First, we thoroughly test each batch of coating both during and after manufacture. The manufacture of latex coatings is part science and part art, so careful checking is needed to ensure each batch is built to standard. Every batch is tested for viscosity, fineness of grind, air entrapment, pH, and reflectivity. Coatings that don’t meet company standards are quarantined until the problem is corrected or the coating is re-manufactured or scrapped. Monthly test reports summarize the performance of each product line in detail and make it easy to track trends and consistency.
The second form of testing involves obtaining samples of competitors’ coatings and testing them under simulated roof conditions along with our own coatings. The results are compared to ensure our coatings are performing to a high standard. We employ a number of tests involving extreme soaking, wet- and dry-adhesion, dirt-pickup, and weathering. Elastek takes advantage of the severe desert climate by having its own outdoor weathering facility. Testing involves a variety of substrates such as BUR, emulsion, modified bitumen, single ply, metal, and foam.
Finally, we regularly test new coating ideas or ideas to improve existing coatings in our lab. We are in close contact with key suppliers, including resin manufacturers, who are often the source of new technology. We also pursue our own ideas to improve coating performance. We are on rooftops looking at coating situations all the time and this often suggests new product ideas. Significant changes are never introduced until we have tested them carefully in advance.