What Are The Pros & Cons To Roll Roofing?

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Quick Answers: What is Roll Roofing

Do you need an alternative roofing material for your roof?

Are you not yet ready to invest in traditional but costly roofing materials such as asphalt shingles and concrete tiles?

Do you want to install the roof on your own?

Roll roofing is one of the many alternatives to conventional roofing materials.

This article discusses what roll roofing is, the different types of rolled roofing, and its advantages and disadvantages.

What Exactly is Rolled Roofing

Rolled roofing is an asphalt product that comes with a mineral-surfaced base design.

It comes packaged in 100 square feet rolls, weighs around 75 pounds per roll, and typically has a length of 36 feet long and 36 inches wide.

Although roll roofing is comparable to asphalt shingles, it’s a much cheaper alternative.

In addition to its low cost, roll roofing is a whole lot thinner and less durable compared to asphalt shingles.

Where can Roll Roofing be used?

Unfortunately, roll roofing material can neither be used in residential homes nor in commercialized buildings.

Rather, this type of roof is commonly used in practical and serviceable sites such as garages, workshops, treehouses, small shops, barns, etc.

How to Install Roll Roofing?

Installing these flat roofs entails placing rolls that are cut out into long strips. The length of each strip varies for the different portions of the roof.

Afterwards, they are placed in a horizontal position. There are many forms of roll roofing that are applied in different variations.

An example is saturated felt, a material that is combined with asphalt for added protection and support.

You will find that this material is very similar to ice and water shield.

Roll roofing complements low-sloped roofs. Be sure to check whether your roof style is compatible for installation before purchasing this product.

How to Handle Rolled Roofs

Rolled roofing is one of the most convenient roofing materials in the market. The installation of rolled roofing material does not require as much effort compared to its conventional roofing counterparts.

For example, asphalt shingles need to be moved as a group to the rooftop. As a result, the installation process becomes difficult and dangerous.

Furthermore, various roofing contractors require the operation of heavy machinery such as forklifts to move shingles from one place to another.

In the case of rolled roofing, you can get your rolls to the top of your home with less effort and minimal help from machines.

Different Types of Roofing Materials

Here are some of the different types of roofing materials to choose from when considering which rolled roof to buy:

  • Rubber Rolled Roofing

Rubber rolled roofing is the most common kind of rolled roofing. It is also the least expensive of the four variants.

Recycled materials such as tires, sawdust and slate dust make up rubber roofing. Its sheets can be overlapped on flat roofs. Rubber roofing is durable, inexpensive and low maintenance.

  • EDPM Rolled Roofing

EDPM rolled roofing is also known as rubber membrane roofing. Like rubber roofing, EDPM roofing rolls consist of recycled materials.

The major difference, however, is that EDPM rolled roofing is more lightweight and durable. This makes EDPM rolled roofing more advantageous than ordinary rubber roofing.

The installation of EDPM flooring does not require additional materials due to its lightweight nature. Moreover, you don’t have to worry about leakages thanks to the presence of adhesive seams in each EDPM flooring.

This type of roll roofing can also last for about 20 years.

Also known as Thermoplastic Polyolefin , TPO rolled roofing has been receiving good reviews from homeowners due to its durability and cost efficiency.

This rolled roof type is made up of ethylene propylene and polypropylene. One advantage of TPO roofing is its cost. It is cheaper compared to EDPM roofing.

Besides its affordability, TPO roofing is also heat-resistant. For starters, TPO roofing resists heat due to its white color. This prevents potential heat buildup in the building. 

  • Bitumen Rolled Roofing

Bitumen rolled roofing is a type of asphalt roof material that can be seen, designed and sold as rolls. It is either self-adhesive or cold-press adhesive.

The bitumen rolled roofing’s seams can be combined together. What makes this type of roll roofing stand out from the rest of the pack is its longevity.

If it is installed and maintained and supported properly, bitumen roofing can last for up to 20 years or more.

Roll Roofing: Advantages

Rolled roofs may be unconventional for most structures, but it has its fair share of benefits. Here are a few advantages of having a rolled roof:

  • Easy to Install and Handle

As mentioned earlier, roll roofing is very easy to operate. This is due to its lightweight nature and low maintenance.

You can either install it on your own, or you can have an assistant to guide you in the installation of your roof.

Regardless of how you plan on insert your roll roofing, it should take you at least a day and at most a weekend to install it.

  • Compatible with Low Sloped Roofs

Roll Roofing can cover low-incline roofs. This gives these roofs the necessary protection they need from external threats such as leaks, heat, moss, etc.

It is important to note that hammered-down rolled roofing will not be compatible on flat roofs.

This roofing roll type may lead to leakages.

  • Can be Easily Transported

Due to its lightweight nature, rolled roof is very portable.

For example, you can buy a 100 square foot roll and it will be able to fit in your SUV’s trunk.

This is a huge bonus especially for those who always carry their roof materials before, during and after construction.

Roll Roofing: Disadvantages

Before purchasing your rolled roof, it is also important to consider some of its disadvantages:

  • Short Lifespan

Although the EDMP and Bitumen rolled roofs can last for up to 20 years, other common roof types have an average lifespan of 5 to 8 years.

This is a far cry from the 20-30 year lifespan of asphalt and composite shingles.

  • Lack of Aesthetic Appeal

Rolled roofing comes in either black or white only. For those who want to design their house according to different color schemes, this may be a disadvantage.

In short, rolled roofs are less attractive compared to the more established and high-end materials. This is definitely a major downside for your consideration.

  • Lack of Durability

Most common roll roofing types such as rubber are very thin. This means they lack extra layers needed for protection.

As a result, these rolls will most likely easily tear and deteriorate quickly.

Because of this, bald spots and granule deficiency can occur.

In short, your home might be in trouble.

Conclusion

This article gives you an in-depth discussion of what exactly roll roofing is. It also features the different types, as well as its advantages and lack thereof.

I do agree that this is a solid short-term alternative to more conventional roofing options. Unfortunately, rolled roofing is not for everyone.

This is because it is not compatible with every house, especially residential homes and high-rise buildings.

At the end of the day, the choice is still yours.

If you want to use rolled roofs as a complementary piece to your home, then don’t let us stop you.

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