Roofing Tops Tight Schedule

Distribution center TPO roof is applied in winter temperatures using Secure Bond technology.

The Five Below distribution center roof used UltraPly TPO SA with Secure Bond technology, allowing the roofing to take place in weather as cold as 20 F.

At the grand opening ceremony for its 1,045,000 sq. ft. distribution center, Jeff Brown, National Freight Inc. (NFI), Cherry Hill, NJ, president and vice chairman, referred to the “tight timeframe” for the construction.

Tight? The project was completed in 10 months from groundbreaking in September 2014 through June 2015. That’s when the warehouse tenant, retailer Five Below Inc., Pedricktown, NJ, began shipping product.

As in any building project, weather can be a serious factor, especially during the roofing phase. Roofing contractor Dave Bieber, owner of M. Potteiger Inc., York, PA, submitted a bid that called for completion before winter began.

Weather shouldn’t have been an issue in installing the single layer, metal deck, 3.3 in. of mechanically fastened ISO board, and 12 ft. x 100 ft. sheets of 60-mil Firestone Building Products’, Indianapolis, UltraPly TPO fully adhered, field applied adhesive as specified. Instead, due to several delays, the roof installation began just as one of New Jersey’s coldest winters was about to begin.

The challenge

“Sometimes winter can be a cruel beast when installing a roof,” said Bieber. Field-applied adhesive requires time to flash-off to allow the TPO membrane to be glued to the insulation. No sun and low temperatures equate to even longer delays for the crews to continue the job. With time lost due to the weather, the very real possibility existed of not having the roof dried-in soon enough to allow work inside the building to proceed.

Understanding time issues like these, Firestone Building Products introduced UltraPly TPO SA with Secure Bond technology—a product that could be installed in temperatures as low as 20 F. Contractors could now install a fully adhered system without letting the weather dictate their schedule.

Jeff Purvis, president of Performance Roofing Associates Inc., Exton, PA, a Firestone sales representative, brought the product to the general contractor with the help of the builder, ARCO Design/Build Northeast Inc., King of Prussia, PA. It would be used to enclose a critical perimeter section of the roof. This would allow the crew to work on the building interior. The crew had never installed the product, but with the help of Firestone’s on-site advisors, it didn’t take long to figure it out.

“We rolled the sheet out, put it into place, had two roofers on each side of it and loosened the contact film,” said Bieber. “They just started pulling it back. And as they did, the sheet laid into place. It took maybe three or four minutes to run down that 100-ft. sheet. The looks on the guys’ faces were like, ‘Wow, this is pretty easy.’”

The result

“You don’t have any glue to mix or keep warm,” said Purvis. “No empty buckets to dispose of. The job site is just so much cleaner. You literally just have the rolls, the fasteners, and the welding equipment, so it just made it really easy.”

Bieber sums up the results very simply. “We could install more roof per day because we didn’t have to wait for the glue to dry.”

They say in the roofing industry that one of the highest compliments for a job well done is that the roof looks like it grew there. Very flat. Very uniform. No wrinkles or other imperfections. “When we look at that surface with the UltraPly TPO SA technology, that is exactly what we see,” Bieber said proudly.


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