US demand for liquid-applied roof coatings is expected to rise at a healthy rate of 3.2% per year through 2021, driven in large part by the cost effectiveness of applying coatings over reroofing. For a building owner, roof replacement is among the most expensive of renovations due to:
- the cost of purchasing new roofing materials
- the time needed – in many cases – to remove the old roofing
- labor costs, as a shortage of trained workers is driving up wages
- downtime and a reroofing project’s disruption of regular business operations
As a result, building owners have delayed roof replacements for as long as possible. However, the roofing industry has come up with a solution to this problem: liquid-applied roof coatings. Here are three ways this innovation produces big savings for consumers without compromising quality.
1. Liquid-Applied Roof Coatings Extend the Useful Lives of Roofs
Coatings are applied to roof surfaces that are somewhat worn or have minor damage such as hairline cracks or minor gaps at the seams. These coatings can rejuvenate roofs by:
- filling gaps and ensuring that membranes do not separate from the roof surface
- repairing cracks and filling holes caused by foot traffic or hail
- smoothing out uneven surfaces that can cause leaks or ice dams
While the lifespan of coating types vary by product and operating conditions, many are warrantied for up to a decade of service life. This is an important consideration for business owners who need to repair a roof but may not have the means to fund such a project. It costs much less to apply a roof coating than it does to install new roofing materials.
2. Cool Roofing Capabilities Reduce Energy Costs over Time
Another key factor driving demand for liquid-applied roof coatings is the continuing push to improve energy efficiency by reducing a building’s energy consumption. Contractors and designers are increasingly recognizing the important role a roof plays in energy use. For instance, by using white or light colored cool roofing instead of dark-hued products, less energy is needed to cool a building during the summer months – an especially important consideration in regions of the US where prolonged periods of sunshine and hot weather can drive up utility bills. Thus, many roofing contractors apply cool roof coatings when rejuvenating older roof substrates to not only repair minor damage but also improve the roof’s energy efficiency.
A wide range of liquid-applied roof coatings meet the cool roofing criteria established by the US Department of Energy and the Cool Roof Rating Council, including:
- acrylic coatings
- asphalt coatings with fibers or reflective paints
- light colored silicone and urethane coatings
- polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) coatings
3. PMMA: From Rejuvenator to Primary Roofing Solution
Traditionally, roof coatings have mainly been used to repair existing roofs or to enhance their environmental friendliness. However, some contractors are beginning to use PMMA roof coatings as a structure’s primary roofing material. PMMA coatings offer a number of performance advantages, including:
- Most meet cool roofing criteria.
- They can be applied over existing roofing, eliminating the need for a time-consuming and expensive roof tear-off job.
- They are less costly to install than most traditional roofing materials.
- They can be applied by a small work team with moderate skill levels.
As concerns about the shortage of trained roofing professionals continue to mount, it is anticipated that more building owners will opt to use PMMA coatings as a primary roofing solution when the time comes to replace an older or damaged roof.
Want to Learn More?
For more information about the size and growth of liquid-applied roof coatings market, check out The Freedonia Group's study Liquid-Applied Roof Coatings in the US.