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Comparing the Pros and Cons of SPF and TPO Roofing Systems

14 Jan 2015 | Under Roofing, SPF Insulation | Posted by | 0 Comments
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How do you know what roof is right for your commercial or industrial building?

When it comes to commercial roofing solutions, it’s important to know each of their unique benefits and differences between them. Having a quality, long-lasting roof covering your business starts with having peace of mind about what roofing solution you choose to install.

Two of the more popular commercial roofing solutions available today are Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) and Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO). SPF is created from a liquid mixture that  produces a closed-cell structure that bonds and expands upon contact to custom-fit to any roofing substrate. TPO typically comes in single-ply roofing membranes that need to be welded or fastened together at their seams.

There are several important factors to consider when choosing between SPF and TPO for your new commercial roofing solution:

SPF (Spray Polyurethane Foam)

  • Pros:
    • Highest thermal resistance per unit thickness and eliminates thermal bridging
    • Seamless/monolithic construction
    • Eliminates ponding effect, which extends your roof’s life-cycle
    • Lowest lifecycle cost sustainable, durable, and low maintenance
    • Very flexible installation and conforming nature, including self-flashing
    • Lightweight and extremely strong
    • Class “A” fire rating, UL and FM approved
    • No lateral water migration due to closed-cell structure
    • Cool roof rated
    • Over 50 years of industry performance excellence
  • Cons
    • Requires expert installation
    • Severe hail can cause surface fractures
    • Wildlife can cause additional maintenance requirements
    • High traffic areas require additional protection
    • Not as aesthetically pleasing

TPO (Thermoplastic Polyolefin)

  • Pros
    • Economical solution for roof re-cover application
    • Resists dirt, bacteria, and algae
    • Aesthetically pleasing
    • Easy installation requirements
    • Cool roof rated
  • Cons
    • Plasticizers are known to leach out of the membrane and cause brittleness over time.
    • Susceptible to broken seams and membrane failures
    • Does not respond well to heat load and severe weather, especially hail and storm debris.
    • A fractured membrane allows lateral water migration
    • Manufacturers are changing formulations to meet industry standards.
    • Questionable durability and longevity.

Call R&A Contracting today for a long-term life-cycle cost evaluation and to learn more about the available roofing solutions.

I’d be an idiot if I did not take this opportunity to communicate to you how much we appreciate the way in which you conduct business and take care of our facility. In my experience you, and your team, are at the top of the list of all the roofing companies I’ve dealt with over the years. Thank you!

Jim Lowry - Bissinger's Handcrafted Chocolatier

Eric and crew were really nice to have around. They were courteous, careful and caused little if any disruption. Their work looks good too! To be honest… a good experience with a product that I initially had misgivings about. I’m a convert because of Bubba, Sam and Eric. Thank you.

Jim Lowry - Bissinger's Handcrafted Chocolatier

“I want to thank the crew at R&A for a job well done on our very leaky roof at the shop. It is certainly nice to have the drips and rivers gone from the shop when it is raining. I also wanted you to know how much we appreciated that the guys were able to stay out of our way and allowed us to do business as usual without any problems or interruptions. The roof looks great and the clean-up after the job made it so we couldn’t even tell you’d been here. Thanks for doing what you do so well!”

Jay Moore, President of Safe Way Tire and Auto Center

“My wife and I were on vacation when water pipes burst in our house. We got a hold of Craig and the R&A crew was able to start evacuating the water immediately. The best part was that they were able to start work before we even returned home. It was a very fast turnaround considering the extensive amount of water damage.”

Will from Dardenne Prairie, MO

“Craig and Mike came out in a timely fashion when we needed the work done. They did a reliable and quality job.”

Jerry from SLR Properties

“Craig helped us out tremendously with the insurance process. Timely and very professional.”

Lindell from Greater Missouri Builders (GMB)

“We purchased a house and there was some damage to the roof. Very impressed with the thoroughness of Mike’s inspection. Very comfortable with their explanation of what needed to be fixed. Most impressive was the way they protected our landscaping. Really liked the way they treated me as a valued customer, even though it was only a small project.”

Ross from Troy, MO

“I use R&A Contracting when my commercial roofs receive storm damage. They work on our behalf through every step of the insurance claim process. They perform all of the work and complete the insurance process, making our roofs better than they were before the storm.”

Director of Facilities for a large Property Management Company

“The team at R & A Contracting responded immediately when notified of our water disaster. They removed water-damaged materials and property quickly and restored our home even before the final settlement from our insurance company. They minimized how long our family had to live in a hotel and got us back to normal as fast as possible.”

Will from O'Fallon, MO