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Things To Consider When Choosing A New Commercial Flat Roof

An article had emerged from the Huffington Post (White Roofs, Green Myth?) written by a credible contributor (Samir Ibrahim, Director of Design Services and Project Reviews, Carlisle SynTec) that gives us, as a company, some additional confidence when communicating with building and homeowners about flat roof membrane choices in the colder climates in the United States.

Simon Construction is an Authorized Roof Applicator of Carlisle Syntec, manufacturer of both black and white roofing membrane.

Marketing Noise Can Cause Market Confusion

The green roof or reflective environmental roofing movement has posed some challenge to roofers in the northern market, as it applies to assisting customers with choices of low slope roofing membranes. Market pressures are pushing for “green” “reflective” “energy wise” “environmentally friendly” roofing choices the marketing noise can be overwhelming for our customers wishing to sort through what is best for them. And as a result of this market changing “marketing noise” process, the roofing industry has had some difficulty dealing with the issue of white or reflective roofing.

A White Reflective Roof Has It’s Place in the Market: Now, to be clear before any arrows start coming our way, in the southern climates,white roofs (reflective roofing) does very specifically have its place potentially (and additionally in northern climates it may even have some place perhaps if the right white roof is applied (for example) or in areas where there is an urban heat island effect like in Minneapolis in downtown Minneapolis a reflective roof may very well have it’s place we suspect so, but we don’t specifically know.

Black Roofing in Colder Climates Should be Considered: What we do know is that there are many reasons to very closely consider using a black roof membrane (such as Torch-On SBS with a black granule or grey cap sheet, EPDM, liquid rubber, and tar and gravel), especially in the northern United States.

We Believe Unbiased Representation is Important when Considering Roof Membranes and a Contractor. Forget the fact that you need to choose a roofer that applies low slope roofing on a daily basis and not shingles, there are many other considerations.

Simon Construction applies all roofing materials for low slope roof structures… black, white, reflective, fluid, torch on, metal, spray foam (spf), mechanically fastened, ballasted, etc. Systems such as EPDM, TPO, PVC, SBS Modified, Torch On, Spray Foam, Fluid Applied Hot and Cold Rubberized Roofing, and on and on. In other words, we have no reason to be specifically motivated to one type of roof membrane be it black or white or reflective or green except as it applies to the future performance and service-ability of the roof.

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