What Is Foam Roofing, And Is It For You?

Foam roofing is a product that allows contractors to create surfaces using sprayable products. These are typically produced using products like polyurethane, and it can be handy for use in a variety of commercial, industrial, and even residential settings. The product is a two-part liquid that expands to several times its original volume. It ultimately forms a seamless, lightweight surface that's ideal for roofing in certain circumstances.

Energy Efficiency

When performed properly by a qualified foam roofing system installation services provider, this process yields a very energy-efficient surface. The final surface lacks seams, and the relatively high density of the molecules makes it difficult for air to escape a structure through it. Closed-cell spray foam generates an R-value of about 6.5 per inch. For reference, that makes it competitive with many types of insulation. Used in conjunction with insulation, it's possible to achieve highly efficient results.

Easy Repair and Maintenance

Another appealing factor with a foam roofing system installation is that it can be easily cared for over a lifetime. If cracks or holes form in it, those can simply be cleaned out and filled in with more materials. Dealing with dents and dings from debris hits is also simple. This is one reason it's popular for use on many commercial and industrial buildings, where it is a good substitute for other flat roofing solutions, such as asphalt.

Coating Is Critical

Polyurethane is prone to cracking when subjected to sunlight. For that reason, it's essential that the coating process is handled with close attention. Recoating is especially important. While a foam roof can last about 50 years, it will have to be cleaned and recoated every 15 to 20 years to restore the UV barrier.


Foam roofing can be applied to other types of substrates, including wood, concrete, metal, and even some other roofing materials. If you're trying to get a few more years out of an existing roof, it's worth asking a contractor whether it can be used to add a new layer of roofing. One downside is that foam works best on roofs that have small slopes. A foam roofing system installation at a steep angle can cause abnormalities and inconsistency. If you have a flat roof, though, it's likely a good option.


Nationally, projected costs for installation range between $3 and $5 per square foot. Some repair jobs may cost more due to specific considerations.

For more information, contact your local roofing service.