Why Should I get My Roof Coated With a Reflective Coating?
Coating will extend the life of the roof, by reducing heat transfer into the building, decreasing thermal shock (thermal expansion and contraction of the roof membrane), and helping to mitigate leaks. Reflective coatings also can reduce heat energy costs and improve the aesthetics of the roof.
What Kind of Roofs can be Coated?
Almost all types of roofs can be coated. Some examples include metal, spray polyurethane, single-ply, modified bitumen, Built-up roof (BUR) systems, gravel surfaced membranes, etc.
What Types of Reflective Coatings are Available in the Market?
There are several types of reflective roof coatings that impart varied reflectance rates/ values. Typically, the reflective coatings are what are commonly referred to as white coatings and there are also aluminum coatings typically used with asphalt. Highly reflective white roof coatings are typically comprised of acrylics, urethanes, silicones, SBS, SEBS, and other types.
How is the Coating Applied?
The coating can be applied using spray, roller or brush.
How is a Roof Prepared for Coating?
The roof must be thoroughly cleaned, and allowed to dry thoroughly. This is a critical step to ensure a successful coating application. Be careful not to damage the lap seams. Care should be taken when pressure washing not to disturb the integrity of the underlying roof membrane particularly where there are adhered seams. Refer to the specific coating manufacturer you are using for their specific requirements for roof preparation.
Silicone coatings should not be installed when there is surface moisture, ice, or frost.
Our high standards in products due to their proprietary formulation eliminates the use of primers, in most instances. The coatings applicator will inspect the roof for any damage, repair the membrane and seam deviations, power wash the roof surface and then apply the silicone coating.
Should I coat a New Roof or a Nearly New Roof?
Yes, a new roof should be coated if the building owner wants to add a highly reflective roof coating to reduce energy costs. The buyer should be aware of any warranties provided for a new roof that may violate that warranty during the period it is in force via the use of a roof coating. This will extend the roof’s service life. A reflective roof coating will reduce the heat load on the roofing assembly.
What are the Building Code Requirements for Roof Coating?
The International Code Council provides detailed info on the status of I-code adoption. This depends on the local, state, and federal code enforcement requirements that have jurisdiction in your area.
Will a Reflective Coating Extend the Life of my Roof?
Yes. The coating becomes the first layer of UV and water resistant protection for the roof, and helps reduce expansion and contraction (thermal shock) of the roof.
Are There any Warranties Available?
Yes, coating manufacturers offer warranties depending on applications and needs.
Find out more about our Roofing Warranty Process by clicking here.
How Long Will the Coating Last?
Based on long-term histories, typically the roof life of a properly applied roof coating can be extended up to 20 years or more. Performance can vary depending on type and conditions, as well as the coating film thickness.
Why is Silicone Coating More Expensive than Other Coatings?
The initial cost may be higher than others but review the superior properties of silicone. The installation cost is much lower since typically no tear off is needed. Plus long term savings include lower maintenance costs, lower energy costs, and longer roof life span.
Why Shouldn't I use a Less Expensive Coating?
Acrylic roof coatings are water based products and have a very short life cycle. They are prone to chalking and hazing and their adhesion will degrade over time. Silicone coatings does neither of these, making silicone a much more effective solution.
Can the Roof be Recoated in the Future?
Yes. As the coating wears away, additional coating can be applied. Most coatings systems are renewable and sustainable. Refer to the specific coating manufacturer you are using for their specific requirements on re-coating applications.
Can a Coating Stand Up in Ponding Water Conditions?
That depends on the coating. All roofs should be designed and built to have positive drainage and not allow ponding water. Some coatings are designed to withstand ponding conditions; however, not all coatings will withstand these conditions.
In What Weather Conditions can the Coating be Applied?
For water borne coatings, the ambient air temperature should be 50oF (10oC) and rising, with no rain for the next 24 hours. Solvent borne coatings (i.e. Silicone) can be applied in colder weather. As always, check with the coating manufacturer.
How Long Does the Coating Take to Dry/Cure?
That depends on many factors: air temperature, wind, roof surface temperature, relative humidity (water borne coatings) coating color and the type of coating applied. For example, silicone is moisture cured and thus humidity assists in its curing process.
Can I Coat a Rusted Metal Roof?
Rusted metal roofs can be coated after the rust conditions have been addressed. All rusted fasteners should be treated or replaced.
What is ENERGY STAR?
ENERGY STAR is a US Government sponsored program encouraging the use of energy efficient products. Roofing materials including coatings can qualify for ENERGY STAR if the coating meets specific solar reflectance minimum criteria.
What is the Cool Roof Rating Council (CRRC)?
The Cool Roof Rating Council (CRRC) is an independent, non-profit organization that maintains a third-party rating system for radiative properties of roof surfacing materials.
What are the Energy Savings?
This depends on the geographic location, insulation, and cost of electricity. Energy consultants are available to provide environmental regulation compliance information.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), NTL Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), and several roofing material manufacturers have comp programs that can estimate the savings.
Is There a Tax Advantage or Rebate Program Available?
Roof coatings are typically classified as maintenance, and in many cases can be written off as such in the same calendar year in which the coating application is completed; check with your CFO for specific details on roof maintenance tax deductions.
How do I Maintain the Coating?
It is recommended that the roof, including the coating, be inspected semi-annually and after a major storm or high wind “event”. Additional coating may need to be applied to repair damage to the coating and underlying roofing substrate. Check with the manufacturer and/or warranty program requirements.
What are Solar Reflectance and Thermal Emittance?
Solar Reflectance is a measure of the ability of a material (roof coating) to reflect the sun’s radiation. Thermal Emittance is a measure of the material (roof coating) to release trapped heat back into the atmosphere.
Will the Coating Stop My Leaks?
While coatings may potentially stop minor leaks, the roof should be properly repaired and dried prior to coating application. Coatings may be able to seal pinhole leaks, which are leaks not visible to the naked eye. If the roof is leaking, the roof leak will need to be identified and repaired prior to any recoating. Do not expect the coating to find and seal the leak until the leak has been repaired first.