Single Component Roofs Trump Built-Up Roofs Every Time

Brad-KirklandBy Brad Kirkland, CSI, Kingspan Insulated Panels

Roofing contractors, architects, specifiers, and design professionals alike look for the competitive advantages when it comes to time, money, and efficiency. With the help of the single component metal roof system, that search is over. The single component roof system finally provides all of these advantages in one single option compared to the traditional Built-Up Roof (BUR) system. Take a moment and discover the good, the bad, and the ultimate solutions that come with leaving BUR for a single component roof system.

Single Component, Multiple Solutions

While BUR is still a prominent solution for commercial building, there are so many advantages that come with the implementation of a single component roof system that BURs are simply unable to provide. First and foremost is the cost saving factor that gives the single component system its name. Built off-site, this roofing system comes to the build site pre-assembled, as the one step installation solution that allows contractors to potentially cut the build-times by up to 50 percent. This also eliminates the need for multiple trades on site, which prevents potential scheduling delays, saving everyone involved time and money.

The advantages continue with the highly desired energy efficiency that comes with single component systems. Single component systems are the choice for the long run when it comes to cost cutting and savings. The thermal performance that comes with its higher R-value, superior airtightness, and low thermal bridging can result in potential energy savings as high as 30 percent over standard cavity-based insulation systems.

Lastly, aesthetic appeal matters. Single component roofs can be designed in an assortment of different colors. This allows the assembly of a roof that perfectly complements the rest of the building. Plus, the true flexibility of design allows single component systems to be comfortably implemented in a variety of designs from low slope roofs to complicated roof geometries such as hips and valleys.

A New Tradition

While Built-Up Roofs have traditionally been used for years, unfortunately there have been little advancements in the implementation of this system. Roof tar hazards can aggravate asthma and lung conditions. Plus, the smell alone will have businesses wanting to shut down during the construction process. Additionally, if the smell and potential roof tar hazards weren’t enough to get under your skin, the build speed (or lack there of) will.

Additionally, BURs are known to be very heavy, so much so that they sometimes require the building’s joints to be strengthened before completion. Other problems like having gravel clogging up gutters and scuppers also make BURs a tough sell. It is tough enough finding the origin of a leak on a roof in the first place, but cover it in gravel and it is time to clear the entire schedule in search of the solution before the problem gets worse.

The Ultimate Solution

For some, BURs have been a long-standing practice, but the wise have learned to take advantage of the technological advances of the ultimate solution … the single component system.

To learn more about the KingZip™ single component roof system, visit

Brad Kirkland, CSI is Regional Sales Manager for Kingspan Insulated Roof and Wall Panels. To contact Kirkland regarding this article, call (501) 249-5204, or email To learn more about Kingspan products and systems, visit

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