EPDM Roofing Surrey

What is EPDM?

I am often asked “what is EPDM?” Well, let me explain….. EPDM, which stands for Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, is a synthetic rubber derived from oil and natural gas. It is a system that is very similar to PVC, but it is rubber while PVC is plastic

EPDM has stormed the market since being introduced a few years ago in the U.K.

A rubber roof can be often installed in one complete layer without the need for joins depending on size, which is often an attractive prospect.

It is also extremely light weight, elastic and tough, so it lends itself to many situations. Mostly rubber roofs are glued down to the decking ( wooden substrate ) so if you had a felt roof previously the timber deck may need replacing depending on the system or glue used.

Other fixing methods are possible i.e. mechanically fixed, and ballasted ( weighted down with stones ).

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A well installed rubber roof can be a very good option.

Lifespan – Some guarantee up to 50 years. This seems to be an immensely variable figure from installer to installer, and I question whether they plan to be in business or honour a guarantee with a 50 year time frame. From what I’ve seen so far a well installed EPDM roof should last 30 years upwards. I’m happy to guarantee mine for 25 years from what I have seen so far on ageing UK installations.

Cost – Very competitive, expect to pay 20%-30% more for a nice example in relation to a torch on roof.

Damage resistance – Very tough in most situations and foot traffic, always place something to spread the weight underneath a ladder though. And do not throw food on top of the roof for the birds, as I have seen a roof ruined by seagulls pecking it because they fight over scraps. Can be repaired easily, but can look a bit obvious, as it normally involves gluing on patches a bit like an inner tube repair.

Installation issues – Unfortunately the perceived easy D.I.Y. fitting of this roof has brought the cowboys out to play, some are simply horrible to look at, wrinkly, saggy and without correct edging strips at drips. Also be aware of roof details, although a roof can be seam free, corners, pipes and complicated drips will mean joins, and these should be done carefully and with thought by either a Trade or a DIY installer.

Flexibility – You will simply not beat a rubber roof for expansion and contraction, if you have a large roof where this is a real concern, EPDM is for you.

Vapour transmission – This is dependent on layers that may be underneath, but in normal glued down install it will breathe less than a torch on felt roof. If condensation is a problem this may have to be designed into the roof construction or elsewhere in the house.

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