Roofing/TPO membrane

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Question
I have read that TPO membranes in Europe of are a higher quality and use less filler material. Some PVC manufacturers like Fibertite and Durolast claim to "not use any filler material" and thus claim to offer a better sheet that is thinner than their standard 45ml TPO counterparts. Is there a manufacturer in the US that is or will be following suit by offering a "pure" TPO sheet in the near future?

Answer
Quincy,

Fillers are a part of selling product, and when added to a formulation in a quantity that does not affect performance, then effectively the cost of the product is reduced resulting in more sales at a better margin.  A pure TPO sheet is not likely as a large part of the TPO formulation is fire retardant as TPO is inherently flammable and cannot pass UL fire testing for use in roofing with out them.  I do not think a 'pure' TPO is likely, however I am not in a position to monitor the pulse of product development.

Fibertite PVC formulation contains a higher percentage of KEE which is a polymer that has proven to provide superior long term performance properties to the sheet over other more popular PVC type formulations.  They have to offer the sheet in a thinner profile i.e. Fibertite regularly substitutes there 40mil sheet when a 60mil sheet is specified in order to be cost competitive.  At least Fibertite uses a reinforcing scrim that increases the puncture resistance of the thinner membrane.

I guess that was a long way of saying, "No."

Consider your goals with the TPO and why this material is important over any other material, and if thinner is really better when it comes to the PVC.

Regards,

Bruce Ryan II, RRO
Professional Roof Consultants, Inc.

Roofing

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Bruce A. Ryan II, RRO

Expertise

I offer solid knowlege of all types of Commercial and Residential Roofing, Waterproofing, and, Building Envelope systems. Experience ranges across low slope and steep slope roof systems. I am also well versed in matters regarding condensation and ventilation. I enjoy donating some of my time and knowledge to the betterment of others.

Experience

Bruce Ryan has 20 years of roofing, waterproofing, and building envelope consulting experience with PRC, with 5 years of commercial roofing experience prior to joining the firm. He became Vice President of the company in 1998. Bruce Ryan plays a key role in the development of practical, long-term roofing and waterproofing solutions, along with implementation of on-site forensic studies. Bruce also has a high level of experience with regard to the impacts of roofing materials and construction for demanding clients with heavily occupied structures.

Organizations
Oregon Construction Contractors Board Construction Specifiers Institute National Roofing Contractors Association The Institute of Roofing, Waterproofing, & Building Envelope Professionals Oregon Board of Investigators Installation Masters

Education/Credentials
University of Maryland BS Business & Administration Registered Roof Observer - RCI Private Investigator Certified EIFS inspector - Northwest Wall and Ceiling Bureau Certified InstallationMaster™ - The Installation Masters™ Training and Certification Program (developed by American Architectural Manufacturers Association)

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