Testing the system – by Duncan Winter of Flex-R

Jul 20, 2017 in Case Studies, ClassicBond, DuoPly, General, RubberBond, SureEdge, SureWeld

The long-term weatherability and repairability of flat roofing systems continue to be major points of decision making when selecting flat roofing and waterproofing systems. At Flex-R we recently updated our EPDM Product Data Sheets and EPDM Specifications with new Xenon Arc weathering data that more accurately reflects the superior long-term performance of Carlisle SynTec EPDM membranes.

Listed below is the comparative weathering data that on Carlisle Syntec’s various membranes, expressed as the amount of energy to which the membranes were exposed without exhibiting cracks. As you can see, slate grey EPDM has survived by far the most severe of the exposures. In fact the 1.5mm EPDM has still not cracked or crazed, even after going well beyond the industry’s minimum standard. In our view it’s like the ‘Energizer Bunny’…it keeps going and going! Xenon Arc testing is the most accurate method of comparing how materials will be affected by the amount of energy they can be exposed to. Xenon testing replicates and accelerates ageing conditions caused by UV and weathering that affect the longevity of roofing systems by causing cracking or crazing.

(The table shows the comparative weathering data on Carlisle Syntec’s membranes expressed as the amount of energy to which they were exposed without exhibiting cracks.)

As you can see, dark-coloured, non-reinforced EPDM can survive the most severe exposure, this 41,580 kJ/m² equates to double that of a non EPDM membrane. At a time when colour or cost seems to have become an over emphasized attribute in a roofing membrane, it is important to remember that a roof’s primary function remains to keep a building dry and that Carlisle SynTec EPDM membranes are unmatched in their ability to do so.

The premium product for Flex-R is RubberBond FleeceBack EPDM. The enhanced physical properties of this membrane result in long-term performance, higher installation satisfaction and enhanced contractor reputation and have helped the growth of this system in both domestic and commercial marketplaces. The contractor benefits, such as the seaming speed & accuracy of Factory Applied Tape (FAT), plus the cleanliness and strength of Sprayable MCPU decking adhesive have contributed to making this a preferred system.

In our view Flex-R membranes are the smart choice for a number of reasons including:

  • RubberBond FleeceBack EPDM giving enhanced strength and ease of installation
  • ClassicBond 1.2mm or 1.5mm non-reinforced range of EPDM sheets
  • Senit-RF internally scrim reinforced membranes for puncture resistance
  • Sure Weld TPO, FleeceBacked or non-backed

Lifecycle assessment using EPA’s TRACI model analysed EPDM, TPO, PVC and Modified Bitumen

  • EPDM had the lowest global warming potential
  • BRE Green Guide rating of A+
  • EPDM had the lowest acid rain impact
  • EPDM had the lowest contribution to smog

EPDM is the most dimensionally stable, heat resistant membrane, maintaining flexibility even in extremely cold conditions, down to -40°C.

All Flex-R EPDM membranes have been tested by many authorities including BBA and carry the CE- mark. This year has seen a change in the rating of the range of EPDM single ply membranes  manufactured by Carlisle SynTec Systems and distributed throughout the British Isles by Flex-R Ltd.

All the EPDM BBA certificates for the membranes now state the products: “will have a service life in excess of 35 years.” This increased service life makes them one of the leading BBA approval lifetimes in the country.

Flex-R has also taken the responsibility of CE marking all their membranes in accordance with harmonised European Standard BS EN 13956: 2005 to comply with the Construction Products Regulation (CPR). We have taken a lot of effort to improve the standards of EPDM roofing supply and installation methods in the UK and correct CE marking is just one of these standards that our customers, distributors or contractors, need to have to ensure that they are getting the best products from the best EPDM suppliers.

Carlisle EPDM has more than 50 years of proven performance offering industry leading resistance to outdoor weathering.

Speak to a member of our team for help and advice on the best solution for your flat roofing project; call us on 01494 448792 or email us at enq@flex-r.co.uk