What Is TPO Roofing?

For anyone who’s worked with commercial roofing, either as a roofer or business owner, TPO roofing is a familiar sight. This single-ply roofing material has steadily grown in popularity ever since it first hit the market. Nowadays, you’ll see it on many new commercial roofs! But what is TPO roofing, exactly? And why is it so popular? At Elite Roofing, TPO is one of several commercial roofing materials we like to work with. So in today’s blog post, we’re breaking down this popular single-ply material—and why it might be the right commercial roofing solution for you!

What is TPO roofing?

Let’s start right from the beginning: What is TPO roofing, really? Well, TPO stands for thermoplastic polyolefin, and with a name like that you can see right away why everyone just says “TPO.” The name also lets you know that TPO is a synthetic material. Indeed, TPO consists of a blended membrane (typically made of materials like polypropylene and ethylene-propylene rubber) with a reinforcing scrim added for stability. In other words, it’s a specialized roofing membrane made of different synthetic materials. The membrane is manufactured and sold in sheets that are typically 10, 12, or 20 feet wide.

How is TPO installed?

TPO is typically quick to install for an experienced commercial roofing company. First, the roofer prepares the substrate (that is, the surface where the TPO will be installed). This often involves cleaning the substrate thoroughly to ensure adhesion. Then, the roofer installs some form of insulation. The TPO membrane itself is unrolled and affixed, either using a specialized adhesive or some form of mechanical fastener. Then finally, the roofer head-welds the seams between the strips of TPO to form a watertight seal. While TPO is quick to install, that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Make sure your chosen roofer is well-versed in the potential pitfalls of TPO roofing installation before they start!

What is the appeal of TPO roofing?

Now that you know the essentials of what TPO is and how it’s installed, you might be wondering: why is this material so popular? As it happens, there are several reasons for TPO’s popularity, including:

  • Durability – TPO does an excellent job standing up to the elements. It’s highly flexible, yet strong, allowing it to resist puncture and impact damage as well as tears. While TPO’s primary weakness tends to be compromised seams, you can avoid this by making sure you hire an expert commercial roofer to install your TPO roof.
  • Affordability – While it isn’t the most inexpensive commercial roofing material, TPO might just offer the best balance in terms of cost and durability. Depending on the size and type of roof you have, as well as your choice of insulation and membrane composition, installing a new TPO roof can be very affordable.
  • Energy efficiency – TPO is readily available in a wide variety of colors, unlike many other commercial materials. With the right choice of color, TPO offers built-in energy efficiency and can even be classified as a “green” or “cool” roof.

Let Elite Roofing Be Your TPO Roofing Partner!

TPO can be a great option for business owners in search of a durable yet affordable commercial roof material. The success of a TPO roof starts with proper installation, however—and that’s where the experts at Elite Roofing come in! Our commercial roofing team has helped many business owners and property managers with reliable and professional TPO installation. In addition to installation, we also provide a variety of other commercial roofing services. That means Elite Roofing can be your partner for commercial roof repairs, maintenance, and more throughout your roof’s lifespan. If you’re in need of a TPO roof installation or have questions about our other commercial roofing services, contact us today!

Image credit: Versico Roofing Systems

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