Are Roof Coatings a Repair or a Roof?

The question of the day is: Are roof coatings a long term solution or temporary fix?

Roof coatings as any other roof system can be installed well and can be a long term roofing solution. However if installed improperly or using cheap products roof coatings can actually compound the current problems that your roof is having.

Roof coatings have been given a bad name due to poor installations of cheaply made products. Poor installation of coatings such as too thin of coats or not enough coats of coatings per manufacturers recommendation.

Coatings can be used as a temporary roofing solution in the interim while waiting for correct conditions for a total replacement. However if the coatings are installed as a system by a qualified contractor they can be a more permanent solution.

Roof coatings are usually installed within the following parameters:
1 to 4 coats of coatings depending on the manufacturers requirements for the specific roof the coating is being installed on.
There are many different application rates at anywhere from 1/3 gallon per 100 square feet for primer to 2.5 gallons per 100 square feet for single pass top coats. All application rates depend of roof conditions and ambient temperatures.

The other reason that roof coatings fail in most cases are due to the conditions that the coatings were installed in or the substrate (roof surface) they were installed on. As in the examples below:

  • Acrylics installed in ponded water roof areas causing the coating to lift and fail
  • Any product applied over a silicone coating or caulking compound that is not like and kind in chemical makeup, Such as acrylics installed over silicone roof coating.
  • Any products applied over fresh Aluminum Asphalt based products which is also known as Silver Coat.
  • Urethanes and silicones applied while there was moisture present on the roof surface, which will cause the products to lift and separate.
  • Any coating installed not at manufacturers recommendation for application rate and number of coats.
  • Any coating installed on a fresh metal roof with some sort coating or manufactures oil on the surface.
  • Installing any coatings over an uncleaned or dirty surface.


Coatings can be a great solution in many situations where a tear off of existing roofing systems will be cost prohibitive or will expose the interior of the structure to possible water intrusion during the tear off processes. Roof coatings systems have been known to last 25+ years with no maintenance and 40+ plus years with routine roof maintenance. Coatings roofs also can receive NDL warranties just like any other conventional roofing system. Some coatings manufacturers will even write us to 25 year NDL warranties. To wrap up just like any other other system a properly installed roof coating system will last for a long time just like any other commercial roofing system.


If you have any questions regarding roof coatings or if you think that your roof would be a good candidate for a coatings system contact us at CRS through our website.