How Much Does The Type Of Roof Matter During Installation?

In the roofing world, there are many types of structures that all present particular challenges. If you're planning an installation project, you should know how these factors might affect the work. Let's look at how much the type of roof affects a commercial or residential roofing installation effort.


One of the biggest differences among the major types of roofs is the slope. Residential roofing work usually involves homes that have fairly pitched peaks. Conversely, a lot of commercial roofing involves flat or nearly flat surfaces.

Generally, the more pitched a roof is, the more equipment the contractors will require. Residential roofing installation work may require platforms, jacks, and lifts to get people and materials safely around significantly sloped peaks. On the commercial side of the ledger, roofers tend to have an easier time getting themselves and their materials around because the surfaces are mostly level.


Commercial roofing contractors often end up working around more features. For example, many commercial buildings have one or more air conditioning units at the top. Not only do the roofers have to be careful not to damage these features, but they also have to take time to seal the areas where these units meet the roof. Otherwise, water can get into gaps and cause long-term damage.

Residential roofing also involves features. However, these tend to be fairly standardized, such as dormers that protrude from roofs. A contractor can usually apply flashing and tar to clean up the seams between a roof and any dormers.


Most residential roofing services firms put a lot of asphalt shingles on a lot of homes. Even when a customer doesn't use asphalt shingles, there's a good chance they'll use a material like slate, cedar shakes, or tile that employs a similar installation process.

Particularly with asphalt shingles, it's often easier to accommodate custom features on a roof. If a roof has a very tight valley, for example, a roofer can usually cut the shingles to create a good fit.

Commercial roofing contractors will frequently use materials like rubber and tar. In some cases, they'll apply gravel, especially if the roof will see a lot of foot traffic. These materials tend to be easier to repair in a pinch because you can usually apply patches or just thick tar to fill damaged areas.


Residential roofing materials can last between 15 and 100 years. Commercial roofs tend to need more attention. However, they're easier to patch and repair so you can still get a lot of years out of them as long as you inspect them annually and fix problems as they appear. 

For more information, contact a local roofing company like Lockhart Roofing.