Part of the process of deciding which system is suitable for your premises involves gaining an understanding the different types of available materials. Put simply, it is impossible to arrive at an informed decision if the relative merits of cost, sustainability, reliability and useful lifespan are not assessed. In addition the range of available styles and brands ensures that choosing the correct materials is no small undertaking.
Overall, a single-ply roof is composed of a synthetic (derived from crude oil) polymer which is applied to the roof in a single layer. The material is usually supplied in large rolls and applied in sheets which may (or may not) contain a reinforced layer. The layers are connected together by heat sealing or by fixing and ballasting. In addition, whilst there is no such thing as completely environment-friendly roofing system massive strides have been made in the materials technology. The roofing sheets contain no heavy metals and aside from PVC contain no halogens (Chlorine is halogen) or plasticisers
All single-ply roofing materials have been developed to cope with the most extreme conditions they can expect to encounter within their design remit. In effect this means extremes of temperature and impact, in certain applications “durability” will also cover corrosion by industrial chemicals.
The roofing materials themselves have a very high tensile strength, the strongest materials can withstand 1200N (Newton’s)/mm2, making them as durable as the best titanium alloys. In roofing systems which require welding of the seams between the polymer sheets both durability and water proofing properties are enhanced.
A cost effective Investment
Once the correct choice of materials has been made there are specific techniques which enable the sheets to be installed rapidly and efficiently, thus reducing labour costs.
Additionally, disruption of the day-to-day running of the premises will be minimised which offers clear advantages when it comes to necessary refurbishment and maintenance work. Finally, the roofs are designed to last for decades and so are generally installed to last at least as long as the useful life of the premises itself.
Fire and Safety
When the roofing systems which require heat sealing a hot stream of air is used instead of an acetylene flame, thus making the installation process itself intrinsically safer. Furthermore, legal statutes exist to ensure that the roof work itself is resistant to combustion and melting in the event of a fire. With this in mind, the roofing materials manufactured in the UK have the appropriate fire safety ratings.
The sheets are generally designed to be attached to the roof of the building. This in combination with effective sealing or fastening of the sheets to each other effectively removes the possibility that the roof will be lifted off should storms or other extreme weather events occur.
The advantages of single-ply roofing lie in the swift and safe installation of the materials and with the added benefits outlined above the popularity of such systems will continue to increase.