Customers Like the Characteristics of JMCleanBond Roofing Membrane

March 21, 2005
The response to the introduction of JMCleanBond™, a self-adhering, fire-resistant SBS modified bitumen roofing membrane, manufactured by the Johns Manville Roofing Systems Group (JM), has been overwhelmingly positive. This new membrane was developed based on customer feedback over an 18-month period, which led to the launch of JMCleanBond in August 2004. In the Fall of 2003, contractors, architects, and building owners told JM that there was no proven multi-ply, asphalt-based roofing product on the market to meet the requirements for certain applications, including buildings that had limited access and those where occupants demanded little or no odor from the roofing application. They also were concerned about increasing legislation restricting the use of open flames to adhere roofing membranes. JM used this input to create a proprietary roofing application that has the proven waterproofing capabilities of multiple-ply asphalt systems, but eliminates the odors, heavy equipment, open flames, and adhesive fumes associated with traditional roofing products.“Everything about JMCleanBond is a direct response from what our customers told us they needed,” said Jennifer Ford-Smith, market manager for Johns Manville, Denver. “We listened to what they told us about the way the product is planned, designed, developed, and launched. This truly is a product designed for customers by customers.”JMCleanBond was specifically developed to meet the special requirements of occupied schools, medial facilities, and office buildings during a roofing project. For example, in the past, schools were generally roofed during the summer, which put a lot of pressure on roofing contractors to complete numerous projects during a limited period. In one school district alone, there could be as many as 75 roofs that needed to be completed during a 3-month window. With weather delays, it was not possible to complete them in one season. In addition, many schools are open year-around. The JMCleanBond application is a plus not only for the occupants of the building being roofed, but for buildings downwind. This is one of the reasons that food processing and hospitality industries also have expressed interest in the product.“With JMCleanBond, a building owner will not have to close off sections or relocate occupants during a re-roofing project,” said Heidi Wollert, new product development project manager for Johns Manville. “The occupants won’t even know the product is being installed.”Before the advent of JMCleanBond, single-ply roofing systems were the only alternative to meeting these customer demands. This proved a good option for building owners who wanted the clean and unobtrusive single ply application methods, but wasn’t suitable for owners uncomfortable with having just one layer of single-ply membrane to protect their buildings.JMCleanBond uses SBS materials that have been proven for more than 20 years, contains no adhesives, and uses no intermediate plastic films. It also has a patent-pending asphalt-to-asphalt interface, which creates a unique bond that strengthens over time. The formulation delivers a self-adhering feature that is integrated throughout the entire membrane sheet. This enables the product to bond quickly. The JM base and cap sheet form the only asphalt-to-asphalt bond in the self-adhering market today. JMCleanBond base sheet adheres directly to JM ENRGY 3™ polyisocyanurate insulation or other JM approved substrates. Subsequent layers of JMCleanBond adhere directly to each other, forming a durable, lasting bond.From customer feedback during the development stages of JMCleanBond, it was clear that Class-A fire ratings were important, but customers did not want to have to purchase special insulation in order to use the product. JM R&D scientists listened and developed an SBS formulation that enabled application directly to paper-faced polyisocyanturate insulation. This also achieved Class-A fire ratings.The factory-applied waterproofing gives JMCleanBond outstanding weather resistance in a variety of temperatures and climates. It has excellent elongation and recovery characteristics, and the fiber glass reinforcement enhances the tensile strength, dimensional stability, and puncture resistance of the system.JMCleanBond has full Underwriters Laboratories and Factory Mutual approvals. A 20-year, no-dollar-limit guarantee is available, covering materials and installation.Since the launch of JMCleanBond, more than 500 potential customers have asked for additional information and a number of orders have been placed. Those customers have cited specific advantages of the product:Several contractors have said that JMCleanBond is very cost-effective. One contractor selected JMCleanBond for a job that was in a remote location. He thought it would be less expensive to use JMCleanBond instead of hauling people and kettles to a remote place. Another felt it would be less expensive to use because of the set-up and breakdown time required to use a hot or cold conventional modified bitumen system.All mentioned how easy it is to use JMCleanBond.Customers also have told JM that the asphalt-to-asphalt bond provided with JMCleanBond is the only one they trust. Other self-adhering systems, commonly referred to as “peel and stick,” either require the application of adhesives or primers, or leave a plastic film between the base and the cap, so the bond is “asphalt-to-plastic” which they believe will not last. The asphalt-to-asphalt bond in JMCleanBond is the same as the bond in a hot-mopped or torch-applied roof.“From this initial response to the product, it is clear the advantages of JMCleanBond go beyond ease of application and odor control,” said James Taylor, the product manager for bituminous membranes. “As contractors have had the opportunity to work with JMCleanBond, they are finding even more advantages to this unique product.”

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