Pros and Cons of Different Commercial Roofing Materials

Information About Commercial Roofing Materials


Flat Roof Materials – TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin)

  • Pros:
    • Energy-efficient: Reflects sunlight, reducing cooling costs in summer.
    • Resistant to chemicals and oils: Suitable for buildings with HVAC units on the roof.
    • Cost-effective: Generally less expensive than other flat roofing materials.
  • Cons:
    • Durability: Although durable, it may be less resistant to punctures compared to materials like EPDM.
    • Installation: Requires expert installation to prevent leaks and other issues.

EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer)

  • Pros:
    • Durability: Highly resistant to weathering, tearing, and punctures.
    • Expandable: Can expand and contract without losing its shape, which is important in Colorado’s fluctuating temperatures.
    • Easy Repair: Easy to repair if a leak or other damage occurs.
  • Cons:
    • Heat absorption: Tends to absorb heat, which can increase cooling costs.

Modified Bitumen

  • Pros:
    • Flexible: Can expand and contract without cracking, essential in cold Colorado winters.
    • Durable: Resistant to abrasions and tears.
  • Cons:
    • Installation: The installation process can be complex and requires a professional.
    • Appearance: May not be the most aesthetically pleasing option.


Asphalt Shingles

  • Pros:
    • Cost-effective: Generally less expensive than other sloped roofing materials.
    • Easy Installation: Installation is straightforward compared to other materials.
  • Cons:
    • Sustainability: Less environmentally friendly than other options.
    • Durability: May not be as long-lasting as metal or tile roofing.

Metal Roofing

  • Pros:
    • Longevity: Can last up to 50 years or more with proper maintenance.
    • Energy-efficient: Reflects sunlight, reducing cooling costs.
    • Snow shedding: Helps shed snow, an important consideration in snowy regions of Colorado.
  • Cons:
    • Cost: Generally more expensive upfront than other roofing materials.
    • Noise: Can be noisier than other materials during hail or rainstorms, which are common in Colorado.

Slate and Tile Roofing

  • Pros:
    • Durability: Extremely durable and can last for many decades, even centuries.
    • Fire resistance: Offers excellent protection against fires.
  • Cons:
    • Weight: Requires a strong structural support due to its heavy weight.
    • Cost: One of the most expensive roofing options.

Sustainable Roofing Options – Green Roofing

  • Pros:
    • Energy Efficiency: Provides natural insulation, reducing energy costs.
    • Environmental benefits: Supports biodiversity and helps manage stormwater.
  • Cons:
    • Maintenance: Requires more maintenance than traditional roofing materials.
    • Initial Costs: Higher initial costs compared to conventional roofing materials.

Material Considerations for Colorado’s Roofs

When choosing a roofing material in Colorado, consider the climate, including hailstorms, snow, and intense UV radiation due to the state’s high average elevation. Durability and resistance to the elements should be top priorities, along with energy efficiency, to manage both cold winter temperatures and hot summer weather.

Contact Northern Lights Exteriors TODAY! We are happy to help you with an informed decision on our next roofing project.

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