Commercial vs Residential Roofing Shingles

The terms ‘commercial grade’ and ‘heavy duty’ comes-up frequently in the construction business, including roofing. Sometimes folks ask us for ‘commercial grade’ roofing shingles. They’re under the impression the shingles they see on commercial buildings, such as their dentist’s office, is stronger or ‘commercial grade’. This isn’t the fact.

Technically, there’s no difference between commercial and residential roofing shingles. The shingles you see on your dentist’s roof are the exact same shingles you can get for your home. They are not ‘commercial’, or heavy duty, or stronger in any way. You can, however, get better or lesser shingles, but better shingles can be installed on any roof that’s within the correct pitch range.

Quick Answer: There’s no difference between commercial and residential shingles. Commercial shingles are normal shingles installed onto a commercial building.

Installation of all asphalt shingles are also the same. Roofing shingles on a commercial building are installed the exact same way as on your home. We don’t use ‘commercial’ nails if the shingles are being installed onto a commercial building. The only difference between commercial and residential roofing shingles, is where they’re installed. Roofing shingles installed onto a commercial roof, might be referred to ‘commercial roofing shingles‘. Roofing shingles installed onto a residential roof, might be referred to ‘residential roofing shingles’, however, often they aren’t.

When you are ordering a new roof from the roofing company, you will probably get asked if the job is for a home or commercial building. This is because the extended warranties work differently for commercial vs residential. Not only are there several manufacturers making roofing shingles, but each manufacturer has lots of options to choose from. Owens Corning, for example, has 10 different varieties of roofing shingles, and each of those come in a wide range of colors.

What’s more, looks can be deceiving. Some roofing material manufacturers make products that have the appearance of another roofing product. Take Westlake Royal Roofing’s Pine Crest Shake, for example. It looks like wood shake, but it’s actually steel. Decra also makes metal roofing products that have the appearance of tile, shingle, or shake.

Roofing Shingle Options

new architectural asphalt shingles

There are many types of roofing shingles available, today. Traditional asphalt shingles are the most popular. Stone-coated metal shingles are somewhat new and quickly becoming popular.

Traditional Asphalt Shingles

We only offer traditional asphalt shingles from quality manufacturers, such as Owens Corning, Tamko, GAF, and CertainTeed. These companies have been in business for many years, make quality roofing products, and offer great warranties. Traditional asphalt shingles come in 3 different styles: 3-Tab, Architectural/Dimensional, and Luxury. 3-tab shingles are often your least expensive and shortest-lived. These shingles also often come with the fewest features. For example, most are not impact resistant. Architectural/Dimensional shingles come with more features. For example, most are impact resistant and high-wind resistant, such as Owens Corning’s TruDefinition Duration Storm. These shingles often last the longest of these 3 types. Luxury shingles, such as GAF’s Camelot II are among the most expensive shingles. They look great, however, like 3-tab shingles, do not come with the feature you might want, here in Colorado, such as hail and high-wind resistance. When shopping for asphalt shingles for your home or office in Colorado, we high recommend you choose features over style. Choosing a shingle that lasts longer and is more resistant to hail and high-winds, means you’re replacing your roof less frequently. This translates to saving more money.

Stone-Coated Metal Shingles and Tiles

metal shingle roof

Businesses are always looking for the highest ROI (Return on Investment), or the best ‘bang for their buck.’ That makes sense. It’s wise to not waste money, get the item that lasts the longest, requires the least maintenance, etc. Homeowners would be wise to follow this same wisdom. That said, the roofing shingle that offers the most ‘bang for your buck’, is stone-coated metal shingles. That’s because this roof covering lasts the longest of all roof coverings. Traditional asphalt shingles only last between 25 and 30 years. They are made with fiberglass. Metal shingles and tiles, on the other hand, are made of metal and last 70 years or more. Metal is more durable than fiberglass. Westlake Royal Roofing manufactures stone-coated metal roof coverings that resemble traditional asphalt shingles, wood shake, and barrel and pacific tiles. Their shingle and tile are offered in a number of colors, such as various shade of browns and grays, reds, and greens.

The Bottom Line

Shingles are shingles. There are no ‘commercial’ roofing shingles. There are no ‘residential’ roofing shingles, for that matter. They are just shingles. If someone refers to them as ‘residential’ roofing shingles, they are just shingles getting installed onto a residential building. If a roofing company asks you if you want commercial or residential roofing shingles, press them further to make sure they aren’t trying to sell you the same shingle at an inflated price for your commercial building. Contact Bob Behrends Roofing for all of your Colorado commercial and residential shingle needs.