The type of material used in your commercial roof plays an important role in the overall health of the building and longevity of the roof itself. Read on to gain an in-depth understanding of the different kinds of commercial roof materials available.

# Metal Roofing

When it comes to commercial roofing systems, metal roofs are very popular. There are so many different kinds of metals that you can choose from, such as copper, metal tile sheets, tin, stainless steel, lead, aluminum, aggregates of zinc and silicon-coated steel, along with corrugated galvanized steel. Metal roofing has an advantage of having an appealing, finished look, and they are fire-resistant, stronger and durable compared to traditional commercial roofing choices.

# Thermoset/Thermoplastic Single-Ply

Thermoplastic roofing systems are one of the fastest growing roofing systems for commercial buildings. Made of a sturdy material with a high-temperature tolerance and low-temperature flexibility, these roofs are highly resistant to ultraviolet radiation and other chemical exposure. They have a lifespan of over 20 years and are also resistant to punctures, fire, high winds and chemicals. Some Examples are:

  • EPDM -Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer – also known as rubber roofing is one of the most inexpensive commercial roofing materials. It is lightweight and can be installed easily. A top-notch quality EPDM roof can last for about 20 years or more and they do not scratch or scruff easily. Moreover, this roofing material is generally black and absorbs the heat so that you don’t have to worry about UV damage.


  • TPO –Thermoplastic Polyolefin– has become one of the most common Commercial Roofing materials for many reasons. One of the great advantages to TPO is that it comes in various sizes from 6–12-foot-wide and from 40-100 mill thick and normally 100 feet long. Sizes vary by manufacture though. Normally white in color; this helps to reduce energy cost by reflecting the absorption of heat. Seams are seal with heat.


  • PCV Polyvinyl Chloride –Similar to the other examples; is a common Commercial Roofing material. It comes in 6-12-foot-wide rolls that comes in up to 100 foot lengths. Thickness is from 45-90 millimeters. Maintenance is easy; you can use Simple Green,Formula 409, or Spic and Span cleaning solution for light cleaning. Simply spray down with a garden hose and follow the directions on the bottle. If you need something

stronger you can use a commercial cleaner like methyl ethyl ketone (MEK). Do not pour the chemicals directly onto the PCV material; follow the directions on the bottle. Coming in many colors the most popular are gray and white due to the energy benefit.

  • Modified – Modified Bitumen roofing material is another common roofing material utilized on low slope roofs (2:12-4:12) ISC Revised Code R905.1.1(2) and is designed move water off of the roof. There are a few different applications from torching (heat applied), self-adhesive, or a cold process system. Modified is very durable and tear resistance due to the fiberglass or poly reinforced layers. Usually comes with a 20 year plus manufactures warranty and is easy to repair. Modified comes in rolls of up to 100 feet. Modified bitumen is flexible, water resistance, expands and contracts in weather.

Commercial roofing materials are many, but ultimately, the choice depends on your specific building structure, roofing requirements and budget. Discuss your available options with a certified and experienced roofing contractor like Exterior Experts.