One of the main advantages of the SPF roof system is that your old roof does not have to be torn off. This means that 98% of the time, the cost of tear-off is eliminated and the environmental cost of disposing in a landfill is also eliminated. The only preparation of the roof prior to spraying is the manufacturer specifications regarding skylights, drains, roof vents, etc… (If your roof is tar & gravel, the gravel is removed prior to spraying.)
Another advantage to foam roofing is the insulation factor. When the SPF is fully formed, which takes about 3 minutes, it becomes a solid insulation which holds an “R” 6.5 value per inch. So, if the foam is sprayed at 1.5 inches, the insulation R value would be around R12. However, in the formula for R value, there is consideration for air passing through the insulation itself. This means that the R value is based on loose insulation (Pink Panther) not solid (closed cell) polyurethane. If we were to use the proper formula for SPF, we would use “K” value rather than R. The result of that formula would give SPF a much higher insulation factor if this were the common measurement for construction insulation values.
If you have a city or county requirement for a particular R value, you may be able to show the building department the difference between R & K and use less SPF than the required R value thickness. In any case, an SPF roof system will give you a huge insulation advantage over any other roof system, both interior heat loss and exterior heat transfer.
You can save up to 50% on your heating and/or air conditioning bills by installing an SPF roof system. PG&E also offers “cool roof” rebates as well as commercial and multi-unit apartment rebates up to .20 cents per square foot. If you’d like to know more about these rebates and your roof is in California, please call (530) 231-5349 or visit the PG&E website.
Ultimately, there are so many advantages to using an SPF roof system on your flat or low pitch roof, that it would be difficult to name them all and give explanations for each one in this article, so I will list a few of the advantages not aforementioned.
• Seamless – An SPF roofing system has no seams and can be sprayed thicker in low areas to promote drainage. There are no additional “weak” areas on the completed SPF roof such as caulking, nails, screws, tar, etc…
• Permanent – Unlike a conventional roofing system, the SPF roof never sees the sun. The sun is the enemy of all roofs as the UV breaks them down over time and requires replacement every 10-15 years. An SPF roof system is painted with a spray applied acrylic elastomeric paint which hides the SPF roof from the sun and reflects UV which slows down the deterioration of the protective coating. Depending on the thickness of the paint, this coating can last as long as 25-30 years without the SPF roof being affected. Most SPF roof warranties will run 10-15 years unlike conventional warranties where there is a product warranty of 20 years, but a workmanship warranty of only 2-5 years. An SPF roof system only needs to be re-coated, not replaced!
• 100% Green Application – Although the chemicals used to create an SPF roof system are petroleum based and is mildly toxic in its liquid form, the SPF roof application is 100% emission free, and there is no “off gassing”. In 2005, the EPA required all foam roofing companies to adjust or change their equipment to spray the new “emission free” formula. Once the application is complete, the fully formed SPF is inert & non-toxic. As a side note, you may hear of “Soy Based” SPF which doesn’t make the roof “more green”. There is a minute amount of soy in the chemicals and is strictly designed for marketing purposes. As mention before, there is a 98% chance that your roof will not need to be torn off and disposed of in a landfill, so even though this is a non-biodegradable product, if you take proper care of your SPF roof system by re-coating every 15 years or whatever the warranty calls for, there is no reason to ever dispose of another flat roof in our already bulging landfills.
• Does not add weight, only structure – SPF itself weighs only about 28lbs. per 100 square foot. However, when sprayed in a monolithic form from edge to edge on your roof, it does not add weight, but structure. You will increase the life and value of your home by adding an SPF roof system.