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Atlanta Roofing: Article About Built Up Roofing

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Because snowstorms are rare in Southern states, flat roofs are much more commonplace in the region than in localities to the north. While metal roofing systems are frequently used for production plants and oddly shaped buildings, the most widely installed type of flat top structure is built up roofing. The acronym BUR refers to these systems, which consist of layered bitumen along with felts and surfacing. For a century, BUR systems have functioned as sturdy and long lasting formations. They are thick and waterproof with sufficient chemical resistance and protection from ultraviolet rays.

The bitumen can be either asphalt or cold tar. When the felts are manufactured from mopping asphalt and fiberglass that has been permeated with asphalt, four plies are usually laid like shingles. The entire roof is then covered with a mixture of asphalt and either gravel, slag, crushed marble or stone. On the other hand, the fiberglass in the plies can be impregnated by coal tar, in which case the surface material is a combination of coal tar and aggregate. A BUR system must be installed by professionals in order to ensure that the membrane is completely watertight. Atlanta roofing specialists can offer advice concerning the best types of materials to use. After the choice has been made, experienced roofers will heat the bitumen to the exact temperature necessary for maintaining the quality while bringing it to the right consistency for application.

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Modified bitumen membrane systems include a cap sheet that is elongated and able to withstand heavy tension. These newly developed hybrid combinations are easier to install than standard BUR systems and add uniformity.

The essence of putting on a BUR is the stacking of the materials in layers called ply sheets. Insulation is often added to the structure as one slab, and ballasted asphalt is gaining in popularity because it can be implemented as fire retardant surface material. In most cases, ply sheets are prefabricated into pieces that are about 36 inches wide. Some of today's cold BUR materials can be sprayed on or administered with a squeegee. This method of application is safer than the traditional approach because toxic fumes are not emitted during the process.

BUR systems, which are occasionally called tar and gravel roofs, are worthwhile investments for both residential and commercial buildings. If kept in good repair, these roofs can last up to 40 years. They are strong enough to be walked on and inspected for potential leaks. Although the installation cost is normally higher than that of shingle roofs, the BUR's durability makes it a very cost effective option.

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