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Posts tagged ‘acrylic roof coatings’

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.

At VFI we offer solutions to all your project needs. With a talented onsite lab staff, we can customize our products to suit your application requirements. Contact us today to learn more about our custom solutions!