Commercial Flat Roofing

A Guide to Commercial Flat Roofing Options

Whether you’re a recent or a seasoned commercial building owner, understanding the different types of commercial flat roofing options available is helpful. Of course, you don’t need an expert to tell you that without proper repair and maintenance, all flat roofing options leak or become vulnerable to the ravages of time.

This guide will serve as a starting point in allowing you to understand the different types of flat roofing. Along with basic information, we will discuss their projected lifespans, what impacts their longevity, and most importantly, how to have the roof repaired on a budget.

The Different Types Of Commercial Flat Roofing Systems

The following are the most commonly available roofing systems in the U.S.:

*EPDM Or Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer

EPDM at its core is an industrial-strength rubber made of synthetic materials. This style of roofing is sold as a roll with a single-ply layer available in popular colors such as tan, black, white, and gray.

Thanks to its ability to contract and expand based on outdoor temperature fluctuations, this roofing system is considered a resilient and hardy choice. When properly maintained and installed by professionals, this roofing system may provide up to 30 years of service!

Heavy foot traffic and inclement weather can significantly shorten the lifespan of EPDM systems. The membrane usually begins to separate around the parapet walls and seams, providing a weak point for leaks to develop. Additionally, older EPDM roofs tend to accumulate dirt and debris that makes them less aesthetically pleasing over time.

*Modified Bitumen

A modernized version of the built-up roofing system, modified bitumen is a combination of materials such as fiberglass, asphalt, and either plastic or polymerized rubber. Though this roofing system offers a protective and waterproof barrier against the elements, it has a fairly short lifespan of only 10 to 20 years.

The reason that modified bitumen isn’t going to last as long as other options is because it tend to hold onto water from snow or rainfall much sooner. This pooling and standing water will become its downfall resulting in multiple worn areas and leaks especially near the seams.


Considered the oldest type of commercial roofing available, metal is a time-tested option. It works well in virtually any climate and requires the least amount of maintenance. Most importantly, these roofing systems are infamous for longevity and having the ability to provide ample protection for 30 years or longer!

The downside to metal roofing is the corrosion, and the different fasteners will wear away at different speeds. Another downside to metal roofs is that they can become punctured or dented fairly easily on commercial buildings.

*TPO Or Thermoplastic Polyolefin

This material comes in sheet form that’s heat-welded and houses a combination of ethylene propylene rubber and polypropylene. Its known flexibility makes it an ideal choice for colder climates and through proper maintenance as well as installation, they can last up to 30 years.

Unfortunately, TPO roofing systems are notorious for failing well before their projected lifespans. This is especially the case in areas where they’re subjected to much UV light and excessive heat.

*PVC Or Polyvinyl Chloride

Considered hardy by many, PVC is an excellent flat commercial roofing option. It can withstand exposure to harsh chemicals while also retaining its ability to repel water. Available in a wide range of colors and varying thicknesses, this roofing system can last up to 30 years with care and maintenance.

The downside to PVC as a roofing material is that it shrinks in time and the seams begin to slip apart. They also aren’t considered a sustainable option and are prone to punctures and shattering in cold climates

What Factors Can Impact The Lifespan Of Commercial Roofing Materials?

Commercial Flat Roofing ContractortsAs you’ve just read, you can see that the projected amount of time that a roofing system lasts can change drastically. What are the direct factors that determine how long your roofing lasts?

*Faulty Installation And Poor Craftsmanship

No two roofing contractors are alike, and the materials used (good or bad) as well as the craftsmanship of the installation have a direct impact on a commercial roofing system’s lifespan. The real problem is that many commercial building owners don’t realize they’ve dealt with an unscrupulous contractor until years after installation and their warranty has expired.

*Inclement Weather

Your commercial roofing is greatly impacted by inclement weather such as excessive windstorms, rain, snow, and hail. However, the sun also causes significant UV damage to roofing materials resulting in the deterioration of the materials.

*Absence Of Or Poorly Designed Drainage Systems

Usually, roofing systems can be divided into two categories: ones that are leaking and ones that are close to leaking. However, by having a properly sloping roofing system installed along with a solid drainage system, you can prolong the inevitable.

*Ignored Maintenance

Has the current roofing system been adequately maintained? This isn’t something you may have the answer to if you’ve only just acquired the property. Inconsistent maintenance can impact its lifespan, but even with proper maintenance, a good roof doesn’t last forever.

The Roof Is Leaking: Now What?

Regardless of the age of your roofing system, the moment you notice a leak, it’s crucial to act quickly. Not only is a leaking roof a serious health hazard, but it can cause damage to the very foundation of the building.

A roofing contractor can help you periodically repair and maintain any potential leaks that occur. Unfortunately, in due time, this becomes a repetitive and expensive task. Replacing your roofing system is another option, but do make sure to get several pricing quotes because this is an expensive endeavor.

Armadillo Roofing & Exteriors (512) 333-7663, provides commercial flat roof repair, commercial flat roof replacement and commercial flat roof installation services to Austin, Texas and the surrounding communities. We have been providing commercial roofing services to the area for over 19 years. When you need help with commercial metal roofing systems, check out our sister site at

Commercial Roof Replacement Companies

Safety Tips You Must Follow at a Construction Site

Construction sites are hazardous places to work and there are safety tips you should follow, because a majority of accidents can be prevented by adopting simple measures and proper working procedures. To make construction sites, safe and secure places to work in, work must be done carefully and appropriate safety measures taken, to lessen the work injury cases.

Basic Safety Rules to Follow

  • Construction sites must be tidied up all the time and the passages kept clear. The debris must be removed at the earliest.
  • The materials should be sorted out and piled up safely ensuring that the stacks are not too high.
  • The floor openings should be kept fenced or covered. Sufficient lighting must be provided for adequate visibility
  • The location and operation of fire-fighting equipment must be known to all.

Safety measures for Construction Site Workers

  • The dangerous part of the machine should be installed with a guard before it is operated.
  • Since there may be some dangerous places not covered or fenced, areas with insufficient lighting must be avoided.
  • Site workers must be watchful at all times, looking out for hooks, moving cranes, or other lifting equipment.
  • The condition of electric cables of any electrical installation or tool must be checked before its use.
  • Electric cables must not be dragged on the ground and their contact with water must be avoided.
  • Electrical tools must be installed with an earth leakage circuit breaker before they are used.
  • Chemicals must be used and handled with care.

Measures for Personal Safety

  • Protective equipment must be worn all the time you are on the site.
  • Stay away from drinks or drugs while working.
  • Personal hygiene must be maintained.
  • Unsafe conditions must be reported immediately to the supervisor if noticed.

Emergency Response Measures for Accidents

Awareness of the working environment and adherence to the supervisor’s instructions is necessary. In the event of an evacuation during an emergency, stay calm and find out:

  • The dangerous situation which has set off the alarm.
  • The routes for evacuation.
  •  The safe areas designated by the company that you must run to.

In case of a serious injury, you should:

  • Stay calm but seek help immediately.
  • Attend to the injured person, and provide first aid.
  • Help with the immediate rescue work as much as possible.
  • Inform the site safety staff.
  • Do not try to move the injured person, unless it is absolutely necessary to do so.
  • The accident scene must not be tampered with till the arrival of the investigation team.

When a fire breaks out, you should remember:

  • A small fire can be put out with a fire extinguisher.
  •  If the blaze is out of control, do not try to extinguish the fire on your own. The Fire Services Department must be called immediately.
  • The emergency telephone numbers posted on the notice board in the site office must always be kept note of.

Measures for Workplace Safety

When working on False work: 

  • Confirm if the false work is erected as per the design.
  • Ensure whether the false work is securely erected.
  • The struts of the false work should be well secured.
  •  Ensure that the props are erected vertically and arranged at a suitable distance in a row.
  •  Report to your supervisor when any unsafe situation is found.

When working on Scaffolding:

  • Before use, confirm if the scaffolds have been erected by trained workmen, under the supervision of a knowledgeable person.
  • The scaffold must be inspected and certified safe by a competent authority before use.
  • The instructions of the competent person should be strictly followed. The scaffold must not be altered by anyone unless authorized to do so. Never work on an unfinished scaffold.
  •  When it is necessary to work on a mobile scaffold, lock the wheels of the scaffold before you start working.
  •  Do not work on a scaffold unless it has been provided with a suitable working platform. Fencing.
  • No work should be done in a hazardous place unless all the floor edges and openings have been fenced.
  •  If you notice any dangerous places that have not been installed with fencing or the fencing has been damaged, reinstall or repair the fencing. If this is beyond your capability, inform your supervisor at once.

When working on a Ladder:

  • Use a ladder that is of good construction, sound material, and adequate strength.
  • The ladder should be examined before use and inspected at regular intervals.
  • The ladder should be placed on a level and have a firm footing.
  • Place the ladder at an appropriate angle.
  • The ladder should be of sufficient length and its upper end should be at least 1 metre above the landing against which the ladder is propped.
  • Do not use a ladder unless its upper or lower end has been securely fixed or secured by another worker.
  •  If there are electrical installations nearby, do not use metal ladders.
  • Use a suitable working platform If working 2 metres or more above the floor.

When Lifting Appliances and Gear

  • The lifting appliances should be operated by trained workers, and crane operators should be certified.
  • Before using lifting gear such as hook, shackle or chain sling, check whether there is any wear and tear.
  • The weight of the load to be lifted should be checked and the safe working load of a lifting appliance or lifting gear must not be exceeded.
  • Adopt the correct lifting method.
  • Do not use a lifting appliance or lifting gear unless it has been examined and certified safe by a competent examiner.
  • A lifting appliance should have been regularly repaired and maintained by a competent authority, before use.
  • No unauthorized repair is allowed.
  • The manufacturer’s safe working instructions for a lifting appliance must be strictly followed.
  • Do not work beneath any suspended load.

When Working with a Material Hoist

  • The workers should not ride on material hoists.
  • The material hoist should not be operated without prior proper training.
  • The safe working load of a material hoist should not be exceeded.
  • The material hoist should be used only after it has been examined and certified safe by a competent examiner.
  • Do not use a material hoist unless its gates have been installed with an effective interlocking safety system. The hoist is only operable after all the gates have been closed.
  • Use a material hoist only if it has been repaired and maintained by a competent person. No unauthorized repair is allowed.
  • Do not put loose materials into receptacles unless properly secured.
  • Ensure good communication with the operator of a material hoist by understanding and following all his signals.

Commercial Roof ReplacementWhen Load shifting Machinery 

  • Unless you are a worker concerned, do not work in an area where a loader, an excavator, etc. is in operation.
  • Do not operate any load shifting machinery without training and approval.
  •  Operators of forklift trucks, bulldozers, loaders, excavators, trucks or lorries should possess appropriate certificates.

Preventing Cartridge-operated Fixing Tool hazards

  • A cartridge-operated fixing tool can be operated only by a valid certificate holder.
  • While operating a cartridge-operated fixing tool, suitable eye and ear protectors must be worn.
  •  Use a cartridge-operated fixing tool with great care Portable Power Tool
  • The dangerous parts of a portable power tool such as saw, grinder and drill must be effectively guarded before use.
  •  Place the electric cable and hose of a tool at an appropriate position to avoid tripping Cartridge-operated Fixing Tool hazards

When Working with Compressed Air 

  • Compressed air should be used only for specified purposes.
  • Only good construction compressed air equipment, pipes, and relevant devices, examined and certified safe by a competent examiner must be used.
  •  Fix the connectors properly.
  •  Do not twist the pipes.
  • Do not abuse the use of compressed air for cleaning purpose. A vacuum cleaner or brush should be used to remove dust from skin and clothing

When Working with Electric Tool 

  • Check the tool. its plug, and connecting cable, before using an electric tool.
  •  Do not use a damaged tool.
  • Check that the electric tool’s connecting cable is well protected, before using it.
  • Do not use an electric tool unless its metal casing is earthed and its power supply is provided with an earth leakage circuit breaker.
  •  Do not repair or alter any electrical installation unless competent to do so.
  •  If you meet any fault or problem, report it to your supervisor immediately

During Excavations 

  • The fence on all sides of an excavation should be intact.
  • Safe access should be used for ingress and egress.
  • No soil or other materials should be piled at the edge of an excavation.
  • Make sure that a trench is securely shored before working in it.

During Gas Welding and Flame Cutting 

  • Only those aged 18 years and above, holding a valid certificate must be allowed to use the equipment for gas welding or flame cutting.
  • Only those gas cylinders that are fitted with flashback arrestors, must be used.
  •  Wear personal protective equipment.
  •  Keep the workplace clean.
  •  Place fire extinguishers within reach.
  • The gas cylinders must be kept in an upright position, and secured properly to avoid overturning.
  • Any gas leakage detected, must be reported to the supervisor immediately.

Preparing for Fire Risk 

There is always a fire risk. However, the chances of fire can be reduced, and you will know what to do when a fire breaks out if you:

  • The workplace must be kept clean and tidy at all times.
  • The machinery and tools that may generate sparks or heat, must be handled carefully.
  •  Do not smoke or use naked flames in any area where flammable and explosive substances are stored.
  • The location and use of fire extinguishers must be known to all.
  • The place of assembly for fire evacuation must be known to all.

Caring for Public Safety

  • Members of the public are not aware of the risks of the work carried out on construction sites, hence attention must be paid to public safety.
  • Preventing the fall of materials from height is a must as it can be hazardous.
  • Materials should not be stacked on floor edges or scaffolds.

During Waste Disposal

  • All unwanted materials, and was tamest be disposed of at a designated place.
  • The supervisor must be notified of the requirement for the separate disposal of chemical or inflammable wastes.
  •  Do not leave planks with nails on passageway.

The above tips if followed meticulously can save precious lives and property on your construction site.

Armadillo Roofing & Exteriors (512) 333-7663, provides commercial roof repair, commercial roof installation and commercial roof replacement services to Austin, Texas and the surrounding communities and has been providing commercial roofing services to the area for over 19 years. For help with commercial metal roofing, you can find all the information you need at our other site here.

Contact Us For Your Free Estimate!

Simply Fill Out The Form Below or Call Us Now

Commercial Roof Repair, Commercial Roof Replacement and Commercial Metal Roof Restoration for the Austin Area

Commercial Roof Repair

Need commercial roof repair? At Armadillo Roofing we offer customers affordable commercial roof repair options.

Commercial Roof Installation

Modified Bitumen, White Membrane, Metal or Green Roofing Systems, we can install the highest quality roof on your commercial building.

Commercial Metal Roof Repair

We'll keep your property's Metal Roofing System in top-notch condition with our extensive experience and expertise with Commercial Metal Roofing Systems.

Commercial Metal Roof Restoration

Let us show you how you can save a lot of money, as much as 30-40%, by restoring your commercial metal roof instead of replacing it.

About Us

I’m Mark Franz, the owner of Armadillo Roofing & Exteriors.

I’m proud to say no one can beat our quality and experience in commercial roof repair, commercial roof installation, commercial roof replacement, commercial metal roof repair and commercial metal roof restoration in Austin, Texas.

Some of Our Latest Projects

Check out these recently completed commercial roofing projects.

Whether you’re looking for commercial roof installation, commercial roof repair, commercial roof maintenance, commercial metal roof repair or commercial metal roof restoration, we here at Armadillo Roofing have you covered.

With Commercial Roofing we are experienced in Modified Bitumen, White Membrane, Metal, Tile, Shingle, Green and all Flat Roofing systems.

You can save a lot of money, as much as 30-40% over a replacement, by taking advantage of our commercial metal roof restoration services.

Some of Our Latest Projects

Here at Armadillo Roofing, nothing is more important than taking care of the most important asset we have – our satisfied customers.

We take pride in the number of 5 star reviews you will find online that our customers have posted.

We will always deliver on our promise to ensure the finest quality materials and craftsmanship, stressing integrity and rewarding excellence. We are craftsmen who take pride in the roofing services we provide to our customers, both commercial and residential.

Our commitment is to deliver “Quality Craftsmanship at an Affordable Price,” and we have been doing just that for well over a decade now in Austin and the surrounding areas.

“Thanks for taking care of us in a professional manner. It was a pleasure to deal with someone who actually did what he said he would do. Look forward to seeing you soon. Thanks again.”

Mike McCoy – Mission Mortgage

“Thanks for a job well done. I look forward to working with you in the future. Let me know if you need any references on your future jobs. I’d be glad to be of help. Take Care.”

Mike Wilson – Central Texas Development Assessments, Inc.,

“Thank you again for your hard work. You did an amazing job on our building’s roof system and I would certainly recommend Armadillo to anyone needing your services.”

A.W. Armstrong – Kestrel Management Services, LLC

“Armadillo Roofing replaced our old roof with a beautiful new one. David managed the entire process to the detail. He was there during the work and walked the roof with me after it was finished. Quality, friendly and trustworthy best describes our experience with Mark and David at Armadillo.”

Lisa Y. – Austin

“We had an amazing experience with Armadillo Roofing and can’t say enough positive things about them. They replaced our entire roof in time to put our house on the market.”

Court C. – Cedar Park

“A hail storm left us with roof damage. Armadillo was referred to us and we couldn’t be happier. David was onsite at the start and finish of each phase to ensure everything was done properly. Mark is engaged and responsive anytime we had questions. They do great work! I would recommend Armadillo to anyone.”

Danny W. – Austin