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Polyurethane Foam Roofing: Lightweight And Watertight Alternative

Oct 21, 2007
Polyurethane foam roofing has been around for more than 40 years as one of the major choices for materials in insulation and roofing. Once, they were considered only to be an alternative to the age-old built-up roofing but now polyurethane foam roofing already belongs to the forefront of the roofing industry as it has proven its durability, dependability and affordability. Some have already withstood 40 years and appear to be able to continue performing for the decades to come.

Great Advantages of Polyurethane Foam Roofing

Polyurethane foam roofing has several great advantages when compared to other roofing options. The coverage of this type of roofing is seamless, as polyurethane foam comes in liquid form at first, and then sprayed evenly as a single, continuous membrane that protects the entire roof. There are no joints or seams that can widen to cause leaks like in other roofing materials. Polyurethane foam is also flexible, it can be installed in practically any kind of surface; even roofs with protrusions and irregular shapes can be covered by polyurethane foam.

Polyurethane foam roofing is also very lightweight, it usually just weighs around 50 pounds per square feet, compared to 800 pounds for the built-up roofing system and at least 100 pounds for those ballasted single-ply membrane roofs. Polyurethane foam also provides great insulation so it can help keep heat away during hot seasons and heat inside during cold seasons. This type of roofing is also very easy to maintain, there is little waste created throughout its use, and with proper maintenance, can last indefinitely.

Insulating Properties

The insulating properties of polyurethane foam roofing are incomparable. For such a thin material, it can give adequate thermal resistance like no other roofing option. For every 1 inch of polyurethane foam roofing, the R-value is rated at 7.14. This can help save as much as 30% of energy costs for both cooling and heating.

With such savings, the cost of the roofing can be recovered easily within just five years. These insulating properties have proven to be useful in wineries, chemical processing plants, and oil refineries. If polyurethane foam roofing can withstand the demands of these industries, how much more can it provide less demanding settings?


Another important property of polyurethane foam is its waterproofing capabilities. Polyurethane foam roofing is comprised of very uptight cells that as a whole can act as a barrier for both water and moisture. Not only does it keep water, in liquid form, away, it also minimizes problems with dew point and prevents condensation of water inside structures.

The roofing is very much protected even if the foam's top coat gets damaged as the underlying layer still keeps the roof waterproof. Water also drains properly so accumulation of water does not occur even when it rains.

How It's Applied

Polyurethane foam roofing is actually a combination of polyol and isocyanate. The two substances are run through a machine known as the proportioner that heats up the two chemicals and sprays them in a mixture using a spray gun as a single substrate. Because the foam is initially sprayed in liquid form, it can cover the surface of a structure as a single, continuous layer that has no seams or joints, providing stability and even coverage.

When installing the polyurethane foam roof, it is important for the surface to be dry and free of any contaminant such as solvents and oil. To protect the polyurethane foam roof from the rays of the sun, another layer, called the elastomeric coat is sprayed on top, making the roof even more protective as it is.

With such great advantages and ease of installation, there is no wonder why polyurethane foam has become one of the top choices among roofing options today. With such great properties there is no question that polyurethane foam roofing is definitely worth getting for any structure that needs adequate protection.
About the Author
Visit Flooring2Roof.com to learn more about roofing calculator and mobile home roofing.
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