Whether you’re about to have a new roof installed or looking to repair or reinforce your current one, you should consider the benefits of a cool roof coating. For flat and low-pitch roofs, white elastomeric solar reflective roof coatings provide the most benefits.
What Is an Elastomeric Coating?
This type of coating is applied as a spray that dries into a seamless membrane. No additional sealant is required. Although it resembles paint in some ways, it contains significantly more solids, so each coat forms a thick layer.
Weatherproofing. Elastomeric coatings stand up to all kinds of weather. Long-term exposure to sun and rain cause very little wear. Like all roof coating systems, it is reliably waterproof and prevents wind from widening any cracks in the roof where water and debris might be able to enter.
Easy maintenance. Only periodic cleaning is required. There’s no additional risk of slipping and falling to people who walk on it, and foot traffic can’t chip or otherwise damage it. On the rare occasion that damage does occur, repairs are just reapplications of additional coats.
Energy efficiency. This is one of the dramatic advantages of elastomeric coatings. Conventional asphalt roofing typically consists of a gray composite on top of a black substrate. Unsurprisingly, about 75% of the solar energy that hits this combination is absorbed as heat.
By contrast, much of that energy bounces right off of white reflective roof coatings. When they’re first applied, that amount is roughly 80%. These ratios are almost exact opposites: Elastomerics repel four times as much as they absorb, while traditional materials absorb three times more than they reflect.
As you might guess, the result is a substantial reduction in power costs. In addition, these coatings can help to get your property rated by ENERGY STAR® or the LEED Green Building Rating System®.
Durability. This is another area where elastomerics stand out. The installation of asphalt roofing is itself energy-intensive, as is the process of replacing it. Since these roofs last an average of 8 to 10 years, this cycle burns through a lot of supplies. The initial elastomeric coating can be applied directly to an existing roof, creating no waste.
Once in place, the useful life of a white solar reflective roof coating can be extended much further. Aging layers don’t need to be removed — instead, additional coats are added to reinforce those already in place. The result is a significant reduction in the amount of construction materials destined for landfills.
The Best Choice
The up-front costs are higher than those associated with other coverings, but so is the value. The energy savings alone justify the expenditure in the long term, not to mention the extension of the useful life of your roof by 10 years or more. By combining toughness with energy savings, elastomeric solar reflective roof coatings offer a truly sustainable – and economically smart — roofing solution.