Your silo’s metal roof is paramount to its functionality. This single structure does not only shield your silo’s valuable contents against rain, snow and wind. Without it, your team cannot fill your silo efficiently – nor can they benefit from a safe work environment.
Unfortunately, a silo’s great size coupled with the relative inaccessibility of its roofing means this important structure too often goes neglected. Silo roof failure resulting from frequent usage and exposure to the elements, which brings both workplace inefficiency and accidents, inevitably follows. One must never fail to have their silo’s roof regularly inspected by a metal roof repair specialist for this very reason!
A reputable metal roof restoration service will ensure your silo’s roof possesses the integrity it needs to provide uninterrupted service as well as promote greater safety for your crew. But just detecting problems is inadequate. To provide the roof maintenance your silo deserves, they may employ any number of flat roof repair techniques including the application of coatings.
Technological advancement over the past several decades has greatly improved every facet of modern metal roof coatings’ performance. Still, there remain a fundamental four types of coatings that are suited to a silo roof’s needs: acrylic, epoxy, polyurethane and synthetic rubber.
Each of these coatings possesses different strengths and weaknesses with regard to how effectively they repel adverse elements including rain, water, ultraviolet light and corrosive materials, as well as sustain heavy usage and traffic. Their abilities to avoid damage from continual thermal expansion and contraction may differ, as might the tenacity with which they adhere to a given metal surface. For this reason, two or more substances might be combined so that the final coating possesses multiple strengths and fewer weaknesses.
Let us briefly go over the relative advantages and disadvantages offered by each of the four fundamental roof coatings so you may make a better informed decision as to how you can protect your silo’s metal roof.
Acrylic is the first commercially available elastomeric coating. It is cost-effective, very easily installed, and its extreme reflectivity conveys superior protection against damage from UV light. That last advantage makes acrylic roof coatings very popular in America’s sunny southland.
However, as a water-based product, acrylic should not be applied at temperatures beneath 50 °F. Its tendency to let water pond on flat surfaces makes acrylic better suited for pitched metal roofs rather than flat ones. Furthermore, acrylic’s relative lack of durability means it will not last as long as certain other coatings. It can prove invaluable as an addition to a hybrid coating, however.
Epoxy’s greatest blessing is arguably its ease of application. This highly adhesive substance bonds to metal roofs quickly and with little need for preparation. It also creates a continuous membrane that is impermeable to water, and its UV resistance is sufficient for a broad range of climates.
But epoxy’s disadvantages are many. It is highly flammable, emits potentially hazardous fumes, and has a tendency to crack and peel away when subjected to freezing temperatures for extended periods of time. Epoxy also adheres poorly to itself, making it impractical to add more epoxy to existing coats.
This plastic material boasts excellent stability when subjected to intense UV light. It is additionally durable, flexible, resistant to accumulating dust and grime, and quick to adhere to most surfaces including metal roofing. Certain polyurethane applications also boast exceptional resistance to impact, thus making them ideal for areas which receive heavy foot traffic.
That said, certain other polyurethane coatings (such as spray polyurethane foam or SPF) are wholly unsuited to areas which receive any foot traffic. If damaged, SPF coatings will likely fail to repel water infiltration. Polyurethane may also prove weaker to humidity than other types of coatings.
Artificial rubber doesn’t just look nice. It excels at reflecting UV rays, possesses excellent tensile strength and resultant durability, may bond to metal more effectively than foam, and resists taking damage from a broad range of hazards including fire, water, fungi, corrosive materials, and extreme weather. Synthetic rubber’s ability to create an expansive and uninterrupted waterproof barrier suits a larger roof ‘s needs especially well.
There are few potential drawbacks to synthetic rubber roof coatings. Although the it repels UV rays, the adhesive which bonds it to some surfaces may gradually degrade under direct sunlight. Foot traffic and sharp objects may also slice open or otherwise damage this supple surface.
Determining which type of coating is best suited for your silo’s metal roof may seem daunting at first. But NIJAC is standing by to make sense of it all for you! As one of the Midwest’s leading providers of grain silo roofing services, we are standing by to offer any assistance you might need repairing, restoring or coating any type of metal roof – including selecting and applying the ideal coating for its unique needs.
We welcome you to contact us today!