ONE OF THE OLDEST ROOFING SYSTEMS STILL AVAILABLE TODAY.
How has one roofing system lasted so long with only minor changes in its design and execution?
Built-up roofs, commonly referred to as BUR, are time-tested roofing systems typically comprised of hot tar and gravel. These roofs are made up of many layers, typically ending with a top layer of tar and gravel. Built-up roofs have been around and in demand for ages, and their history is one of the main reasons building owners still choose them today.
The tar and gravel system comes out looking very clean, and built-up roofs are very aesthetically pleasing when completed. BUR are also very strong roofing systems which allows them to be more useful in terms of handling foot traffic and supporting other structures on the roof surface. This adds another layer of usefulness to your building, and more space to operate. Of all the commercial roofing systems available today, BUR has been around the longest.
Because of its simplicity, BUR is also a very inexpensive roofing system. This is a huge selling point for the system as it helps building owners to save some cash when installing or upgrading their roofing system. On top of its low price, it also looks great. As mentioned above, the gravel roofing system tends to come out looking very clean and is a nice visual feature for your roof.
Thanks to the layers that make up the system, BUR roofs are great insulators. They can save you money on energy expenses because they are very good at keeping your hot or cold air inside. That great insulating power comes with disadvantages, though.
Because they are made up of so many different layers and are such a good insulator, Built-Up roofs are also very heavy roofs. If your roof is not properly supported, this can be a problem. If you currently do not have a BUR and are considering replacing your flat roof with a BUR, you may want to double check that your building can support the added weight from the system. This can be an added cost that doesn’t add much value.
BUR roofs are also not recommended to be installed over a building with any occupants in it due to the dangers associated with the installation process. Due to the fact that the building must be empty, any delay in construction time means increased delays in your operations, which is money lost for your company.
While Built-Up roofs can be very aesthetically pleasing and are an inexpensive commercial roofing option, there is an old saying that should be considered: “You get what you pay for.” These roofs are inexpensive for a reason; they aren’t made of extremely high quality material. They can be dangerous to install, often require reinforcing your supports, and don’t have many significant advantages.