Flat & Low Slope

Roof Membrane Types

As people continue to move into Central Texas, Brenham-area building infrastructures are getting bigger to accommodate larger office spaces, workshops, and larger workforces. As a result, extensive roofing areas that cover those spaces can only be covered using a membrane material. Since flat or low-sloped roofing assemblies were introduced, high-pitched roofing was used less along with its ability to rapidly shed water. Fortunately, new technology has delivered a water-resistant element and various manufacturers have developed a building top covering that can be immediately applied to decking. This innovation, known as membrane material, is widely used in new building projects as well as for repairs to meet such a waterproofing need.

Common Types

This material is most commonly used in commercial buildings; however, it has been used in many housing projects because of its impermeability to water and various weather conditions. There are three basic types of elastic membranes: thermoset, thermoplastic, and modified bitumen.


Made from synthetic rubber, it is welded together at the edge to form a strong covering and the thickness ranges from one to two inches. It is comprised of the most common Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM), Chlorosulfonated Polyethylene (CSPE), Neoprene (CR), and Epoxy Coated Rebar (ECR) and can provide resistance to different weather conditions as a leak-free covering. In addition, it can be installed through adhesion, using batten bars, or ballast.


Unlike thermoset, this type does not require vulcanization to fuse the seams together to create a continuous membrane. The edges are connected using bonding agents or heat to form a durable covering that can keep water away. Thermoplastic PolyOlefin (TPO) and Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) fall into this category.

Modified Bitumen

This is the least expensive and is widely used in residential applications. The asphalt is mixed with modifiers (APP and SBS) to form a rubber-like characteristic. This is also known as the “sandwiched” material because of the different layers of components used in forming the system. It can be heat-welded, cold processed, or adhesion processed.

Essential Benefits

There are many benefits to be gained from using this membrane:

  • friendly to the environment
  • ease of installation
  • easily repaired
  • minimal maintenance
  • cost-effective and economical
  • excellent performance
  • reduce utility consumption during winter and summer
  • prevent water penetration
  • fire resistance
  • impact resistant

Inspection Requirements

Although the elastic membrane is durable and strong, it will still deteriorate due to wear and tear, installation inaccuracy, and many weather conditions. Because of this, whether flat or pitched design, it will require regular roof inspection by a Brenham roofer to detect any problems earlier to prevent problems, preferably on an annual basis. The examination should also be done to check performance versus design function, looking for any signs of deterioration and/or repair needs.

When selecting a new roofing assembly for commercial applications, rubberized membrane materials can be a good choice. Aside from cost and performance, the material can deliver many other benefits and advantages over a conventional asphalt system, providing excellent functionality and extended service life. Some experts believe it is the solution to be sure that a roof is watertight and impenetrable for 20 years or more.