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Facility Maintenance Decisions

Roof Coatings: Pay Attention to Green Claims





As managers pay greater attention sustainability, manufacturers are expanding their offerings to meet what they hope will be growing demand.

"The growth of high-performance electrometric, acrylic coatings — with specific products to coat virtually any type of low-slope roof and many types of steep-slope roofs — has given managers new and improved options for enhancing the sustainability of their buildings," Baumann says. "Elastomeric acrylic roof coatings are suitable for most roofing system types, since specific products are available for coating EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) and asphaltic roofs, as well as metal roofs."

As they move through the research phase, managers will need to pay close attention to the varying green claims by manufacturers. In some cases, it will require them to read product labels to better understand their options.

LaBruzzo recommends managers carefully review material safety data sheets and product information for coatings under consideration. The central issue is the way coatings fare based on ASTM testing methods, LaBruzzo says. He points to ASTM D6083, Standard Specification for Liquid Applied Acrylic Coating Used in Roofing, which covers testing and material properties of water-dispersed coatings composed of a water-based acrylic latex elastomeric emulsion polymer.

That final factor — tear resistance — is a reminder to managers that no matter the coating they select, post-installation inspection for wear and damage ultimately will play a large role in determining the success of any coating.

"Managers know they have to perform maintenance, as with any product or system," LaBruzzo says. "What happens, though, is the roof becomes part of the 'out of sight, out of mind' mentality. It's easy to do that."


posted on 3/3/2010

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