Benefits of SPF Roof Systems in Minneapolis
When most people hear of a "foam" roof, they automatically think of the type of soft foam similar to that used for seat cushions and are concerned that they won't be able to walk on it without causing problems or damaging the roof. Foam roofs are very durable and can handle foot and construction traffic as well as other roofs. They are still susceptible to damage from dropped tools just as any other roof but the damage is more easily seen and can most often be repaired with some simple polyurethane caulking.
Density & R-Value
Density of SPF is important when it comes to strength and Thermal Resistance. Obviously, higher density means increased strength and higher R-value. Most SPF roofs have densities ranging from about 2.5 pounds per cubic foot to 3 pounds per cubic foot. Three pound density foam has a compressive strength of about 50 psi and an R-value of 7.14 installed and 6.86 aged (these numbers may vary slightly depending on the foam manufacturer). Here's an example of how well a good SPF roof insulates. A school district in southern North Carolina had recently installed some new, one-room relocatable classroom buildings. During the late spring and early fall, these classrooms were using their air conditioners an average of 50 minutes every hour. The school district installed foam roofs on some of these classrooms in order to see if it would provide an energy savings. The roofs consisted of three pound density foam, 1.5 inches thick with an acrylic coating system. The air conditioner usage was cut down to fifteen minutes every hour. That's a fifty-eight percent savings on energy costs.
Does this mean an SPF roof pay for itself? Absolutely! North Carolina A&M studies indicate that an SPF roof in North Carolina and other southern climates can pay for itself in approximately four and a half years.
If the coating for an SPF roof is properly maintained, then an SPF roof can last a very long time. Every ten or fifteen years, depending on the type and amount of coating installed, the roof will need to be cleaned, primed, and recoated. If this is done, then a quality SPF roof could last 50 years or longer.
As with all other roof systems, cost depends on several factors. Some of which include building accessibility, complexity of project, foam thickness, foam coating system, and geographical location. Costs may start at about $2.50 per square foot for a cheap system and go up from there.
Energy Star – Cool Roofs Program and Benefits
ENERGY STAR qualified roof coating products reduce the amount of air conditioning needed in buildings, and can reduce energy bills by up to 50%. The Cool Roof Program defines certain standards for reflectivity, and maintenance of reflectivity, in roof coating systems. These light colored roof coatings reflect the suns heat and UV rays and often lower the temperature of the roof by up to 100 degrees.