Archive for November, 2010

What we forget about using “hot” asphalt

November 18, 2010

We are seeing more and more roofers using hot asphalt.  We see mops, mop handles and sleeves almost flying off the shelf.  This means that hot is not dead as has been mentioned in months and years past.

This is a tried and trusted form of roofing that has been around for over 2000 years.  Today we see T.P.O. roofs that are prone to punctures and / or poor workmanship. There is a difference between a single sheet and two or three plies with a generous layer of hot in between.

All of the equipment manufacturers in the roofing industry had their start in the built up / hot asphalt arena.  Some of the original manufacturers such as Aeroil Products, from 1917, and Blackwell Burner Company from about the same time, are now gone.  But there are other companies, such as Roofmaster, that have continued to offer equipment for the hot roofer.

Now, we do not see the kettles flying off the shelf, but we do repair kettles that are well over 40 years old.  They don’t seem to wear out like lite wall tubing or mops.

Since some roofers have not used hot in a while, there are a couple of things they want to remember before starting.  Safety is the first item.  Remember gloves, long sleeved shirts and safety goggles.  You are dealing with 450 degree material.  In case of burns, there is the Roofmaster Burn Kit .  This is stocked with all the items that will help address the unfortunate burn. Remember, asphalt will continue to burn until it is cooled.  Be sure to keep an ice chest or water cooler on the job site and plunge or soak a towel, shirt or other item with cold water to cool the affected area.

Next, remember that hot pipe and rubber or metal flex hose for the transition on the roof.  Know what kind of unions you have been using.  A Stockham union requires a pipe wrench to tighten.  A tri-lug knock or two-lug knock just requires a hammer, but you cannot mix as the interior threads (where the two halves come together) are different on the three different types.

Then you will need mops, adapters and handles, mop carts, hot carriers and feltlayers, depending on the size of the job.  Knives, hook blades and maybe some knife holders will help keep your tools at hand, and Dissolve to keep your hands and tools clean.

Remember what it was like before single ply roofing…Ah, the good old days.


Are You Into Solar??

November 12, 2010

As government regulations change and more people are adding solar panels to their roofs, we receive calls asking what products we have to make installation of solar panels easier and/or cheaper.  A product we’ve been selling for over a year is the brainchild of another product (CommDeck): SolaDeck.

SolaDeck is a prewired roof-mounted base that serves as a roof terminal for the photovoltaic wiring that comes up through the roof from the inside.  It’s available in several models depending on your wiring requirements.  The SolaDeck also provides a waterproof installation base superior to regular roof penetrations using inferior boots or just mastic or caulking to try to seal the wire harness.

UL 1741

UL 50 Type 3R

The unit is low profiled and fits easily under most solar panels.  Additionally, it is UL approved.  Most models are much cheaper than what an electrician could fabricate.  Use of SolaDeck will provide installation consistency on every job and consistent costing.

Roofmaster carries a variety of products for solar panels and solar installations.  Search “solar” at

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