Modified Bitumen: Ultimate Roof Protection

Modified bitumen roofing is a roof system that combines traditional bitumen material with a variety of reinforcement fabrics and modifiers. This combination creates an elastomeric roof covering that is highly resistant to impact, water leakage, wind uplift, and ultraviolet radiation. 

Roofing materials

What are modified bitumen & built-up roofing?

Modified bitumen roofing is an advanced step up from built-up roofing systems (BUR) in terms of durability and flexibility. Much like BUR, it is equally well suited for flat or low-slope commercial roofs but receives a boost by the addition of fiberglass reinforcement and various polymerized rubber and plastic materials. This boosts its strength beyond that of typical BUR, allowing installers to create stronger waterproof membrane systems as part of either two-layer or multi-ply layers.

Why choose Ruca Consulting & Construction for your modified bitumen & built-up roofing?

Have you encountered hail or weather damage and need modified bitumen or built-up roofing replacements? If so, Ruca Consulting & Construction is your go-to contractor. Most other contractors skimp on the quality of work to save money, but at Ruca Consulting & Construction we will not cut any corners when it comes to replacing your roof. We strictly adhere to all building codes and regulations to ensure a superior installation that can stand the test of time for many years. Quality work is our primary mission, as we understand how important it can be for a roof to last.

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When did modified bitumen and built-up roofing first appear?

Modified bitumen first appeared in the mid-1960s as an alternative to built-up roofing and revolutionized the commercial roofing industry. While built-up roofing had been used extensively, it was often found lacking in areas of cost, simplicity, repairability and resilience to extreme temperatures. Modified bitumen was developed to combine bitumen with polymers and fiberglass membranes – making it a simpler, more durable product that could meet all these requirements. It was quickly adopted as a solution for practical yet long-lasting roofing solutions throughout Europe.

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Benefits of modified bitumen and built-up roofing

Modified bitumen and built-up roofing provide superior protection in cold climates and against extreme temperatures. Many commercial buildings across the country now utilize this type of roofing due to its strength, durability, and affordability. Additionally, when certain types of materials are used, Modified Bitumen Roofing can provide white roofs that can be used to improve a building's energy efficiency and reduce the amount of heat absorption in urban areas. Ultimately, Modified Bitumen Roofing provides exceptional protection from weather-related damage at a fraction of the cost compared to other flat or steep-slope roofs.

Types of modified bitumen roofing membranes

Modified bitumen roofing membranes are engineered roofing membranes that increase the life of a roof system. The two main varieties of modified bitumen membranes are APP and SBS, which stands for atactic polypropylene and styrene-butadiene-styrene, respectively.

  • SBS membranes are rubberized asphalt couplings featuring a mix of asphalt and polymerized rubber, which offers added flexibility and elasticity making them an ideal choice for buildings with roofs that contract or expand with extreme temperature changes or those subject to higher foot traffic areas.
  • APP Membranes are nicknamed “plastic asphalt” couplings due to their mix of asphalt blended with plasticized polymers that become elastic when exposed to high temperatures. They offer excellent UV resistance and a “cool roof” effect.

Modified Bitumen Membranes offer long-lasting, durable solutions perfect for any structure in need of a reliable roof system.

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Types of built-up roofing systems

When it comes to built-up roofing systems, there are three key types you should know about:

  • Smooth Surface Insulated BUR System over a Plywood Deck
  • Gravel Surfaced Insulated BUR System over a Steel Deck
  • Mineral Surfaced Insulated BUR with Vapor Retarder over a Concrete Deck

Each of these systems comes with its own unique benefits depending on your specific needs. So be sure to take the time to research each one thoroughly before making any decisions.

How are modified bitumen & built-up roofing applied?

Modified bitumen membrane is an extremely versatile roofing material and comes in handy rolls that can be fitted directly to the substrate of a building. This process can be as simple as cold rolling it into place with an adhesive, or more technical processes such as heat welding. Many roofs benefit from two layers - a base layer and a cap layer - though some use three or more layers depending on the requirements.

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