Are foam roofs any good?

spray foam application on a roof

How long does a foam roof last?

If you’re commercial building needs new roofing, consider having foam roofing installed. This has become one of the most requested roofing material in the industry the past few years, and for several good reasons. If you have heard or read much about spray foam roof, good or bad, it is worth your time to chat with a few different roofing contractors to get some information. 

You can expect to have a lifespan of 25 to 35 years from original foam roofing, with the climate, foot traffic, maintenance, and weather having an impact. That may not seem like a long time for commercial roof coating, but a re-coating will extend the life a foam roofing even longer. 

Everyone needs as much bang for their buck as possible today, and commercial roofing isn’t any exception.  We have listed the foam roof pros and cons that may convince you that foam roofing is the way to go for your commercial structure. 

  • Simple Installation – You’ll save money and time with foam roofing installation because of how easy it is to have it installed. It doesn’t disrupt your business either when you go with an experienced contractor roofer.
  • Foam roofing is simply installed by the contracting spraying a liquid material on your existing roof and can be applied to clean asphalt, concrete, metal, shingled, or wood roofing. It then expands into a foam and conforms to the roof shapes and types, even if there is an irregularity with your roof shape.
  • Energy Efficiency – Foam roofing will deliver you the benefits of a high R-value rating per every inch that will protect your building while saving you money on heating and air. Foam roofing keeps the heat out during the summer and keeps it in during the winter. It is UV reflective, protects the roof by absorbing the heat. 
  • Easy Maintenance – Foam roofing requires little to no maintenance or repairs. With the right amount of inspection and maintenance, it can last 50 years or longer. Experts recommend that they should be inspected twice a year, Spring and Fall. If any significant weather event occurs, an inspection afterward is recommended. When re-coating is needed, they can apply a new layer of coating right over the existing roofing after it has been cleaned. 
  • Seamless & Waterproof –When commercial roofing leaks, it typically is in the seams and penetrations. Foam roofing removes this susceptibility because it is applied in liquid, filling in cracks, gaps, and seams in the existing roof. Foam roofing allows a contractor to level the roof which decreases ponding water. The foam roofing material will contract and expand with the building and the outside temperature. This reduces the possibility of cracks and splitting.
  • Renewable & Sustainable – Foam roofing creates little waste during its existence on your roof. Minimal stripping off of the existing roof is required in most cases before apply foam roofing. With less existing roof removal, there is less waste in the environment. The materials used for foam roofing are environmentally friendly, which are Zero Ozone Depleting, Low in the Emission of Volatile Organic Compounds, Free from Chlorofluorocarbons, and Ultra-Low Global Warming Potential. 

How do you maintain a foam roof?

Five years after being installed, a re-coating is recommended. If a foam roof looks good without re-coating, it still needs to be re-coated to keep it in top condition. The longer you wait in between re-coating, the more costly it will be, so maintain that every 5-year re-coating schedule to keep your foam roofing looking good. Re-coating foam roofing costs approximately 25% of the original installation. With proper maintenance and routine re-coating, foam roofing will last 25 years. 

No flat foam roofing will go undamaged, you can’t stop the environment from causing small holes happening. Maintenance and repair crews walking on the roof can damage it. If you find larger cracks or holes during a regular inspection, schedule a re-coating. Foam roof cleaning can be cleaned by spraying or sweeping it off. Regular cleaning, inspection, and maintenance will increase the longevity of foam roofing.  

spray foam roof along a seam

How do you seal a foam roof?

A downside to foam roofing is they are susceptible to damage. Once a tiny hole has been made, water can penetrate and soak into it to like a sponge. If enough water is absorbed, you’ll hear it walking on it. 

For a small hole, a basic repair procedure can be done by following these steps: 

  1. Locate the penetration and confirm that the roof foam is dry.
  2. Sweep or vacuum the roof surface to remove contaminates.
  3. Using a foam roofing sealant, patch any problem area.  This patch can last as long as 35 years.

If there are larger holes, call a professional roofing contractor for a complete re-coating job. 

Can spray foam stop leaks?       

Yes, expanding polyurethane foam for roof leaks is one of the best ways to stop them. It expands and fills the cracks, bonding to any surface type quickly. 

Can you walk on a foam roof?

It isn’t recommended, but commercial structures usually have HVAC and plumbing vents on the roofing surface, so it is inevitable it will be necessary. When scheduling a contractor or work, advise them your building has foam roofing so they can plan accordingly.  Any experienced commercial structure contractors know how to walk on foam roofing. A Commercial structure is an expensive investment, and the roof protects that investment.  Maintenance and inspection need to be done regularly to make sure a foam roofing will last for many years. Call (573) 789-8367 today for spray foam roofing in Osage Beach and Lake Ozark, MO.