Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing

It is a myth that commercial and residential roofs are alike, without any special considerations. The truth is both roof types are different in several ways, even though the goal of having a robust roof stands the same for residential and commercial properties. Here is an article to understand the differences between commercial and residential roofing.

Here are a few of the factors that differentiate commercial and residential roofing. You ought to know the difference between hiring a suitable commercial or residential roofing company for restoration or fresh installation needs. The differences are as follows:

  • Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing Services: The Process

When you hire a residential roofing company, they will take a straightforward approach with essential considerations to get the job done. But, with commercial roofing needs, the intensity of consideration factors increases tremendously. The airflow systems, external piping and other such factors need much more intense planning in the case of commercial roofing services.

It is the most evident difference between commercial and residential roofing. There might be a need for unique roof restoration or repairs on residential and commercial properties. But, even considering that residential roofs are fairly small, the process can be completed within a day or two.

Most home roofs are made up of asphalt shingles, which are attached to the roof through metal tabs. The tabs will secure those shingles onto the roof substrate.

Commercial roofing or restoration requires more planning, time and material. The financial cost, safety factors and a lot of other things are taken into consideration. The tools needed for installing commercial and residential roofing also vary.

The tools you need for residential roofs can fit in a tool belt. However, commercial roofing needs heavy equipment and bigger tools to accomplish the job.

  • Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing: The Design or Slope

One of the significant differences in commercial vs residential roofing is the design needs. Residential roofing designs often have higher and steeper slopes, also known as pitch. High pitches are important for residential properties to ensure proper drainage of rainwater.

The maximum pitch that residential roofs have is around 12:12 or 45 degrees. Moreover, the roofs are usually smaller, with minimal features such as vents, skylights, or chimneys.

Commercial roofs are often flat or nearly flat, known as the membrane roof. The slope demands of a commercial building are fairly lower than that of residential roofing.

As the size of the commercial roofs is humongous, giving an extremely steep slope design will be dangerous and inconvenient for the technical professionals to work on. Installing or maintaining the appliance fixtures for the building will become difficult.

But still, there’s a need for at least a smaller slope of around ¼ inch per foot. It will prevent the buildings from ponding or poor water drainage issues.

  • Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing: Materials Used

The materials used in the process are a great point to state the differences between commercial vs residential roofing. Some common materials preferred for residential roofing news are clay tiles, slate tiles, colorbond steel sheets, and concrete tiles. A roofing or roof restoration company will take the preferences and expectations of house owners to curate the choice of materials accordingly.

But, for commercial roofing, it is an entirely different story. There’s a need for a lot of material for the complete installation or a restoration job. Concrete membranes or metal sheets are required for installing a nearly flat roof over commercial properties such as restaurants, warehouses, schools, office buildings, etc.

Such robust materials allow dedicated professionals to install or repair specific features on commercial buildings, such as external pipes, HVAC units, etc.

But still, certain common materials are often used in both settings, but the quantity differs. Such materials include:

  • Cedar tiles
  • Steel roofing
  • Solar tiling
  • Clay roofing tiles
  • Timber-glad
  • Pebble
  • Thatched
  • Terracotta tiles
  • Corrugated metal

Some of the other supporting materials are also commonly used in both settings, which offers insulation properties to the property. People with no budget constraints often get this done to save on utility bills in the long run.

  • Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing: Maintenance Efforts

Both residential and commercial roofing needs maintenance over time. But, the effort and time are what make them different from one another. The residential roofs are smaller in size. Hence, the maintenance needs are less. It is because you can easily schedule regular inspections and maintenance over time for your residential roofs. It is a job that would take less than half a day.

If any problems are found, the repair efforts are also minimal compared to commercial roofing. On the other hand, commercial roofs will need periodic maintenance, as they are more susceptible to leakages or other damages because of increased foot traffic, ageing, and weather events. A complete roof restoration team will be assigned to inspect and maintain a commercial roof.

Thus, maintenance of commercial roofs is much more strenuous than residential roofs.

  • Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing: Pricing Differences

It is pretty evident that commercial roofing will be a lot more expensive than residential roofing services. Some common factors that influence the cost are size, required manpower, the number of materials used, the use of different tools, the time required for completion, risks, and specific preferences.

Both residential and commercial roofing needs high-quality installation or restoration using durable structures and materials. But, the cost of installing or restoring roofs on your house will be less than your commercial building.

You can get in touch with the best commercial or residential roofing company to get an estimate for your project. They will give you a better analysis of all of the costing factors.

  • Commercial Roofing vs Residential Roofing: Aesthetic Differences

Talking about commercial vs residential roofing, the concern for aesthetics also differs among these two types. People buying or constructing a house will expect an appealing, amazingly pleasing property. As people often praise the roofs of residential properties, house owners want them to stand out.

But, in the case of commercial buildings, the roof’s aesthetics is not much thought of! Commercial properties are often big, and the appealing aspects of the roof don’t matter. How many of you have walked into a mall and wondered what the roof looks like? The lighting, interior, and the building walls are what catch your attention.


In short, commercial roofing is done with the vision of enriching functionality, whereas residential roofing is about aesthetic appeal. Durability is a common consideration for both. Considering the needs and requirements, a professional commercial and residential roofing company will take on the job with all factors in check.

If you have a roofing job coming up anytime soon, this article will help you know what your property needs to serve the purpose. Let professionals analyse the materials and tools required for your house or commercial building.

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