Pros & Cons of Polycarbonate Roofing

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Pros & Cons of Polycarbonate Roofing

Summer is just around the corner, making this the perfect time to jump into some home improvement. Maybe you’ve been wanting a greenhouse for years, but never got around to it. Maybe you want to finish the patio in time to enjoy some lazy days out in the sun. Whatever you’ve got planned, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get the job done. We’re here to help with any roofing needs your project has, but let’s start with the basics: what do you use?

With high versatility and durability, we recommend looking at polycarbonate roofing. There is no such thing as the perfect material for every situation, but the strength and flexibility of polycarbonate makes it suitable for a vast host of construction projects.

Pros & Cons of Polycarbonate Roofing

Here are a few of the pros and cons to help you make your decision.

Strong and Durable

If you need something to take a beating, polycarbonate roofing is the choice for you. To give you an idea of the durability, bullet-proof riot shields are made from polycarbonate. The material is incredibly impact resistant, able to withstand pretty much any damage that might come it’s way.

Since it is nigh unbreakable, it is favored construction material of banks and other high security businesses. You might not need the roof of your sunroom to be quite so durable, but you can take comfort in the fact that it will stand up to even the harshest conditions.

Resistant to Extreme Temperatures

Mother nature can do some real damage to anything left out all year long. When your deck is facing both sweltering summers and bitterly cold winters, you’ll be happy to know that your polycarbonate roofing can take the heat.

The material is resistant to snow, rain, hail, and sunlight. The durability of the material helps it resist warping or discoloration for years, making it a great long-term investment. Whether it’s 101 degrees in the blistering sun or hailing golf balls in the dead of November, your roofing will stay just fine.

Protection from UV Rays

It’s tempting to spend all summer out on the patio, sipping lemonade and settling in with your favorite book. You can’t forget about your health though, and that much fun in the sun can have some serious consequences.

Polycarbonate roofing blocks UV rays from the sun, making it the perfect material for any awnings or patio roofs. Friends and family will be able to lounge outside all day long and you won’t even have to bother them about sunscreen.

Versatile Opacity

Every project is going to have different needs. Polycarbonate roofing can be adjusted to fit those needs, giving you some much needed flexibility. Clear polycarbonate is ideal for greenhouses or conservatories, letting in maximum sunlight while keeping out the harsher elements. Getting a more opaque option can add a degree of privacy or much needed shade for your porch or patio.

Need to maximize the natural lighting in your sunroom? The flexibility of polycarbonate roofing can help you find the perfect light balance for the space.

Lightweight and Easy to Work With

Polycarbonate roofing is certainly sturdy, but it’s also surprisingly lightweight. When compared to other materials, such as glass or acrylics, it’s much easier to transport and install. This can help save you time and money in the initial construction period and, surprisingly enough, help maintain the structural integrity for years to come. The lightweight nature of the material won’t weigh down the structure over the years, meaning less maintenance down the road.

Affordable, But Not Cheap

If you need the high durability and versatility of polycarbonate roofing, it’s worth the investment. That being said, it is significantly more expensive than other roofing material options. While plastic or glass options don’t have all the benefits of polycarbonate, they can prove to be much more cost effective.

When determining what material you want to work with for your project, ask yourself if you need all the benefits of polycarbonate. Sure, it can withstand harsh temperatures, but does your climate demand something that heat resistant? Do you need something with the same durability, or are you confident you’ll be able to avoid any serious impacts?

Many prospective buyers find Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, or ABS, a viable alternative. The cost is considerably lower, and while it isn’t as impact-resistant as polycarbonate, it is still pretty tough. Consider what your roof might be face over the course of its lifespan, and go from there.

Strong, but Not Immune to Scrapes or Dents

While polycarbonate roofing is nearly indestructible, that doesn’t mean it is invincible. It may not shatter due to impact, but it is still vulnerable to scratching or denting. If you’re concerned about the aesthetic appeal for your roofing, you’ll have to take extra precautions to avoid unsightly scratches or other marring. For some people, paying for the extra layer of scratch-resistant finish isn’t a deal breaker. This vulnerability makes it less than optimal for projects where clarity is of utmost importance.

Sensitive to Certain Cleaning Products

Certain strong cleaners can cause lasting harm to polycarbonate roofing. If you decide to build your roofing with polycarbonate, you’ll need to remember to avoid particularly abrasive and alkaline cleaners. This can be a major downside to homeowners who want to be able to keep their roof as crystal clear and clean as possible.

If you’re willing to work within the cleaning limitations, it might not be a problem. If you want to be able to give your roofing a good, deep clean from time to time though, you might want to consider other options.

Not Very Environmentally-Friendly

Unfortunately, the process for making polycarbonate is less eco-friendly than other roofing options. It requires high temperatures to manufacture, and some of the chemicals have negative effects on the surrounding environment, as well as any people in the vicinity. Extra precautions must be taken to protect workers during the manufacturing process. While the process is not ideal, steps are being made in order to develop polycarbonate roofing through a greener process.