All roofs were performing like new—after up to three decades in the field

May 2, 2014 in Uncategorised

The long-term weathering test recently finished proves that 30-year old EPDM flat roofs are consistently performing well.

The ability of EPDM single ply membrane to resist the potentially damaging effects of various climates extremely well.

A properly designed, installed, and maintained EPDM roofing system can successfully withstand extreme weather conditions throughout its life. These tests indicate that an EPDM roofing system can exceed other flat roofing systems service lives. This state-of-the-art study of roof systems provides substantial proof of the lasting performance of EPDM flat roofing systems.

The study tested five roof systems, spanning 28 to 32 years of real life use. The roofing systems tested were still performing as originally designed. In fact, the research shows that all of the roofing membrane samples were essentially functioning “like new�? with physical material properties similar to that required by newly manufactured 1.2mm EPDM roofing membrane.

The EPDM roofs were first inspected in situ to get a good understanding of their conditions, samples of the roofs were then sent to Momentum Technologies, a US testing facility for the roofing industry. The facility tested 5 essential performance characteristics of the EPDM membrane,

  • Elongation (%) – The Elongation test results showed that 4 out of 5 of the EPDM roof samples surpassed the minimal characteristics for aged EPDM and one surpassed the minimal required for new EPDM.
  • Tensile strength (psi) – For Tensile Strength, all five roof samples bettered the minimum standard for newly manufactured EPDM membranes.
  • Thickness XD (inch) – For Thickness cross direction (XD), three samples surpassed the manufacturer minimum, while the other two narrowly missed the standard  by one one-thousandth of an inch (0.025mm)
  • Thickness MD (inch) – For Thickness machine direction (MD), three sample sections matched or bettered the minimum, while one narrowly  missed by one one-thousandth of an inch (0.025mm) and another by four one-thousandths of an inch (0.102mm).
  • Seam strength (psi) – For factory seam strength, it was only possible to test two of the roof samples, and both easily exceeded manufacturers’ minimums.

This is the fourth study conducted on EPDM that supports the long-term performance of the EPDM membrane. “The first field studies of EPDM were done in the late 1980s, and we are finding a pattern, says Thomas W. Hutchinson AIA, FRCI, RRC and Principal, Hutchinson Design Group, Ltd., Barrington, Ill. “The pattern is that these roofs can really last a long time.