While residential and commercial roofs play the same role, the roofing systems available to homeowners differ from those available to owners of commercial buildings. Commercial roofing refers to large-scale roofing projects. The average commercial building faces many different problems when it comes to roofing.
What Are the Differences Between Commercial Roofing and Residential Roofing?
These two roofing systems usually vary in design. Compared to a typical residential roof, commercial roofs are much larger and are either completely flat or have a low slope.
Flat roofs also require more maintenance in comparison to residential roofs. With residential roofs, homeowners have minimal options to pick from, like concrete tile or asphalt shingle systems; the latter is the most popular option.
Building owners have various options for commercial roofing systems, including tar and gravel systems, built-up roofing, concrete, modified bitumen, EPDM, PVC, TPO, and sprayed polyurethane foam, among others.
Additionally, residential roofs are easy to create and install. This is unlike commercial roofs, which require more skilled installation by those familiar with external piping, airflow systems, and smokestacks.
Important Aspects of Commercial Roofing
Roof Installation. The installation method used for a commercial roof depends on the material, labor hours, level of skill required, and pricing. Hiring a skilled and certified commercial roofing contractor who can get the work done within your budget and on time is recommended.
Roof Inspection. Inspections examine the issues with a roofing system, which helps prevent roof damage, identify any problems early and avoid costly repairs in the future.
Commercial Roof Maintenance. Properly maintaining a commercial roof helps extend its life span. This may include treating any tears, water damage, or leaks, cleaning debris, repairing HVAC and flashing systems on the roof.
Types of Commercial Roofing Systems
Built-Up Roofing. This roofing system is the standard tar and gravel roof system. It comprises multiple piles or layers that improve the system’s durability. This commercial roofing system is ideal for those seeking a cost-effective and durable option.
EPDM Roofs. These roofs are also known as thermoset roofs. They are easy to maintain and are long-lasting and versatile compared to other commercial roofs. EPDM roofs are also resistant to alcohol, acids, and some solvents, and they possess reflective properties which decrease cooling expenses.
Metal roofs. Metal commercial roofing systems come in different materials, including silicon-coated steel, stone-coated steel, stainless steel, corrugated galvanized steel, metal tile sheets, copper, tin, zinc, and aggregates of aluminum, among others. These roofs are very popular, mainly because of their durability and fire-resistant ratings. The roofs also possess protective layers which prevent damage and rusting from exposure to environmental factors like sunlight.
Modified Bitumen Roofs. This roofing system comprises bitumen and reinforced roof fabrics applied in layers. It is fastened to the rooftop of a building as a 2-ply system, ensuring maximum stability and protection. Bitumen roofs provide improved tensile strength and are easy to maintain compared to other commercial flat roofs.
Green Roofing Systems. Green roofs are a sustainable option for properties and have become popular in the last few years. They can manage water and drainage concerns as well as improve efficiency. This is in addition to being environmentally friendly and aesthetically pleasing commercial roofing material.
PVC Roofs. Poly Vinyl Chloride roofs are resistant to bacterial growth, most chemicals, punctures, and UV rays, in addition to being highly reflective and lightweight. These roofs are ideal for 2nd generation applications and perfect for businesses that release oils from their ventilation systems, like restaurants.
TPO Roofs. Thermoplastic Polyolefin roofs are also lightweight and highly reflective. They are suitable for second-generation applications.
How Do You Calculate the Cost of Installing Commercial Roofs?
The cost of commercial roofing services, which includes installation, maintenance, and inspection, usually depends on various aspects. These aspects include the type of roof and slope as well as the supplies needed. You should also consider the total area of the roof as it will affect the amount spent on material purchases.
In addition to this, consider the required permits for installation and repair and any additional features like chimneys and skylights. These will add to the installation cost.
The installation of commercial roofs also takes longer than residential roofs. This time factor needs to be considered. For instance, while it can take one or two days to complete a residential roofing job, it can take a month or more to finish installing a commercial roof. This is because their installation involves complex installation procedures. And, of course, the labor cost for this complex and time-consuming task will be higher.
What is the Life Expectancy of a Commercial Roof?
The life of a commercial roof varies depending on the materials used to build it. For instance, TPO commercial roofing has a 15 to 20-year lifespan, while PVC roofs have a lifespan of over two decades.
On the other hand, EPDM flat roofs have a thirty-year lifespan, making them a good choice. It should be noted that a roof’s longevity is also dependent on how well it is maintained.
Are you interested in undertaking a commercial roofing project? Our experienced team at Phillip’s Roofing is available to help!