Flat Roof Wirral Felt vs Rubber EPDM

Flat Roofing – Felt or Rubber EPDM?

If the time has come for a new flat roof, look no further than Furber Roofing Limited the flat roofing specialists. We cover Wirral, Liverpool, Ellesmere Port, Chester and North Wales.

A lot of people have asked us which the best flat roofing material is. We could cover a lot of ground here, so let’s narrow it down to the two most commonly available flat roof choices today and try to list the positives and negatives in the fairest way possible as we see them.

What is the best new flat roof covering?

Furber Roofing Limited has been fitting new flat roofs now for over almost 60years. As you can imagine, we’ve seen nearly every type of flat roof. So if you’re looking for some advice, on which is the best flat roof covering you have just found it.

How long does a flat roof last?

Most modern flat roofs have an average lifespan of 20 – 30 years, so you would probably only have to replace it two or maybe three times in your lifetime…Unless its for aesthetic reasons flat roofs are cheaper, and of course you can also have a pretty flat roof.


Flat roof comparison, here are the most commonly used and installed flat roof systems… Torch on Felt and Rubber EPDM.



New felt roofs can unfortunately still carry a bad reputation from the older and now unused pour and roll systems of yesteryear. Large strides have been made, and continue to be made in flexibility and durability of a modern hot flame applied torch on roofing felts. Typically applied in a 3 layer system consisting of Thermovent, a 2mm underlay and a cap sheet finish of mineral felt available in a variety of colours.

Lifespan – Furber Roofing offer a 10 year written guarantee. A well installed torch-on felt roof could well last up to 30 years if looked after and treated well.
Cost – The cheapest option.
• Damage resistance – Foot traffic in hot weather may scuff the surface of a mineral finish; this can lead to U.V. damage by sunlight. Window cleaners also put step ladders and ladders on them in hot weather which could damage the surface.
• Repair – Easily repaired but patches on top can look messy, the plain cap sheet with solar reflective paint is the most repairable and popular in unseen and industrial settings for this reason.
• Appearance – Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but we think a mineral finish is pretty to look at.
• Flexibility – Modern roofing felt has good expansion and contraction properties.
• Vapour transmission – Roofs are often called on to breathe. Thanks to the vapour layer a felt roof will do this. We would however personally never rely on a roof covering alone, especially if you have condensation issues. This should be dealt with in house or during roof construction.


These have stormed the market since being introduced a few years ago in the U.K. A rubber roof can be often installed in one complete layer without the need for joins depending on size, which is often an attractive prospect. It is also extremely light weight, elastic and tough, so it lends itself to many situations. Mostly rubber roofs are glued down to the decking (wooden substrate ) so if you had a felt roof previously the timber deck  will probably need replacing. A well installed rubber roof can be a very good option.


• Lifespan – Furber Roofing offer a 20year written guarantee. A well installed EPDM roof should last 30 years upwards.
• Cost – Very competitive, expect to pay 20%-30% more for a nice example in relation to a torch on roof.
• Damage resistance – Very tough in most situations and suitable for light foot traffic.
• Appearance – The black/grey look of the roof is very sleek and modern to look at due to the lack of seams.
• Flexibility – You will simply not beat a rubber roof for expansion and contraction, if you have a large roof where this is a real concern, EPDM is for you.
• Vapour transmission – This is dependent on layers that may be underneath, but in normal glued down install it will breathe less than a torch on felt roof. If condensation is a problem insulation boards may be required.

If you would like a quotation or some advice on your Flat Roof or any other roofing issues do not hesitate to contact Furber Roofing Limited today on 0151 691 2978.