Major Types Of Commercial Roofing Systems

Commercial Roofing Explained

Commercial roofing systems are composed of three layers including the weatherproofing layer, the reinforcement, and the surface.

The weatherproofing layer is the part of a roofing system that prevents water from entering the structure. Because of this, it is considered as the most important component of any commercial roofing system.

Next is the reinforcement. As the name suggests, it is the layer added to make the roofing system stronger, more resistant to puncture and provides a dimensional stability.

Finally, the surface layer is a component that adds sunlight and weather protection to the overhead protection of a commercial establishment on top of other benefits, such as improved resistance to hail, better solar activity, and fire resistance.

Types of Commercial Roofing

There are many types of roofing systems offered on the market today. Like in residential roofing, every single one of them has advantages in certain scenarios which is why it is important to understand what they are:

  1. EPDM Roofing

EPDM roofing, a popular roofing system for commercial establishments, is made using a membrane composed of a highly durable synthetic rubber called ethylene propylene diene terpolymer. It is typically used in most low-sloped buildings in the United States and is usually made with a thickness of 45 or 60 mils.

This type of roofing system is arguably the most durable and versatile in the market. However, it is also popular for its ease of installation and maintenance compared to other kinds of commercial roofs.

  1. Thermoplastic Roofing

As the name suggests, this roofing system makes use of thermoplastic material that has extremely high resistance to sunlight, chemicals, and ozone. Specially made to have high-temperature tolerance and low-temperature flexibility, this kind of roofing system is resistant to punctures and fire, making it a great option for most buildings in fire-prone urban areas. This kind of roofing system typically has a lifespan of over 20 years, depending on the quality of materials used and maintenance.

  1. Green Roof

Global warming has been a lingering problem in urban areas all over the world which is why environmentalists pushed for the use of “green roofs,” or roofing systems that include living plants growing in them.

Since the environmental dilemma has become known to man, it was discovered that one of the biggest suppliers of greenhouse gases in the modern world are asphalt-covered roofs. Because of this, innovations in architecture gave birth to living roofs that make use of vegetation instead of other weatherproofing materials to prevent moisture from entering the edifice.

Among the known benefits of having a green roof in a commercial building includes reduced energy cost from cooling systems, heat entrapment to lessen the Urban Heat Island Effect, and oxygen production and purification.

  1. Modified Bitumen

Modified bitumen roofing systems are developed after experts discovered the benefits of adding SBS (styrene butadiene styrene) and APP (atactic polypropylene) to traditional asphalt used in most commercial roofing systems. According to them, the rubbery SBS and the plastic APP provide the enhanced performance of bitumen, especially when used with the elongation capabilities of polyester and the impressive tensile strength of fiberglass.

To top that off, modified bitumen roofing systems with the added APP are self-adhering with the help of roofing torch while one with SBS can be easily applied thanks to hot asphalt or a cold adhesive.