No roof lasts a lifetime. When you are faced with the capital expense of a new commercial roof, you have to factor in its expected longevity, so you can see which type of roof best serves your budget. The same is true for an “inherited” roof on a newly acquired commercial property: you need to know what your roof can do for you. 

Commercial Roofing Materials

Though shingles (the #1 residential roofing material) can be used in limited commercial applications, the most common commercial roofing materials are very different: 

  • PVC — Polyvinyl chloride is a single-ply membrane roof material which is exceptionally durable; life expectancy for PVC roofs is typically 25 to 30 years, with proper maintenance by trained, professional roofers; its white color is excellent for reflectivity and built-in energy savings
  • TPO — Thermoplastic polyolefin is also a single-ply membrane roofing material with typical lifespans of 15 to 30 years; severe weather can drastically affect its longevity
  • EPDM — Ethylene propylene diene monomer is a rubber-based membrane; expect it to protect your commercial property anywhere between 20 and 30 years, but careful inspection and maintenance is crucial with this material

Nobody’s Best

Nobody in roofing is best at making the “best” roofing material since every substance has its advantages and disadvantages. Enlist the help of your local, reputable commercial roofer so your building’s individual needs can be considered when selecting the right roofing material.

Your roofer can inspect your current roof, give you a sense of its lifespan, and then lay out options for future replacement. 

Two Factors

Two major factors affecting the life of an existing or planned roof are:

  1. Proper installation
  2. Proper maintenance

You have no control over the installation if you inherited a roof, but you can make up for inferior work by additional, diligent maintenance. When selecting a roofer and a roofing material with an eye toward longevity, insist on the highest quality of installation. This helps you eke out every possible year of service life from whichever material you choose. 

Annual inspection and maintenance can often add many years to your roof’s life. This is money in your pocket since it delays outlay for tear-off and replacement. PVC needs very little maintenance; EPDM needs more than the other two types. 

To gain an expert’s eye on your commercial property’s roof, contact us at VanWeelden Co. today to schedule a site visit. We perform inspections, repairs, and replacements.