An industry workhorse

EPDM membranes help provide roof systems with long-lasting durability during extreme weather

For more than 40 years, EPDM membranes have been one of the roofing industry's workhorses. Long appreciated for durability, longevity, ease of installation and repair, many EPDM membrane roof systems installed during the 1980s still are performing well. But EPDM now is being appreciated in a new context.

Although you might dispute the cause, there is no doubt extreme weather events are increasing worldwide. Houston has experienced three 500-year floods during the past three years. In early January, the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) reported 2017 set a new record for destructive storms. Sixteen "weather and climate disaster events" each caused more than $1 billion in damage in the U.S. These included droughts, one "freeze event," flooding and tropical cyclones as well as Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. Together, these storms inflicted more than $306 billion in losses. Beyond the material loss, these disasters accounted for the deaths of at least 362 people.

Although all roof systems may be vulnerable to extreme weather, building owners, architects, specifiers and contractors can lessen that vulnerability with their roof system choice.