Why use Spray Foam Roofing on your roof?

In the paragraphs below, you will learn why Spray Foam is the most economical, durable and energy efficient choice in roofing.

DSC090611) Water tight chemistry
Why are Florida business owners like yourself concerned about the adverse affects that moisture can have upon their business? First and most obvious is a concern for protecting your products and equipment from being damaged by moisture. Second is the time and bother of arranging to fix to a leaking roof. Worrying about whether every storm will be another logistical headache. Third is protecting the professional image of your business. A leaking roof and the odors of mold and mildew give the perception that your business chose to be located in a second rate facility.

Polyurethane spray foam is a unique type of plastic. It has low density and weight, yet it provides excellent moisture protection. As a result, Spray Foam is the only product that FEMA recognizes as water proof! Closed cell spray foam is the only FEMA endorsed flood resistant insulation.

A properly applied spray foam roof will protect your roof against moisture penetration in five ways:

  • a) The spray foam material is inherently waterproof. Water will not leak through the spray foam material. In fact, spray foam is used in floatation docks.
  • b) The spray foam adheres to your existing substrate (underlying layer). Spray foam begins with two separate components that is mixed onsite and sprayed onto your prepared roof structure. When sprayed, the liquid mixture turns into a foam that expands 20 to 30 times in volume and forms a solid roofing system. That expansion allows the foam to fill in and grab onto the surface (substrate) below it. The result is a spray foam roof that custom fits the unique shape of your roof and eliminates the small cracks that can allow moisture and wind to enter your building.
  • c) The spray foam has no seams or joints. Why is that important? Because many, if not most roofing moisture issues originate in the seams or joints of the roofing material. Daily fluctuations in temperature cause subtle movements on the roof throughout the day. That weakens the seams and increases the chances of moisture problems. Imagine a hot summer afternoon when a passing thundercloud showers cool rain on your hot roof! A spray foam roof has the flexibility to move with temperature changes, but it remains a single, seamless layer of moisture protection.
  • d) Water ponding (water sitting in a puddle on top of a flat roof), is a problem with most types of roofing systems. However, the watertight nature of a spray foam material eliminates that concern. And because each spray foam roof is custom applied to the unique shape of your roof, low areas on a flat roof can easily be built up with spray foam eliminating the low lying areas!
  • e) Spray foam minimizes dew point problems and condensation which can lead to mold.

At AFU, sealing your roof from moisture is our first concern. We make sure your waterproof spray foam roofing system is applied correctly, the first time, so you are free to focus your time and energies on growing your business.

2) Best insulation known today
Spray foam is 96% effective insulation vs. 36% effective for the open cell insulation that is loosely sprayed into attic spaces. If energy conservation and reduced heating/cooling bills are important you, then a properly applied spray foam roofing system is the most energy efficient roofing system available. Another green aspect of a spray foam roofing system is that it often reduces landfill when the existing roof does not need to be torn off. That means no ugly garbage chute or garbage bin on your property during the application of your new roof.

More specifically, spray foam roofing and insulation are environmentally friendly because:

  •  The high insulation value of spray foam reduces the amount of fossil fuels required to heat your building
  •  Spray foam resists heat and cooling movement in all directions
  •  Spray foam requires less energy to produce than the leading insulation materials
  •  Spray foam requires less energy to transport and install it. Spray foam roofing typically weighs 50 lbs. per square (1000 square feet). A Built Up Roof typically weighs 800 lbs. per square!
  •  The durable nature of spray foam contribute little to the waste stream over time
  •  Spray foam provides effective insulations at both high and low temperatures
  •  Spray foam contains no formaldehyde or ozone depleting chemicals
  •  HVAC equipment can be downsized, thereby reducing construction costs

3) Resists wind damage

Titusville City Hall 2_after_foamIn Florida, business owners are concerned about the adverse effects on their building of high winds during major storms. The industry term for this is “lift”. Due to one entire monolithic seamless design. The closed cell spray foam adds structural strength by “glueing” a building together. That makes your building more resistant to racking events, such as hurricanes and high winds.

Mulitple studies have shown that when Spray Foam is applied to the interior of the roof and to the interior walls of a structure, it can significantly increase the strength of that structure against high winds. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) examined buildings in Pascagoula, Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina. They found that buildings with spray foam kept the roofs intact and prevented moisture from entering the roofs of the buildings.

Because spray foam expands upon application, it adheres tightly to the prepared roofing surface. Other benefits of this tight adhesion are:

  •  Spray foam reduces noise from outside by air sealing the building.
  •  Spray foam reduces drafts and increases the comfort of your workers and customers.
  •  Spray foam helps maintain a comfortable, constant, temperature throughout the building, from room to room and floor to floor.
  •  Spray assists in improving indoor air quality by reducing the infiltration of outside air pollutants and soil gases.

4) Reduced time of application
A spray foam roof only needs one coat in most cases. Because it is lightweight, often there is no need to tear out old surface. The a reduced time in applying your spray foam roof means minimizing interruptions to your business.

5) Reduced Cost
Spray foam roofing is an economical choice is in both the short term and even more so in the long term. Every roofing situation is different because the costs of preparing the roof can vary: repairing leaks, or venting ________ or flashings_________. That as a given, Spray foam roofs start around $4.00 to $5.00 per square foot installed, but as mentioned above, they can cost as much as $6.00 to $7.00 per square foot.

The true cost comparison doesn’t end with the initial dollar amount. With the energy savings on your monthly heating and cooling bills, the return on investment with 3 lb. density foam is often less than five years. An additional factor that may decrease the time of your return on investment are energy incentives that may be available from your local power company.

6) Easy maintenance
Any type of roofing system needs maintenance. A properly applied spray foam roof is easily and economically maintained by re-coating every 10 – 15 years, depending on the type and thickness of coating used and factors specific to the roof (such as wind erosion effects, hail, foot traffic, abuse, etc.). By properly recoating the surface, your spray foam roof will last 30 years and longer. Eliminating the need for roof replacement every ten to fifteen years will save you significant money over the lifetime of your spray foam roof!

7) Most proficient system warranty in the business
We offer 10, 15 and 20 year non-prorated warranties the roofing system, not just the materials. Many roofing companies imply their roof has a 10 or 20 year system warranty when in fact, they as a roofing contractor are responsible for their labor for 2 years or less! Please see the warranties section on the “Red Flags” page on this website for more details on misleading warranty claims.

Since you read this far, you may ask, is there a catch with spray foam roofing? The answer is yes. The catch is in the application of the spray foam. Spray foam roofing, like any other type of roofing, must be applied correctly. The surface must be clean, dry, and free of contaminants like oil.

Once the spray foam is properly applied, a protective top coat is applied on top of it. The spray foam is waterproof, but must be protected from the UV rays of the sun. The protective top coat must be able to stretch with the foam during the heat of the day. It must also be tough enough to withstand weather conditions and foot traffic.

To make sure your spray foam roof is applied correctly,

  1.  Only use a certified spray foam contractor with the years of experience to install a spray foam roof in the unique environment of your building.
  2.  Only use a roofing contractor with spray foam equipment! Make them show you
  3.  Make sure you get a system warranty, not an NDL.
  4.  Ask for references. Unfortunately, the roofing industry is a largely unregulated industry. So check out the references of the roofing company and find a company with a track record of integrity and doing what is right for the customer.