Types Of Commercial Roofing


If you own a business, you know that the maintenance of the roof is complicated. Commercial roofing systems differ from residential roofing systems for good reason. The problems that commercial building owners face differ from those residential owners face, so the solutions required are different. Today, we’re going to help you make your commercial roofing system decision easier by providing you with all the different types of commercial roofing available on the market. 

What Is Commercial Roofing?

Commercial roofing is a comprehensive term for the industry that designs, constructs, installs, and manages commercial systems. These types of roofing companies include the manufacturers of the materials, the architects of the systems. This also includes the roofers and companies that install, repair, and maintain commercial roofs. 

Business roofing materials focus more on durability rather than aesthetics. However, that depends on the type of property, its purpose, and location.

These roofing systems are intricate, expansive, and expensive to install versus residential systems. Your commercial building’s roof is an investment in your business. Therefore, it’s important to understand the types of roofing systems and what will work best.

It is even more important that you work with a professional commercial roofing company that can install and maintain a high-quality roofing system. 

Types Of Commercial Roofing

They build each commercial roof according to the needs of the building and the budget of the owner. The roof of your commercial property plays an integral role in the overall health of the building. It also plays a huge role in the roof’s longevity itself. The surrounding environment, weather, and things like animals and foliage will also affect the integrity of the roof.

Most commercial roofs are flat or low slopes. This narrows down the available roofing materials. There are a few common roof classifications. They include Built-Up Roofing Membrane, Metal Roofing, Modified Bitumen Roofing, Thermoset Roof Membrane, Thermoplastic Roof Membrane, Garden “Green” Roofing System, Concrete Roofing, and Asphalt Shingles. Let’s break those down for you.

Built-Up Roofing Membrane (BUR)

Built-up roofing, or “BUR”, is your standard tar-and-gravel roof. It’s built with multiple layers. This is a flexible roof type, as the number of layers can be varied to help control costs or meet certain durability requirements. It’s an old low-slope roof system. It is also one of the most cost-effective and tough roofing types available today.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing is a very popular commercial roof type.  There are so many kinds of metal materials available for such a roofing system. These include corrugated galvanized steel, aggregates of zinc, aluminum, and silicon-coated steel, metal tile sheets, copper, aluminum, stainless steel, stone-coated steel, tin, and lead.

Since metal is susceptible to rusting, they add protective surface layers to manage damage from prolonged exposure to sunlight and other dangers. Metal roofing also has the advantage of having an attractive, finished look. Metal roofs have strong fire resistance ratings and are both stronger and more durable compared to traditional commercial roofing options. They also help create a more sustainable design for your building.

Modified Bitumen Roofing

Reinforced roof fabrics are applied to act as “carriers” for bitumen, which is later cut and installed in layers similar to BUR membranes. They fasten these roofing systems to commercial rooftops as two-ply systems, adhered to the roofing deck for maximum stability and protection.

Maintenance of modified bitumen roofs is simple and is typically just annual inspections and cleaning. They offer strength compared to most other flat roof types that experience regular foot traffic. This means if you expect a lot of activity on your commercial building roof, modified bitumen may be ideal.

Thermoset Roof Membrane

Also known as EPDM roofing, Thermoset roof systems offer long-lasting durability and versatility, paired with a simple installation and ease of maintenance. EPDM boasts a strong resistance to ultraviolet light and ozone. They construct it from a single-ply rubber material.

Other benefits include great flexibility in colder temperatures, resistance to some acids and solvents, and reflective properties that help lower cooling costs.

Thermoplastic Roof Membrane

Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO) and Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) roofing systems are lightweight and highly reflective. They provide excellent weathering and resistance to UV light, punctures, and most chemicals. The nature of these resistances makes thermoplastic roof membranes popular for restaurants and other businesses that emit oils and fats from their ventilation systems. Other benefits range from a high-temperature tolerance to high resistance to fire and high winds.

Green Roofing

Green roofs are perhaps the most versatile kind of commercial roof around today. They’ve not only become popular in recent years, but they present a truly sustainable option for commercial properties and businesses. The leading advantage of green roofing systems is their ability to protect commercial buildings from the elements while simultaneously managing water, drainage, and improving energy efficiency. They’re beautiful to look at and an enormous step toward a more sustainable, environmentally-friendly commercial property.

Concrete Roofing

Concrete tile roofing is extremely resilient and can be quite effective for energy conservation and savings. They can also make concrete roofing to mimic the look of various other types of roofing materials, such as shingles or shakes.

Traditional Asphalt Shingles 

While asphalt shingles are typically more common for residential structures, they are also used for certain types of commercial properties as well. Asphalt shingles are fairly waterproof, relatively inexpensive, and available in a range of colors and styles to suit most properties.

Final Words

Because of the complexity, you want to work with a company that has commercial roofing expertise and maintenance programs that can help protect your commercial roofing system. Call us at (636) 699-0449 to check out what will work best for your new commercial roofing system.