What to Consider in Cold Weather

As the weather begins to change there are some important things to keep in mind when installing any commercial roofing system. Here are a few things to remember:

Care for Adhesives

As the weather cools it is of utmost importance that you pay attention to the weather and temperature in regards to adhesives. Remember to only use water based adhesive when it will be 40°F or higher for 48 hours after it is applied.

  • If you want to work fast in cold weather, try JM All Season Sprayable Bonding Adhesive. It can be installed in weather down to 25°F and will still flash off in five minutes. This is compared to up to 40 minutes of flash time for traditional adhesives
  • Water based adhesive will last until next season if kept in a climate-controlled environment
  • All JM EPDM & TPO Adhesives can be used down to 25 degrees and rising except for water based adhesive
  • You can download our Roof Tech Xpert app through your Android on Google Play or your App store on your iPhone to help during installation. Use the Adhesive Advisor to get a rough estimate on flash time based on the temperature and humidity at your jobsite. The Adhesive Advisor also provides important real-time climate information which has additional effects on flash time (not calculated in the estimate). Toggle between English and Spanish at any time by tapping the gear icon in the Navigation Bar.

Membrane Considerations

Adhesives aren’t the only thing affected by colder weather; roofing membranes go through changes in the cold too. This might not be a natural consideration, but it can make a big impact.

  • Mechanically fastened or induction welded systems work excellent in cold weather
  • Hot asphalt applications below 40 degrees require specific additional storage and installation steps that may limit productivity.
  • Heat welded SBS membranes work great in cooler temperatures
  • Our 12-ft PVC is 20 percent wider than the competition so it will require less welding and less fasteners.
  • Hot asphalt applications below 40 degrees require specific additional storage and installation steps that may limit productivity.
  • Self-adhered TPO membrane can be installed in temperatures 20°F and higher. For temperatures above 20°F and below 40°F, this membrane must be installed using JM SA Primer or JM SA Primer LVOC.
  • Extra-wide rolls of EPDM don’t unfold and lay flat as well as narrower rolls of EPDM that are not folded over on themselves.
  • When installing an SBS membrane, heavy polyester-reinforced membranes allow for more flexibility.

Other Considerations

  • Custom ISO lead times may increase during the winter due to the curing process taking longer

When Going up on the Roof

When going up on the jobsite, it is extremely important to visually scan the roof prior to stepping onto the roof. In the transitional seasons there can be frost or dew that make roofing membranes very slippery. Proper fall protection must be in place prior to stepping out on top of the building. 

When in doubt, contact your local sales or tech rep. You can also reach our inside technical team at (800) 922-5922 option 3.