How To Choose Commercial Roofing Materials
Are you looking at different types of commercial flat roofing materials or commercial roofing materials in general? Trying to devise the best option for your business or commercial building might seem overwhelming from too many choices.
Overall, all of the roofing material options for flat roofs and low-slope roofs have their pros and cons, so it’s mostly a matter of knowing a bit about each one. From there, you can weigh your top priorities for your roof and decide on a suitable option for your building.
In this guide, the roofing contractors at Floridian Roofing and Solar go over common types of roofing materials for commercial businesses. We will get into the pros and cons of each and help you decide which commercial roofing would work best for your roofing needs.
Types of Commercial Flat Roofing Materials
There are several common kinds of commercial roofing materials. Most commercial rooftops have flat or primarily flat roofs. The roofing system is designed to protect from various elements and wear and tear. Here are the most common options:
- Built-up Roofing (BUR)
- Modified Bitumen Roofing
Now, let’s look closer at each of these options and some of their advantages and drawbacks.
PVC and TPO Roof – Pros and Cons
Single-ply membrane roofing systems and high-solids silicone roof coatings are pretty popular these days for commercial roofs. Instead of fabric and asphalt layers, these two roofing systems have a single-layer membrane made of material meant to protect you from the elements, usually PVC (polyvinyl chloride) or TPO (thermoplastic polyolefin).
These roofing materials come in large rolls that are relatively easy to install and don’t have many gaps. This fact means they are good options if you want protection from water damage. Single-ply membrane systems are also fire-resistant and relatively energy efficient.
TPO, specifically, is usually a white color that’s great for reflecting heat, earning it a high Energy Star rating. However, they can be somewhat expensive. You’ll also need to find reliable roofing contractors. While these roofs are reasonably simple to install, learning how to do so takes some time.
EPDM Roof – Pros and Cons
EPDM, which stands for ethylene propylene diene monomer, is another single-ply membrane roofing system. EPDM is made of rubber material, so this option is often called a rubber roof.
EPDM is an excellent choice if you want a long-lasting roofing system for your commercial building. It’s known for being able to last many decades, and the material has a long track record in the industry. EPDM is also relatively affordable, so it’s a solid option for many commercial buildings.
However, some EPDM roofs are prone to shrinkage, which can negatively affect the seal of your roof. Because of this, it’s essential that you perform regular roof inspections and assess for issues within your EPMD roof system.
Built-Up Roof – Pros and Cons
Built-up roofs, also known as BUR systems, are an older style of commercial roofing. They have a membrane that’s made of piles or fabric layers. These are installed along with layers of asphalt and asphalt mixes. Built-up roofs are easy to repair rooftop materials, and they’re also generally low maintenance and durable. As BUR systems age, however, they can bubble or blister, and cracks may form throughout the surface layer.
Modified Bitumen Roofing – Pros And Cons
Modified bitumen is a bit of a mix between the single-ply membrane options and BUR. Like BUR, modified bitumen is installed in layers. But, like EPDM, it’s a rubber material. When installing modified bitumen, the contractors use a petroleum-like substance.
When it comes to pros and cons, modified bitumen is a good option if your roof will need to support people walking on it. In addition, it’s also a rather energy efficient choice.
Floridian Roofing and Solar provides exceptional installation, maintenance, and repair services for a wide variety of roofing materials. Find out how we can service your commercial roof today!
What Is the Best Type of Flat Roof?
Trying to pick one type of flat roof as the absolute best is a difficult thing to do. Generally, it depends on your needs and how the roof will be used. For example, if you want a durable and long-lasting roofing system, EPDM is a solid choice. On the other hand, if you’re looking for energy efficiency, TPO is the way to go. However, it can be more expensive to have installed than EPDM. Overall, you’ll want to consider a few factors when choosing a roofing material for your commercial building.
Consider the Use Of the Building
One of the primary considerations when choosing the right roofing material is how the building will be used. If it’s for a factory, you’ll want something like modified bitumen that can handle various oils and exhaust. If you’re installing the roof on an apartment building, you may want to go with an option like a built-up roof that can withstand people walking on the roof.
Think About Budget
Of course, when choosing the right roofing material for your building, you’ll need to think about your budget. But, you’ll have to weigh a couple of things here. On the one hand, the initial costs do matter. You’ll also need to think about energy efficiency and long-term costs, such as repairs and utility bills. Sometimes the cheapest option at the start isn’t the most affordable in the long-run.
For example, metal roofs typically require more upfront costs than other types of roofing materials, but they are extremely energy efficient and can last up to 70 years if maintained properly. Other types of roofing materials like TPO are less expensive than metal roofs, but they require expert installation in order to provide quality roofing down the line.
Reach Out to Our Roofing Experts
Still unsure which is the right commercial roofing material for your building? All you need to do is get in touch with the flat roof professionals at Floridian Roofing and Solar. We will help you find the right roofing system for your budget and building. We are happy to go into detail about the installation process and more.
Call Floridian Roofing and Solar to learn more about commercial roofing options!
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Floridian Roofing & Solar is a full-service provider of commercial and residential roofing services. We use our 20 years of experience to put a durable roof over your head.