Selecting the right materials will mean that you’ll have a durable roof, and this will also enhance your curb appeal.
Although there are a lot of resources online, commercial owners who don’t have adequate experience in these fields may find the options to be complex and overwhelming.
Understanding the advantages and disadvantages of the different materials and whether they are sustainable may mean that you’ll have to consult with the right professionals.
They can help you make an informed decision, and they ensure that the best ones are going to be installed to keep the tenants of a building or the goods of a factory safe.
A Guide to Selecting Commercial Roofing Materials
Engineers and architects tend to have a lot more options when it comes to flat roof construction.
They can mount most of the equipment if there’s limited space around the building.
A commercial roof can last for decades when the owner has considered the climate in the area and if the materials can withstand harsh weather conditions during the rainy or snowy months.
Different materials are available, but the two more common options are asphalt and metal. They are very durable and resistant against very strong winds, and they can be a good fit for any style.
Whether you want the low-slope, standard, or flat roof style, the metal is not going to let you down. It’s also a cost-effective option, but as time passes, holes and punctures can develop on them resulting in more repairs. Discuss your options with your local contractor to see which one is going to fit your needs.
How to Choose the Best Commercial Roofing Material?
#1 Consider Physical Makeup and Existing Materials
Take a look at the current state of the roof that you have or the surrounding properties in the area. They should be able to resist fire, rainwater, winds, and hail to protect the commercial building’s occupants.
Application of a new material can be possible over existing roof structures, but this might not be a good idea. Reroofing isn’t always a possible option, especially if the supporting frames, beams, post truss, and the rafters are too old.
For example, you will need to tear down the entire asphalt roof first before you can replace it with PVC. Protrusions for the air conditioning units, skylights, and vents should also be taken into consideration because they will affect the costs and complexity of the maintenance later on.
Ideally, the owners should never have to walk on top of a building, and these jobs are better left to the professionals. However, it’s still best if the construction and the sturdiness of the materials are going to consider the foot traffic.
EPDM and other single-ply varieties can easily get damaged and deformed when walking on, and this can result in leaks. On the other hand, the metals can be slippery, but they can be easily accessed by contractors doing the maintenance, so choose well.
#2 Location and Wildlife
Take a look at the immediate surroundings, like the kind of wildlife in the area, as well as overhanging trees. Those that tend to experience a lot of hail should consider metals while the ones in the middle of the desert should have Flexion or other reflective surfaces. This way, they are going to be more energy-efficient even if they are constantly facing extreme heat. Easily adapting to the fluctuations can result in a longer lifespan of the roof, so make sure to do some research first.
TPO’s tensile strength may benefit from low-hanging branches and surrounding trees. They are pretty resistant to punctures and can be a good option for urban settings.
#3 Examine the Types of Businesses Housed Within the Property
Another consideration is the type of businesses that will be operating within the property. Heating and cooling systems may differ between retail boutiques and storage warehouses.
Customers may expect a comfortable but not freezing temperature when they are shopping, so the energy-efficiency of TPO and Flexion may come in handy here. They are going to be worth the upfront costs for the tenants to stay longer.
On the other hand, warehouses may need cold air that should be maintained throughout the day. They might have food that’s sensitive to the environment, and built-up rooftops may be an option.
They can be stacked in layers similar to that of a lasagna stack, and the sheets can be made from asphalt, plastic, or rubber. They are very durable and watertight, so that they can maintain the proper envelope in a refrigerated warehouse.
Monolithic barriers like single ply may cut. This can be easily repaired by the experts, and it connects the floors and walls. Aside from that, you can count on it to have a good vapor barrier which can decrease excess moisture and thermal loss.
Restaurants may also require a roofing system that can accommodate plenty of exhaust systems, smoke, and ventilation. They should be able to withstand oils and chemicals, so PVC is going to be a good choice.
#4 Learn about the Environmental Impact
Another consideration is whether you will want to have a highly reflective roof that can accommodate insulation, as well as photovoltaic panels. They are often green features such as making a garden on top that you may want to consider.
Significant additions like that of a roof will mean that you have to set an adequate budget for the installation, repairs, and maintenance. It’s essential to remember that this is an investment for years to come, and you should be able to look beyond the initial prices so you could understand the value of what you’re getting.
True lifetime costs can include warranty, longevity, and energy efficiency, so it’s always best to choose the best that will benefit you in the future.
This doesn’t mean that you’ll have to break the bank with the most expensive option, but you’ll have to choose something that will be right for you and the tenants.
Get the most out of your investment by having a roof that will protect everyone from the weather and the elements outside of the building.
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