The Strengths of Polyglass

Jan. 1, 2006

In Alaska, the roofing season is obviously shorter and colder than in the continental United States. It takes a special type of roofing system and roofing contractor to handle the elements and tight timeframes that make proper roof renovations happen.

Matt Novakovich, vice president of Novakovich Enterprises Inc., in Anchorage, AK, is that kind of roofing contractor. His company excels in solving roofing problems in the extreme weather conditions of the state. 

Twenty-three years ago, Matt’s dad (Mike Novakovich) opened and successfully ran the business on his own. Just 4 years after Mike opened the company, Matt joined him as his partner. The company serves the entire state of Alaska, but 85 percent of its business is in Anchorage. It uses Polyglass roofing systems for 95 percent of its re-roofing jobs.

When asked which project reflects the strengths of Polyglass in Alaska, Matt Novakovich shared the story of a warehouse office-building project in Anchorage that the company had re-roofed in phases over the past 3 years. “The warehouse building was flat with an awning in the back displaying a 2:12 pitch," Novakovich stated. “The office section was in the front of the building and the main section of the warehouse had 20-foot open ceilings. It was a huge job that, as usual, needed to finish on tight deadlines.”

Hindering the deadlines, were a variety of leaks in the roof. “The roof was leaking in several places,” continued Novakovich. “The existing roof was a built-up, hot mopped system. The beauty of working with Polyglass products is that we did not have to tear off the old roof. We installed the Polyglass system over the old one.”

They installed Polyglass’ Polyflex HP, an APP torch-down modified base sheet and Polyflex HP G cap sheet over the existing membrane. Novakovich installed the membrane on the main section of the roof about 3 years ago and installed the product on the awning in June 2005. The installation of the awning took about 5 days, with the contractor installing 100 rolls of Polyglass torch-down membrane. Though not required, the crew covered the membrane with an aluminum coating. The coating enhanced the roofing system with extra protection.

The Polyflex HP and HP G system is a cornerstone of Polyglass’ roofing systems. It is comprised of a high-strength, heavy-polyester reinforced APP modified bitumen roofing membrane with superior tensile and elongation performance. The system is specifically designed for heat-welded applications such as this one.

Though Polyglass is known as the leader in self-adhesive roofing membranes, in colder climates they are also well known for exceptional modified bitumen products. “Torch-down membranes can be used later in the year without as many temperature restrictions. That is a key benefit for us with the short roofing seasons. The temperature doesn’t stay above 50 degrees F. very often in the later and earlier parts of the year in Alaska,” noted Novakovich.

The contractor also finds it beneficial to use this torch-down membrane because it adheres to existing membranes. Unlike EPDM that is mechanically fastened in certain areas throughout the roof, this membrane becomes one with the existing membrane. “It’s not just a cover; it becomes part of the old membranes, creating an extra strong new system. It binds and adheres exceptionally well,” stated Novakovich. 

This characteristic was highly advantageous when Alaska encountered a windstorm about 3 years ago. “About 30 to 40 commercial roofs downtown were blown off,” concluded Novakovich. “However, the Polyglass roofs that we had installed prior to the storm stayed adhered.” In Alaska’s conditions, a roof that can stay secured and perform well is what really matters.

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