Help Please - New Thermoplastic over old metal

I’m not sure if this got caught in the filter so I’m posting again, I apologize if it’s a dup post.

My dad in FLA in a mobile home in a senior community. He had a thermoplastic “over-roof” done over the old metal pan roof for almost $7k. The edges look messy and unfinished to me, with no termination board/fascia/edging, anything. He’s also right on the water so he’s afraid the long side edges will catch the wind and rip it right off.

I’ve posted the pics here:
Under the folder “Dad’s Roof”.

If anyone can please tell me if this is proper finishing or not for this sort of roof, I’d really appreciate it. I’m having a heck of a time being here in PA with him in FL and I’ve never seen this kind of roofing before.

Thanks so much,

For the edge termination detail, I would have to know if the screws penetrate into a wood surface behind the sheet metal walls.

What I am most concerned about, especially since Florida has strict wind codes, id the fastening into the uni-lock standing rib covers. That metal looks to be the flimsiest version of 28 Gauge, which would not support fastener withdrawasl.

Also, I can not imagine instaling a flexible thermoplastic over the unsupported gaps between the ribs. Those lower recess cavities should have been filled up higher than the rib height to prevent excessive wind baffling and fluttering of the membrane.

I am convinced, from these photos, that that roof is destined to be blown off, by the negative pressure causing the membrane to pull the fasteners out. Initialy, prior to being blown off, the membrane will probably pull out somewhat and be sliced to ribbons by the metal edges and ribs.

Do you or your father happen to know which brand of membrane this was? If so, you could contact the manufacturer for their specifications and detail drawings.

I can not conceive that this woulf fly as an approved installation method.

The 3 most used brands of white thermoplastic membrane in the Florida area that I have heard about, are;
Seaman Fibertite
IB Roofing Systems
Duro-Last Roofing Systems

I certainly hope that I am wrong about this situation, but you might want to look up a member here, by the User Name of **“Cerberus”, **and PM him and e-mail him with a link to your photos and this topic thread. He is an intelligent Roofing Consultant, with a background in actual roofing installations, who could possibly shed some additional light on the subject.

Plese keep the posting updated to see how things work out.


never applied that before, but it appears that they did not finish the job. if the work order doesn’t detail all work to be performed, then the remedy is up in the air. if it does, then you have a good case for a legal remedy if the job detail was not carried out. my advice: call the guy, and ask when he intends on finishing.did the work order say anything about the job being completed to owner’s sattisfaction?

Hi Ed, thank you for your reply.

I know it’s a Firestone product, but I don’t have any other specifics. My father has mentioned to me that the roofer wants to come back and insert some sort of rigid insulation pieces into the visible gaps underneath where the new roof meets the old. I couldn’t imagine how they would fasten this??

I’m really out of my depth here, I’m afraid. I’ll ask what sort of decking was put under the plastic. What are the “rib covers” that you refer to?

I’ll PM Cerebus as well, thank you for the advice. Do you think it’s worth them calling the local inspector out as well?


The ribs are the high point.

These are one piece panels, with a “Male” edge sticking up and when the next panel clips into place, the “Female” portion of that covers up and locks onto the male portion from the preceeding panel.

Firestine does make a white thermoplastic, which I believe is call Ultra-Bright or something similar.

I can see the gaps at the edges, but did the fill in the recessed areas on the rest of the roof before covering it up? It did not look like it from your photos.

Yes, have the building inspector come out there to check on the work. I would assume it would fail, if he knows what to look for, so request a building inspector familiar with single ply membrane roof specifications and Florida fastening codes.

Was a permit pulled for the job?


Per my father’s wife, they used rigid insulation to fill the recesses and then plywood decking screwed down on top, then the membrane. However, she’s not confident as to the height of the insulation in the recesses being up to the level of the ribs. It looks very “wavy” as I’m sure you can see from the pics.

There was a permit, which is another odd point. She mentioned she found a ‘door tag’ that the building inspector had been there, found no one home, and approved the work - however, she was home all day and the tag was signed, in pencil, with only a first name of “Dale,” which didn’t seem right.

I’ve recommend they call and ask an inspector to come out, especially since the roofer wants to come by tomorrow, insert the rest of the insulation and get his final payment - which I’ve told them to withold at this point.

I’ve PM’d Cerebus as well. Anything else they should bring up/ask?

I am not out for “Stiffing” a contractor if he proves that he did the installation correctly.

Ask him to bring the 3 ring binder of the manufacturers specifications to see what he did was an authorised application.

If there still are suspicions that the job was done incorrectly, you soulc hire a roofing consultant to review the installation and then have an unbiased opinion in writing with proper credentials for being an approved installation or not.

I saw no evidence of the plywood decking, hence, the bowing or sagging of the membrane, or I should say, that is what it seemed to look like. There may be a legitimate reason for the illusion or something else is taking place. If they installed plywood on top, how did they anchor it down to the thin guage metal roof material? What does code requirements state, when fastening down decking to a metal roof panel in your area?


I understand about “stiffing” and it’s only a small percentage left, but he wants them to sign a final Certificate of Satisfaction as well which they aren’t comfortable doing just yet. I’m also a little overprotective, I suppose, because they’re elderly and they’ve been taken advantage of before.

I called and asked Dad to request the roofer bring the binder and that he go over the installation and materials to show it was proper installation for this type of product on this kind of roof. (Something I know they probably should have done before the roof was started!)

I’ve asked that they call me afterward, so we’ll see how tomorrow goes. Thank you again for all of the help.


He can resonably delay the final payment based on the information that he gets.

I wouldn’t want my parents, or before they passed away, my grandparents getting high pressured to sign off on a satisfaction certificate, until they knew for sure or reasonably sure that there were ni viable concerns.

I wil check back later tonight, since I have a few appointments to go to now, so don’t think that I am ignoring any additional posts during the interim.

Good Luck,


From what I can see in the pics not much is done to Firestone details. The sheet may be Firestone but the flashings on the pipes and the terminations are not Firestone products. Since Firestone doesn’t warrant residential roofs the contractor probably used whatever he had on hand. A closure metal should have been made and installed at all the tie ins to the metal roof areas. As for the edges only duralast uses that detail with the poly bar the other manufactures call for a heavy gauge edge metal detail. Id guess the inspector from the city has no clue about this type of roofing so he did a drive by.

Just an update - my dad requested the roofer bring the binder tomorrow and instead he got an email from him with a 10 page attachment. It’s the “Miami-Dade Building Code Compliance Notice of Acceptance” to Firestone.

It’s all very technical and of course, none of us understand enough to know if what’s on this paper is what’s on the roof! I’m not sure if this is what we were looking for or not? Should he wait for the code inspector to come out and show him this package?

I’ve posted these new pages up on my webshots page ( ) if anyone wants to see it! I’m trying to see if I can’t get a copy of the diagram they gave them as well, if they can figure out their fax machine.

Thanks!! Beth

Ok, your pipe flashings look like ‘form flash’ which is a Firestone product. The documentation the guy sent you is showing the materials he used and that such materials are acceptable in your area and the application he did over the metal is also acceptable. Don’t freak out on the guy just yet. Calmly bring to him your concerns about the roof edges and make him explain to you how it’s not going to become airborne until you are put at ease.

If worse comes to worse and you are still not at ease call or email Firestone directly and you can send them pictures of the edge detail. Most of the guys there are nice and they should be happy to help.

Good luck.

well it looks like the roof they went over was kinda flimsy to begin with, which most mobile homes are.
from what im seein though it looks like they did the best they could with what they had to work with.
they used a peace of transition metal, fastened it to the exsisting roof, then terminated their roof to that. nothin looks to be flappin in the wind.
i think your all rite.
those firestone roofs do last down here.
i have many out there still on and doin fine.


Thank you both. I’ve passed on the thoughts of the board to my Dad and we’ll see how things go tomorrow. I’ll post back and let you know what happens!

Thats not form flashing. Its caulk. Firestone just started making white form flashing for epdm a month or two ago and its for epdm not tpo. And if it was some type of form flashing it should be 8" high not 1"
Those assembly letters are saying basically that Firestone has approved systems by Miami dade and fm. That doesn’t mean its what you have. It would have to be installed exactly as the system was designed and tested with all the proper fasteners in the proper places, deck gauge ect… not Firestone sheet and Jims screws with bills plates and Sams insulation.
You may have a fine roof once hes finished. But it also may never meet those stiff requirements.

I’m glad somebody else picked up on the seemingly incorrect details, because I am not out to grind some unknown roofer into the ground post haste, without getting a chance to find out what actually was done.

As BornaRoofer said, it just says that Firestone and their products are approved. They need to be installed in strict compliance with their specifications, even a residential, non-manufacturer warranty installation.

But, if there is good reason, or your father was trying to get them to cut corners to keep the price down, then he could have some ground to stand on.


Hmmm well I am certainly not going to argue over TPO as it’s not a system I use much. Caulk itself wouldn’t hold the membrane to the pipe judging from the cut they made on the unfinished pipe. It looks like they used form flash to make the transition between the membrane and the pipe and then caulked the crap out of it but I could be wrong. Form Flash is EPDM…it is also allowed to be used on TPO system by Firestone. I went to a class for their new self stick TPO 3 weeks ago so I know that for a fact. Figured the guy was trying to do the job as cheap as possible. In any case here’s the spec link or call your Firestone rep. … ileId=1954 p.23 (2.12)

I still say give the guy the benefit of the doubt (for now at least). My feelings are it was a tight budget job and you get what you pay for. Hopefully the roofer is an honest guy and can explain the system to the homeowner, I guess we will see. I don’t know all the particulars of the job and have only heard one side of the story from a 3rd party so I’m not ready to hang the guy just yet. /shrug

I know you can use it for up to a 15 yr. The chances of that guy having the new white stuff is slim. Did they even have it in indy at the Firestone school?

I didn’t go to Indy, it was one of those traveling deals where they have a team of about 6-8 guys. Some are reps, some sales and some installers. Class was in Stamford CT. I wasn’t really impressed to tell the truth, the thing I like most about TPO is that it is heat welded…peel and stick kind of defeats the purpose. But they kept saying how they don’t have certain detail pieces yada-yada and it’s fine to use form flash or any EPDM product on the TPO systems. I was like ::eyeroll::

The training facility in they have in Indianapolis is nice.
I agree about heat welding being better than tape but on some details form flash is better and a lot quicker and also easier for tpo newbies to do right.