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The Pros and Cons of Pitched and Flat Commercial Roofs

There are both pros and cons to each kind of commercial roofing system. In this article, we will be providing you with an overview of the most commonly used kinds of roofs to help you make more informed decisions about the types of commercial roofing you choose.

Commercial Flat Roofs: Advantages & Disadvantages

Flat roofs are among the common type of roof that is used on commercial buildings.


Commercial flat roofs are often much more cost-effective to construct compared to steep slope roofs or pitched roofs since less material is required since there are less square feet to cover.

They are faster and easier to install, and that can save the building owner a lot of money. It also affects the potential price and ease of commercial roof repairs.

There are many different kinds of flat roofing membranes and materials for owners to choose from – built-up roofing, modified bitumen, bitumen, TPO, PVC, EPDM, and rubber rolled roofing.

Although roofing membranes are available in a number of different color options, many builder owners stick with white.

That can help to reduce energy from being wasted from cooling expenses due to the reflective properties of the roof.

Air conditioners may be moved to the roof from the ground. It is easier to install satellite dishes and solar panels on flat roofs compared to pitched roofs. They are less obvious from either the parking lot or the curb.

Draining cleaning and maintenance are both easier to do on flat roofs since workers are able to walk safely and easily, no matter what the weather conditions happen to be.


Poor draining is the most critical issue.

Roofing materials can be degraded by standing water well before they normally should. One advantage that a pitched style of roof has is that the building will not have as many drainage problems. The breakdown of materials leads to water damage and leaking inside the building.

It is critical for repairs or installation to be done by an experienced and reputable commercial roofing contractor to avoid roof problems in the future.

Sentry Roofing has an experienced team that understands the proper height and location for drains in order to avoid puddling issues.

Commercial Low-Sloped Roofs: Advantages & Disadvantages

Quite often low-sloped roofs are used on industrial buildings, apartment buildings, warehouses, and factories. They might look to be flat at first but actually do have a slight pitch to them.

Commercial Roof Installation


Low-sloped roofs have a pitch that allows water to run off of the roof. The design of the roof directs water in the right direction, such as drains, saddles, and valleys. High-pitched roofs have less roof area, so less roofing materials are required.

Low-sloped roofs offer safer and easier working conditions for roofers compared to steep slope roofs or high-pitched roofs.

It is much easier to perform commercial roof replacement, repair, and installation. Because the slight pitch of the roof does not allow for puddling or standing water, there is a lower chance of the building owner needing to call repairmen to deal with water problems.

It is easier to maintain and install satellite dishes, solar panels, and air conditioners on a low-sloped commercial roof compared to a roof that has a high pitch.

The same kinds of materials can be used on a low-sloped roof that is used on commercial flat roofs – modified bitumen, bitumen, TPO EPDM, and rubber rolled roofing. Modified bitumen has a longer warranty time due to its superior sealing capabilities and added thickness.


Weight can be added to the roof when heavy snows do not melt fast. You also must precisely adhere to building codes in your local area for low-sloped roofs.

Commercial Pitched Roofs: Advantages & Disadvantages

Although pitched roofs are used in residential houses more than they are on commercial buildings, they still are used quite often along with low-sloped and flat roofs.


The major advantage that a pitched roof has to offer is the greater slope provides for more runoff of snow and water.

A steeper roof structure makes it easier for debris and liquid to run off. This ultimately means there is less risk of water buildup that may lead to mold damage and leaks.

Overall, a steep-sloped roof can reduce your need for maintenance and repair somewhat compared to less inclined, flatter roofs.


Unfortunately, the steep incline on a pitched roof makes it much hard to perform repairs and maintenance.

The need to transfer materials, increase safety procedures and the difficulties with maneuvering the roof tend to increase the expenses of maintenance, repair, and installation services.

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