Project1_Layout 1 07/05/2013 FLAT ROOFING & WATERPROOFING SYSTEMS
The sky’s the limit for advances in
roofing practice and materials
The roofing industry has undergone huge changes over the past decade, writes Shay Casey, senior sales manager at Sika-Trocal. Technology has
inspired its growth, with specification and design innovation keeping step with dynamic project visions
Building information moelling, digital
presentations and even refurbishment
surveys can be carried out using a
drone or virtual programmes. Technical
advancement has led to a marketplace
brimming with new products and systems.
Greater choice has led to increased competition,
with contractors offering complete roofing
and cladding packages – a major change in the
specification and application process.
The introduction of a wide range of
new membranes has seen contractors adapt
specifications to ensure the most cost-effective
installation; an option not available to architects
or clients who no longer have the power to uphold
the original specification. This can result in them
having to accept products of inferior quality,
which isn’t ideal.
Today’s roofing contractors need to be more
financially aware than ever before, due to the rise
of extended payment terms and retentions, which
have proven a huge burden to buyers and suppliers.
Firms throughout the construction sector have also
had to adapt to new ways of self-marketing.
The internet, and more particularly, social
media has revolutionised the way we communicate.
A large LinkedIn or Twitter presence can spread
positive word of a contractor’s service offering in a
matter of seconds.
Environmental concerns have also led to a lot
of roofing industry changes, with the introduction
of green and cool roofs, solar panels and further
developments in roof lighting. The Green Guide
has led to vast improvements in recycling,
manufacturing footprint and roofing performance
in terms of thermal values and sustainability.
The knock-on effect of the drive for a
‘cleaner’ project delivery means sales teams
not only have to be fluent in their products’
properties, but an understanding of their
compatibility with new technologies and
environmental standards is also required.
Virtual reality is another hi-tech revelation. From
simulated flight control and fair ground rides, to
historical battlefields and exotic holiday destinations,
a world of artificial exploration is available for those
with a taste for exhilaration which is free of risk.
It’s likely virtual reality will also prove
useful to the roofing sector in the coming years,
allowing stakeholders involved in a project to
visualise how it will look when completed. This
will help minimise misunderstandings between
parties which can lead to frustrating, costly
delays for the client.
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New technologies should – in theory – make
for more rapid construction, with contractors
able to tailor projects to a client’s specific needs.
It might be that technology will replace people
skills in certain areas of construction. In which
case, with digital wizardry perhaps taking care
of a project’s more technical aspects, it might
mean the industry’s future workforce will merely
require a broad range of abilities and knowledge
to remain employable.
Over the coming decade, the roofing industry
will doubtless face many challenges, and as
practices and systems change, members will be
required to adjust accordingly. With the support
of trade associations such as the Single Ply
Roofing Association and the National Federation
of Roofing Contractors, the future should hold no
fear for those involved in the roofing sector.
Tuff Waterproofing launches GRP roofing system for commercial market
Tuff Waterproofing, the supplier of heavy-duty
GRP waterproof flat roofing, has launched a new
system offering a combination of fast installation,
ease of use and high performance which is ideal for
the commercial market.
A durable, completely seamless waterproof
encapsulating membrane, Tuff Tech Pro VP/UV
is ideal for new or existing flat roofs, walkways,
balconies and gutters. Its advanced fast-curing
formulation is quick and easy to apply, significantly
reducing time and labour on site. Available with
installation training on request, the product is nonhazardous
and can be applied in damp atmosphere.
Tuff Tech Pro VP/UV is completely dry within
eight hours and fully cured within 24 hours to
form a waterproof membrane across the whole of
the application area. Brush or roller applied, the
solution is designed for excellent adhesion to a
range of substrates, including bitumen membranes,
asphalt, metals, brick and concrete.
According to the company, the Tuff Tech Pro
VP/UV has excellent wetting out and moulding
capabilities to accommodate complex shapes
A high-build, elastomeric, moisture-triggered
polyurethane membrane that comprises three
layers of advanced polyurethanes, Tuff Tech Pro
VP/UV also incorporates a separate reinforcement
layer. It can be recoated at any time prior to the
end of its maintenance life, thus extending its
working life indefinitely.
Greg Gimenez, managing director of Tuff
Waterproofing, said: “Whereas our established
TuffStuff GRP roofing is designed for new OSB
timber boards and overlay systems, Tuff Tech
Pro VP/UV is aimed mainly at the commercial
market. It is a cost-effective system for contractors
and trade professionals in need of time-efficient
solutions, which minimise site disruption and avoid
delays caused by adverse weather.
“Tuff Tech Pro VP/UV offers many
advanced performance features including vapour
permeability, flexibility throughout its service
life and a totally seamless barrier with no welds
or joints. Like our TuffStuff range, Tuff Tech Pro
VP/UV is cold-applied, with no heat used during
installation, and has built-in solar reflectivity,
providing excellent thermal and UV stability for all