Why are Flat Roofs Common on Larger Commercial Buildings 

December 28, 2022

The two major types of roofing are pitched roofs and flat roofs; each type has advantages and disadvantages. Generally, we choose a roofing style for its cost, utility, durability, strength and visual impact. Furthermore, roof styles are typically selected based on the type of structure on which they will be installed. Here we will explain why flat roofsarethe preferred choice for commercial buildings.

Cost Effective Compared to Pitched Roofs

A flat roof is more cost-effective than a pitched roof for commercial buildings. Putting a sloped roof on a small home is easier than doing the same on a very large building, which is difficult and impractical. The cost of installing a pitched roof is higher than that of a flat roof, and the process also takes longer. This is because pitched roofs require more labour and additional materials as they are a more complex design. Additionally, these are more affordable because flat roofing materials usually come in larger roll sizes, whereas pitched roofing materials are smaller sheets.

Flat Roofs have Better Drainage Options

There is a direct correlation between the size of the roof and the amount of rain it accumulates. Since commercial buildings are significantly larger than residential buildings, more rainwater collects on their roofs. When rainwater collection volumes are high, traditional gutter systems are less desirable and less practical as a drainage solution. 

Commercial roofs require more elaborate drainage systems, such as gravity-driven and symphonic systems, to handle the large amounts of water they need to drain. The gutters can’t handle such volumes of water all at once because they are too small. This can lead to a buildup of water that wears down the roofing materials. Installing internal pipes, or pipes across the roof to help water divert, is easier on flat roofs.

Easily Store and Service A/C Units on the Flat Roof

A flat roof allows businesses to easily store and service air conditioning units. Commercial buildings require much larger HVAC equipment, and a flat roof provides the perfect storage space. When HVACs are on the roof, the building will gain more space inside also the parking spaces will be freed up. 

Another advantage of installing your HVAC system on your flat roof is that customers will not be obstructed by your system. Another plus side to placing HVAC equipment on the roof is that maintenance staff can access the roof without disrupting those working inside.

The Minimum Aesthetic Requirement 

A flat roof is the current style of roofing used by commercial building owners because they want their buildings to match the neighbouring properties. It is not as important for a commercial business with a flat roof to consider the aesthetic appeal of the exterior of its building as a homeowner does. Plus, if you want, you can also get a modern appearance with flat roofing by emphasizing the siding material and giving the building a block-like appearance. 

Flat roof systems installed correctly can last for a very long time, which is a common concern in commercial roofing. Ultimately, flat roofs are better suited to most large commercial buildings than pitched roofs.  As you can see, there are many differences between a sloped roof and a flat roof. You should consult a professional roofing contractor before making your choice. Torham Exterior Solution Inc.is a reputable roofing company serving Hamilton and nearby areas. You can contact us anytime and benefit from our expertise in commercial roofing.