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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 15,000 sq. ft. flat warehouse in Michigan and I am wondering what the best roofing material is between PVC, EPDM and TPO?

Does anyone have any recommendations?

What are the pros and cons of each material for this climate?

Are there any experts out there with insight on this topic?!
 

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Is it "flat" or does it have some pitch on it? How many penetrations? They will all do a good job, but if it is wide open, I would recommend a 60 mil. EPDM. Fewer joints, and it can be fully adhered. Are you going to do it? Have you ever done flat roofing before? What kinds of tools do you have if you are going to do it? It isn't so much the main areas, but the detail flashing work that will cause you problems. How long do you want it to last. What you are asking is kind of like asking what is the best kind of car to buy. The short answer is "yes"
 

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if there is going to be ponding water(puddles that don't evaporate after 48 hours) I recommend Duro-Last PVC.

Personally I don't like EPDM. the black absorbs heat, the material shrinks and pulls itself apart. The material itself lasts a long time but the seams tend to come apart because of the shrinking. Because of the shrinking the edges give trouble. We do a lot of roof repair so I see the roofs with problems, not the ones without problems. I'm sure some people get good service from EPDM.

We repair all types of commercial roofs but mostly install Duro-Last because of the warranty and customer service and follow up.

good luck
 

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80 mill PVC would be the Cadillac system by far. Have it installed by a factory authorized installer recomended by the manufacturer and forget you have a roof. Except for periodic inspections for weather damage.
 

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Best roofing material is Monolitic PU based liquid membranes. It is great for standing water (they waterproof swimming pools with similar material). Great for penetrations, transitions. As you may all know, where there is seam, there is problem. This is a seamless system and can be applied to most surfaces even without a primer. So far much better than tpo and epdm. Only thing is that price per sq ft is expensive - around 3-4$ sq ft for material for a complete system warranty excluding labor. Widely used in europe and asia unlike in North America


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my 2 cents

When you say flat, is it truly flat or is it simply a low slope roof? If there is no slope you should really consider adding tapered insulation. The best membranes will fail prematurely if they spend much of their life under water. This is also a great time to evaluate you current insulation to see if you should add any. As far as the membranes go I prefer a properly installed TPO or PVC because of the monolithic surface they create. The EPDM will require adhesives along it's seams and cannot be welded. Any of them will be fine as long as your roof is designed and installed properly.

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Blake Akers
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5 Star Roofing & Restoration
 
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