T. Clear Corporation – Concrete Building Envelope Products
- Written by: Molly Shaw
- Produced by: Ian Nichols
- Estimated reading time: 5 mins
From below ground to the roof, Ohio-based T. Clear Corporation is manufacturing a full line of quality concrete building envelope products in the USA. T. Clear products have a proven history of durability and the energy efficiency performance to meet today’s green building standards.
T. Clear dates back to 1975 when founders Ted and Mary Lou Clear started Fin Pan Inc., initially as a concrete backer board manufacturer. A contractor by trade, Ted used his building know-how to develop the original manufacturing patent for concrete backer board, which spurred the company’s advancement into building envelope technologies.
From 1975 until 1990, the company began to manufacture concrete-topped roofing panels consisting of Styrofoam and a latex modified concrete top for Dow Chemical Corporation. T. Clear formed in 1990 when Ted and Mary Lou purchased the rights to sell the roofing panels, now known as LightGUARD and HeavyGUARD protected membrane roofing (PMR) to separate the company’s line of exterior products from Fin Pan’s interior shower installation products.
Today, LightGUARD and HeavyGUARD are still T. Clear’s main PMR products, but the company also manufacturers wall and foundation products that meet today’s continuous insulation requirements, such as ProGUARD, concrete insulated sheathing; WallGUARD, concrete faced insulated perimeter wall panels for foundation walls; ThermaDRY, insulating drainage panels for below grade basement walls and ProTEC C-SIP’s, concrete structural insulated panels.
Built for longevity
Using concrete and insulation as the basis for its products, T. Clear has carved a niche in the low-slope roofing industry across the U.S. and Canada. The company serves customers across a wide variety of sectors, including institutional, educational and government clients.
“We typically cater to a more high-end market for our PMR roofing products,” says Steve Confer, national sales manager for T. Clear. “We’ve done a lot of work for Duke University, Michigan State and many other higher education institutions and universities across North America. We’ve done a lot of government buildings as well. Our niche is where the building owners have a genuine interest in seeing a facility last for a very long time and they want to make this investment to protect the roof membrane.”
Backed by proven building science
T. Clear takes the science and evidence behind concrete and insulation and applies it to the building envelope for a long-lasting solution. “We don’t have many direct competitors with most of our products because ours start with a concrete skin, whether its latex modified concrete adhered to extruded polystyrene, or concrete backer boards that are laminated to either extruded or expanded polystyrene,” explains Confer. “With our products you get the insulation value of either EPS or XPS polystyrene, while also getting the protection and durability of the concrete face.”
“A lot of our competitors have to use a couple different products to get to the same result or they’re using metal or other mediums, where we feel the proven history of concrete and insulation provides a very durable, sustainable and energy-efficient product on the building envelope,” adds Confer.
T. Clear’s roofing solutions have been put to the test at Duke University Medical Center, where a reroofing project using the T. Clear’s LightGUARD and HeavyGUARD PMR panels saved the university some $43,000 and added numerous years to the roof’s life span.
In sensitive data center applications, T. Clear’s envelope solutions deliver the consistency needed to maintain controlled environments. T. Clear’s WallGUARD concrete-faced insulated perimeter wall panels were used to protect the perimeter foundation of Microsoft’s datacenters.
The opportunity for LEED points
Not only do T. Clear’s envelope products ensure long-lasting performance and durability, they can also contribute to LEED. T. Clear’s products are eligible for material and resource (MR) credits, including building reuse, construction waste management, recycled content, local and regional materials and more. “Everything we make is still sourced in the U.S. and produced in Ohio,” says Confer.
The energy performance and savings T. Clear’s products produce can also make an installation eligible for sustainable sites (SS) credits, energy and atmosphere (EA) credits and increased thermal comfort can make T. Clear applications eligible for environmental quality (EQ) credits. “Our mantra is sustainability, durability and energy efficiency across all of our products,” says Confer.
T. Clear is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and will attend the annual Greenbuild International Conference and Expo this year. “Greenbuild is a good opportunity to see what new green initiatives are out there and to see what architects, contractors and building owners are looking for from an energy standpoint. It’s also a chance for us to see what other companies are doing and to form partnerships,” says Confer.
Backed by the proven building science of concrete and insulation, some of T. Clear’s PMR products have lasted as long as the company has been in business. “When installed correctly our LightGUARD and/or HeavyGUARD products can protect the roof membrane from anything that will typically cause it to break down,” explains Confer. “Some of the roofs we’ve installed in 1975 are still standing today.”
To get this type of result and longevity for their PMR products, T. Clear works with a network of preapproved contractors across North America. “We try to control the process as much as possible,” says Confer. “We entrust these preapproved contractors and distributors to deliver products and installations up to our standards.”
A higher standard has been T. Clear’s promise to building owners for more than 40 years and today, family ownership still fuels T. Clear’s resolve to deliver. Ted and Mary-Lou have recently retired after some 40 years of service to the company. Their grandsons, Ryan Schaffer, now CEO of Fin Pan/T. Clear, and Jason Clear, president and chief operating officer of Fin Pan/T. Clear, are carrying on the third-generation of leadership. “We’re still a fairly small, family-owned business and we take great pride in what we do,” adds Confer.
With solid building science at the core, T. Clear Corporation’s concrete roofing and building envelope products deliver a higher standard in protection, durability and energy efficiency.
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