Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO) vs. Fiberglass
Most experienced RV drivers know how important it is to maintain their Recreational Vehicle in a good state. Because even if we think it may not be important, it surely is an essential component, and taking care of it will make our RV last longer and with this have more pleasant trips.
The roof is sometimes one of these parts that are overlooked by some people. While some users just plain don’t care about it and don’t upgrade it or maintain it there are people who are genuinely lacking information about the types of roofs that are suitable for RVs. Today we will talk about two different popular types of roofs: TPO and fiberglass.
Let’s start with TPO, they use that word to refer to Thermoplastic Polyolefin, the official name, but since it’s difficult to pronounce they use the acronym TPO. It consists of a single-ply layer of a rubberlike component. It is one of the most popular roofing techniques in business in the world.
Fiberglass Roof is also called GRD Flat Roof in some places which stands for Glass Reinforced Polyester. And like the names say it pretty much just consists of this strong material that is formed by adding small fibers made of glass, which will help to strengthen it.
Now that we have explained what each one of them is, let’s move into some similarities and differences and hopefully, this will help you decide which one is better for you.
What everyone probably wants to know first is the price. And you’ll be surprised that there is a huge difference! TPO costs around $5-$16 USD per square meter while Fiberglass costs $90-$115 USD per square meter. That is almost 9 times the average of TPO. So, if you are on a low budget Fiberglass may not be the ideal option for you.
People might be wondering why is fiberglass so expensive, and the answer is the lack of maintenance it needs. Repairs are not common with fiberglass roofs if the job is done well the first time it will last a long time up to 30 years or 50 for fiberglass shingles. While TPO will last up to 20 years if you are dedicated to maintaining it.
Fiberglass is resistant to harsh weather conditions and has a nice finish, and while TPO is also resistant it all depends on the manufacturer. TPO thickness doesn’t always mean it will last more because the materials wear out evenly regardless.
After reviewing all this, we can say that fiberglass is better than TPO but it can be considered very expensive for most people, so it would be something you have to invest in but it will be worth it if you are thinking of long term use.