Latest Advances in Roofing Materials

When you come to looking at materials for a new roof or a re-roofing project, familiar faces will always appear. Slate and tile for pitched roofs alongside felt for flat ones have been in use for generations, sometimes hundreds of years, and still do their job today. But as technology advances, new roofing materials are created that also have a lot to offer. Here we look at a few of the latest advances.

Eco friendly options

Everyone from big businesses through to homeowners are today increasingly aware of the environmental impact of what we do. This concern for being eco-friendly has had an effect on the roofing world and has led to some interesting new ideas about how to roof your property.

Vegetated roofs are currently found most often on large scale buildings such as universities or factories but in principle, are also available to homeowners. These use special seeded packs that are placed on the roof that require water and light to grow into a natural, green covering.   The look is certainly a natural one, though at the moment, flat or low pitched roofs are the best option for this style.

Another development is in the technology used for solar panels. At the moment, these can be a slightly ugly looking large panel that sits on your traditional material to collect sunlight to transform into energy.   However, the new thin film solar technology works on metal and shingle roofs and is rapidly becoming a serious option. There’s no bulky and awkward panel to add to your roof, simply a thin, almost invisible film that then sets about harvesting that sunlight.

Metal roofs aren’t a new material – we’ve all seen the huts that have corrugated metal on them from years past. But modern metal is an entirely different prospect and one that is gaining popularity for business and domestic properties. They are extremely durable, employ a rain catching system to save on water usage and are easy to recycle when the times comes to replace them, though they also have a very long lifespan.

Flat roof developments

For many property owners, flat roofs have been something of a pain for years. The traditional roofing felt only has a limited lifespan, can shrink in sunlight or tear and let water in. But there are some new materials for flat roofs that are taking away these problems.

Rubber membrane, or EPDM, is a durable material that can now be laid on a roof. There are different ways to apply it, including with special adhesive and it is very lightweight. It resists scuffs and tears very well and is easy to patch if there is an impact causing damage.

The other new flat option are the fibreglass materials, known as GRP roofing. These have a lifespan of at least 30 years and can come with a number of different coatings and finishes to them to fit in with the look of the property. It is waterproof, versatile to different roof areas and is safe and easy to install.

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