What does roof coating do?

Close-up of a workers hands as they apply a roof coating.

Should I get a roof coating?

A commercial building is typically a large, expanding structure. The roof of that structure needs to be durable, protective, strong, and flexible enough to keep up with the climate and weather, especially in areas like Texas. The weather is ever-changing here, and to make a commercial structure roof meet those challenges, a roof coating is recommended. 

Does roof coating stop leaks? 

If you’re considering using roof coating to stop leaks on your commercial structure’s flat roof, you’re in the right direction! A roof coating will stop existing leaks, sealing them up to keep any future leaks starting, as well as sealing any potential leaking areas. Applying roof coating over the entire roof is recommended because small cracks aren’t always visible. 

Are a roof coating and sealer the same thing? 

Yes – and no. Both roof coating and roof sealant can seal up cracks and stop leaks. A roof coating goes one step further though. 

During the heavy rains that can bombard Texas, a flat roof can turn into a pool, even with the best drainage system. With all that rainwater on a flat roof, it is bound to find any possible crack where a leak can start. A roof sealant will seal those visible cracks and keep the water from penetrating and starting a leak. 

A roof coating on the other hand coats a roof and not only seals up cracks but provides a reflective surface. That reflective surface sends the UV rays back out away from the building, keeping it cooler, a big plus in Texas summers, and helps ease the workload on your HVAC system. 

How much does roof coating cost?

Applying a roof coating to a low-slope or flat commercial roof adds a waterproofing layer that is also fire resistant. A professionally installed roof coating will lower the cost of cooling a commercial structure during the summer, a factor to consider as a ROI. It also gives a commercial roof another layer of durability that prevents chemical corrosion or physical abrasion, extending the lifespan of the original roof. 

With the per square foot price ranging between .65 cents and $5, the average of roof coating can be as low as $500 and as much as $2,000 and up, depending on the condition and size of the existing roof. is $1,186 and typically ranges between $447 and $1,961. Other factors that affect the pricing is the roof type, the type of sealant, and location. 

How much roof coating do I need?

When you have a commercial roofing contractor inspect your roof, they will give you a written estimate that will have the details about roof coating. This will include the size of your roof and the amount of roof coating or roof sealant needed. However, as a responsible owner of a commercial structure, it is wise to know how they get those numbers. 

To estimate how much roof coating your structure needs, get an estimate of the total square footage of roof surface. This is done like getting square footage of a room: Measure the length, measure the width, including dormers or wings. Then, multiply the length by the width, this will give you the total square footage.

A 500 square foot roof will need a 1 – 5 gallon bucket of roof coating and a 3,000 square foot roof will need 6 gallons. With those figures, one 5 gallon bucket of roof coating for every 500 square feet will allow you to apply a thick coating. 

How do you apply roof coating?

If you’re going to have your maintenance crew apply your roof coating, allow them plenty of time to do a quality coating. Make sure they have protection for their eyes and skin and if they are working during the summer, have them do this in the early morning hours when it is cooler using these steps:

  • Clean the roof surface thoroughly – A roof collects dirt, oils, and more and when it isn’t cleaned thoroughly, the roof coating will not stick. This can be done using a TSP solution and a bucket of water. Pour the solution & water mixture on the roof surface and then using a push broom, scrub carefully all across the roof, especially where water is known to puddle. Then rinse with clear water and allow the surface to dry before taking the next step. 
  • Repair and seal roof penetrations, seams, and tears – Use a crack and joint sealant with reinforcing polyester roof fabric. Focus on deep ponding areas and large areas that can hold water. Do not use a plastic roofing cement and if there are any major, serious ponding areas, a professional commercial roofing contractor should be brought in for the job. 
  • Once the roof is completely dry , apply the roof coating with a nine-inch heavy-duty frame, half-inch paint roller with a 6 foot extension pole to spread the roof coating out of a pail. 

The topcoat should be a thick application, for every 100 square feet, use one gallon to apply a 10 mil thick coating. 

How much does it cost to recoat a foam roof?

Every spray foam roof, at some point, will need to be recoated. No two roofs will cost the same to recoat either because there are a few factors to be considered. The first one is the size of the roof, and the next big factor is any repairs that need to be done. 

The process of applying a spray foam recoating is to clean the existing roof, make any repairs that are needed, and finally to add a new layer of roof coating. There are five key reasons a roof coating is needed:

  • Foot traffic wear on the roof
  • Storm damage
  • Wind damage
  • UV damage
  • Dirty

A  typical spray foam roof comes with a 15-year warranty, starting out with 25 mils of roof coating as the topcoat. By the time that roof has reached its 15th year, that roof coating is down to 10 mils or less. To have that recoating applied, you can expect to pay up to $3.00 per square foot. 

Your first thought may be to just get a new roof installed, as the cost will be the same, but that is wrong. Before a new roof can be installed, the old roof must be ripped off. This is like two jobs at the same time, and you’ll be paying for labor on both. A roof coating only requires that repairs be made, which is less labor-intensive. 

Worker spraying a coating onto a flat roof.

In Closing – Roof Coating Benefits 

What benefits could a roof coating provide your commercial structure?  Read on to find out what silicone roof coating provides: 

  • Silicone roof coating withstands ponding water because it doesn’t absorb moisture. 
  • Silicone roof coating doesn’t chalk off as acrylic or elastomeric roof coatings. 
  • Silicone roof coating will stay fully intact for the lifetime of the roof. 
  • Silicone roof coating doesn’t need fabric reinforcement, a money saver on installation. 

If you’re ready to learn more, or to find out what options are available to you, reach out to Weather Guard Roofing today by calling at __PHONE__.