The Future of Flat Roofing


By Tommy Scherer of T&G Roofing

There is a movement in the flat roofing industry towards what is referred to as “single ply” roofing for flat roofs.

This energy efficient roofing is like a big (usually white) rubber roof. It lasts longer than hot tar roofing (as long as 50 years) and, across the board, it is much superior.

This product has been around since the sixties or so and has been upgraded, changed and re-invented.

It’s now standard in the industry and becoming more popular as people get introduced to it.

Single ply roofing is basically large rolls of different combinations of rubber, PVC, plastic, and other chemicals (a few different types) that are hard to pronounce.

Ultimately this material is superior to traditional hot tar roofing and will be replacing hot tar roofing in the near future. It is “heat welded”, one sheet to another, to create a watertight system.

I have installed hundreds of thousands square feet of hot tar roofing, and I can say that it’s quite involved, and very dangerous. The life span is limited to 20 or so years at best.

The new single plies are longer lasting, chemical and fire resistant, have high reflectivity, are recyclable, and are much easier and safer to install.

With oil prices rising, hot tar roofing has risen in cost as well.

The single ply roofing is based on plastics, rubber, and other non-oil related chemicals, thus not directly subject to the oil price frenzy. So, what used to be more expensive is now competitive with the hot tar.

I am not a salesman for single ply roofing. I am simply a roofing contractor with some experience in the field writing this article to shed some light on a subject with which most people are not acquainted.

So, if you need a flat roof re-done on a property you own you would be wise to get information on some of the different types of single ply roof systems now available.

By Tommy Scherer