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Commercial Roofing Vs Residential Roofing: The Differences

When thinking about the type of roofing you should do for your home, you might conjure up images of ladders and tar paper. While these are still part of the roofing equation, they are not the only options available today. There are many different types of roofing that can be used to protect your home from the elements. These include slate roofs, shingle roofs, rain gutters, and vinyl siding. All of these have their own pros and cons as well as their own unique features. Here is a breakdown of the differences between residential vs commercial roofing to help you make the right decision for your project.

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What Is The Difference Between Residential And Commercial Roofing?

In general, the main difference between commercial and residential roofs is that residential roofs are made from asphalt shingles while commercial roofs are made with asphalt concrete. Residing also means that the shingles are covered with an asphaltic compound. While there are many different types of roofing, they all have one thing in common – they’re made to be replaced.

Unfortunately, if you’re like most people, you won’t be needing to replace your roofing throughout your lifetime. In fact, the average homeowner has a roof that will last for 10-15 years before needing any roof repairs. Although roof problems can be annoying, they can also be expensive. Not only that, but roof repair has become more complex over time. These days, there are special tools developed for roofing. While shingle roofs can be repaired with normal roofing nails, studs and slates require specialized equipment.

What Is Commercial Roofing?

In general, commercial roofs are made from asphalt shingles and asphalt concrete. This style of roof is durable and can often be used on a rental property or Multi-Family Dwelling. However, there are many different types of roofing. Some roofing materials are better suited to different types of applications. For example, slate is perfect for homes with a historic feel. Slate roofs are usually Slate Grey or Satin Stained. Other roofing materials, like asphalt shingles, are best suited to roofs with a heavy facade such as stucco and granite.

What Is Residential Roofing?

In residential roofing, shingles are the primary roofing material. They are manufactured in a number of colors and can be designed in a variety of ways. One of the most common types of shingle roofs is the woven variety. This is the best option for homes with little maintenance.

However, woven shingles are heavy and require regular maintenance. These are, by far, the most expensive type of shingle roof. Woven shingles also have one big downside – they have a tendency to blow off in the wind. If you don’t want to deal with blow-off roofs, there are plenty of other options available.


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The Pros of Residential Roofing

When it comes to the pros of residential roofing, there are many. Shingle roofs are known for providing excellent protection from the sun, rain and wind. They are also very durable and will last for decades. This is great for your home’s exterior. But what about your interior? Well, while shingle roofs may not provide the warmth and protection of a wood or tile roof, they are still suitable for indoor purposes.

These include insulating your home, providing year-round protection from the sun’s rays and blocking out the cold winter air. One downside of shingle roofs is that they are very heavy. However, this weight is compensated by the fact that they are very durable.

The Pros Of Commercial Roofing

There are many reasons for commercial building owners to go with commercial roofing. On the surface, the pros of commercial roofing seem to balance out the cons of residential roofing. However, there are actually some significant technical differences that make commercial roofing ideal for a variety of applications. These include the fact that it’s made to be replaced. It is also very durable.

Finally, it has no tendency to blow off in the wind. While these are all great attributes, it’s the price that really sold me on this style of roof. Consequently, when deciding between commercial and residential roofing, the price wasn’t the deciding factor for me. Instead, the technical differences between the two were what swayed me in favor of commercial roofing.

The Cons Of Residential Roofing

While the pros of residential roofing far outweigh the cons, there are some negatives that should be considered. The first is price. While a residential roof is usually cheaper than a commercial roof, it’s not always the case. Some roofs will cost more to repair than a commercial roof. Additionally, some roofing materials are harder to get in the United States, meaning a residential roof may cost more.

One last negative is the fact that, in many areas, it is illegal to place panels over a residential shingle roof. If you are planning on putting in a shingle roof, you must get a building permit.

The Cons Of Commercial Roofing

Like residential roofing, the main disadvantage of commercial roofing is the lack of maintenance. As they are mostly flat and flat roofs need more maintenance than any other roof. While it may be less expensive in the short term, the long-term cost of the roofing will be much higher than any other type of roofing system.


Regardless of which type of roof you decide to use among residential and commercial roofs for your home, it’s important to remember that both have their advantages and disadvantages. The best option for your home will depend on a number of factors such as your budget, desired insulation level, preferences of your intended use, and local weather conditions.

When comparing the advantages and disadvantages of residential and commercial roofing, you should focus primarily on the material and the installation type and then talk to different roofing contractors. All other things being equal, residential should always be the cheaper option.

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