I want to install EPDM rubber (1/16 thk) on my shed. I need about 10'x10'. But I cannot get an answer on what adhesive to use. I talked to 2 roofing companies, but they never gave me an answer. I was told that asphalt based adhesive will destroy the rubber. Can you help me to figure out what to use?

  • 1
    Did you check with the manufacturer of the EPDM rubber sheets?
    – jwh20
    Nov 16, 2020 at 14:39
  • Read the instructions with your rubber sheeting and/or contact the manufacturer! The roofing companies don't want to tell you because that would be giving away business. You could try contacting a roofing supplier, because they'd expect you to buy it from them (which you should, instead of expecting free advice from them, then saving $5 buying it online - next time you go looking for free advice, they won't be so willing to share...).
    – FreeMan
    Nov 16, 2020 at 14:42
  • Well, I wanted to buy the sheet from the roofing company. Nov 16, 2020 at 14:55
  • I have not found a roofing supplier yet. I found something on Amazon (yes I know..). Nov 16, 2020 at 14:56
  • If there are roofing companies in your area, chances are there are roofing supply companies. They may be more general construction material suppliers but an internet search for roofing supply should get you some leads.
    – jwh20
    Nov 16, 2020 at 15:33

2 Answers 2


Forget about it. EPDM is too picky.

EPDM is a complex roofing product that requires a variety of fairly specialized chemicals to work together.

I have a feeling you got all excited when you saw the square foot price for just the rubber membrane. Then you researched and priced the approved glues and other kit... and found out that would quadruple the price! And that makes rubber more expensive than shingle, and more like the cost of high performance roofs like metal. Yeah, it's like that. But it is a high-performance roof, if you can keep the "stupid" away.

"Stupid" is any misuse of another chemical. Tar is the #1 enemy of rubber roofs, and many roof "products" are actually made of tar even though they really work hard to dodge admitting that.

Our poor nonprofit had a new $12,000 rubber roof - should've been a 30 year roof, a welcome respite to 2 decades of roof problems. Except one genius thought the black roof made the building too warm, and painted it silver. With cheapie RV roof coating (you know, the $90 for 5 gallons stuff which is tar). Utterly destroyed the roof. The rubber became brittle and parted from the (expensive) glue holding it to the OSB, started moving around, cracked, and leaked. Voided the warranty of course. Patching it is hopeless, more tar only makes it even worse, and proper rubber patches won't stick to the silver/tar topcoat.


This is what the local roofing supply company sold me:

Product Description

EPDM X-23 Low-VOC Bonding Adhesive is a high-strength, solvent-based contact adhesive that bonds EPDM membranes to various porous and non-porous substrates. It is compatible with InsulBase® and SecurShield® polyisocyanurate insulation, APA non-fire treated plywood, structural and lightweight insulating concrete, oriented strand board, wood fiberboard, SECUROCK®, DensDeck® Prime, masonry, and various metal finishes. EPDM X-23 Low-VOC Bonding Adhesive is easily applied with a 9" (228 mm) medium nap roller, creating a strong adhesive bond between the membrane and substrate.EPDM Adhesive

I am posting this, so it might be helpful to others. I am not promoting this company. It's just an example.

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