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commercial roofing types

7 Common Commercial Roofing Types

Commercial roofing is as expansive as residential roofing, and in most cases, business owners have to consider more factors when deciding on a commercial roofing type. For businesses, aesthetics are important, and the roof plays a huge role in improving curb appeal. Businesses also prioritize cost reduction, so durability, cost-effectiveness, and energy efficiency are essential in commercial roofing. 

Although commercial roofs function the same as residential roofs, often, the materials suited for commercial roofs differ from residential roofing types. This guide explores the features of seven common commercial roofing types.


Green or living roofs have recently become a popular commercial roofing type. These roofs comprise a waterproof membrane on which people can plant vegetation. The roof may also have drainage and irrigation systems and a root barrier to protect the roof material from damage. 

Green roofs offer commercial property owners several benefits. First, the roofs absorb rainwater, reducing runoff. They also provide insulation, which lowers cooling costs. The roofs also provide a beautiful landscape. 


between $4-$12 for every square foot installed. Thus, for an average roof of 1,500 square feet, roofing costs may be between $6,000 to $18,000. Besides its cost efficiency, PVC is a widely available roofing material. 

The main benefit of PVC roofing is its flexibility. This makes installation easier and allows it to resist extreme weather conditions such as high winds. PVC roofs are also waterproof and have great chemical and fire resistance properties. 


Built-up roofs comprise alternating tar and gravel layers. The number of layers on a built-up roof determines how long it will last. Besides durability, the tar and gravel layers provide insulation and make the roof waterproof. 

The main advantage of a built-up roof is that it is easy to repair. But, on the downside, built-up roofs are vulnerable to wind and water damage and have a short lifespan.


Ethylene Propylene Diene Terpolymer (EPDM) is a roofing type made using synthetic rubber. The material used to make EPDM roofs makes them very durable. Synthetic rubber can resist UV rays, is waterproof, and has great insulation properties, which helps save on heating and cooling costs. The material can also adapt to structural movement and is recyclable. 


Modified Bitumen roofing comprises an asphalt base combined with bitumen and reinforced using polyester or fiberglass, or both. These layers add to the roof’s resistance to wear and tear and its thermal resistance properties. However, this roofing option has a lower lifespan of 15-30 years


Also known as Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO) roofing, this roofing type is among the most popular roofing types used for commercial roofing. This roofing has flexible membranes that can go over any surface, making installation very easy. The installation costs for single-ply membrane roofs are low due to the ease of installation. 

The flexibility of single-ply membrane roofs makes them durable. These roofs can resist temperature shifts and have great wind and fire resistance. Additionally, their material is non-toxic and recyclable.


Metal roofing is a common material used for commercial and residential roofing. Commercial metal roofing may use materials such as stainless and galvanized steel, copper, and aluminum. These materials are strong, increasing the roof’s longevity. 

Metal roofs have a coating to prevent rust and fading. Additionally, they can resist fire and reflect sun rays, lowering temperatures, which reduces heating costs. 

No matter which roofing type you choose for your business, having it installed by an experienced contractor will ensure it lasts its expected lifespan. Contact us today for professional commercial roofing installation in Greensboro to get the job done the right way.

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