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Residential Flat Roofing Vs. Commercial Flat Roofing

We understand that every infrastructure requires a different design, expectancy, and installation. The similar concept applies to different roof types and the two main categories they are made in commercial and residential roofs. Although, the difference in roof structure seems unusual and the majority believes that roofs do not have much in terms of details and don’t have any significance in terms of structural integrity when it comes to their shape. That is incorrect and such notions are constructed on lack of information. In this blog, we will be discussing commercial and residential roofs; both of these types encompass a variety of different aspects such as design, function, and materials.


We will start with the design. Commercial roofs are designed to be flat providing big surface area and a low slope to enable drainage in case of rain. Flat roofs are less dangerous than residential roofs but also require regular maintenance and demand repairs of large spaces. They are designed by experts and professionals that are familiar with building around smoke stacks, air flow systems, and external piping.

Residential roofs, on the other hand, are easier to be maintained, repaired, and even replace. Most of them are externally covered with shingles and have an attic designed underneath that serves as a storeroom. They are usually shaped in inverted ‘V’ (the traditional house roof shape) and are inferior to flat top commercial designs in terms of durability.

Flat Roof Safety


Commercial roofing is designed to be wider in comparison to residential roofing because it needs to cover the entire area underneath evenly along with concealing and supporting pipes, connections, and even machinery. They are also designed as such that they support machines and equipment housed on top of them. For that purpose, commercial roofing strictly follows the guidelines set for commercial buildings whether industrial or residential. This is the reason why almost all the roofs of industries and even commercial residential buildings look the same.

Whereas the size of the residential roof depends on the stability of the structure and the owner’s choice but residential roofing usually designed to be small. Some of the residential roofing tends to be quite extravagant, which requires immense care and maintenance.

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Talking about roofing materials, the base materials of the roof stays the same such as, Asphalt shingles, lay in concrete tile, metal panels, slate, and wood slates, single ply membranes etc. That being said, a variety of other factors (weather, height, the weight of the structure, load on top, etc.) also play an important role in determining the right materials for the roof; which means performance, quality, cost, materials, etc. also play their part in choosing the right material for the type of roof (for both kinds of structures).

Residential Roofing

Types of Residential Roofing

Ceramic Roof Tiles: This is the type of roofing system is installed to make a house look nice but these tiles are very fragile and can break easily. But they are resistant to fading and fire.

Slate Shingles Roofing: This is the sophisticated type of roofing. It gives a natural vibe and lasts for 100 years. But they are quite heavy and are expensive overall.

Types of Commercial Roofing

TPO (Thermoplastic Polyolefin): it is a single-ply reflective roofing membrane that is installed in a fully adhered or mechanically attached system. It is well known for being cost and energy-efficient while being durable.

EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer): A synthetic rubber derived from natural oil and gas. It is a low cost, eco-friendly, and fire-resistant type of commercial roofing that has been a preferred choice for decades due to its longevity of life.

We have discussed some differences between commercial and residential roofing systems. Moreover, we have compared and contrasted different types of roofing to help you get proper knowledge about residential and commercial flat roofs. Wether you need your roof done for your home or business, make sure to get it done by professionals. Contact Wolfenburg Roofing today for a free quote on your next roofing project.

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