Following a chance encounter on Channel 4's 'Equinox' television programme, two long established British paint makers, with a combined history of almost 200 years, are collaborating on the latest generation of solar reflective coatings, which will help cut building owners' energy costs and contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, in line with current Government initiatives.
Manchester-based HMG Paints and Kent firm W H Screeton Associates have joined forces to manufacture and market Retroflect, a unique coating containing a titanium dioxide pigment base, one of the highest quality reflective components available.
Under the deal, HMG will provide the manufacturing and administrative infrastructure, from its Collyhurst Road base, while Screeton will contribute the specialist formulations proven over 20 years, its worldwide applications experience and technical / marketing support.
Distribution will be via Screeton's network of independent distributors. "Screeton's solar reflective coatings have distinguished themselves over the years by being, quite simply, the best in class," says HMG's Marketing Director, Stephen Falder. "Thanks to this agreement, their customers can be assured of the highest product quality and continuity of supply, coupled with Screeton's specialist market knowledge and passionate zeal for coatings of this type."
"This is a product whose time has come," adds Branton Screeton, MD of W H Screeton Associates. "Retroflect can simply and safely reduce the energy demands of a vast array of buildings, saving power and reducing the CO2 emissions produced in its generation."
Retroflect is formulated for use on asphalt, bituminous, asbestos and metal deck roofing, both flat and pitched, and is designed to prevent the blistering, cracking, shrinkage, embrittlement and eventual membrane breakdown that can occur with excessive heat buildup and exposure to infrared and ultra violet attack. It also reduces the solar heat absorption that can otherwise damage the roof structure itself, particularly where construction methods and insulation leave little latitude for thermal movement.
Retroflect also introduces 'passive air conditioning', in that it minimises the transmission of heat through the roof structure to the building interior, which would otherwise cause an overheated atmosphere and increase demand for air conditioning. Thus, it offers the potential for significant energy savings, as illustrated by a Retroflect test site in California, where roof temperatures were reduced from 50ºC to 27ºC and power consumption was halved.
Falling in line with the latest DETR Building Regulations Part L proposals for increasing buildings' resistance to solar overheating and improving overall energy performance, Retroflect is a ready-for-use single pack product that is easily applied by conventional roller or airless spray, with only two coats normally required.
Unlike traditional aluminium and emulsion based roofing treatments, it is chemically stable and does not deteriorate on exposure to industrial pollution or acid rain, nor when water accumulates on the surface. Compared with the paving slabs and chippings often used on flat roofs, Retroflect means less weight to be lifted to roof level and a greatly reduced final loading, at only 90gms per square metre, against upwards of 4.5 kilos.
Repaired roof areas can be easily recoated to restore heat reflection, with routine maintenance required only once every five years. Ring bolts, lightning conductor strips, flashings and cappings may also be treated, to reduce heat gain and prevent thermal transmission to adjoining surfaces.
Available in standard white, green and grey shades, plus special colours on request, Retroflect coatings can dramatically increase the efficiency and lifespan of flat and pitched roofs, as well as yielding measurable energy savings. It can also be applied to existing asbestos cement roofing as an effective sealant.