Glass Fibre Roofing | New Flat Roof | Flat Roofs Repaired
Glass Fibre roofing will last 25 to 30 years when installed correctly.
Whether you need to repair your flat roof or require a new roof to replace a damaged one, or are you thinking about creating a new build, installing a roof will mean making a decision about what type of materials will be the best choice. The choice you make needs to be viewed as a long term investment, not only will it give you peace of mind but it can add value to your property if ever you want to sell up. This important decision may affect the future saleability of your property, so it is paramount that the right option is thought out very carefully with these points taken in to consideration
A fibreglass flat roof is an ideal choice for properties that have extensions or garages. Traditionally felt and tar or asphalt were the materials of choice for flat roofers, but since technology has advanced this is no longer seen as the best possible solution. Glass Fibre is a very durable material, has a long lifespan and requires very little maintenance, it is often chosen as the perfect choice for flat roof protection against the severe British weather conditions we now seem to be experiencing more often than not these days.
Benefits for using GRP for a flat roof are highlighted below:
• Extremely durable and hard wearing.
• Can be exposed to all weather types.
• A life-span that outlives many other Flat Roof Materials – a typical fibreglass roof will last at least 25 years.
• Requires little maintenance and can be easily repaired if necessary.
• A cheaper option to some flat roof alternatives like lead, which means fibre glass flat roofing is not a material that will be targeted by thieves,
• Can be overlaid with tiles to form a patio or roof garden.
Fibreglass roofs are also known as GRP (glass reinforced plastic). When installed layers of fibreglass matting are bonded in a two part resin it is then finished with a gel coat or top-coat that can be coloured to your specific choice. This top-coat is applied to the fibre glass flat roofing layer which promotes additional water resistance and durability. Top-coats and fibreglass roofing systems should be installed by a professional roofer for optimal results, but if you feel brave then you can use the information in this article to try and install a GRP flat roofing system yourself. However, it must be mentioned that installing a GRP without any knowledge of roofing or Glass Fibre is beyond the scope of most people. Enlisting the help of a professional is probably a better option. For information purposes however, a rough overview as to how a fibre glass flat roofing system is installed is outlined below.
Assuming that the structure of the roof has plywood boards laid securely over the joists, a GRP flat roofing system can be installed. GRP cannot be fitted in conditions below 5°C and ideally this sort of task should only be undertaken during dry warm weather. Fibre glass matting is applied to the 18mm plywood boards, and then a specialist resin is applied using a roller or brush. When this has cured a second layer of matting is applied .This adds to its durability and water resistance and is vital if you want to be able to get the best out of your new fibreglass roof. Up-stands can be formed using strips of matting and drips or capping's can be bought purpose made and incorporated into the GRP roofing system. Finally a coloured top gel coat is applied.
Replacing your old flat roof with a GRP roof is a popular option if you are looking at having a new flat roof installed on your property. Under most circumstances two experienced roofers can strip, re-deck, laminate and apply a top-coat to a roof at a rate of around 10 square meters a day.
Application of fibre glass flat roofs.
A fibreglass flat roof is a great alternative to traditional materials.
- Asphalt and felt are no longer seen as the material of choice. Fibreglass is more durable and water resistant, whilst its life span is longer and it usually works out to be more cost effective. This article however is not looking at the advantages of fibreglass roofing, but it aims to provide some useful information that will come in handy when installing a GRP roof.
- When laying any roof it is always advisable to check the weather conditions beforehand, but if you are going to fit a fibreglass roofing system in the winter the following tips will come in useful.
- Top-coating is essential to get the best out of a GRP roof, but avoid doing this after 2pm in the winter. The heat from the sun is essential if the resin is to cure, even when you have invested in a high quality top-coat that can cure at temperatures below 10°C.
- When top-coating it is a good idea to warm the resin. This can be achieved by leaving it in a warm room over night which will make it much easier to apply the next day.
- If it does start to rain, cover the roof with a waterproof sheet to protect it. Make sure you have one on standby in the event of this happening.
- If you are running out of time and have not yet applied the fibreglass lamination layer, then coat the exposed plywood with a catalysed resin. This will protect wood from the elements allowing you to continue work at a later date.
- It is vital for the wooden substrate to be completely dry before it is laminated with fibreglass. Trapped moisture will cause major problems.
As already mentioned, the tips listed above are useful for people who plan to lay a fibreglass flat roof in the winter. However, different techniques will have to be employed if you plan on laying GRP flat roofing system in warmer months.
These are outlined below.
Hot weather can cause top-coating resin to dry quickly. Ideally small batches should be mixed up regularly, as opposed to mixing it all at once. A top-coating should not be applied when the temperature is above 35°.
If a roof is top-coated in strong sunlight it will not be able to cure properly. It may be better to undertake this task later on in the day, which will save you from having to do it twice.
Apply the fibreglass laminate in short runs. By doing this the resin is less likely to catalyse and consequently have a negative impact on your roof
These tips regard the installation of your fibreglass flat roofing system, but what about caring for the tools that you have used?
Acetone is an essential product for cleaning your tools. This can be applied to paintbrushes and polyester rollers, but not the bucket that you have mixed your resin in. To keep this clean, coat the bottom of your bucket with resin. After it has cured it can be peeled out, which makes it instantly clean for the next task. Under no circumstances is it advisable to wash your hands with acetone, as it is a strong chemical that is dangerous to your skin.
These tips are useful if you are planning to fit a fibreglass flat roofing system yourself, but for high quality results it is advisable to use a professional roofing company. Professional roofers will have years of experience when it comes to undertaking tasks like this, and it is in their best interest as professionals to install a roof that is functional, durable and attractive.
Long lasting durable Glass Fibre Flat Roofing (GRP) is an excellent Flat Roof Coating for most types of flat roofs. New flat roof installations have a 20 Year Guarantee. Call now for more advice or a Free Estimate : Chelmsford 01245 200582 Mobile: 07968 556958 any-time.