I barely qualify as a roofer BUT I do have stupid question

Hi Im 58 now, in my 20’s I framed some nice post and beam barns in Maine and roofed them with one other guy. Also have done a lot of cedar shingles the old fashioned stuff but these days I’m in New Orleans and I have a 600 sq/ft flat roof the butts into my main asphalt pitched roof.

So I hired a roofer to fix a couple small leaks in my flat roof - he rolled down some new torch rubber and told me to lay on some thick sealant over the rest.

What kind? he ddint say.

its EDFM roof - sorry if I spelled that wrong I never has a flat roof before. It has an old cracked silver coat and its crazed pretty bad.

I’m ready to go if someone could steer this old cowboy towards the right stuff. There are so many out there. Do I just clean it with a hose? Prime it? Rubber stuff is my guess from reading some posts here. I get confused by the terms but I guess the rubber 5 gallon tubs have some asphalt in there?

Appreciate any help. tips . Thankee

Caleb White

Got a couple pics? EPDM is not compatible with asphalt and is NOT Modified Bitumen torchdown.

Thanks Dark30, here are a couple photos. I got it wrong right out of the gate! Yeah my roof looks like its all torchdown then covered with silver stuff?

The site will only let me post one photo at a time. in the wide shot the new repair is way back in the shadow. here is a close up

Its really too old for another coating.
You paint it BEFORE it starts cracking.
These are like grand canyon cracks…

You could coat the whole thing in asphalt primer and then burn a new roof on top of it.

well I gotta re-roof the main house so for $$ I gotta do something cheap for this year. Asphalt coating sounds good- does brand matter or just go to Lowes and buy whatever they have? For prep just use a stiff broom? lay the asphalt with a squeegee or a paint roller? Online the paint rollers look terrible. I was thinking squeegee. anyway thanks for the steer

You would go to a Roofing supply only store.
You would ask for 5 gallons of asphalt primer.
I would usually install a day or two before i burned a new layer of torchdown.
Its purpose is not to protect the roof
But for adhesion for the new one.

So i guess what you are looking for is
“Roof emulsion”.
It doesnt go near as far, you will likely need multiple buckets.
This will fill in all the cracks.
Maybe 5 sq per 5 gallon bucket.
Then after that dries ( a week or more)
You still need two coats of aluminum roof coating.
Non fibered will go about 10-12 square.
Fibered will go about Half.
Aluminum roof coating dry time-
One day or less.
Sometimes half a day.

really useful info. my thanks. you have a choice between fibered or non fibered?

Just to be clear I’m asking for asphalt primer not “roof emulsion” right? I talked to a supply house and they have asphalt primer at $44/5 gal and fibered alum/ $66.

I’m good to go?

I’d stay away from emulsion, go with a solvent based coating.


When I go to the supply shop what would I ask for ? Just solvent based? Would you still go with a couple coats of alum fiber on top?

You want fibrated aluminum coating, apply it with a 3 knot brush or a 7" roofing brush.

You will need a heavy duty drill with a mixing attachment, have someone record the first time you try to mix the stuff you will get a laugh later after you clean up.

Funny. i saw that long egg beater thing online. Tyvek suit stuff. OK I got the fibrated alum located. thx on the brush recco, really helps. Do you also recco putting down a primer or solvent before the alum?

Again, the Asphalt primer is for adhering A new torch-down roof.

Roof Emulsion is to fill in all the cracks and make it smooth.
Aluminum roof coating is to protect it.
An awesome job would be a coat of fibered and a top coat of non-fibered.

Roof lover, I don’t know how to get hands on Roof Emulsion, I asked a couple suppliers here in town and they drew a blank. Asphalt primer and fibrated and non fibrated Alum no probs - but no one has heard of Roof Emulsion. I’d love to get some.

You might have to have your roofing supplier order it for you.
Its old school roofing.
I am not surprised your supplier doesnt have it.
But they can get it.
Just google “roof emulsion”
I see they are selling it at home depot.
Henrys Asphalt emulsion.

Home Depot has Henry 107 Henry “Asphalt Emulsion Sealer and Dampproofer Roof Coating” I found [Western Colloid’s #298 asphalt emulsion roof coating]

They seem to be basic and around everywhere - people just want to take your order these days! dont want to think.

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Right on! I’ll lay some brand of emulsion down- 2 coats better or one do it? and then a fiber coat - then a non fiber coat. In the future should I re paint the alum every few years?

I sprayed emulsion on one roof 30? years ago. It didn’t hold up till it was warm enough in the spring for another coat. Last job with emulsion.

Normally you would do it every few years at the most.
But if you truely do the spec you are saying.
Thats the best job ever
And its going to last longer than a few.
Continue to use non-fibered only after this
Keep your eye on it and recoat when it starts to fade.
Keep it from alligatoring.
The failure of this system is the “side seams”
Its the three foot seam that fails, not the 33 foot seam.
You will want to repair these areas before you do any of these coatings.
I see one sideseam in the picture has already been worked on.
Maybe all of them have.
The rubber shrinks and the side seams pull apart.
They also pull away from the “rake” metal.
So if your roofer didnt prepare for that.
You likely are having wood rotting on the sides of your house.
So you likely need to repair the roofing on your rakes before you do these coatings also.
Edit- I took a second look, the roofer has already stripped in the rakes.
So those are probably good.
I would Strip in any side seams in the field that havent already been done.