White roofing membrane has reached its prime. Its popularity is increasing as its benefits are recognized not only by architects and roofing contractors, but also by local government officials.



White roofing membrane has reached its prime. Its popularity is increasing as its benefits are recognized not only by architects and roofing contractors, but also by local government officials. As evidence of this, New York City is now mandating the use of white roofs.

Wilbur Kline, an Allentown, Pa.-based architect ranked in the top 100 specifiers by McGraw-Hill, is ahead of his time in many ways, but specifically in his views of a rooftop’s role in energy conservation.

Nearly 20 years ago, Kline designed a reroof for his own office/residence with extra insulation and an elevated air channel to release built-up heat from the sun. He also recognized the benefits of light-colored, reflective roofing well before the idea became a mainstream practice. That’s why he specified Carlisle SynTec Sure-White® EPDM to replace his existing built-up asphalt system, which had failed after 12 years.

Today, Kline is preparing to reroof the structure with a fresh layer of Carlisle’s Sure-White EPDM membrane.

“I’ve been very satisfied with the product,” said Kline. “The membrane itself is still in good shape - the old neoprene edge flashing failed over time, and subsequently, the underlayment needs to be replaced.”

Recent Advancements

With such advancements in EPDM technology as factory-applied tape and pressure-sensitive flashings, Kline is anticipating his new roof to well-exceed the 18-year performance of the last roof.

“I can’t remember any kind of problem with any project in which I used EPDM membrane,” said Kline, who exclusively specifies Carlisle EPDM membrane for low-sloped roofs. “I just kept specifying Carlisle membrane because the performance was consistent.”

White EPDM membrane has a history of solid performance in the Northeast. As New York City turns to white roofing systems, it will prove a formidable contender to thermoplastics, energy caps and coated BUR systems as a reliable solution to the urban heat island effect.

For more information about Carlisle’s Sure-White EPDM membrane, visit www.carlisle-syntec.com.