The Main Differences Between Residential and Commercial Roofing
Residential roofing and commercial roofing vary in several ways. Understanding the differences between residential and commercial roofing is key to building high-quality roofing systems for each structure.
What is a Commercial Roof?
Commercial roofing often covers thousands of square feet and may have to accommodate several weighty rooftop features, including pipes, drains, vents, smokestacks and other commercial components. Commercial roofs are often flat.
What is Residential Roofing?
Residential buildings are usually smaller in size and require fewer rooftop accessories than commercial structures. Unless a homeowner desires solar shingles on the roof, the only obstacles tend to be a chimney, skylights, or vents. Residential roofs usually carry a significant slope.
What’s the Difference?
The main difference between commercial and residential roofing lies in the design. We break down the differences below.
Commercial Roof Design
Most commercial buildings cover thousands of square feet, so the roof must be strong enough to cover the large building span. Commercial roofs must carry the weight of commercial heating and cooling systems, large signs, and other equipment, vents, parapets, or pipes. Flat roofs are more structurally sound than high pitched roofs on larger buildings, so most commercial roofs are flat or low slope, meaning the roof pitch is 3:12 or less.
Residential Roof Design
A residential building’s smaller footprint allows for more roofing design choices. Smaller structures can accommodate a steep slope easier, and the higher roof slope reduces the weight load on a home’s foundation. While any roof’s primary purpose is to protect residential and commercial buildings from weather, residential roofs are more visible to neighbors and passersby. Attractive roofing creates a more desirable home appearance and can increase property value significantly.
Residential roofing often uses some type of shingle, often asphalt, wood shake, ceramic or terra cotta tile. Some factors that may determine which type of roofing materials homeowners use include budget, climate and maintenance requirements.
Large commercial buildings often require more robust and durable roofing materials due to their size and operating conditions. Many commercial buildings apply long-lasting, low maintenance materials like EPDM, TPO or modified bitumen roof coverings.
In most cases, a residential roof’s steeper slope allows rain and snow to slide off the roof easily. And residential roofs generally contain fewer rooftop components than commercial buildings. Fewer obstructions mean residential roofs are often repaired or replaced more easily and quickly.
Commercial roofing requires more maintenance and frequently presents more obstacles during maintenance or repair. External piping, cooling and heating accessories, smokestacks, communication equipment and other protrusions present more hurdles to deal with during repair or replacement. Flat roofs may require more maintenance in wet climates, as water is more likely to pool on the rooftop.
We are a locally-owned and operated roofing company with over 30 years of experience in the industry. We specialize in roofing systems and structures for both residential and commercial clients. Whether you need a roof repair or a complete roof installation, we have the solution for you. Give us a call to speak with a local roofing contractor and schedule an appointment today! For more information or an estimate, call us today and experience The Rosie’s difference!