While the main purpose may be the same, residential and commercial roofs are two completely different roofing systems. If you happen to be both a homeowner and a commercial property or business owner, knowing the key differences between the respective roofing type requirements can help you make confident remodeling decisions.
The roof’s slope is basically its angle, and constitutes the main difference between residential and commercial roofs. Residential properties have a relatively small area, and need to shed rainwater as fast as possible, hence the steeper slopes. Plus, homes tend to have two stories, which makes the roof visible from the curb. That’s why roofs are always a consideration when the remodeling project is aimed towards boosting the home’s curb appeal.
There are three reasons steep slopes wouldn’t work on commercial roofing. One, it would take up too much roof area; building a similar roof at that scale would create an attic that’s about two stories high. Two, commercial properties are much taller than residential properties, and whatever boost in curb appeal it may have would be lost on such a tall structure. And three, tall structures are more vulnerable to high winds, so a low-slope or flat roof is ideal.
The slope also dictates the choice of materials for each roofing type. Asphalt shingles, tile and slate are particularly effective on residential roofing, as these materials shed snow and rainwater efficiently. On the other hand, commercial structures traditionally have built-up roofing (BUR) that holds up well against high winds. Modern commercial roofing materials, such as TPO, are membranous materials and are ideal for flat roofs, as their main purpose is to prevent water intrusion in case of pooling water.
Different roofing materials require different installation methods. Residential roofs have decks supported by trusses. A waterproofing element known as “felt” is installed between the roof deck and the outer material for additional protection.
Commercial roofing, being almost flat, will have a substrate material installed between the base concrete and the outer roofing layers, and is typically installed using a combination of heat and adhesives.
Whatever your roofing type is, you need a professional roofer to handle installation, repair and maintenance. Whether you need commercial or residential roofing installation, Howard Roofing can help you. Call us today at (636) 333-1690, or fill out our contact form and we’ll visit you for a free quote. We serve many areas in and near St. Louis, MO.