What Are the Different Types of Commercial Roofs?

by | Jul 15, 2022 | Roofing

Commercial buildings include warehouses, offices, farm land buildings, medical centres, malls, and others.

Unlike regular residential roofing options, there are many commercial roof types, from flat roofs to metal or even mastic asphalt.

The purpose of commercial buildings is obviously slightly different to a home or residential area. So, the roofing options are also different.

This blog post will explain the different types of commercial roofs, why they’re popular, and more – helping you choose the best roofing option for you.

If you’re looking for a roofing company in Lexington, Kentucky, then contact the team at Jacob’s Ladder today for a quote.

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Why are commercial roof types different?

The set-up of commercial roofing is separate from residential requirements.

Commercial roofing needs to be stable, durable, cost-effective, and in a lot of instances, accessible.

For example, you may need to house air conditioning units on the roof, or if tight on space, you could even have a rooftop garden. Pretty swish, right?

What are the different commercial building roof types?

As you likely already know from shopping around, there are many types of commercial roofs out there.

However, some of the more popular options include:

  1. Flat roofs
  2. Metal roofs
  3. Built-up roofing membrane
  4. Green roofing
  5. Shingle roofing 

Keep reading to find out more about each commercial roof type, including how they work, why they’re popular, and what option is right for you.

Flat roofs

If you see a commercial building, chances are, it has a flat roof.

Flat roofing is a very popular option for commercial buildings – it’s inexpensive, accessible, and easy to access.

Metal roofs

Aluminum and steel metal roofs are especially popular for warehouses and similar commercial buildings.

Metal roofing is strong, durable, and weather-resistant.

It’s a good option for those housing products; it’s relatively affordable and does a great job of keeping the weather out.

Built-up roofing membrane

Built-up roofing membrane is a mix of tar and gravel, applied in layers.

This type of roofing is inexpensive and easy to repair. Oh, and not to mention: more layers can be applied to create a more robust, weather-resistant roof.

In fact, built-up roofing membrane is one of the oldest and most widely used types of commercial roofing.

It’s also weather-resistant, doesn’t attract heat (as opposed to metal roofing), and provides easy access to the roof when you need it.

Green roofing

Green roofing is a relatively new concept for commercial buildings.

Some companies take the initiative more seriously than others, housing a basic garden for employees to enjoy.

Green roofing for commercial buildings is more popular in cities – providing a little extra room in bustling areas.

A tough waterproof membrane is covered by greenery – it’s beautiful, scenic, and a fantastic place to relax during a lunch break.

And while green roofing isn’t for every business, thanks to the initial cost and ongoing maintenance needs, it does make a nice addition to a previously dull office or warehouse building.

Shingle roofing

Finally, we have the classic shingle roofing. And while it’s more widely used for residential homes, shingle roofing still has its place when it comes to commercial building roof types.

It’s cost-effective, looks great, and is available in a ton of different colors.

You can’t quite discount shingle roofing – it’s been around a while for a reason.

How to choose what commercial roof type is right for you?

To decide what type of commercial roof type is right for you, consider the following questions:

  1. Do you need access to the roof?
  2. What weather are you exposed to?
  3. Does your commercial building face the sun?
  4. Are you keen on creating a green space for employees?

Answering these questions should provide you with a basic guide to choosing the right roof.

Despite this, flat roofing is a common option as it’s super versatile, but there are other options to choose from. For more advice, contact the team at Jacob’s Ladder.

Commercial roofing in Lexington

Do you need a helping hand with your commercial roofing in Lexington?

We’re experts in commercial roofing and industrial flat roofing specialists – we’ve been doing this for years, and we know how to do a great job of it.

With an industry partnership with Duro-Last (the world’s leading commercial roofing manufacturer), we can ensure a quality job that is built to last.

Find out more about our commercial roofing in Lexington.

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Very pleased with the roof!




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Roof Repair Completed




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Easy Insurance Claim!




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Jacob’s Ladder did a great job for us. They where easy to contact, knowledge in handling Insurance claim did our job in a timely manner and left no mess behind. Very pleased.

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