Different Types of Concrete Stamps Require Different Materials

Posted on: May 18th, 2020 by Marc

Concrete stamps can take a basic concrete project and bring it to the next level. These stamps are used to enhance a surface and make it look decorative by providing a textured detail imitating stone, brick, wood and much more. They are most often used to create decorative walkways, courtyards, patios, decks and on decorative vertical concrete applications.

Most stamps are made out of urethane rubbers as this material provides a range of Shore Hardness options, while remaining flexible and providing maximum abrasion resistance.

Producing stamps can be expensive, that’s why it’s important to understand how to pick the correct rubber for your needs. Stamps come in numerous types and flexibilities ranging from floppy to rigid. Three common types of stamps are stamp rollers, texturing skins and concrete mats.

Stamp rollers are used as imprinting tools on large scale projects, on slab corners and boarders where detail is not as critical. These stamps are popular with contractors because of their ease of use and can cover a lot of ground quickly.

It’s important to have an understanding of what to look for in regards to the type of rubber your stamp roller is made out of. Rollers work best when the concrete is still very soft. Because of the roller application, a harder durometer rubber is needed to imprint detail quickly. VFI would recommend our 3170 or 3180, for this application. This will help to insure maximum detail will be transferred to your project’s surface.

Texturing skins are used in vertical and decorative applications where flexibility would be necessary. These stamps are usually thin to reduce weight and make them more maneuverable on the job-site. Semi-rigid rubbers are used to allow the stamp to be more pliable and capture the curvature of a structure. These skins work best on surfaces with undulations, sloped areas and in flare ups like driveway aprons. VFI-3150 and 3160 provide the perfect amount of flexibility for challenging applications while still providing great casting detail.

Concrete mats are rigid and extremely firm. These mats are very large, and most of the time will have handles to help contractors lift and move them into place. The rigidity of concrete mats will help to leave a highly detailed impression. The polyurethane used in these stamps will range from a Shore A Hardness of 80 or higher (VFI-3180). Interested in making your own concrete stamps? VFI has Technical Service Representatives willing to answer all of your stamping questions. Contact the VFI team at 1-800-307-9218.

The Global Precast Concrete Market is Projected to Grow at a CAGR of 5% Through 2025

Posted on: May 18th, 2020 by Marc

A recent study conducted by Transparency Market Research shows the global precast concrete market growing at a healthy CAGR of 5% through 2025. Two major factors contributing to this growth are swift urbanization and high demand for commercial construction projects.

Urbanization A Driving Force Behind Global Precast Market Growth

As the global economy has become more integrated a population shift has occurred with residents leaving rural areas and moving to metropolitan hubs. Cities are catering to this demand and are utilizing precast concrete to help build needed infrastructure. Precast concrete provides many benefits such as design-build efficiency, low maintenance, reduced costs, and aesthetic versatility.

High Demand For Commercial Construction

With mass migration from rural to metropolitan areas numerous commercial structures will need to be built including malls, hotels, and offices. Architects and builders love specing precast concrete products in commercial projects as it’s cost-effective, easy to produce, less labor-intensive and reduces build time.

Highly Engineered, High-Performance Solutions Tailored To The Precast Concrete Industry

Volatile Free, Inc. (VFI) manufactures a highly engineered, high-performance line of urethane molding rubbers for the precast concrete industry. With multiple Shore Hardness and pot life options, VFI has a product for all your precast concrete needs.

To learn more about VFI’s urethane rubbers contact us at 800-307-9218.

New Fire-Retardant Hard Coat System

Posted on: May 18th, 2020 by Marc

Volatile Free, Inc. formulated the industry’s first polyurethane hard coat cartridge system with fire retardant qualities. The hard coat was designed for long-lasting protection of foam sculptures, parts, and components and protects against external impacts and environmental elements. The 6170 is available for plural component spray systems and the 6171 is available in the convenient Qwik Spray System® with hassle-free cartridge sets.

VFI is Celebrating 25 Years!

Posted on: May 18th, 2020 by Marc

We are excited to announce that Volatile Free is celebrating our 25th anniversary in 2020. To honor the milestone, we are unveiling a refreshed logo and new brand colors. The company is ready to continue offering the same high-quality products and exceptional customer service for the next 25 years with a more modern look and feel.

Acrylic/Silicone Hybrid System

Posted on: January 5th, 2020 by Marc

The Acrylic/Silicone Hybrid System from Volatile Free, Inc. combines the best performance characteristics of their proven acrylic and silicone liquid applied roof coating lines. VFI-640-1 acrylic gray base coat, used together with non-woven polyester fabric, offers a seamless coating with lasting adhesion and excellent waterproofing characteristics. SEALGUARD VFI-991® standard solids, silicone top coat is then applied resulting in superior protection against standing water and aging with 100% UV resistance. The Acrylic/Silicone Hybrid System is unique to the liquid applied roofing industry and is exclusive to Volatile Free, Inc. and VFI approved distributors.

What Is Silicone Roof Coating?

Posted on: January 4th, 2020 by Marc

What Is Silicone Roof Coating?

what is silicone roof coating

Silicone can be used as a liquid applied roof coating to provide waterproof characteristics and UV stability. Roof substrates of all kinds break down over time and eventually cause roof leaks. These leaks typically cause expensive damage to the building itself, as well as the contents of the building.

As roof substrates age they eventually begin to fail. When this happens, a building owner has three obvious options:

  • Repair the leaks. Repairing leaks can be very challenging. The source of the leak is often very difficult to find and the repair is simply a band-aid approach that offers a short-term solution.
  • Roof replacement. Not only are roof replacements very costly, but the material from the original roof ends up in a landfill. Many building owners are looking for more ecofriendly solutions to the maintenance of their buildings.
  • Maintenance coating. Using silicone as a maintenance coating is a way to offer a long-term solution while being much more cost efficient, and ecofriendly, than a full roof replacement. When done properly, a silicone roof coating offers a new layer of protection that can last for years.

Why does silicone work as a roof coating?

The benefit of silicone as a roof coating comes from its non-carbon nature. Silicone is inherently resistant to bacteria growth and resists degradation from ponding water while still providing breathability for the substrate. This breathability helps to protect the substrate which leads to a longer lifespan.

When is it best to use silicone?

Silicone is used when there are concerns associated with UV stability. Silicone is naturally resistant to ultraviolet rays which cause oxidation and can reduce the life of a roofing substrate. Another benefit of silicone is its ability to withstand indefinite exposure to ponding water. Proper drainage is always necessary on a low slope roof, but the risk of standing water still exists. A silicone roof coating provides a waterproof barrier that protects the roofing structure, which in turn helps to expand the lifespan. And since silicone is resistant to mold and mildew, dirt and grime build-ups can easily be washed off with water.

What are the best silicone products and why?

There are three main types of silicone for the liquid applied roofing industry:

  • High Solids Silicone is the most used silicone roof coating. With the ability to apply by spray, roller, or brush, it offers lower VOC, a glossy finish, and decreased application time due to higher volume solids.
  • Standard Solids Silicone has a higher VOC content, but gives better adhesion and a smoother finish with less roller marks and brush strokes. A lower solid content does mean a lower volume solid, but with the increased adhesion this is the preferred product for recoating other silicone.
  • Silicone Flashing Grade is an extremely thick silicone that is used for flashing or seams when combined with fabric. A high solids content in the mastic allows for minimal shrinkage while maintaining excellent adhesion and flexibility. Adhesion and flexibility are important because they allow the flashing grade to move without cracking and remain fixed to the surface.

How is silicone applied?

Silicone is extremely easy to apply. The first installation method is by brush. This is normally for silicone flashing grade or for application over seams in combination with fabric. The second method is roller applied. Roof silicone is compatible with almost all roof roller types. The third method is spray applied and is usually done with a high-pressure spray rig.

Silicone plays a large role in liquid applied roofing. The advantages as a maintenance coating far outweigh costly roof replacements. The properties of silicone are superior to other fluid applied products like acrylic. And more roofing contractors are realizing the benefit of offering application services to commercial building owners. The choice is simple. Contact us today for a free roof inspection from a VFI authorized roofing contractor in your area.

Commercial Roof Coatings: Silicone vs. Acrylic

Posted on: January 4th, 2020 by Marc

Commercial Roof Coatings: Silicone vs. Acrylic

Commercial Roof Coatings Silicone vs Acrylic

What type of commercial roof coating should you choose for your property? The biggest debate for many facility owners and managers seems to be whether they should select silicone or acrylic. What differences exist between these two options, and which one is the best solution? The problem with choosing which one is the “greatest” is that what’s best can vary from one roof and customer to the next.

You see, there are advantages and disadvantages to each of the options. Therefore, you will want to have an overview of each of these types of liquid applied roof coatings. This can allow you to choose the most suitable option for your needs. Begin with the basics.

Silicone Roof Coating

Silicone roof coatings have been around since the 1970s, and they were often used as part of spray polyurethane foam applications. As time progressed, they eventually became a good option for coating a wide range of roofing substrates including metal, built-up roofs, concrete, and more. They are common for commercial roof restoration. Silicone coating is resistant to ponding water, and it provides fantastic UV stability.

Acrylic Roof Coating

Acrylic roof coatings have existed longer than silicone, and they have been a popular option for commercial roof restoration for decades. The products can work well with a range of roofing substrates, just like silicone. These coatings are UV resistant, environmentally friendly, and are simple to work with and clean up. Acrylic coatings work well for many substrates, as mentioned, but they tend to be best-suited for sloped metal roofs, where ponding won’t be a problem.

A Closer Look at Commercial Roof Coatings

Let’s get a closer look at how these two types of products compare across a range of different factors. Understanding the differences between the products and seeing where each excels can help provide you with the information required to make an informed decision.

  • Comparing the Costs

Naturally, finances remain a concern for all business owners who are in need of a commercial roof coating. You want to get great results, but you also want to ensure you are staying within your budget. Simply put, customers attempting to save money will want to opt for acrylic if all other factors are equal. This is because acrylic roof coatings are a more affordable option.

  • Resistance to Ponding

Ponding water causes issues with flat commercial roofs, as it could mean eventual leaks. This is one of the areas where acrylic coatings have a weakness. Acrylic doesn’t hold up to ponding water nearly as readily as a silicone roof coating can do. Therefore, if you have a flat roof where ponding water could potentially become an issue, opting for silicone is the better solution.

  • Application of the Roofing Product

One of the reasons some consumers prefer silicone is because the application can be thick on the first pass. Business owners might find that they need only a single application for their roof, which could be beneficial. However, when compared with acrylic roof coatings, despite needing a second coat in many cases, silicone is simply messier, making the application of the product more difficult. If spraying the material, it requires heavy-duty machines that might not be readily available for some contractors.

On the other hand, acrylic coating applications are speedier and easier in most cases. This remains true whether the material is rolled on or sprayed onto the roof. Cleanup tends to be simpler with acrylic coatings, as well. Still, it does mean that there will need to be more than just one coat.

  • Longevity and Durability

Another commonly asked question when comparing silicone and acrylic commercial roof coating materials is which will last longer and be more durable. It’s important to keep in mind that countless factors will affect the longevity of the products. However, silicone roof coatings typically last longer than acrylics. Although both can safeguard from ultraviolet rays, silicone offers greater protection. As mentioned, it also provides better moisture resistance when dealing with problems like ponding water.

As for durability, silicone does tend to be more durable over time. Because of the longevity and durability advantage that silicone has over acrylic, it could make up for the price difference between the two. Of course, you’ll want to keep in mind that acrylic roof coatings are no slouch when it comes to longevity. When applied correctly, they can last for a decade or more without trouble.

  • Thermal Reflectivity

Have you considered the thermal reflectivity of the roof coatings? Thermal reflectivity can affect how hot the roof gets and the temperature inside the building. You’ll find that both of these options can provide thermal resistance between 80% and 90%. They can both perform quite well in this regard, helping to keep it cooler inside the building. This can reduce the amount spent on keeping the building cool during hot summer months.

Of course, you’ll want to consider that silicone roofs can pick attract small amounts of dirt over time, but this doesn’t reduce the thermal reflectivity. With that said, acrylic coatings could be better in this regard since they tend to stay cleaner longer.

  • Are Commercial Roof Coatings Environmentally Friendly?

What about environmental friendliness? Which of the coatings is a better option? In the past, acrylic was the hands-down choice because it’s water-based and doesn’t have the same level of volatile organic compounds typically found with silicone. However, some of the newer silicone products on the market have low levels of volatile organic compounds, making them far more environmentally friendly than they were in the past. This is particularly true with some of the high-solids silicone coatings available today.

  • Which Looks Better?

The aesthetics of the commercial roof coating are up to you. They have a similar appearance, so the looks are not likely to be a factor in most cases. However, if you have a sloped roof on your commercial property, which is visible, you might have a preference. Acrylic roof coatings tend to have a cleaner overall appearance and they do work well for roofs with slopes. However, acrylic may fade or color shift over time. If you have a flat roof, it’s important to use silicone for its waterproof properties regardless of your viewing angle.

Get in Touch with the Professionals

As you can see, there is a lot to consider when choosing between acrylic and silicone liquid applied roofing for your commercial property. Whether you have already made your decision or you are still unsure of which option is right for you, make it a point to get in touch with us at Volatile Free, Inc. We have a wide selection of solutions that can meet your project needs and surpass your expectations. Take the time to find a solution that resonates with your preferences, your budget, and your needs.

How Long Does Silicone Roof Coating Last?

Posted on: January 2nd, 2020 by Marc

How Long Does Silicone Roof Coating Last?

how long does silicone roof coating last

When contemplating whether you should get a silicone roof coating for your commercial property, one of the biggest questions that’s likely to come up is how long it will last. After all, you want to make sure you have a roof coating that is durable and can withstand the test of time. You don’t want to have to replace the coating in two or three years.

The answer to this question can vary based on the thickness of the coating and how well you take care of the roof. Typically, moisture cure silicone roof coatings can last for about 15 years. This tends to be the average. This requires that you ensure the roof is properly cared for during that time.

The thickness of the coating will affect how long it can last. When the coating is applied at 1.5 gal/sq (20 dry mil thickness), most roofing companies will provide a 10-year material warranty. When the thickness level is increased to 2 gal/sq (32 dry mil thickness), the warranty will generally be for about 15 years. This is because the thicker coating can provide added protection.

The length of the warranty can vary based on the company you choose to apply the roofing. Naturally, you will want to check with them about their warranties before hiring them.

How to Make the Silicone Roof Coating Last Longer

If you choose quality elastomeric roof coatings for your business, you want to make sure they can last for as long as possible. You should work with a professional to provide you with the proper annual maintenance for your roof. They can let you know whether any issues need to be addressed in certain areas. Additionally, it is in your best interest to have a roof inspection after any serious weather events that could have impacted your roof surface.

The amount of foot traffic that takes place on the silicone coating could affect the longevity of the coating, as well. Therefore, if you have a roof that may see a lot of foot traffic, you should use a high-quality walk-pad capable of standing up to the use.

Remember the importance of maintenance to longevity. You or your employees can handle some of the maintenance on your own, such as hosing down the roof once a year. However, anything that goes beyond the basic maintenance of cleaning the roof should be done by a roofing contractor.

The contractor can check the roof for any signs of damage and ensure that there is no ponding water that could somehow cause a leak or show signs of a problem beneath the coating.

While silicone roof coatings are excellent at preventing leaks, if something causes damage to the coating, there is a small risk it could still allow for water to get into the building below. Scheduling an inspection annually is a good way to make sure that any potential issues are caught as soon as possible. This will help to make the repairs easier and more affordable.

If you have leaks on your existing roof, you should work with roofing companies to have those leaks repaired before you apply the coating. This helps to improve the integrity of the roof. Additionally, keep in mind that this type of coating is for low sloped roofs rather than high sloped roofs.

Let the Professionals Add the Silicone Roof Coating

If you need a new liquid applied roofing system for your commercial property with a flat roof, be sure to work with professional roofing contractors. The professionals are qualified applicators and have the tools and materials needed to coat a roof properly and quickly. Although there might be the temptation to do it on your own, it can be a lot of work, and you will need to have specialized equipment and experience to do it right.

Often, it will be easier to work with roofing companies. They know how to prepare the roof, add the coating, and make sure it is done correctly.

Use the Best Silicone Coatings

Whether you are going to coat a roof on your own or you are hiring someone to do it for you, make sure you are working with only the best products. Volatile Free Inc. provides a range of options for liquid applied roofing including those based in silicone. Get in touch today to learn more about how the company can help with your commercial roof with the right products.

Is a Silicone Roof Coating Worth It?

Posted on: January 1st, 2020 by Marc

Is a Silicone Roof Coating Worth It?

Do you have a commercial property that needs a new roof? Having a roof that can last for years and that will need minimal maintenance is important. You may be considering getting a silicone roof coating, but you still aren’t sure whether it is the right choice or not. Is a silicone roof coating worth it? Before making a decision, you should examine some of the main benefits that come from using this type of roofing. It can give you a better idea of whether a silicone roof coating is worth it for you.

The Roof Can Last a Long Time

One of the first questions that people tend to ask regarding different roofing systems is how long they will last. Typically, a silicone roof coating will last about 15 years. In most cases, it could last longer. Of course, it may last less time than this if it is not cared for properly. The better you take care of your roof the longer it can last. This means you won’t have to worry about your commercial roof surface for many years.

Maintenance Is Easy

You will also find that the maintenance of the roof tends to be easy. Most of the time, simply sweeping and hosing down the roof once a year is all you’ll need to do. You could handle this on your own, or you might want to use a roofing contractor for the job. The contractor can also look for any other potential issues that might arise with the roof surface. You can then take care of the roof repairs before the problems get worse.

Easy Installation

Another nice benefit of high solids silicone roofing that makes it worth your time and money is the ease of installation. In some cases, you might not even need to have a primer placed on the roof before the coating is applied. The coatings can be rolled on or sprayed on in most cases. Business owners can apply the coating on their own, as long as they have the tools, the material, and the time. However, it’s generally a better solution to work with a professional roofing contractor to handle it. This ensures that the coating is applied correctly and in less time.

Cures in the Outdoors

Silicone roofing systems will cure in the outdoors without the need for any special preparations. Once the coating is applied, it will start to cure quickly. The heat and moisture in the air can help it cure properly. The amount of time it takes to cure can vary based on the thickness used and the weather. Your roofing contractors can give you a better idea of how long it will take to cure before there can be foot traffic on the roof.

Protects from Leaks and Ponding Water

Flat and low sloped roofs that are often found on commercial properties will often have ponding water problems. This means that the water that hits the roof after rain finds a location to settle and sit. This could eventually cause leaks in the roof if you aren’t using a silicone roof coating. These types of coatings provide an ample amount of protection against the problem of ponding by holding it until it evaporates or drains properly.

If you don’t have one of these types of roof coatings, you will need to have someone remove the standing water each time it rains. A good silicone coating can help you save a lot of money on labor, as well as repair expenses.

Reduce Energy Expenses

This is one of the benefits that many people never even consider. The silicone coatings on commercial roofs will be white and reflective. This provides you with a “cool roof”, which means it can reflect much of the light that hits it. You will not have to use your air conditioning in the business as much because it will stay cooler.

Choose Quality Silicone Roof Coating Material

As you can see from the benefits discussed above, a silicone roof could be a fantastic idea for your commercial roof. Keep in mind that high solids silicone is the preferred maintenance material for flat and low sloped commercial roofs. Additionally, you have to make sure you are using the best silicone coatings for the job. Check out the options available from Volatile Free Inc. to find the coatings that will work well for your commercial roof.