What Is the Best Commercial Roofing Material?

Every commercial roof is unique, and every customer has their own needs!

As you start looking for commercial roofers “near me” to complete your next roofing project, you may be wondering what material will best suit your needs. After all, with an investment as significant as your roof, it’s important to feel like you’re making the best decision possible. Here at Elite Roofing, we work with a wide range of commercial roofing materials, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. So today, we’re breaking down some of the best commercial roofing materials to help you make the best decision for your property!

Built-up roofing (BUR)

Also known as “tar and gravel” roofs for the components typically used in their construction, BUR reigned supreme in commercial roofing for many years. BUR roofs are constructed using alternating layers of material, often tar and gravel, and these layers form a durable, watertight seal that protects your commercial property. However, while once the most common form of commercial roofing, BUR is not often recommended these days. BUR roofs are tedious to install, difficult to effectively repair, and fairly bad for the environment.

Single-ply membrane roofing

The new industry leader these days is single-ply membrane roofing, especially TPO and EPDM. While the specifics of these materials vary, single-ply membrane roofing is installed by unrolling large sections of roofing and adhering these sections using specialized glue, roofing tape, or (in the case of TPO) heat welding. 

Here at Elite Roofing, we primarily work with TPO and EPDM. Each of these materials have their own advantages and disadvantages compared to other materials. For example, TPO and EPDM are relatively affordable and durable, but they can shrink over time and they tend not to last as long as sturdier materials like metal. For a more complete comparison of TPO vs. EPDM, check out our past blog post on the topic!

Metal roofing

It’s hard to say enough about the durability of metal compared to other roofing materials. Once installed, you can expect a metal roof to last for decades—50-70 years or longer, depending on maintenance. Being recyclable, metal roofs are also fairly sustainable, and the many varieties of metal available allow you to give your building a unique look. The main drawback of metal is the high initial cost. Metal roofing is among the most expensive commercial roofing materials on the market, especially if you opt for a metal like copper. What’s more, it can sometimes be difficult to find commercial roofers “near me” that even work with metal. 

Green roofs

The ultimate “green” solution, both in appearance and function, green roofing has surged in popularity over the past several years. Green roofs are composed of a layer of vegetation, a growing medium, drainage and filtration, and a layer of waterproofing material. While plants might sound like an odd material for a roof, green roofs actually perform very well in terms of drainage, insulation, durability, and (especially) appearance. However, green roofs are more expensive than traditional roofing options, both in terms of installation and regular maintenance. Still, if you’re looking for an environmentally friendly roofing option, a green roof is the ultimate solution.

Other commercial roofing options

While the above materials are most commonly found on flat and low-slope roofs, not every commercial roof uses this style of construction. Some commercial buildings have pitched roofs, which opens the door to using more traditionally residential materials. With durability being such a critical factor for these roofs, many commercial property owners opt for hardier materials like concrete or synthetic tile, slate, or stone-coated steel. Each of these can create a unique aesthetic for your business, so give them a look if you’re working with a pitched commercial roof!

Elite Roofing: Your Commercial Roofers “Near Me”!

As you weigh your options, it’s important to have a commercial roofing company you can trust to help make the best decision for your commercial roof. Elite Roofing is Denver’s leading commercial roofing company, and we’re happy to lend our expertise. Our knowledge of comes from our wide-ranging industry experience—if it’s a commercial roofing material, the Elite Roofing team has probably installed it! Our team of experts is standing by to plan your commercial roofing project. Contact us today!

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