RhinoBond Roof System – Induction Welded

RhinoBond from Google Images

RhinoBond roof systems have been installed since the late 2000’s. They are known for having the benefits of a mechanically attached system, where the membrane is fastened to the deck, along with the benefits of a fully adhered roof system, where fewer gaps exist between where fasteners are installed.

With a RhinoBond Roof system, special insulation plates are used that are coated so that a heat welded system can adhere to it. As a result, Rhino Bond can only be installed on a TPO Roof System or a PVC Roof System.

The way RhinoBond works is the rigid insulation is laid out and installed the same way a mechanically fastened rigid insulation system is installed. The only difference is the type of plate used, and the number of plates used. Notice in this picture, the plates are gold, which is the color used for a TPO Roof System.

Plate Layout 2

Once the insulation is installed, the membrane is rolled over the insulation. After the membrane is down, the RhinoBond welding tool is placed over an insulation plate, and is induction welded to bring the plate to 500 degrees. After, a cooling clamp is placed over the insulation plate for 30 seconds, then removed. The final result is that the TPO Membrane or PVC membrane is fully welded to the plate. As with any mechanically fastened roofing system, a better wind rating comes with more fasteners.

Benefits of a RhinoBond Roof

  • Doesn’t produce any foul smell during installation.
  • Easier compliance with Factory Mutual (FM) since no bubble test is required.
  • As with any mechanically fastened system, it is simple to enhance wind ratings.
  • Benefits of fastening membrane to structural deck with fewer gaps.

Drawbacks of a RhinoBond Roof

  • Only Available to TPO and PVC roof systems.
  • Newer system that has not been proven over time.
  • Increased likelihood of hitting a conduit or light system that is close to the deck.
  • Most contractors, including Chaffee, have found that greater labor is required to install.
  • Manufacturers offer shorter warranties than other identical systems with alternative membrane securement. The maximum warranty offered on a RhinoBond System is 20 years.

RhinoBond roof systems are a good hybrid between mechanically attached roof systems and fully adhered roof systems, particularly if Factory Mutual insures the building. However, the system takes longer to install and hasn’t been field tested for as long as competing membrane installation methods, which is likely why RhinoBond systems are limited to 20 year warranties, while comparable membrane securement methods have up to 30 year warranties. What will happen to the system over time is an unknown, which is biggest drawback to RhinoBond.