On Oldie But Goodie

Truth Scuff Test

This video initially crossed my desk last year but it continues to resurface.  It was produced from our friends at Sika-Sarnafil or is it just Sika now?  Sarnafil had a good history of performance but these days the sheet that Sika is producing has been brought into question but that’s another subject.

The video link below is a demonstration of what happens if you beat your roof up with a 2x4.  It is great showmanship but you’ll notice that unlike the photos above, they do not show you what really happens in the test.

I just had to give it a try to find out exactly what happens.  Both materials are thermoplastic so the heat generated during the scuffing is a significant factor and the polymer gets scuffed to the fabric on both sheets.

Some additional items of interest:

  • Yes, we get it; you’re thicker but not stronger
  • Just in case you couldn’t tell, the “scuffing” did not penetrate the fiber
  • As we have always stated, our fiber offers an internal barrier
  • Our nom 36‐mil membrane is already translucent
  • The dark gray inner and back layers of Sika do not permit any light transmission
  • I had to install the fastener to duplicate the test “crooked” as our fasteners “seat” in our plates and do not protrude
  • I didn’t have any 48‐mil Sika‐Sarnafil so had to use 60‐mil
  • The video doesn’t show you what happens to the surface of both membranes…THE SAME THING!
  • Having more polymer doesn’t make you more durable if the polymer is inferior
  • Having the right balance between fabric and the right polymer does ensure durability and performance

The morale of the story: Don’t beat your roof with a 2x4; love your roof and it will love you back.


While in a meeting last week with a roofer in VA I was talking about PVC membranes becoming brittle over time due to placticizer loss.  The field superintendent spoke up and said he has been making repairs to Sarnafil PVC roofs on Target stores.  He said the Sarnafil membranes were having splits and cracks on jobs that are only 5 - 8 years old.  He also said his foreman was on a 2 year old Sarnafil 60mil membrane and kneeled down to make a repair.  It was around 20 degrees outside and the Sarnafil membrane "cracked" due to the pressure from his knee on the membrane and had to be repaired.

So I would say Sarnafil has bigger fish to fry than scuff marks from 2 x 4s. 

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About Mr FiberTite

After 10-years in Local 88 out of Canton Ohio, the opportunity to drink the FiberTite Kool Aid came in 1984.  Since then I've been a student as well as a teacher in all manner of roofing with a focus on the engineering, design and installation of thermoplastic single ply roofing systems.  The industry is growing in complexity so there's plenty of opportunity to learn and sharpen your skills no matter who you are.  Hence, one of the most important things I've learned is that "to sharpen the blade, you have to rub steel with steel".


FiberTite® is a Registered Trademark of Seaman Corporation.  The views and opinions expressed on this site are not necessarily those of Seaman Corporation.

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