Introduced to the roofing market in the early 1990s as a more economical and efficient alternative to PVC roofing products,
TPO roofing systems are making more appearances on roofs these days. Now, with the new rib profile system, TPO is experiencing even more popularity as seen on the Maryland Heights Community Center in St. Louis, Missouri installed July 2016. Bade Roofing was honored to have worked on this project, installing the largest Versico TPO Rib Profile Roofing System to date. As business owners contemplate their roofing needs for future projects, it’s important to first understand what TPO roofing systems are and the pros of installing them.
TPO is a single ply roofing system consisting of a thermoplastic polyolefin membrane that’s comprised of three layers:
1. TPO polymer base.
2. polyester-reinforced fabric center (scrim).
3. thermoplastic polyolefin compounded top ply.
There are several benefits to installing TPO roofing systems. One of them is its reasonable cost in both residential and commercial construction. Like PVC roofing, TPO roofing systems supply hot-air weldable seams and energy efficiency, but at a lower cost.
Another benefit is TPO’s versatility. Business owners appreciate the fact that TPO is manufactured to look great on a variety of commercial building styles. They also appreciate that all colors of TPO roofing membranes are UV resistant. And you’re not limited to a white roof in order to enjoy energy saving and reflective properties. TPO roofing systems have white, light grey, and black reflective color options.
Durability is another benefit. TPO membranes are flexible, allowing for a building’s movement and settling. TPO’s thermoplastic membranes resist dirt accumulation, mold growth, tears, impacts, and punctures. Compared to other single ply roofing products, TPO membranes handle a building’s thermal expansion and contraction much more effectively.
A fourth benefit is installation. Because TPO membranes are manufactured with wider sheets and are light weight their roofing systems are easier to install and there are less seams. This also means less work and time associated with installation, translating into direct savings for the cost of installation.
Now that we understand the pros of TPO, let’s point out the benefits of the TPO Rib Profile roofing systems. First, Rib Profile systems have aesthetic appeal. The Maryland Heights Community Center’s roof achieves the look of a standing-seam metal roof with the TPO Rib Profile hot-air welded in a parallel pattern to the exposed surface of its TPO membrane. This design casts a distinctive shadow that can be seen from the ground or surrounding areas.
Additionally, TPO Rib Profile roofs stand up to the harsh St. Louis weather, channeling rain water, sleet, and snow better than other roofs. The TPO Rib Profile is extruded from the same weather-resistant TPO compound as the TPO roofing membrane, ensuring comparable weathering characteristics. A 1/8” fiberglass reinforcing cord runs the length of each section for dimensional strength and stabilization. During installation Rib Profile sections are joined together by non-corroding, fiberglass pins for continuity and compatibility throughout application.