It is no secret that we are living through challenging times. Costs are rising, and a recession is looming — across the globe, businesses from all industries are considering how they can save money.

In the construction industry, rising prices, low availability of labor and material shortages prompted by the ongoing global supply chain crisis are making for particularly difficult conditions.

Some contractors have been forced to present higher prices to customers who are already experiencing their own financial pressures. At the same time, organizations are looking to reduce capital expenditure wherever possible, and are increasingly seeking cost-effective solutions.

In addition to improving the energy efficiency of buildings, silicone roof coatings (when applied in white) can help to minimize the harmful damage caused by UV exposure. In turn, this can help prolong the service life of the roof.

Despite these challenges, there are excellent opportunities for roofing contractors who can offer affordable fixes and restoration.

In this feature, we’ll discusses the opportunities in restoring roofs with silicone coatings and how they can be an attractive proposition for customers from a sustainability, cost, and practicality perspective — even in times of recession.

Cost Benefits — Attractive Long-Term Solutions for Customers

Roofs are an integral part of a building’s safety and longevity — so when something goes wrong, it is essential that it is resolved promptly to prevent further damage to the building’s overall structure.

Replacing a roof can be extremely expensive, where the cost to tear off an existing flat roof and replace it with a new TPO, PVC, mod-bit, or metal roof can reach as much as $1,500 per square foot. This can make a full roof replacement financially impossible for many building owners, especially when they are working with reduced budgets and restricted capital expenditure.

Roof restoration projects, on the contrary, can be funded by the maintenance budget — making it a smart choice for customers trying to make savings. This is a powerful selling point for contractors, as it provides a platform to emphasize their financial benefits over a full replacement and deliver effective, long-term solutions.

An Energy Efficient Option

In addition to being more cost-effective to implement, roof restoration can also deliver long term energy efficiency savings. This is another great selling point from a cost perspective.

Restoration using a roof coating in white can not only improve insulation but also assist in controlling internal temperatures. Studies have revealed that a cool roof can reduce energy used by air conditioning by 8–48 kilowatt hours/m2, and the maximum temperature by 2.2 to 6.7 degrees Fahrenheit (1.2 degrees to 3.7 degrees Celsius), depending on the climate. This can make a remarkable difference to the internal comfort of a building, which also reduces energy required for air conditioning.

As energy prices across the globe continue to rise, roofing contractors can use this as a selling point — helping building owners adapt to the situation by offering an energy-efficient solution.

Considering Cool Roofs: A Sustainable Solution

These energy-efficient benefits are also positive from a sustainability perspective, as using less energy to control temperature can reduce the carbon footprint of a building. A roof in white reflects more sunlight and absorbs less heat than a conventional, dark-colored roof.

Roof coatings can be applied to new builds and existing buildings, where their heat reflective qualities mean they control temperatures.

In addition to improving the energy efficiency of buildings, silicone roof coatings (when applied in white) can help to minimize the harmful damage caused by UV exposure. In turn, this can help prolong the service life of the roof. This makes them an excellent candidate for buildings that are located in warm climates and are required to perform in extreme temperatures.

Restoration rather than replacement also has other sustainability benefits as it extends the life of existing materials, meaning less expended roofing materials end up in landfill. Waste can be a real issue in the construction world and a significant obstacle when it comes to achieving real sustainability.

For example, it’s estimated that 40% of all CO2 emissions are generated from waste in landfill sites — so choosing to repair, instead of replacing a roof, is an effective way of reducing this. In a time where building owners are increasingly being expected to implement sustainable solutions, this can be a particularly persuasive selling point of roof restoration.

Silicone vs. Other Solutions

Reflective tiles, shingles, and sheet covers can all be used in roof restoration and cool roof projects.

However, silicone coatings can offer several advantages, including cost, lifespan, and performance. Their chemical composition makes them inherently resistant to breakdown under UV light. This enables them to maintain their flexibility and water resistance for the full time they are in use, which is great news for buildings expected to endure challenging weather conditions.

The extent to which silicone products can outperform alternative chemistries was revealed in a 30-year test we ran from 1983 to 2013 to evaluate the long-term durability of a variety of sealant types. When the test concluded, silicone was a clear winner, ranking higher than alternative chemistries for most of the testing criteria.

As we navigate an unstable economy and move towards a future where sustainability is increasingly prioritized by customers and contractors alike, roof restoration is a cost-effective solution that brings a wide range of environmental benefits.

About GE Branded Construction Sealants

The GE brand of silicone construction products from Momentive Performance Materials is a world class line of high-performance, 100% silicone sealants and coatings for the construction industry. GE is a registered trademark of General Electric Company and is used under license by Momentive Performance Materials Inc.

We understand the challenges that come with roof restoration, and offer a complete silicone coating system that extends roof life expectancy, increases energy efficiency and reduces your carbon footprint.

Enduris roof coating is made from a 100% silicone formula that allows the coating to expand and contract with the movement of the roof – remaining stable, flexible, and resilient from the day it is applied and for years to come.