Commercial, Mixed-Use and Strata Roof Maintenance in Vancouver, B.C.

Commercial And Residential Roofing: What Are The 5 Key Differences?

Commercial And Residential Roofing: What Are The 5 Key Differences?

The internet says that there are more than 15 types of roofs. It may sound crazy, but it’s justifiable. If you consider every roof to be a type in itself. However, the three primary roof types are the industrial roof, commercial roof and residential roofs. We will do a comparison between commercial and residential roofing, to give you an overview of what each type of roofing system consists of.

The basic difference between commercial and residential roofing lies in the materials used for its construction, size, installation process, repairs and upkeep.

In this article, we will see what commercial and residential roofing mean. How they differ from one another and the pros and cons of each one of them.

What is Commercial?

Commercial roofing refers to the design, construction, and maintenance of roofs on commercial buildings. These roofs are typically more extensive and more complex than residential ones. They are designed to withstand the specific demands of commercial structures, such as the need for increased insulation, energy efficiency, and the ability to support heavy equipment or machinery.

Commercial roofing systems can be made up of various materials, including metal, asphalt, single-ply membranes, and built-up roofing systems. They are typically installed by specialized roofing contractors who have experience working on large-scale roofing projects.

Types of Commercial Roofs

  • Metal Roofing
  • Built-Up Roofing (BUR) Membrane
  • Green Roofing
  • Spray-On Silicon
  • Thermoset EPDM Roof Membrane
  • Thermoplastic PVC & TPO Roof Membrane

What is Residential Roofing?

Residential roofing stands for the roofing systems on single-family homes, condos or any other residential construction. These roofs are generally smaller and simpler than those of commercial and industrial buildings.

The materials used in residential roofing can include asphalt shingles, wood shingles and shakes, metal, slate, and tile.

Types of Residential Roofs

  • Asphalt Shingle Roofing
  • Clay Roofing
  • Metal Roofing
  • Slate Roofing

What Are The Differences Between Commercial And Residential Roofing?

Commercial and residential roofing differs in may ways. However, below are the 5 most prominent differences between commercial and residential roofing.

Materials Used

Commercial roofing materials are generally more durable and able to withstand extreme weather, such as heavy rain, snow, and high winds. These materials are also designed to be low maintenance and long-lasting, as commercial buildings typically have a longer lifespan than residential buildings.

Residential roofing materials, on the other hand, are generally a bit lightweight and designed for a residential structure.


Commercial structures are generally larger than residential structures, so their roofs are also typically larger. They may also require additional structural support due to the weight of the roofing material.

Residential roofs are generally smaller in size and simpler in design. They are designed to cover the roof of a single-family home or small multi-family dwellings.

Installation Process and Time Needed

The installation process for commercial and residential roofs differs in terms of the complexity of the roof, as well as the time and cost required. Commercial roofs, which are typically larger and more complex, take longer and are more expensive to install due to the increased material and labor needed.

Residential roofs, are generally smaller and simpler, requiring less time and installation cost. The exact time and cost required for installation can vary based on the specific characteristics of the roof.


Commercial roofing materials are generally more durable and have a longer lifespan, but commercial roofs are typically larger and more complex, which can make repairs more expensive and time-consuming. However, commercial roofs need fewer repairs.

Residential roofs are generally smaller and less complex, requiring less time and cost to repair. Both commercial and residential roofs may require maintenance to ensure their proper function and extend their lifespan.

Pros and Cons of Commercial Roofing


Durability: Commercial roofing materials are generally designed to be long-lasting, which means that they can protect the building for many years.

Weather resistance: Most commercial roofing materials are designed to withstand extreme weather conditions, such as heavy rain, snow, and high winds.

Energy efficiency: Some commercial roofing materials, such as metal and TPO, can reflect heat, which can help to reduce energy costs and improve the overall energy efficiency of the building.

Low maintenance: Many commercial roofing materials require minimal maintenance, which can help to save time and money.


Cost: Commercial roofing can be more expensive to install and maintain compared to residential roofing.

Weight: Some commercial roofing materials, such as built-up roofing (BUR), can be quite heavy, which may require additional structural support for the building.

Noise: Some commercial roofing materials, such as metal, are prone to noise when it rains or when the wind blows. This can be a nuisance for people inside the building.

Aesthetics: Some types of commercial roofing may not be as aesthetically pleasing as others, which could be a concern.

Pros and Cons of Residential Roofing


Cost: Residential roofing is generally less expensive to install and maintain compared to commercial roofing.

Aesthetics: There are many options available when it comes to residential roofing materials, which allows for a style to be chosen that suits the design of the home.

Weight: Residential roofing materials are designed to be light, which means that they may not require additional structural support.

Energy efficiency: Some residential roofing materials, such as metal and asphalt shingles, can be energy-efficient and help to reduce energy costs.


Durability: Without proper care, residential roofing materials deteriorate quickly compared to commercial roofing materials, which means more frequent replacements.

Maintenance: Regular maintenance is the key to increasing the life span of a residential roof.


If you think this article has offered valuable insights about commercial and residential roofing, you might want to check out our other blogs about roofing. Moreover, if you have any more questions drop them in the comment section and we will get back to you.

Also, if you need any roofing services for your commercial or residential roof, get in touch with us TODAY!

Leak-Stop is a one-stop destination to meet your roofing-related requirements. We offer roof repair, replacement, maintenance and inspection services all over GVRD (Greater Vancouver Regional District).

We offer a free inspection to first-time clients. Connect with us TODAY at 1 866 777 0084 for immediate assistance!

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