New low slope roof: rubber vs self adhesive mod bitumen


I just purchased my first house (2700 sq ft, western PA) and it needs a new roof and I’m trying to decide if I need rubber (1st estimate 30K) or if mule-hide brand self adhering modified bitumen (13K) is good enough.

Built: 1950
Slope: “barely 2/12”
9 years ago a shingle roof was put on.
2-3 years ago skylights were put in

Roof leaks after bad storm and 2 roofers told me I need new one. One suggested rubber the other self adhesive modified bitumen.

Thanks for your time.

FYI: my house inspector used a drone to inspect house which he said was “serviceable”. I’ll know better next time.


Rubber would be my choice.


Without seeing the house it is hard to give a recommendation. Both products have there advantages and disadvantages. The key with any flat roofing system is to remove the old roof and have an experienced crew install it properly. Roofing products rarely fail if they are correctly, that is the key.


I’m not a big fan of skylights in self adheared modified roofs. They have their place but they are best uses for simple roofs, not ones that require lots of flashing details IMO. And the report from a home inspector who doesn’t even go on the roof really isn’t something that I would trust.


And make sure the person who said “rubber” means EPDM. For some reason lots of roofers in my area seem to call any flat roofing “rubber” and it’s a pet peve of mine.


I missed the skylight part. Totally agree with island on not wanting skylights in self adhered modified. Would defently do epdm or torch down modified before resorting to sa.


The other option is a torch-applied modified bitumen. Roughly the same price as self-adhesive and works beautifully around skylight. EPDM seems like overkill, just my opinion. If you have a 2-4 pitch, get a good contractor, walk your deck replacing any wood as needed, and do a torch down. Texas prices would put it at around 12k.