everyone, has heard the words, “The stars at night, are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas.”.  Sometimes though, that “clap, clap, clap” that comes after that could be the sound of hailstones on top of your commercial structure. This is why commercial roof coatings are an important decision! 

What are commercial roof coatings?

Commercial roof coatings are a thick coating formula of high-quality resins. This formula is installed on commercial roofs to provide an extra layer of protection. These high-quality resins maintain the elastic properties of the roofs throughout the various weather events that can happen here in Texas cur the life cycle of the commercial roof. 

Are there different types of commercial roof coatings?

There are three types of commercial roof coatings, each having its own set of benefits depending on the existing type of roofing material. Those three types are: 

  • Acrylic Commercial Roof Coatings

Acrylic commercial roof coatings are water-based and mainly come in three colors: 

  • Gray
  • Tan
  • White

There are other colors available as well. Acrylic commercial roof coatings are suitable for environments of high UV climates, providing a high reflectiveness.  

  • Polyurethane Commercial Roof Coatings

Polyurethane commercial roof coatings are typically a solvent-based product that comes in two key types: 

  • Aromatic
  • Aliphatic

These commercial roof coatings have good mechanical properties and have high abrasion resistance with tensile strength. Ideal for the high possibility of hailstorms here in Texas as well as heavy foot traffic.

  • Silicone Commercial Roof Coatings

Silicone commercial roof coatings are suitable for high-UV environments and have a high reflectiveness of the sun’s rays. An ideal roof coating where there is a high level of rain and is ponding resistant. 

What are the benefits of commercial roof coatings? 

Each of these commercial roof coatings has various benefits. These benefits can include UV protection, which provides additional benefits of easing the strain on the HVAC system. In Texas, that is a key benefit during the hot summer months. 

Commercial roof coatings also protect waterproofing, a strong possibility during the heavy rains that can come all year long. Additionally, commercial roof coatings are a layer of fire resistance. Commercial roof coatings can help decrease the contraction and expansion of the roofing membrane with temperature fluctuations.  

The top benefit of commercial roof coatings is the lifespan extension it gives the original roof. It is less expensive than a complete roof replacement. 

What are the cons of elastomeric commercial roof coatings?

Although commercial roof coatings provide substantial benefits, there are some cons of elastomeric commercial roof coatings: 

  • Overspray: Elastomeric commercial roof coatings are typically sprayed on, which can have overspray depending on the wind conditions. As they fall, acrylic commercial roof coatings dry as they fall in the air. This, fortunately, keeps them from sticking to anything they land on. 

However, rubber, silicone, or urethane commercial roof coatings dry after they land on a surface and can be challenging to remove. If there is a concern with overspray, an experienced commercial roof contractor will be able to roll the coating on instead. 

  • Weather: In addition to the wind conditions causing overspray issues, acrylic commercial roof coatings are water-based and can freeze if applied at a temperature under 40 degrees Fahrenheit.  Installation should be postponed when the environment has a high moisture level, especially in the early morning hours and late evening. 

An experienced commercial roofing contractor will choose a time day and time of year when the moisture is minimal so that it doesn’t get trapped underneath the coating. Trapped moisture can cause commercial roof coatings to blister and bubble as the temperature rises. 

  • Compatibility: Not all roofing substrates are compatible with all commercial roof coatings, like tar & gravel, and elastomeric coatings. Experienced commercial roofing contractors will take precautions in the preparation and apply a primer so that an elastomeric roof covering will bind. 

In Closing

When you make the decision to apply commercial roof coatings, it is important to choose a commercial roofing contractor and crew that is experienced. To get the best results and benefits, it is important that the coatings are applied to with the right equipment so that they adhere properly. Proper adherence is necessary to eliminate the possibility of roof leaks and other possible issues. 

An experienced roofing contractor will know the preparation of the roofing surface beforehand. This included a thorough cleaning and allowed it to completely dry. The contractor will inspect the substrate, making any repairs needed so that there is a uniform appearance and the adhesion is set for the long term. 

The contractor will know the proper thickness and ensure complete coverage over the roof.  Thin commercial roof coatings can’t provide the roof and structure the protection that is intended and will allow moisture to seep under, causing it to deteriorate sooner than it should. When it is applied too thick, it can make it uneven, causing other various problems.