The Rising Popularity of TPO Roofing

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The Rising Popularity of TPO Roofing

TPO roofing has become a popular roofing option in recent years. Want to know if it's right for you? Check out this overview and the benefits of installing it.

When it comes to your building, there's one thing you can't afford to skimp on.

The roof.

Your roof protects your building and everything in it from the elements. A damaged, leaky roof can be an opening for water damage and animal infestations.

It's good to quickly repair damage when it occurs, but it's even better to build a roof that is less susceptible to damage.

TPO roofing is quickly becoming one of the most popular choices for commercial roofs. But could it really be all that it's cracked up to be?

In this article, we'll take a look at all the reasons TPO roofing is becoming so popular, as well as the benefits you can expect if you install it.

What is TPO Roofing?

TPO stands for Thermoplastic Polyolefin. It is a type of single-ply membrane that has been used for a number of industrial applications. It is made with ethylene propylene and a number of fillers, such as talc or fiberglass.

In decades past, commercial roofs were usually covered with EPDM or PVC. Neither was flawless. EPDM could not be welded, and the liquid plasticizers used to make the PVC flexible would evaporate, leaving the PVC brittle.

TPO was originally used as a liner for man-made ponds or for automobile covers because it was water resistant and flexible, so it could form to any shape.

In the '90s, builders started to realize that TPO's unique structure made it a great roofing material. Because it was flexible, it would fit over any structure. It could also be welded, which could seamless connections between panels.

Damage Resistant

One of the biggest reasons TPO roofing is such a popular option is because it is durable.

TPO is resistant to tears and punctures that might occur because of blown debris or fallen branches. Because of its smooth surface, it is also more resistant to dirt accumulation than other types of roofs.

Mold loves to grow in the small nooks and cracks that form on a roof. Because of its smooth surface, TPO roofing keeps mold at bay. It is also more resistant to dirt accumulation than other types of roofs.

TPO is also resistant to the sun's ultraviolet rays, which can cause other materials to crack and split.

Because it is flexible, it can also withstand small movements in the structure due to settling or thermal expansion. Other single roofing materials may crack when a building shrinks or swells, which no one wants.

Waterproof

Many single-ply plastics, such as EPDM, cannot be welded. Instead, seams are connected with tape or adhesive. These can break down over time, which can cause leaky seams on your roof.

Not so with TPO roofing. Because it is weldable, it can completely seal seams between sheets. 

This makes for a roof that will withstand even the most torrential rainfall. 

But be careful: if your roof does not have good drainage, TPO roofing can cause water to accumulate, which can lead to structural damage.

Lightweight, Easy to Install

TPO is manufactured in large rolls. Rolls can vary by size or thickness, depending on the roofer's needs.

These are rolled out onto the roof and cut to size. The sheets are welded together and fastened into place through heavy screws, a strong chemical adhesive, or wind ballasting.

In wind ballasting, the liner is secured around the perimeter of the building and then covered with gravel or crushed rock to keep it in place. Concrete pavers can also be used as a ballast.

Environmentally Friendly

Compared to EPDM and PVC, TPO roofing has a number of environmental benefits.

Other materials are manufactured using chemicals like chlorine. Chlorine can cause health problems and release toxins into the atmosphere

TPO, on the other hand, uses no such chemicals, so no toxins escape it as it ages.

TPO can also help with a building's energy consumption. TPO roofing (especially in white) reflects the heat of the sun, keeping the interior cooler. And when a building's interior is cooler, the air conditioning doesn't work as hard, saving energy.

Inexpensive

You might have thought an environmentally friendly material that is durable and waterproof would be the priciest roof on the market. 

But that's not true. While TPO roofing is more expensive than a basic rubber roof, it is generally hundreds of dollars cheaper than a PVC roof, and with similar performance. 

The Future of TPO Roofing 

Despite only being available for around twenty years, TPO has carved out a significant share of the market.

But because it is so new, many consumers aren't convinced that it will stand the test of time. 

And in the early days, they may have been right. The early claims that TPO was superior to PVC at a fraction of the cost could not stand against reality. The early mixtures didn't deliver on their promises.

But since then, TPO technology has continued to advance. The manufacturing process has been refined, bringing TPO from a flash-in-the-pan to a major contender.

Now, TPO has surpassed PVC in a number of factors. As such, you can expect TPO roofing to become even more popular.

Need a New Roof? Consider TPO Roofing

If you need to replace your roof, TPO is the way to go.

With the durability of PVC and flexibility of EPDM, TPO is your best bet for a good roof that won't break the bank.

And if you need a reliable roofing company, contact us today!

Jordan Olson