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September 15, 2010 | Building | OS VINE

Thermo Plastic Olefin

Thermo Plastic Olefin (TPO) is a durable plastic roofing material used for flat roofs. For a chronological listing of our building projects with ICF (or insulated concrete forms), be sure to look through the ICF Building Index. Since our basement roof will be flat until we add the first floor and my brother-in-law was able to get a wonderful deal on it, we are using TPO for our temporary roof. We had several 10 ft wide pieces, as well as, several 3 foot wide sections. So, the first step was to roll out what we had and see how best to utilize it.

Next came the seams. Pieces were overlapped, some sticky stuff placed in between the layers, glued and then pressed together. I hope that was not too technical for anyone! To provide insulation, we used the pink foam board. Two layers of foam board were put down on top of the plywood decking. The first layer was screwed down and the second layer glued to the first. The TPO was then rolled out over the foam.

An overhang was left around the top of the insulated concrete forms (ICF) which will be glued down and secured with strips of wood. The bucket are filled to provide weight to hold the TPO down until it is completely secured. We would not want this west Texas wind to get under it and lift it off! The corners remain to be finished. The excess is cut and that same black sticky stuff is used to secure the pieces together. If you have ever upholstered furniture, these corners are much like some of the cuts you make to fit the fabric to the furniture piece. It makes a nice snug corner. Notice the duct tape on the thumb? It is a makeshift, in the field (and sometimes at home) band-aid. Duct tape really is amazing stuff! Did you know it will even help get rid of warts? Not that I have any, but if you do, put a piece of duct tape on top of the wart and leave it for a week, check it and put another piece on if needed. To speed up the process, put duct tape on after using a wart remover. Now, back to the corners.... It makes a nice snug corner! The excess will be trimmed off when it is secured. Painting the exterior will be next and then the TPO can be secured across the top of the ICF. We have bought yellow (my favorite color) paint and are just waiting for a still day to paint. Here in west Texas though, it seems that every day is a windy day!


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