Close up of metal roofing

5 Common Commercial Roofing Materials

The type of material used to construct a roof can have a huge impact on the overall strength of the entire building. Each building– and budget — is unique and requires a custom roof to fit its needs. To understand which materials are right for your commercial property, here are the 5 most common commercial roofing materials.

Built-Up Asphalt

Built up roofing, commonly referred to as BUR, is a basic tar and gravel material. The gravel and tar are layered (built up) on top of one another. The number of layers depends on the durability necessities of the property, weather, cost, and other factors. Because built-up roofing is so customizable, it’s a very cost effective and popular option for commercial buildings.

Shingle Roofing

While shingles are typically reserved for residential properties, they can be a great option for commercial properties as well. Many companies use shingle roofing as a design asset because they come in so many shapes and colors. Beyond their aesthetic appeal, shingles are often hail-resistant and are very easy to replace. Shingles come in a variety of materials including asphalt, wood, slate, metal, ceramic and more. Shingles are a great option for commercial properties interested in upgrading the design of their establishment.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing has been one of the most popular commercial roofing materials due to its durability and affordability. There are many different types of metal roofing including steel, aluminum, copper, tin and more. Metal roofing offers commercial properties a very clean, finished look, while also being functional. Because metal rusts over time, a protective layer is added to prevent sun-damage and rust.

Single-Ply Membrane

Single -ply membranes are sheets of rubber that are secured to insulation to form a roof. Single-ply membranes can be made out of various synthetics including Thermoplastic and EPDM. If properly installed and taken care of, single-ply membrane roofing can last up to 30 years.


Thermoplastic is by far one of the most durable and tolerant roofing materials on the market. Made from polypropylene based materials, thermoplastic is resistant to UV rays, punctures, tears, and most chemicals, including oils, animal fats, and bacteria. This material also offers high-temperature, fire, and wind tolerance. Because of its severe durability and resistance to environmental factors and chemicals, thermoplastic is a great option for restaurants and other establishments that emit oils and fats.  

If you’re looking to replace or install a roof on your commercial property, give our knowledgeable and experienced roofers a call at 303.443.5843.