If you are like much of the wider population, you probably overlook the differences between residential and commercial roofs. To many, a roof is a roof. However, there is a significant difference between the two. There are several factors that set commercial and residential roofing apart which will be discussed in this blog post.

1) The Materials Used by the Roofer

A professional roofer will utilize different materials for residential and commercial roofs depending on the roof’s design, cost and the area’s weather conditions. Working with a professional roofing contractor who can decide which materials to employ on a particular roof is crucial. 

Rapidly draining roofing materials such as asphalt shingles, wood shakes, tiles or ceramic are used for residential roofs. Asphalt shingles are the most popular roofing material for houses because of their affordability and ease of installation.

In contrast, multiple layers are used when constructing a commercial roof, including insulation, protective coating and decking. Commercial roof installation usually requires specialized equipment, supplies and safety gear that is not necessary for residential roof installation. 

There are more elements and stages to commercial roof construction, which can be attributed to them being significantly larger than residential roofs.

2) The Design of the Roof

The most apparent difference between residential and commercial roofs is their ‘slope’.

The slope of a commercial roof tends to be almost flat. The pitch stops at the minimum percentage needed to allow water to drain and avoid pooling. Unlike residential properties, which frequently use aesthetic designs or colors, commercial roofing is designed based on functionality.

On the other hand, professional roofers design residential roofs with both practicality and style in mind. The slope of a residential roof is usually much higher than a commercial roof, making the property more noticeable to prospective buyers. An eye-catching residential roof with a decorative design or colors further increases the appeal of a home to a potential buyer.

3) The Installation Process

We touched on installation briefly when discussing the differences in the materials used. Let me expand on this further. Commercial and residential roofs have different installation requirements. The roof’s surface area and type determine how long the roof will take to install. 

Residential roofs are often much smaller than commercial ones, meaning installation can be as quick as a single day. The process of installation is as follows:

  • Initially, wood planks are fastened to trusses.
  • Next, underlayments are put in place.
  • Lastly, the exterior materials are applied. 

On the other hand, installing a commercial roof can take over a month due to its sheer size and the number of layers required.

4) The Level of Maintenance Required

A residential roof requires less maintenance than commercial roofs. The homeowner simply needs to perform periodic visual inspections of their roof. This includes looking for damage after storms. Residential roofs tend to develop leaks in isolated areas. 

This means that a professional roofer can complete the repairs in just a few hours. Isolated leaks are the most common issue that occurs with residential roofs.

Maintenance for commercial roofs, on the other hand, requires a qualified roofing contractor. The contractor must keep an eye out for leaks and other damage indicators. Professional inspections should take place more frequently, especially for flat roofs. 

A commercial roof needs to be evaluated in its entirety if water gets through its layers. Commercial roof repairs can be costly because of their size and the types of materials required. 

5) The Type of Roofing Professional

Commercial and residential roofers have different skill sets. Commercial roofers must understand the wide range of available materials and the correct methods for repairing and patching them. Less specific skills are needed for residential roofing. 

Unlike conventional commercial roofers, residential roofers frequently work with asphalt shingle roofs, which only requires more basic expertise.

Final Thoughts

While there are significant differences between residential and commercial roofs in terms of function, style, maintenance and installation, both types of roofing should be performed by professional roofing contractors. Working with a reputable expert during building avoids maintenance issues down the line. 

This is where we come in – as professional roofing contractors; at TDJ Contractors, we have your residential and commercial roofing needs covered. Contact us today for further information and see how we can make your next roofing project dream a reality!