As peak roofing season carries on in full swing, we have seen more and more clients realize the advantages of restoring their roof as opposed to replacing it. PM silicone roof restorations cut costs in half and significantly reduce labor. However, as addressed in our last blog, Roof Prep for a Silicone Roof Coating Restoration, the benefits of a silicone roof restoration would not be possible if the existing substrate had underlying, untreated issues. Paying close attention to the following factors will help you determine whether or not a roof is a good candidate for a silicone roof restoration:
- Current state of the substrate
- Adhesion test results
- Primer recommendations
Does the substrate need repairs?
Repairs will vary depending on the existing substrate. Common repairs for metal roofs you’ve probably seen are mending or replacing any metal panels or screws that are not providing a watertight condition, as well as screwing down any side or end laps that have more than a ¼” of gap. This includes any rust or holes in the panels.
The most common issue on substrates with seams are seams that do not provide a watertight condition. This issue is why PM silicone’s “seamless” properties are so valuable. Failing seams will eventually lead to water getting into the building. In cases like this, any wet insulation (detected with thermal imaging) should be torn out and replaced. There are many consequences of ignoring wet insulation and working around it. Wet insulation is extremely inefficient, deteriorates the roofing system, and allows mold growth. This article does a good job describing the dangers of ignoring wet insulation. Once you address the foundational problems like seam separation and wet insulation, then you can focus on adhesion.
Does the roof have good adhesion?
Adhesion is one of the most important aspects of a silicone roof coating restoration. You can easily schedule an adhesion test with a Regional Manager, and they will walk you through the process. An adhesion test kit comes with a small container of HS 3201 and 3 strips of polyester fabric. Your Regional Manager will simply clean off a portion of the roof, apply a small amount of coating, insert the fabric into the coating, and then apply a bit more coating over top of the fabric. After allowing the silicone to cure, your Regional Manager will then attempt to pull up the fabric. The silicone will either remain adhered to the roof when pulled or peel up with the fabric.
Although seldom, if the coating pulls off the substrate with ease, there is not good enough adhesion for a coating in its current state and more research needs to be done. Was it not cleaned well enough? How old is the substrate? Is a primer necessary? There are a number of reasons why an adhesion test might fail, but your Regional Manager is there for to help you to troubleshoot any issues.
Would a primer enhance adhesion?
Primers are not typically necessary for a silicone roof restoration. However, as you know, each substrate has unique properties that could require a primer. Understanding when a primer is necessary for each individual substrate can be a daunting task and can require a great deal of research. For assistance with this, we will direct you to our blog series that looks at each substrate and determines when a primer may be necessary. You can find that comprehensive blog series here.
Begin prep work
If the roof is structurally sound and the adhesion test was successful, the substrate is now ready to be power washed and prepped for coating! Roof Prep for a Silicone Roof Coating Restoration has all of the details about proper prep work for a long-lasting silicone roof coating. After you prep the roof, you are ready for PM silicone and decades of new life on the roof. If you have additional questions about qualifying for a roof restoration, roof prep, or would like to schedule an adhesion test on your roof, you can find your Regional manager here.