The hot sun bearing down on roof surfaces

One of the great aspects of a reflective roof coating is the profound impact it can have on a building’s interior climate. The majority of commercial roofing materials are not adequately designed to prevent the flow of heat from constant exposure to the sun’s UV rays. As a result, the sun’s heat permeates throughout the roof structure and ultimately transfers to the building below. This causes warmer temperatures inside the building as well as higher energy costs.

Reducing the Sun’s Impact is Key

When it comes to reducing the sun’s impact on roof surfaces, reflective roof coating systems greatly outperform most conventional roofing membranes (e.g., modified bitumen, EPDM, and built-up roofs). In fact, these systems can reflect up to 80-90% of solar radiation and reduce energy costs by 10-30% on average. This added layer of UV protection not only helps to maintain cooler interior climates and reduce energy usage but also prolongs service life by preventing degradation of the existing roof membrane.

To help us illustrate the effectiveness of these highly reflective and energy-efficient coating systems, we feature a small repair project that recently took place on 10,000 sq. ft. modified bitumen roof located in downtown Mobile, Alabama.

Project Overview

The property owner did not initially voice concern over the building’s interior climate but did report several roof leaks throughout the building. To determine the extent of the problem, an inspection was conducted by an American WeatherStar Approved Contractor.

The first step was to identify the source of the leaks. While the roof was in fairly good condition, the contractor was able to determine that a few isolated portions of the roof membrane—specifically around seams and penetrations—showed significant signs of deterioration, and were in definite need of repair. In cases such as this, compromised flashing details are the most likely spots for roof leaks to occur. If not addressed quickly, they could lead to a more extensive and costly repair project down the road.

Next, the contractor addressed the “problem areas” of the roof by applying localized sections of our Ure-A-Sil Roof Restoration System. Since this particular project did not require a full-roof system application, it took only a few days to complete. In the end, the Ure-A-Sil System stopped the leaks and the building owner was satisfied with the quality of work.

VIDEO: Click here to watch the Ure-A-Sil System being installed on a modified bitumen roof.

During a follow-up inspection a few days later, the contractor performed an infrared scan of the underlying roof deck. The results clearly showed a significant reduction in surface temperature in the areas where the Ure-A-Sil System was applied (pictured below).

Reflective Roof Coatings Reduce Heat Absorption

As you can see in the infrared images above, the coated sections (dark purple) of the roof are far more effective at minimizing heat absorption than the non-coated areas (bright orange). Though the main objective of this project was to stop leaks, the added level of reflectivity and UV protection provided by the Ure-A-Sil System cannot be understated.

After all, roof leaks are most often the result of constant exposure to UV radiation as well as inclement weather. That’s why minimizing the sun’s impact is essential to the long-term success and performance of a commercial roofing system.


Reflective roof coating systems are a great way to improve the UV stability and energy-efficiency of commercial and industrial roofs. If you are a facility manager or property owner and would like to know if a fluid-applied roof restoration is right for your building, click here to schedule a free roof evaluation with an American WeatherStar Approved Contractor.