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Flat Roofing

SikaBit makes its mark

by Matt Downs

A pub in Salford has become the first building to be refurbished using SikaBit, the Safe2Torch bitumen roofing system recently launched by Sika.

The existing felt covering on an area of the busy pub’s roof had reached the end of its service life and the pub’s owner was keen to carry out a roof refurbishment without disruption to the business while the works were undertaken.

The project specification called for a cost-effective bituminous system that could be applied as an overlay onto the existing roof build-up, in full compliance with the National Federation of Roofing Contractors’ (NFRC) Safe2Torch Guidelines.

The pub is situated in a busy urban location, close to shops and residential properties, so safety was paramount throughout the works. The SikaBit system offered a Safe2Torch solution that was fully-compatible with the existing roof surface and could be installed safely within a short programme while the pub remained open to customers on a business-as-usual basis.

With its best-of-both-worlds hybrid technology combining the flexibility and tensile strength of an SBS membrane with the hardwearing properties and UV stability of APAO technology, SikaBit also offered an upgrade to the existing bitumen system.

SikaBit’s technical team carried out a detailed roof condition survey to confirm that there was no water within the existing roof build-up and assess compatibility of the roof for use of the SikaBit system as an overlay. Sika’s technical team then developed a full specification for installation of a SikaBit Safe2Torch system onto the existing roof.

Roofing contractor, LRL Roofing Solutions, cleaned and prepared the existing roof area, retaining the existing felt as the air and vapour control layer. The LRL Roofing Solutions team then applied Sika’s Primer 610 spray-applied adhesive to the prepared roof surface, followed by SikaBit SA 730; the fully self-adhered 3mm underlay that forms part of the complete SikaBit Safe2Torch system.

With the underlay in place across the roof area, LRL Roofing Solutions installed SikaBit T940 G torch-on cap sheet in all the Safe2Torch zones. The self-adhesive SikaBit SA940 G cap sheet was then installed in the torch exclusion zones, which included upstands and a 900mm area at either side of the roof where it adjoins neighbouring structures.

On one corner of the building, where the roof abuts a timber-clad structure, the installation team used Sika Liquid Plastics’ Decothane cold-applied liquid membrane in combination with the self-adhesive SikaBit system to provide a best practice solution with a joined up specification from a single supplier.  Aggregate was cast into the partially cured liquid membrane to provide a homogenous appearance with the SikaBit roof covering.

Mick Raistrick, Contracts Manager at LRL Roofing Solutions commented: “The fully self-adhered underlay went down well, with great lap seals that enabled us to leave it overnight prior to installation of the cap sheet.  We achieved an extremely consistent bleed from the self-adhered cap sheet, providing us with great confidence within the Safe2Torch element of the system.

“The SikaBit cap sheet was really easy to apply, and we found it more pliable than other bituminous membranes.”

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