Stop Rooftop Water Before It Damages Your Building

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Published | 04-09-2020

Cover Boards Put Moisture Resistance to the Test

On a commercial building’s large scale, the financial effects of dealing with water damage can be devastating. All it takes is one burst pipe or roof leak to experience the first-hand damaging toll that water can take on a building—and quickly. It’s not just cleaning up a spill, either. Once you’ve stopped the actual water intrusion, you also have to take care of any potential structural erosion and mold development. How can something so ordinary wreak so much havoc in such a short time?

The pipes aren’t the only place potential water damage looms; leaky roofs are a top source of commercial building damage. In fact, a 2016 Ducker Worldwide roofing consultants survey named moisture as a roof’s most frequent destructive event,

estimating that nearly half of all assemblies sustain moisture-related damage within the first 10 years.[1] Even a minor leak can be very costly if it’s not taken care of quickly and professionally.

When you consider how heavily you rely on your building’s roof to keep your investment protected and profitable, the prospect can be daunting. But you can take tangible steps to help ensure you’re defending your building against moisture from the top down.

Moisture Damage Costs Big Dollars

Whether manmade or a natural disaster, your roof is exposed to a variety of risks. From strong winds and hailstorms to dropped tools, heavy equipment and other sources of damage—punctures, tears, and cracks in the roofing system leave an invitation for water to seep in and cause damage. All it takes is just one good rain after an unexpected maintenance accident, and your bottom line feels it.

If water soaks into the insulation under the roof membrane, it can result in mold growth, unhealthy air quality, and structural rot. Not to mention, wet insulation can lose up to 40% of its energy-saving, R-value heat flow reduction and often needs to be replaced.

But even without an opening for entry, did you know moisture can still get in and cause long-term problems if the roofing system isn’t properly designed? Chances are you probably haven’t heard the term vapor drive—which describes the scientific occurrence when a significant temperature difference between the inside and outside results in moisture transitioning in or out to find balance. (Think: condensation.) Moisture will flow from warmth to cooler areas, from high to low density, and from high to low pressure. So, depending on your building’s geographical location, seasonal weather changes can lead to warm, humid moisture within the roofing assembly.

“Compared to roof leaks, which are more obvious and identifiable, vapor drive is a silent killer in the roof assembly,” warns Mikael Kuronen, Georgia-Pacific Gypsum’s Director of Product Management. Without you seeing it, that trapped moisture can sprout mold in a matter of days but take weeks to start showing signs.

Regardless of the source, trapped moisture can begin to degrade the roofing materials and weaken its internal structure. And moisture left unchecked inside the building assembly easily becomes a breeding ground for mold—a whole new nightmare to manage.

Commercial buildings with low-slope or flat roofing can run a particular risk of mold and algae growth in higher-humidity regions, often signaling roof damage that might otherwise go undetected. Eventual structural damage concerns aside, tenants across the U.S. (both residential and commercial) have won multi-million- dollar cases against their landlords for toxic mold-related health concerns. That’s a list to avoid joining.

[1] Research conducted by Ducker Worldwide, Troy, Michigan, Roofing Consultants’ Survey October 2016.

Cover Boards Enhance Moisture Resistance

Along with any appropriate drainage support, including a cover board is another key ingredient to a proper roofing design. Designing the roof for extra protection against long-term moisture accumulation through vapor drive and providing extra durability to withstand sources of puncture, cracks, and tears just makes sense.

Cover boards are sturdy roof boards added under the membrane to provide extra structural strength to support weight across the assembly and extra protection around the more delicate and absorbent materials (like insulation). A high-performance cover board quite literally puts a strong layer of protection between intruding water and the roof deck and insulation to help block potential water build-up and vapor transference below.

But not all cover boards are created equal. You need a high-performance, moisture-resistant cover board to really get the job done. EONIC™ Technology has doubled DensDeck® Prime Roof Board’s resistance to moisture, making it the only roof board to meet the industry’s tough new Three-Part Specification for moisture resistance. Independent testing also noted 83% better puncture resistance in roofing assemblies with DensDeck Prime cover boards than ones using HD ISO or no cover board at all.[1]

And if water does get in, tests show DensDeck Prime absorbed 76% less water than the alternative coated glass mat gypsum boards available on the market.[2] In a standard two-hour soak test to assess the board’s overall stability, DensDeck Prime was still 87% stronger than its coated glass mat gypsum competition.[3] The results are clear.

Costly repairs eat into whatever gains you might make in a good year or hope to break even with on a bad year. It’s important to take whatever strategic actions you can to mitigate unforeseen expenditures. Choosing to include a high-performance cover board in your building’s roofing assembly is a critical strategic step to take. DensDeck Prime cover boards can help you better defend your building against these common sources of moisture damage. Learn more at DensDeck.com.

[1] Third-party testing of ¼” DensDeck cover boards conducted by Jim Koontz & Associates in July and August 2014, in Hobbs, N.M., in accordance to ASTM D5635 standards. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LipoYSLb80

[2] Independent third-party testing conducted by PRI Construction Materials Technologies concluding in October 2017. Test conducted in accordance to ASTM C473 to meet ASTM C1177.

[3] Third-party testing of 1/2” boards conducted by Trinity ERD in Columbia, South Carolina in October 2016 and December 2017. Testing conducted in accordance to ASTM C473 to meet ASTM C1177.

Request a Sample of High Performance Cover Board Today.

Cover Boards Enhance Moisture Resistance

Along with any appropriate drainage support, including a cover board is another key ingredient to a proper roofing design. Designing the roof for extra protection against long-term moisture accumulation through vapor drive and providing extra durability to withstand sources of puncture, cracks, and tears just makes sense.

Cover boards are sturdy roof boards added under the membrane to provide extra structural strength to support weight across the assembly and extra protection around the more delicate and absorbent materials (like insulation). A high-performance cover board quite literally puts a strong layer of protection between intruding water and the roof deck and insulation to help block potential water build-up and vapor transference below.

But not all cover boards are created equal. You need a high-performance, moisture-resistant cover board to really get the job done. EONIC™ Technology has doubled DensDeck® Prime Roof Board’s resistance to moisture, making it the only roof board to meet the industry’s tough new Three-Part Specification for moisture resistance. Independent testing also noted 83% better puncture resistance in roofing assemblies with DensDeck Prime cover boards than ones using HD ISO or no cover board at all.[1]

And if water does get in, tests show DensDeck Prime absorbed 76% less water than the alternative coated glass mat gypsum boards available on the market.[2] In a standard two-hour soak test to assess the board’s overall stability, DensDeck Prime was still 87% stronger than its coated glass mat gypsum competition.[3] The results are clear.

Costly repairs eat into whatever gains you might make in a good year or hope to break even with on a bad year. It’s important to take whatever strategic actions you can to mitigate unforeseen expenditures. Choosing to include a high-performance cover board in your building’s roofing assembly is a critical strategic step to take. DensDeck Prime cover boards can help you better defend your building against these common sources of moisture damage. Learn more at DensDeck.com.

[1] Third-party testing of ¼” DensDeck cover boards conducted by Jim Koontz & Associates in July and August 2014, in Hobbs, N.M., in accordance to ASTM D5635 standards. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LipoYSLb80

[2] Independent third-party testing conducted by PRI Construction Materials Technologies concluding in October 2017. Test conducted in accordance to ASTM C473 to meet ASTM C1177.

[3] Third-party testing of 1/2” boards conducted by Trinity ERD in Columbia, South Carolina in October 2016 and December 2017. Testing conducted in accordance to ASTM C473 to meet ASTM C1177.

Have A Roofing Expert Contact Me

Want to learn more about cover boards? Have a new roof construction project? Need assistance on a roof remodel?

HAVE A ROOFING EXPERT CONTACT ME

Want to learn more about cover boards? Have a new roof construction project? Need assistance on a roof remodel?