Flat Roof Waterproofing
Flat roofs can be a cost effective solution to building design and whilst the old adage of ‘flat roofs leak’ may have applied back in the day, this is no longer the case. Waterproof Labs Firestone RubberGard™ EPDM is engineered to seal commercial, industrial and residential flat and low slope roofing applications for new and existing buildings.
Firestone RubberGard™ EPDM is the membrane of choice in many countries on account of its ability to stretch, reduce the number of joints required, ease and speed of application, protection against UV and it’s cost effectiveness. In addition, EPDM flat roof waterproofing systems can be applied over existing, failed waterproofing, is eco-friendly, recyclable, insulates your roof, requires no maintenance and is easy to apply.
An appealing feature is that we can cover your flat roof with minimal seams. Our EDPM is supplied in large rolls – our EPDM is supplied in rolls of up to 15m wide x 30m long (450m²). Our popular rolls are 6m wide x 30m long membranes (180m²). This flexibility in the size of the membrane enables the project team to select a size of membrane that will reduce the number of seams on the roof, which is typically time-consuming and an important element of any installation. Additionally, it is a naturally elastic material, with over 300% elongation
Residential, Commercial & Industrial Flat Roof Waterproofing
Other key advantages of EPDM as a flat roof waterproofing material:
- No fire to torch
- No electricity needed
- Chemically sealed with a special bonding adhesive to wood or masonry
- EPDM is a naturally elastic material with superior flexibility and durability
- Flagship quality is the exception detail work that goes with the system using Firestone Form Flash (see video)
- Can be applied to wood or masonry
- RubberGard™ EPDM membrane is eco-friendly and recyclable and has been certified by the Singapore Green Labelling Scheme (SGLS)
- Waterproof Lab’s Flat Roof Waterproofing System leads the race in the market
- Top 5 Benefits for using our system
EPDM is an extremely strong and resilient roofing system that has in excess of 50 years life expectancy when installed and maintained correctly – ideal for all your waterproofing needs.
Scuderia Amazon Building
This building’s flat roof has a lightweight screed as the structure would not accept anything heavier upon it. Waterprooflab was awarded the job of sealing this roof. You can see the builders joining two seams with adhesive below. Waterproof Lab used 6m wide, 30m long EPDM membrane, minimising seams, which can pose the risk of water ingress.
Camps Bay House
Waterproof Lab sealed this roof with EPDM which was loose laid, stabilised and protected with stone aggregate on top of a protective geo-textile layer. The ballast system offers the advantage of a cooler roof in summer and a warmer roof in winter, at a lower initial installation cost to the landlord!
Frequently Asked Questions
A rubber membrane that is available in rolls measuring 3m, 6m or 9m wide & 30m long, which can either be loose laid or fully adhered, to flat roofs of various substrates, with a lifestyle expectancy of 50 years. Click here to get an overview of the different EPDM roofing systems
With an integral UV protector in its manufacture, it has been proven to last in excess of 50 years, through a range of climatic conditions, including rain & snow, below freezing, to the hottest, ultraviolet laden sun;
Applying EPDM is a simple process, employing a specially formulated contact adhesive & sealants, to lay over a flat roof or other surface & once adhered, smoothed out to ensure a crease & bubble free finish;
Over more than 50 years, EPDM has been manufactured to a special blend of environmentally friendly materials, including UV inhibitors, which has been proven to last in excess of 50 years, under the most adverse conditions – successful where others have generally failed;
One of the benefits of EPDM, is that it does not require protection from the elements, which saves on on-costs over the years. This is unlike similar competitive products which a Silvakote or similar every 2-3 years to maintain the warranty and protect the membrane from the sun. However, should one prefer a coloured aesthetic finish, there is no reason that it shouldn’t be coated with an acrylic-based paint;
There is absolutely no reason why it should not work as well on pitched roofs. In fact it presents a very sensible option to waterproofing, with the ability to cover the existing roof cladding, without having to reroof, be it metal, tile, or whatever, & it will be particularly effective, due to the pitch enabling even greater water management;
This total installation cost will depend on the amount of detail required to waterproof. Size of roof & the number of water outlets or other penetrations, such as water &/r air-conditioning pipes, are a variables that can attribute the total installation cost. However, we would like to assess each situation on it’s merits, so we can estimate the least expensive price to assist our clients – so please get contact us at +27824151694 so we can discuss your project.
Each project has its own merits however in general, EPDM membrane may be laid over asphalt or other materials, by first laying a sheet of ‘Bidem’ to protect it from the original material.
No problem; simply lay a screed of cement over the protected EPDM, ensure is a ‘fall’ in the substrate to allow water to efficiently drain to the outlets and tile’. We do this all the time and this feature sets us apart from most waterproofing membranes in the market,
There are many materials which have historically been used for waterproofing flat roofs. However Waterproof Lab’s RubberGard EPDM membrane has become the membrane of choice in many countries, on account of its ability to stretch, reduce number of joints required, ease of application, protection against UV & cost effectiveness;
- It is most eco-friendly, having been used for years as a pool liner which sustains fish life & plant growth. Firestone RubberGard EPDM is an inert roofing material with limited environmental impact during manufacturing, installation and use:
- The initial production of the membrane has a low embodied energy number.
- The effectiveness of the EPDM polymer results in low quantities of polymer being required to obtain proper mechanical and physical properties.
- During the membrane’s service life, no toxic substances are released from the membrane, allowing collection and use of run-off rainwater for household applications.
- EPDM is a very highly durable material: Firestone RubberGard EPDM has outstanding weathering characteristics and a life expectancy up to 50 years.
- In regions like South Africa where Heat Degree Days outnumber the CoolDegree Days, a black EPDM membrane on top of a properly insulated roof can help to save energy and reduce associated carbon emissions.
- At the end of its service life, the membrane can be recycled and re-used
For more information on eco-friendly properties of the Firestone EPDM Roofing and Lining Systems, download the EPDM Sustainability Brochure
These ecological benefits, in combination with the membrane’s life expectancy of up to 50 years, make RubberGard EPDM an environmentally friendly roofing solution.
Due to the ever increasing concern for the environment, green roofs are becoming a regular part of our landscape. The RubberGard EPDM membrane has successfully passed the FLL test for root penetration resistance in green roofs. It is an ideal membrane for combination with extensive green roof systems using lightweight and low maintenance sedum vegetation.
The ecological benefits of a green roof system are numerous:
- Reduction of the urban heat island effect
- Reduction of energy costs
- Stormwater management
- New habitats for plants and animals
- Improved air quality
- Reduction of noise pollution
Combine this with a Solar System solution, will be the ultimate in saving energy costs and reduction of carbon emissions – click here to find your eco-friendly solution or Green Roofing System
- A resounding yes. See how we did this here in an installation we did in the leafy suburbs of Noordhoek in Cape Town – see Waterproof Lab Facebook Page for video showing how we do it
It has many benefits, which are listed in our ‘Benefits & Gains’ brochure.
For best results, you will require a measuring tape, a chalk line, a pair of scissors, a paint brush & a rubber roller;
It is always best to allow the substrate to dry before applying the membrane, as it is important to ensure that the bond between the membrane & the surface is not compromised.
EPDM is a blend of materials – Ethylene, Propylene, Diene Monomer, which imparts it’s outstanding flexibility, strength & waterproofing characteristics, making it the most ideal, long lasting, material to use for any waterproofing problems, most particularly, flat concrete or other, roofs;
EPDM is tough, flexible & resilient to foot traffic. Unlike most other waterproofing membranes, one of Waterproof Lab’s EPDM roofing systems main benefit is that it is also very easily & quickly repaired in the event of accidental damage ; simply cut a patch, apply a primer and Formflash patchto the damaged area, allow to dry & stick the patch down – & wallah! you once again have an uncompromised waterproof roof/deck! See video for explanation
- We currently import rolls of EPDM, measuring 6m wide x 30m long x 1.14mm thick, thus effectively giving access to a square area of 180m2. We can get bigger sizes too but imagine covering 180m2 with now seams!
NB: Detailed instructions as to the application procedures of our EPDM, appear in our website, as do videos of the full application procedure. Click here to access the information
I have used Waterproof Lab on two occasions recently and have been very impressed with their service and expertise on both occasions.
In August, 2018, Waterproof Lab repaired a flat roof over a stoep, and lined a water feature at my house, that were both leaking. The flat roof was originally waterproofed with ‘Torch-on’ some 20 years ago and has leaked numerous places over the years.
Each time, the same product was used to repair the waterproofing, without permanent success.
It seems to be an inferior product, which is difficult or impossible to install on any flat roof that is slightly difficult, despite my using the most highly recommended installers (5 different firms over the years!).
I finally decided to try the EPDM product, based on published reviews and chose Waterproof Lab as the installer.
They impressed me at being extremely efficient at installing the product – and I am renowned for being difficult to please! I have had no Problems since then.
At the same time, they lined a water feature that was leaking – the builder had waterproofed it with a liquid product, that did not live up to to it’s s upposed claims. Again, the EPDM has shown no signs of leaking since it was installed.
Based on my satisfaction with their work at my house, In October, 2018, I asked Waterproof Lab to provide me with expert opinion on major Water leaks that have been occurring at a new block of apartments, Hugon Place in Claremont, of which I am a Trustee. They pointed out numerous problems that the builder/developer & well-known waterproofing company had failed to identify to us, or address properly, and the latter are currently attempting to fix these problems – which they have not managed to solve during the previous two years. Again ‘Torch-On’ had been used at this site; if it leaks again, I will be recommending to the other Trustees, that we appoint Waterproof Lab to install EPDM.
I would highly recommend Waterproof Lab for their expertise – from their expert advice, I would doubt that there is anyone in South Africa more knowledgeable than them – excellent service and what appears to be a much superior and more reliable product.’
Bruce & I would like to highly recommend your Company for its standard of workmanship & attention to detail, from the time we contacted you for assistance, to the time you handed us a not inconsiderable bill for work well & successfully completed.
As you know, we had endless trouble in trying to find a solution to the problem of stopping our continuously leaking low pitch flat roof, to no avail. Since 2000 we have been trying everything to alleviate our distress during rainy weather & it was only after contacting Waterproof Lab, that you managed to solve our problem for us.
The EPDM membrane which you guys applied in February, 2019, is the only solution that has finally worked! It’s such a weird feeling now when it rains, I don’t have to rush around putting drip catchers all over the house. It’s not cheap, but it does work….
And you’re also all such nice guys!
We’ve had ZERO issues with the section you did last year. Bruce recently completed the Polycrete on the remaining corrugated sections, but is not yet convinced that we need the membrane – time will tell, we may need you to come & quote after winter!
Thanks once again for helping us to overcome our nemesis.
We’ll recommend you to all our friends & acquaintances.
Water started seeping into our spare room after a crack formed in our wall following road construction.
We faced a potentially extremely costly and disruptive repair, but Waterproof lab were recommended to us through our plumber and we asked them to consult on the best solution.
The team were incredibly generous with their time, doing a few site inspections before coming up with a proposed repair plan. It was not an easy repair as required working with a number of contractors over a short period of time.
The team were always professional and on time, got the job done efficiently and with really good, quality results. We have had no issues following the use of the RubberGuard membrane, even during the most torrential rain. Thank you Waterproof lab for your excellent service, we would definitely use you again for any waterproofing needs!