RKD Blog and News Articles

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Welcome to our blog/News segment. Here you will find commentaries, guides, advisories and the latest news from RKD

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Which Rubber Roofing System is best for me?

RKD have five Rubber Roofing Systems with Rubber Roofing Kits available. Thus we believe that with some consideration we will have the right kit and products to suit your project. So how do you decide which membrane is best for you? Below is a quick overview of our EPDM and Rubber flat roofing systems with links to our landing pages for more information. Beneath you will find a comparison table between our systems which should guide you in the right direction. Our Rubber Roofing Solutions We have five different roofing solutions for you to choose from: 1 - The One-Piece ClassicBond system is our most popular EPDM. It comes in 2 types of Kit (standard property size kits and generic meterage

I've got bubbles (blisters) on my new Rubber Roof. Why?

Bubbles of air are unsightly but won't cause the membrane to fail - so that's good news. The bubbles are trapped air or moisture. These can be caused by a variety of issues which are all avoidable if the roof design is correct and the membrane is correctly installed. The most likely causes - Vapour from Contact Bonding Adhesive Nine times out of ten the issue here is not letting the adhesive become touch dry before bonding the EPDM The adhesive is solvent based and must be allowed to gas off and become touch dry prior to bonding the membrane into position. When the rubber membrane is bonded too quickly, and prior to the adhesive drying, bubbles will appear under the membrane caused by the tr

What is a Geotextile underlay used for on an EPDM roof?

1. The Geotextile fleece underlay can be used on top of the rubber membrane to protect it from sharp objects when it is planned to cover the membrane with pebbles for fire protection. 2. Where a cement screed is being installed to provide a hard wearing surface for slabs or tiles on top of the rubber membrane the Geotextile fleece can be placed on top of the EPDM to protect it from sharps in the screed. 3. The Geotextile fleece can in certain circumstances be used under the rubber membrane when installing directly over the old roof. This will protect from sharps that may puncture the rubber membrane. In this scenario the rubber membrane can not be glued in place - it is therefore secured us

What adhesive do I use when bonding Duoply EPDM?

DuoPly EPDM membrane is extremely versaile. It can be bonded to almost all existing flat roof materials including bitumen based products such as torch on felt, asphalt and liquid mastics. This EPDM roofing membrane is a polyester reinforced elastomeric flat roofing membrane which consists of EPDM laminated to a polyester reinforcement layer. Timber Tissue Faced Insulation Glas Fibre Felt Asphalt and Many More Advantageously the fleece reinforcement offers protection from the oils in bituminous products that would normally damage EPDM rubber membranes. This improves puncture resistance meaning that flat roofs can be repaired without removing the existing roof. Caution - roofs which have suffe

ClassicBond EPDM - what substrate can I bond to?

So for a starter - What can ClassicBond EPDM be bonded to ? ClassicBond EPDM is best bonded on to timber surfaces such as roofing grade plywood or OSB3 (Oriented Strand Board) sometimes called sterling board. It can also be bonded to light weight concrete and other non porous surfaces such as Fibreglass and tissue faced insulation. Importantly - What Surfaces Cannot Be Bonded To? ClassicBond EPDM can not be bonded to bitumous surfaces such as: Roofing felt Asphalt Liquid mastics The EPDM will tend to draw the oils out of the bitumous material which causes the EPDM to lose its molecular structure and fail. As such care should be taken when removing the old Bitumous roofing membrane as it may

Are your 3 systems - ClassicBond, Restirix and Duoply BBA Certified?

Yes all three systems are BBA certified ClassicBond EPDM holds the British Board of Agrément certificate, No. 11/4853. DuoPly™ EPDM holds the British Board of Agrément certificate, No. 11/4853. RESITRIX Sytem holds the British Board of Agrément certificate, No. 06/4329. The BBA carries out assessment, testing, approval and certification of products and systems for the construction industry against national requirements, internationally recognised standards or other relevant technical specifications. The ClassicBond system is also fire rated, the 1.2mm EPDM has a fire rating of EXT.F.AB and the 1.5mm EPDM membrane is fire rated to EXT.F.AA. The RESITRIX System is also fire rated Fire behaviou

Can EPDM be laid over an existing roof covering?

Each of our EPDM Rubber membrane roofing systems can be bonded to a range of different surfaces. If you plan to leave your existing roof covering in place and install a new waterproof membrane over the top of it please consider the following: ROT - A roof is only as good as its foundation timber work - If the existing roof deck and supporting timbers are rotten there's no way around this they will need to be removed and replaced. OSB3 or exterior grade plywood are recommended for EPDM UPGRADE INSULATION - Whilst you are renovating your roof consider a new warm deck insulation. - If the existing roof deck is good then in most cases the existing waterproof layer such as felt can be left in pl

Can I install a cement screed over my EPDM Membrane?

Yes! EPDM rubber membranes are not effected by cement or lime additives, unlike TPO and plastic single ply membranes, making them ideal for waterproofing screed decks. Our clients often utilise Geotextile Matting laid over the top of the EPDM to give it added protection from sharps in the screed. EPDM Membranes are also often used as a waterproof barrier underneath exposed cement screeds. They offer a much tougher alternative to a traditional visqueen membrane which are often damaged by the aggregates in screeds. Ideal applications include balconies, terraces and reinforced concrete roof decks over underground structures. Our EPDM roofing membranes offer an attractive waterproof finish to ro

Can I install tiles or slabs on top of my Rubber Roof Membrane?

Yes - to install slabs or tiles on top of an EPDM flat roof is certainly a commonly used option. There are a couple of options here depending on the type of decorative finish you require and the design of slab. 1) A slab support, as above, can be utilised underneath the concrete slabs and placed directly on the EPDM rubber membrane. RKD provide paving slab supports which are 15mm high circular plastic discs that support the corners of 4 slabs in a standard check board pattern. Water will pass through the gaps in the slabs and safely away to the gutter. 2) If you wish to install a fully bonded ceramic or decorative tile covering on the flat roof you will require to lay a minimum 70mm screed

Can I walk on my EPDM Rubber Roof? - I'm thinking Balcony here.

Can you walk on a rubber (EPDM) roof - Yes, but only to an extent. All RKD Rubber Roofing Systems are designed to enable LIGHT foot traffic during installation and for any occasional cleaning or maintenance. If you require more use than this, i.e. for a balcony or sundeck, as stated, additional materials can be laid over your EPDM for a more durable solution. There is a common sense factor here. By light traffic we assume that installers will not be wearing studded boots and that should access require materials to be laid on the roof (ladders etc) that protective planking to spread any load will be used. Note - Our Resitrix System can withstand a higher level of traffic and is suitable for e

ClassicBond and Firestone - What's the difference?

RKD get asked from time to time what are the differences are between the two systems. Obviously we stock ClassicBond so to offer a critique would be unprofessional. So here are some salient facts. In essence ClassicBond and Firestone Rubbercover are the market leading brands for EPDM Rubber Roofing Membrane Systems. ClassicBond is manufactured in the United States by Carlisle Syntec,. They are the largest producer of EPDM in the world. ClassicBond is the original EPDM - it was first used on commercial roofs in the 1960's. Firestone was launched at a later date in the 1980's. With its longevity ClassicBond can claim to have a proven 50 year life expectancy with many roofing instances still

How thick is an EPDM Rubber Roofing Membrane?

The Roofing Kits Direct range of Rubber Roofing membranes come in the following thicknesses - ClassicBond and ShedCover = 1.2mm or 1.5mm RESITRIX = 2.5mm DuoPly = 2.54mm It is also useful to note that our liquid system option ElastaThane, which is a polyurathane liquid, is applied in one coat of 1.2mm

What's the biggest size EPDM roofing sheet I can buy?

The biggest sheet size available from RKD, in each system, is as follows. Note - All sheets can be joined where the roof size is bigger than the maximum sheet size: ClassicBond & Shedcover 1.2mm - 15.25m x 30.5m (50ft x 100ft) ClassicBond & Shedcover 1.5mm - 15.25m x 15.25m (50ft x 50ft) DuoPly 2.54mm - 1.52m x 12.20m (5ft x 40ft) RESITRIX 2.50mm - 1M x 10M (3ft 4" x 32ft 10") The biggest EPDM one piece sheet sizes available in the Roofing Kits Direct range come from our ClassicBond range. Membranes can be supplied in one continuous sheet up to - 15.25 metres x 30.5 metres in the 1.2mm thick membrane and 15.25 metres x 15.25 metres in the 1.5mm thick membrane. RKD understand that covering

Can I install EPDM under a shallow pitched roof where I need to have a tiled finish

The pitch angle of your roof will determine what type and design of tile can be installed. Some modern interlocking roof tiles will accommodate a pitch angle as low as 15 degrees, where as more traditional Rosemary or Victoria tiles require a 35 degree pitch minimum. Here the client needed to install a traditional tile on a roof where the pitch was too low for the tile EPDM membranes can be installed on any pitch of roof however in certain circumstances it might be important for the roof to have a tiled finish. In the following steps we will show how a roof can be waterproofed using an EPDM membrane and then have a decorative tile overlaid on counter-battens to give the desired finish. Here'

Do I need Special Tools for EPDM Rubber Roofing

RKD ethics are to provide the kit or product required, simply and professionally. Rubber Roofing can be absolutely ideal for the competent DIY user. As far as tools are concerned will only typically need a standard 9" roller set, mini roller and brush for applying the adhesives and primers. A Seam Roller is a useful tool for tapes and joins and the RESITRIX system will require a heat gun for joins. For a one piece mebrane from our ClassicBond, and ShedCover ranges the only tool that might be termed specialist is a seam roller. A seam roller is used to compress the flashing and seam tapes when a repair or a join is being made in the rubber membrane. If the roof only consists of a single membr


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