Rubbermaid trusts FiberTite® Roofing Systems to protect its largest facility at Greenville, Texas - high winds and extreme temperatures are no match for Seaman Corporation's technology.
Name: Rubbermaid, Inc. - Greenville
Dates: Installed in August, 1984
Location: Greenville, TX U.S.A.
Over the last 30 years, the Rubbermaid distribution and manufacturing facility in Greenville, Texas, has grown from 266,000 square-feet to one that is now over one million square feet, making it the company’s largest manufacturing and distribution center in the United States.
Located in north Texas, in one of the most unforgiving climates in the United States, Greenville experiences hail, rain, blazing heat, extremely cold temperatures, snow, constant high winds and occasionally tornadoes. In a single day, temperatures can fluctuate from over 100 degrees during the day to near freezing at night. The wind blows at a near constant speed of 25 mph with regular gusts up to 75 mph.
Mike Decker, automation engineer at the Greenville plant and a 26-year veteran employee, recalled a storm in 1983 that produced high winds and large amounts of rainwater. During the storm, the stone ballast covering the facility’s four-year-old EPDM roofing membrane shifted to one side of the building, exposing the membrane to the storm. The strong winds lifted the membrane from the building, causing major “bubbling” and ultimately the complete failure of the roof.
“It was a mess,” Decker said, and added facility managers had to act quickly to determine a better long-term solution for protection against north Texas’s unforgiving climate. They selected a 36mil FiberTite Roofing System.
Facility managers were so impressed with FiberTite, that a year later, a FiberTite Roofing System was installed on a 365,000-square-foot addition. Seven years later, FiberTite was again chosen to protect an addition that nearly doubled the size of the building.
Decker said that in Greenville, there is an almost constant 25 mph wind that can produce gusts up to 75 mph to 80 mph. These strong winds sometimes produce large hail, which can cause extreme damage to an aged roof. Over time, roofing materials such as modified bitumen, PVC or TPO lose plasticizers that keep the fabric flexible. When an object strikes an older membrane roof, cracking can occur, leading to roof failure.
FiberTite is engineered with a face and back coat formulated with Dupont™ Elvaloy KEE®, which is known for its long-term flexibility, weldability and resistance to harsh chemicals. This coating is molecularly bonded to an adhesive coat that saturates the densely woven base fabric that provides protection against punctures.
Decker said that over the years, the FiberTite roof has seen everything from hail to tornado force winds and there has never been a major failure. When minor damage did occur, Decker learned another advantage to FiberTite.
“FiberTite is very easy to repair,” he said. “Most damage was covered by the warranties, and were quickly fixed, but those damages that weren’t, I was able to take a hot-air welder and put a patch on the damage in just a couple minutes. Over the years, that’s saved us a lot of money and headaches.”
Facilities and Environmental Engineer John Metzger said, over the years, the roof has performed better than anyone expected.
“To me, there is no comparison between FiberTite and a built-up-roof (BUR),” he said. “Though we try to limit foot traffic, there is regular air conditioning maintenance and every once in a while something gets damaged, but we’ve never had a major problem with the roof.”
The Rubbermaid facility in Greenville is a two-time recipient of the FiberTite Silver Roof Award, which recognizes the company’s support in pioneering FiberTite’s reputation of durability in the harshest climates.