EPDM Roofing FAQs  

Got questions about EPDM? Find the answers you're looking for here! 

What does EPDM stand for? 

You may be wondering, what is EPDM roofing? Short for Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, this roofing system uses a single ply membrane to protect a flat roof from leaks and other damages. 

How is EPDM roofing installed? 

Single ply roofing can be installed using mechanical fasteners, a ballasted system, or fully adhered with chemical adhesive. Fully adhered installations offer the best leak resistance and the longest life expectancy, but they are also more difficult. They require experience and skill in order to avoid common mistakes that can lead to roof failure. 

How long does EPDM roofing last? 

EPDM roofs have a proven track record around the world for longevity, waterproofing and weatherability in both domestic and commercial situations. The roof membranes remain stable over time and can have a life expectancy of over 50 years. 

Can you repair EPDM roofing? 

Long-lasting repairs to an EPDM roofing system requires the right repair materials and careful prep of the repair area. EPDM roofing membrane is made with synthetic rubber and is not compatible with asphalt-based products. This includes any type of roof cement flashing as well as any asphalt-based roof coating, including aluminum roof coating. These materials will contaminate the EPDM rubber membrane, leading to a more extensive repair. 

How thick is EPDM roofing? 

EPDM membrane is manufactured in various thicknesses (.045″ to .090″ thick) and is available as a non-reinforced or reinforced sheet (depending upon application). Other thicknesses are also available for use in non-roofing applications as a special order. 
Reinforced membranes contain an internal fabric that is completely encapsulated within the EPDM membrane sheet and is available in various thicknesses (.045″ to .075″). 

What colour is EPDM roofing? 

Because of our changeable climate a dark coloured roofing membrane is always preferable. EPDM attracts and collects more heat, so saving energy and reducing the demand for heating – it can actually help reduce your energy bills. And because of the reduced heating demand, EPDM rubber flat roofs create fewer carbon emissions, making it far more environmentally friendly than other flat roofing materials. Naturally, you'll still need to ensure there is good insulation within your roof structure. 

What are the main benefits of EPDM roofing? 

There are numerous advantages of EPDM rubber. Capable of a reasonably wide operational temperature range of -50 °C to +150 °C, EPDM is suitable for sub-zero environments and cold materials. It offers outstanding weathering properties, including excellent ozone and sunlight resistance. 
EPDM also delivers excellent tear, abrasion and steam resistance, as well as good resistance to compression set, dilute acids, ketones and alkalis. EPDM is widely used as a lower-cost polymer thanks to its all-round capabilities and good processing abilities. 

Can you walk on EPDM rubber roofing? 

Yes to an extent. EPDM is designed to take LIGHT foot traffic during installation and for occasional cleaning or maintenance. 

SMS Building Supplies has a range of EPDM Products in stock for all your upcoming projects. Contact us to find out more or place an order.  

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