What are the 3 Top Types of Commercial Roofs?

Photo of Commercial Roofs

The roof of a commercial building is not just a protective barrier, but it also plays a vital role in enhancing the building’s energy efficiency, aesthetics, and overall structural integrity. When it comes to commercial roofing, there are various options available, each with its own set of advantages and considerations. 

What Materials are Used on a Commercial Roof?

Some of the popular materials used on commercial roofs include:

  • Built-Up Roofing (BUR): These commercial low-sloped roofs consist of multiple layers of bitumen (asphalt or coal tar) and reinforcing fabrics.
  • Single-Ply Membrane Roofing: This can be EPDM roof (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer), TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin), or PVC roofs (Polyvinyl Chloride).
  • Metal Roofing: Metal roofing materials include steel, aluminum, or copper sheets or panels.
  • Modified Bitumen: A type of asphalt industrial roof reinforced with modifiers for added strength.
  • Roof Coatings: Liquid-applied coatings that can extend the life of existing commercial roofing systems and lower energy costs.

While selecting among the best commercial roofing materials, building owners need to consider various factors such as the design, climate, desired durability, and energy efficiency goals.

What are the Commercial Roof Types in Florida?

Here are the major types of commercial roofing systems used in Florida:

Built-Up Roofing (BUR) Systems

Built Up Roofing systems are time-tested and reliable commercial roofing solutions. They consist of multiple layers of asphalt shingles, reinforced with fiberglass or other roofing materials, to create a resilient and waterproof barrier. Built-up roofing membrane helps in forming a strong, layered structure.


BUR systems are popular for commercial flat roofs that require fire resistance. The design and construction of these low-sloped roofs make them ideal for buildings where water drainage can be a challenge. Solar panels can be easily installed on both commercial and residential roofs.


  • Cost-effective commercial flat roofing solution
  • Exceptional durability, often lasting 20-30 years
  • Fire-resistant roof systems


  • Heavy (requires a strong building structure)
  • Installation of entire roof can be time-consuming
  • Existing roof may require periodic maintenance and resealing

Single-Ply Membrane Roofing

Single-Ply Membrane Roofing is a versatile and cost-effective choice for commercial roofs. EPDM roofing and TPO roofing are popular commercial roofing types. These flat roof types involve membranes that come in large rolls and are installed as a single layer, providing a durable, watertight seal.


Single-ply membrane roofing is a widely used commercial roofing material and is suitable for various roof shapes, including flat and low-slope roofs. This is one of the best flexible roof types, which allows for efficient installation of roof membranes on a wide range of commercial properties.


  • Lightweight and suitable for various commercial roofing options
  • EPDM roofing material is energy-efficient
  • PVC roofing is durable with a lifespan of 20-30 years


  • Susceptible to punctures from sharp objects requiring entire roof replacement.
  • Proper seam sealing during single-ply membrane roofing installation is essential.


Photo of Commercial Roof

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing systems are one of the more sought-after roofing materials for commercial buildings. The metal roof deck can be made of steel, aluminum, and copper. These robust metal sheets or panels are designed to withstand the elements and provide long-lasting protection as long as they are properly installed.


Metal is a popular commercial roof system material. In fact, it is recommended for pitched roofs. A new commercial steep slope roof can be easily adapted to different architectural styles offering flexibility in design.


  • Lasts longer than other commercial roofing types
  • Fire-resistant and energy-efficient with reflective finishes
  • Minimal maintenance and resistance to rot and insects


  • Higher upfront cost compared to some other options
  • Requires proper installation to accommodate metal expansion
  • Potential for noise during heavy rain or hail storms without proper insulation

What is TPO Roofing?

TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin) roofing is a type of SPF roofing commonly used in commercial applications. It is made of a synthetic rubber compound or polyurethane foam and is known for its energy efficiency, durability, and resistance to UV rays. This rubber roofing is often white or light-colored, which helps reflect sunlight and heat, making it an energy-efficient choice.

Benefits of TPO Roofing:

  • Lightweight, reducing stress on the building’s structure
  • Versatile in design options
  • Efficient and cost-effective installation

Limitations of TPO Roofing:

  • Watertightness depends on seam quality
  • Susceptible to punctures
  • Long-term performance varies based on material and installation quality

What Is the Best Roofing for Commercial Buildings in Florida?

Florida’s climate includes high temperatures, heavy rainfall, and the potential for hurricanes. These roofing options are particularly well-suited for commercial buildings in the state:

  • TPO Roofing (Thermoplastic Olefin): TPO roofing is a popular choice in Florida due to its excellent heat-reflective properties. It can help keep the building cooler in the hot Florida sun, improving energy efficiency. TPO is also durable and resistant to moisture, making it suitable for frequent rain.
  • EPDM Roofing: EPDM roofing membrane is known for its durability and resistance to UV radiation. It can withstand Florida’s heat and offers good waterproofing. EPDM roofs are a cost-effective option that can be particularly well-suited for flat or low-sloped roofs.
  • Metal Roofing: Metal roofing is highly durable and can withstand the extreme weather conditions that Florida sometimes experiences, including hurricanes. It is also fire-resistant and energy-efficient. Properly coated metal roofs can reflect sunlight and heat, helping to reduce cooling costs.
  • Modified Bitumen Roofing: Modified bitumen roofing is known for its strength and ability to withstand both high temperatures and heavy rain. It is often used in Florida for its durability and waterproofing capabilities.
  • Concrete Tile Roofing: Concrete tiles are a durable and hurricane-resistant roofing option. They can provide both aesthetic appeal and longevity, making them a good choice for some commercial buildings in Florida.
  • Green Roofing: Green roofs, featuring vegetation and planting systems, can offer energy efficiency benefits and help manage rainwater runoff. They can be suitable for eco-conscious commercial buildings in Florida.

You should consult with experienced professionals to make informed decisions that align with your building’s needs and budget.

Call Our Experts for Your Property Improvement Work

Property Renovations and Construction, LLC consists of experienced, licensed, and certified commercial property contractors that can take care of your commercial roofing project. PRC provides the most dependable construction and renovation services in Florida. To schedule a consultation, call us at 321-341-8083 or complete this online form.

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