TPO Roofing: Exploring Its Common Issues and Proven Solutions

cartoon image of white buildings

Do you have a TPO commercial roof? Or are you still in the process of considering this material for your facility in Youngstown Ohio? Regardless of the two, J&M Roofing LLC wants you to have a deeper understanding of what is TPO roofing. Knowledge about TPO roofing allows you to care for it, maximize its lifespan, and achieve a positive ROI in business through a durable roof.

Today’s guide will cover the following topics:

  • An introduction to TPO roofing (TPO roofing meaning and reasons to choose this material)
  • Common TPO roofing problems
  • Practical remedies to TPO issues

What is TPO Roofing?

TPO is an acronym that stands for Thermoplastic Polyolefin. The material combines polyprophylene and ethylene-propylene. Basically, TPO is a single-ply membrane (similar to EPDM). Property managers and commercial building owners consider this material as one of their top choices because of these advantages:

Color availability – Nowadays, we find TPO membranes that come in unique colors to match properties. Choose a specific color that meets your business’ branding. As you speak with a roofing contractor before installation, ask if they use a manufacturer that offers various TPO roofing colors — not just plain white.

Energy-efficiency – TPO is a great material in that it reflects the UY rays and heat of the sun. An energy-efficient roof helps keep your facility cooler, especially during summer. You also benefit from lower cooling bills.

Environmentally-friendly – If you want a roof that won’t harm the environment, it would make sense to install a TPO roof. It’s a completely recyclable material and doesn’t pose any hazards.

When it comes to installation methods, TPO can be heat-welded or secured using an adhesive.

Related: Choosing a TPO Roofing Material for Your Youngstown OH Property

The Usual Problems with TPO Roofing

We already answered the question, “What is TPO roofing?” Next, let’s dive into some drawbacks. What you may not know is that TPO roofs are new in the industry. Their introduction began in the late 1990s. So as one would assume, TPO is a work in progress. But TPO issues must not stop you from choosing this versatile, energy-saving material. For transparency, we share these 3 typical TPO roofing problems:

1. Shorter life expectancy

Among the drawbacks of TPO roofs, a short service life is one. How long does TPO last? It lasts around 10-20 years. Compare this lifespan with EPDM (which is up to 35 years) and you’ll realize that TPO doesn’t last that long. But do remember that a short roofing lifespan is not only because of the estimated average service life. Poor installation methods and a low-quality membrane are other factors.

2. Sun damage

sun shining on commercial buildings
The sun decreases the effectiveness of TPO roofs over time.

In our section “What is TPO Roofing” we mentioned that TPO roofs reflect sunlight. However, aged TPO roofs can no longer reflect UV rays the way they used to. The sun deteriorates anything over time. Other flat roof membranes are not exempted. But keep reading because, in a while, we’ll be introducing a solution that boosts your TPO roof’s service life and reflective capabilities.

3. Seams that come apart

Not all TPO roofs in the market are alike. Some perform well while others don’t. One issue is a poor formulation that causes the seams to fail easily. If you plan to install a TPO roof, get the membrane from a proven manufacturer.

Proven Solutions to Prevent and Solve TPO Membrane Issues

Finally, we’ll explore four tips that will ensure your TPO roof lasts.

1. Choose a thicker TPO membrane.

Remember that thicker membranes perform better. TPO roofing cost may be higher but the membrane itself offers enhanced protection. It’ll resist hail and foot traffic better. Usually, thicker membranes come with additional warranty coverage. Membrane sheet thickness ranges from 40 mils up to 90 mils.

2. Invest in a quality installation.

cartoon shadow of commercial roofing contractor
Qualified commercial roofing contractors carry years of experience. You can be sure that they will handle your TPO roofing using the best methods.

Start with the right commercial roofing contractors. Properly installed roof membranes last longer because they experience fewer problems. During installation, roofing contractors must use the best practices to avoid creases and surface cracking. If you are from Youngstown OH, choose a local contractor that specializes in TPO. Roofers with a proven track record also partner with top manufacturers.

3. Apply a roof coat membrane system.

Here at J&M Roofing LLC, we restore TPO roofing systems and other flat roof membranes with our roof coat membrane services. Roof coatings are solutions for TPO roofs that start to wear and tear. Basically, we evaluate your TPO roof and determine if we can still save it by applying coatings. We use membrane coating systems by Conklin. Here are some of the great benefits of using this remedy on your roof:

Eliminates roof tear-offs – Admit it. Tearing off an old and damaged TPO roof to replace it is expensive. Little do commercial property owners know that they can simply apply coatings to solve many of its problems. Once the coating is in place, you get a roof that doesn’t only look brand new but also functions like new.

Reflects sunlight and promotes comfort – Got an aged TPO roof? Know that you can slow down the aging process by using our roof coatings. You get a cooler TPO roof surface that prevents heat from entering your building. Now, enjoy a cooler environment and lower energy bills.

Clean appearance – You don’t need a new flat roofing membrane to get a nice-looking roof. Our roof coatings seamlessly cover your entire TPO membrane. After the application process, your roof will look neat and clean.

Watch the short video below to get a good idea of how we apply these roof coatings:

4. Get regular inspections.

Proper TPO roofing maintenance starts with detailed inspections. Schedule an evaluation twice a year. Your roofing contractor will identify issues that developed and perform the needed repairs. They may even recommend a restoration service, which we, J&M Roofing LLC, can do.

Wrapping Up

We hope that we gave you more than enough information on what is TPO roofing. The bottom line is that TPO roofs make a worthy investment for any commercial property. Like any flat roof, TPO roofs come with drawbacks. Sometimes these drawbacks are consequences that result from poor maintenance, materials, or workmanship.

If you want proven professional TPO services, J&M Roofing LLC is here. We serve the needs of our Youngstown OH clients. We mainly offer roof coatings and restoration services using Conklin’s products. Our goal is to breathe new life into your commercial flat roof. What are you waiting for? Contact us today at 800-773-1616