Why Some Clients Prioritize Torch-Down Over EPDM Roofing

The best and most affordable options for flat roofing are either torch-down roofing or EPDM roofing. Torch down roofing, which many refer to as modified bitumen or asphalt rolled roofing, works similarly to asphalt shingle roofs but are more compatible with low-sloped or flat-roofed materials. While it offers no aesthetic additives to properties, it can provide the same protection level for property owners.

Torch down roofing offers great insulation thanks to its UV-reflective coating. Additionally, using a torch melts the roofing material, creating an impermeable layer that protects against rain and snow. While it requires the help of professional Littleton, CO roofing companies for handling installation torches and proper practices, the payoff is always an excellent roofing material with asphalt toughness the likes of road infrastructures.

EPDM roofing offers the same advantages. Its overlapping seams ensure zero property water damage during heavy rainfalls. Additionally, rubber performs well consistently exposed to hot or cold environments. However, its adhesive-based installation and the missile vulnerability of EPDM roofs make them only an option for most property owners.

Torch-down roofing introduces excellent protection and defense against hailstorms than EPDM. While both have similar lifespans, torch-down roofing achieves exceptional performance than rubber roofs can.

Penfolds Roofing discusses the major differences between the two materials at length. Read more about them below.

What Is EPDM Roofing?

EPDM is an extremely durable synthetic rubber roofing membrane that is widely used on flat and low-slope roofs. Its two primary ingredients, ethylene and propylene, are derived from oil and natural gas. First Introduced in the 1960’s, it became increasingly popular through the 1970’s and 1980’s in North America.

What are the pros and cons of EPDM?

Pro: EPDM can be produced in wide carpet-like rolls up to 40 feet wide and 100 feet long. For new construction, this can have a great advantage as roofing contractors can loosely lay down a large footprint before any penetrations are put in place.

Pro: Depending on the particular system, the average service life of a locally installed EPDM roof is 25 years.

Pro: EPDM can be installed in a variety of ways, again depending on your building’s needs. Locally the most common method has been by loose laying the field area and then ballasting the membrane with 2” river rocks. Other methods of installing can be using low VOC adhesives or mechanical attachment, either way, roofing contractors don’t have to use open flame torches or extremely hot industrial heat guns to apply EPDM. This greatly reduces the fire risk to the building during installation.

Con: Much like other single-ply membranes, EPDM roofs can be easily damaged and are susceptible to punctures or tears from both foot traffic and debris such as falling tree branches.

Con: EPDM can be a cost-effective roof solution for an extremely large building with minimal penetrations; however, the failure points can often be traced back to a seam failure. Since the inception of the EPDM membrane, there have been many changes to the adhesives that are used at the seams in order to reduce seam failure. In the end, you will still be relying on glue to keep water ingress from occurring. (Read the full article)

If you have yet to find a reliable commercial roofer who can help with all your needs, you can count on us at Roper Roofing to deliver the most exceptional results possible. Contact us today to learn more about everything that we can achieve with you.

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