Rubber Roofing Guide: Pros, Cons, And More [2023 Guide]
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Rubber Roofing: Pros, Cons, and Purpose

Posted by Northface Construction

Thinking about installing a rubber roof for your home or commercial building?

Rubber roofs are great for residential and commercial properties alike. They offer easy installation, energy-efficient components, and hassle-free repair. Not only will installing a rubber roof keep your home safe from rain and fire, but it will do so while providing long-lasting energy efficiency.

By knowing the benefits and drawbacks of rubber roofing, you’ll be able to make informed choices about your roofing materials. Let’s dive into what you need to know. 

What is EPDM Rubber Roofing?

Contractors and construction professionals know rubber roofing by its component-driven name, EDPM. EPDM is an acronym that means ethylene propylene diene terpolymer.

Rubber roofing, or EPDM, is a type of material that roofs can be made of. It is used for both residential and commercial properties. Rubber roofs are commonly made of recycled items. These materials include rubber scraps and rubber tires. They also sometimes involve saw dust and slate dust as a binding agent.

Why Should You Install Rubber Roofing?

Rubber roofing is a great roofing alternative because it is one of the most eco-friendly ways to roof a home. The rubber takes much less energy to produce than typical shingles and other roof materials. Once the rubber roofing is used, it can be recycled to make tires, rubber items, or even more rubber roofing.

EPDM Flat Rubber Roof

Rubber Roofing Benefits

EPDM roofing has many different benefits. Along with being an eco-friendly roofing material to create, rubber roofing is also energy efficient. This is because rubber roofing reflects the thermal heat of the sun rather than absorbing it.

Reflecting thermal heat and insulating the home can keep your house cool in the summer and warm in the winter. This efficiency will result in less expenditure used on heating or cooling devices.

Low Cost

Due to its energy efficiency, rubber roofing can save homeowners hundreds of dollars per year on energy bills. Rubber roofs also take very little labor to install compared to regular roofs. This makes them low-cost to both buy and install. 

Easy Repair

In addition to an easy install, rubber roofs are inexpensive and straightforward to repair. While most rubber roofs are sturdy enough to never leak or need repair, they are easy to fix when necessary.

Since the rubber is glued into place on the home rather than nailed down, it can expand and contract with the weather. This limits the amount of breakage that happens and allows for ease of re-gluing if needed. 

In some cases, liquid rubber is added to spots along the roof that need extra sealing. These repairs typically last another 20 years if done correctly.

Long-Lasting Lifespan

The EPDM material of rubber roofing itself is very long-lasting. When an original rubber roof is installed, its lifespan is usually around 40 to 50 years long. 

Rubber roofs can have long lifespans because they are laid down in one single piece. Without lining or seams, there are fewer chances for bug infestations or water leakage during stormy weather.

Since rubber roofing can withstand very high wind, heavy rainfall, and dry sun damage, many rubber roofs from the 1960s and 1970s are still being used on their original houses today.


Along with being resistant to most weather, rubber roofing is also fire-resistant. This is important for homeowners because its flame-retardant roofing membrane will keep a home safer than a regular roof can, slowing the spread of nearby flames. It will also help lower the payments on home insurance if rate-reduction options are available.

Flexible Application

Rubber roofing is available in a variety of thickness which can vary from 45mm to 90mm. In addition to a variable thickness, their size will can fitted to the exact size of your house for best performance. 


Cons of Rubber Roofing

While rubber roofing has many unique benefits, it also has some downsides. Although rubber roofing can look like shingles on a home, its shape is limited to being flat and square or rectangular. It also comes with limited color options and can be challenging to install correctly without certified help.

Limited Color Options

When purchasing a rubber roof, it is essential to remember that most EPDM materials are black. If a homeowner wants a specially made white rubber roof, they will need to pay an extra manufacturing fee. 

Although the color options of rubber roofs are limited to black and white, they can be painted. This is done with acrylic paint that can turn rubber roofing into almost any color. The acrylic paint also acts like a shellac or paint seal, elongating the roof’s lifespan.

Locating Certified Roofers

The most imperative aspect of installing a rubber roof is utilizing certified roofers. While many roofing companies are certified in standard roof installation, not all are certified in rubber roofing install. 

Make sure to use a roofer with experience in rubber roofing that offers a warranty for their services. This will ensure that your roof is installed correctly and won’t need to be redone.

flat EPDM rubber roof

The Best Way to Switch to Rubber Roofing

Are you starting to think rubber roofing might be the best material for your roof? Contact our team today at Northface Construction to learn more about switching to rubber roofing. And, if you happen to be located near Elk River Minnesota, our team of experienced are at the ready to help with your home or commercial roof.

Contact us today to learn more!


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