Flat Top Roof Coating vs Replacement: Which is Best for Denver Commercial Roofs 2023

Flat Top Roof Coating vs Replacement

Damaged or aging flat roofs require immediate repairs, but between applying a flat top roof coating or going with a full roof replacement, which is the better choice for your commercial roofing project?

As a business owner or property manager, you’d want to ensure that your building is in its top shape, especially the condition of its roof. While re-coating and replacing can restore and waterproof your roof, it’s important that you explore each option to find the right solution for your specific roofing needs.

In this article, I’ll talk about the difference of flat roof coating and roof replacement, their benefits, and the factors to consider when choosing which of the two repairs you should apply on your roof.

What is a Roof Coating?

A roof coating is a paint-like material layered on top of the roof’s surface to strengthen it against extreme weather. It is a seamless, waterproof protective barrier that prevents leaks and water damage to the roof. Apart from weatherproofing purposes, flat top roof coatings also improve energy efficiency by reflecting sunlight and reducing heat absorption.

There are a various kinds of commercial roof coatings available, each having their own compatibility with different types of roofs. To find a flat top roof coating best suited for your roof type, consider the formula, use, and application method. Here are a few types of waterproof roof coatings:

  • Acrylic coating: A water-based acrylic polymer coating originally designed to suit high UV environments. Acrylic roof coating has excellent resistance to radiation and is highly flexible and durable. While this coating is an economical option, it does not do well with pooling water.
  • Silicone coating: Similar to acrylic, silicone roof coating has excellent ultraviolet protection for intense temperatures. This type of coating works great in areas with frequent rain because the material is able to withstand excessive or pooled water.
  • Polyurethane coating: This type of coating is usually solvent-based and comes in two kinds: aromatic (less UV resistant) and aliphatic (more UV resistant). Polyurethane roof coating is a top choice for impact resistance and exposure to foot traffic. They are often used a base and top coat combination.
  • Asphalt coating: Asphalt roof coating is a mixture of asphalt and rubber, making it durable for use in cold and inclement weather while being easy to apply. It provides excellent protection has supreme weatherproofing capabilities.

Benefits of Roof Coating for Commercial Roofs

Roof coating systems offer several advantages that make them an attractive option for flat roof maintenance and improvement. Let’s explore the benefits of a flat roof coating system:

Cost-Effectiveness: Compared to full roof replacements, roof coating is generally a more cost-effective solution. It’s a great option for those that want to extend the lifespan of their flat roof but are on a tight budget.

Energy Efficiency: A roof coating system reflects the sun’s rays thus improving energy efficiency. The reflective property helps keep the property nice and cool and without the need for excessive air conditioning, you can save money with the lower cooling costs.

Easy Application: Roof coating is a quick, easy, and efficient waterproofing solution for flat roofs. Applying the coating isn’t a complicated process, which is why it’s less likely to take time and disrupt daily routines, which is beneficial for businesses that cannot afford extended periods of downtime.

Limitations of Roof Coating

While flat top coating offers numerous benefits, it is essential to understand its limitations. Flat top coating is not a solution for severely damaged or structurally compromised roofs. If your commercial roof has significant structural issues or extensive damage, roof replacement might be the only viable option.

Roof coating is easy to apply but it can require significant preparation to ensure the best results. Weather should also be optimal for installing and the roof should be cleaned and prepared properly before applying the roof coating.

Additionally, flat top coating is overall a temporary solution that requires periodic maintenance and reapplication to maintain its effectiveness. Depending on the type of coating used, the average lifespan ranges from 10 to 15 years.

What is a Flat Top Roof Replacement?

Commercial roof replacement is, as its name suggests, replacing your facility’s roofing system with a new one. Getting a full roof replacement costs more money but it is a longer-lasting solution to leaks, structural damage, and other major roof problems.

Re-roofing brings life to damaged or aging flat roofs, ensuring you and the facility’s proper protection from the elements. A roof replacement is also an opportunity to make adjustments to your roofing system as needed or preferred.

Benefits of Roof Replacement for Commercial Roofs

A full roof replacement offers several advantages that may make it the preferred option for your flat roof. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of roof replacement:

Longer Lifespan: Depending on the type of roofing material used, a new roof can last between 20 and 25 years. This extended lifespan provides peace of mind and minimizes the need for frequent maintenance or repairs.

Better Insulation: When replacing your flat roof, you have the option to choose materials that provide better insulation. Improved insulation contributes to energy efficiency by preventing heat transfer, reducing the need for excessive heating or cooling. This can lead to lower energy costs and increased comfort for occupants.

Increased Property Value: Potential buyers are often attracted to homes or buildings with recently replaced roofs, as it eliminates the need for immediate roof-related expenses. Investing in a replacement can yield a higher return on investment when selling your property.

Limitations of Roof Replacement

Getting your roof replaced works great for keeping your building and its occupants safe from the elements. However, the cost of materials, labor, and additional expenses can add up quickly, making it an expensive option for your commercial project.

Aside from being costly, re-roofing is a time-consuming process that can take several days or even weeks to complete, which can disrupt your business or routine.

4 Factors to Consider When Choosing Roof Coating or Replacement

When choosing between getting a roof replacement or a roof coating to repair your commercial roof, here are some key factors to keep in mind:

  • Roof’s Age: No roof lasts forever, so when your flat roof is at the end of its lifespan and needs repairs, it’s better to start fresh with a new roofing system.
  • Budget: The cost comparison of roof coating vs. replacement is a huge factor in making your pick. A roof coating system is more affordable, but there is the advantage of long term cost savings in re-roofing because of the longer lifespan of the roof. It all depends on your needs, priorities, and budget.
  • Damage: If you simply need to fortify and waterproof your roof, applying repairs and a roof coating can suffice. However, for damages that affect structural integrity or major roof issues, a full replacement is the more effective choice.
  • Pros and Cons: Both roof coating and re-roofing are great methods in restoring your roof, but each has benefits and limitations that may affect your type of roof and roofing needs.

Professional Inspection and Evaluation

Choosing between getting a roof replacement or a roof coating can be a tough decision, which is why it is recommended to consult professional roofing contractors. As experts in the industry, they have the experience and know-how when it comes to dealing with roofing damage and the proper solutions that best fit.

Getting a professional inspection and evaluation can help you make a more informed decision about whether a coating or replacement is the best option for your building. They take a closer look at your roof’s condition, identifying leaks and damages along with their severity.

As they assess your roof, they’ll be able to recommend which is the better option as well as provide estimates, benefits, and drawbacks. Remember that when hiring a roofing contractor, ensure they have the necessary licenses, insurance, and experience in commercial roofing projects.

Finding the Right Solution for your Denver Property

Choosing between flat top coating and roof replacement for your commercial roofing project requires careful consideration of various factors. Assess the condition of your existing roof, weigh the benefits and limitations of each option, and consider the long-term cost implications.

Consult with a professional contractor to receive expert advice tailored to your specific needs. By making an informed decision, you can ensure the longevity, performance, and cost-effectiveness of your commercial roof.

Bjorn’s Roofing is an professional roofing company in Denver, Colorado providing top-notch commercial roof coating and roof replacement services. We deliver high-quality solutions tailor-fit to your roofing needs. Whether you need repairs or a new roof, we’re always ready to help. Contact us today and get a FREE inspection!

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