Inorganic vs. Organic Coatings
Here at Progressive Materials, a common misconception we come across is that there is not much difference between organic coatings (like acrylic or paint coatings) and our inorganic, silicone coatings. This blog is dedicated to looking at the main differences when it comes to inorganic vs organic coatings.
To address this issue, we spoke with the head of our in-house Research and Technology department. He offered some insight as to what differentiates organic and inorganic coatings as well as three characteristics that make inorganic coatings the best choice for your roof.
It’s All About the Bond
The first thing to do here is to define what inorganic and organic even means when it comes to roof coatings. Whether a coating is considered organic or inorganic is solely determined by the nature of the binder. Organic materials found in paint and acrylic coatings’ bonds are carbon based. These bonds are typically derived from things like petroleum or solvents. Carbon-based bonds break down far quicker than inorganic bonds.
On the other hand, inorganic coatings will use inorganic binding agents like silicate in silicone’s case. The bond here will be a silicon-to-oxygen bond. Since there is no carbon in this bond, silicone’s binding is far superior to those with organic bonds.
The first, and arguably most important, difference between organic and inorganic bonds is their ability to withstand day-to-day weathering. Inorganically bonded silicone products are hundreds of times stronger and more durable than their organic counterparts. This is courtesy of the silicone-to-oxygen bond used in our inorganic coatings. These are much stronger than carbon-to-carbon bonds.
On the contrary, inorganic coatings like silicone are able to withstand weathering as well as ponding water. They are significantly more heat resistant, and they even prevent fungal growth. All three of these qualities combine to make silicone a superior product for roof restorations. If ponding water is an issue on your roof and you would like to learn more about our ponding water eliminator, check out this article in Coatings Pro Magazine!
A second major advantage to inorganic coatings is the flexibility they offer. Silicone-to-oxygen bonds are not only stronger than carbon-to-carbon bonds, but they are also much more flexible. The strong binding is the main factor that helps PM Silicone adhere to roof substrates so well. The flexibility is what makes it a great solution for roofs that go through harsh winters and summers. The ability to expand and contract with the seasons and building settlement, make our silicone a great solution for nearly any roof.
A third benefit of PM’s inorganic, silicone coatings is that you get a much thicker film build. This means you can put down more coating in one pass. This feature makes single-pass application a reality even when your job is needing layers as thick as 50 mils! Additionally, our silicone has a high solids content meaning that after the silicone is cured, you lose less than 10% of the total coating. This will help cut back on the time it takes to install a silicone roof coating saving time and money.
So in the battle of inorganic vs organic coatings, it’s clear that inorganic coatings are superior for roof coatings. Organic coatings have a place in the market, but inorganic coating’s qualities are simply more desirable when it comes to roofing. To find out more about the technical properties of our coatings, you can find our technical data sheets here. If you have specific questions about any of our products, feel free to reach out to your local Regional Manager here.