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Roof Coatings: 101 The Pros and Cons of Different Roof Coatings

Updated: May 17, 2023

Thanks to the rising cost of materials and labor, property owners are looking for ways to extend the life of their roofs instead of making costly repairs or buying a new roof. Hiring a Lafayette commercial roofing company to apply a roof coating is often the most prudent choice to get the most out of your roof.

Roaf coatings act as a protective barrier between your roof and the elements. They block harmful UV rays from the sun, limit the expansion/contraction of the roof, and are water-resistant. A proper roof coating can protect a new roof and rejuvenate an older one.

With various types of roof coatings on the market, it is essential to understand how they compare to make the right decision for your property. Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of various roof coatings.

Roof Coatings vs. Roof Replacement

When a commercial roof develops problems, it’s time to either recoat it or replace it. While adding a brand-new roof is a surefire way to protect your building, the added expense might not be in the budget.

Before your dig too deep into the various kinds of roof coatings, it’s worth exploring if it is better to coat or replace your roof. It’s always worth contacting a commercial roofing company to inspect your property and make a recommendation.

Roof Replacement

Replacing a portion or the entirety of your roof can be a cost-effective option, and a new roof can add years of lifespan to your property. You can also use this project as an opportunity to update your building’s ventilation system or correct structural issues.

The downside of a partial or complete roof replacement is that the process disrupts your building. You may have to expose portions of the property while the old roof is being removed. You also have to consider the added cost.

Roof Coating

A waterproof coating is a quick and reliable solution to a leaky roof. Roofing coating is excellent because it comes at a lower cost than new roofing installation and can be applied quickly on nearly any commercial roof design. The downside of using a roof coating is that the process does not address any structural issues on the property. It also requires significant prep work and can only be installed during specific weather conditions.

The Benefits of Roof Coating

Although roof coatings sound like a band-aide solution, they can add years of protection to the roof. There are several benefits of going this route with your Lafayette roof repair company:

Increased Roof Lifespan

No matter when you install a coating, your roof will benefit. Roof coatings protect your roof from UV rays, dirt build-up, and water, and the coating keeps your roof from breaking down as quickly over time.

Lower Cooling Expenses

With fewer UV rays penetrating your roof, your air conditioning unit won’t have to fight as hard to keep the temperature down inside.

Better Waterproof Protection

Roofs with low slopes tend to experience areas where water collects or “ponds.” This stagnant water can break down your roofing membrane and damage your property. A roof coating helps keep water deterioration from ponding water.

Updated Roof Aesthetics

Roof coatings can adhere to roofing surfaces like asphalt, metal, and wood. While the coating does not alter the look of your building, it can cover areas where the roof has started to fade, giving your property a fresh and clean look.

The Pros and Cons of the Most Common Roof Coatings

As with most construction materials, there are strengths and weaknesses to the three major roof coating options. Each one is best used in different situations to achieve optimum results. Here’s what you need to know:

Acrylic Roof Coating

Property owners who want a strong and affordable roofing coating love acrylic. This water-based coating works on numerous roofs in different climates, comes in various colors, and provides tremendous value.


● UV resistant, highly reflective, and offers straightforward application

● Provides an excellent balance of reliability and cost.


● Not the best solution in high-ponding situations.

● It can lose thickness over time due to weathering.

● Must be applied at 50 degrees Fahrenheit or above

Acrylic Roof Coating

Silicone Roof Coatings

You can find silicone roof coating that is either water-repellent or waterproof. It is one of the most common roof coatings in areas with excessive water.


● Great in ponding situations.

● Resistant to corrosion.

● Stands up to various weather conditions.

● Does not get brittle over time.


● Existing roof coating must be removed before applying silicone.

● Requires fabric to avoid tearing.

● Will lose reflectivity over time.

Polyurethane Roof Coating

Polyurethane coating has impact-resistant qualities, which makes it great for areas with lots of foot traffic. Aliphatic coatings cost more but are UV stable and hold color over time. Aromatic coatings cost less and are not UV stable.


● An aromatic base with an aliphatic top is exceptionally durable and resistant to ponding.

● Helps keep the roof cooler than other options.


● More expensive than other roof coatings.

● Often has a strong odor.

Explore Roof Coating Options with Hibbard Roofing

A leaky roof doesn’t mean you have to rush right into installing a new roof, and adding the proper roof coatings can give your roof a fresh look and new life. Regardless of which coating material you choose, it can help protect your roof and lower your cooling costs.

If you aren’t sure if it’s time for a new roof or which roof coating material is best for your property, call Hibbard Roofing. We have been the leading Lafayette roofing company for years, and we look forward to serving you. Scheduled a free quote and consultation right away.


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