DMV Roofing: Commercial Roofing in the DC-Maryland-Virginia Area

Table of Contents

Ice storms? Unrelenting rain, steamy sun, and wind? DMV roofing takes a beating. In DMV (DC, Maryland, Virginia), it’s possible to cycle through the seasons in a week.

Commercial roofs tend to have very different construction than residences. Their lifespan, repair and replacement schedule is shortened by weather extremes. If the weather conditions outside reach the inside, it’s time for a roof repair or replacement.

When you look for a new commercial roof in Great Falls or repairs in MD, the most important factors are cost, longevity in the face of the weather and energy efficiency. 

Learn more about your options.

DMV Roofing Cost, Energy Efficiency and Lifespan

The most important factor for many businesses is the overall cost of new roofing. It’s also the most variable factor. Some roofs cost less to install and maintain. There may be tradeoffs like a shorter lifespan or lesser energy efficiency.

The cost of energy to heat and cool a building in the DMV region is a cost factor you can’t ignore. Factor heating and cooling costs into your roof replacement budget. Some roof types have insulating or heat-reflective properties. Energy efficiency and sustainability parameters are part of the permit process.

Properly installed and maintained roof systems can have a lifespan of 10 to 50 years in DMV. Weather extremes like last summer in Great Falls or the ice storms of 2014 increase the variance. Sub-roof structure affects wear, too.

The Right Commercial Roof for DMV

Some important considerations DMV roofing. Consider these factors before making your budget or choosing a roof type. 

  • sun exposure
  • chemical exposure (acid, fats, pollution)
  • pitched or low-slope
  • climate extremes (wind, heat, freezing)
  • wear from walking
  • visibility

Different building uses and different local weather patterns affect your choices. For example, a south-facing flat roof of a restaurant near a busy overpass will have a different materials selection than a sloped roof of an apartment building

Consider the durability of the roof to the conditions, its energy efficiency, and its maintenance cost. In Virginia, Maryland, and DC, weigh the benefits of a dark-colored roof to reduce the heating bill, with a light-colored cool roof to limit air conditioner use.

Commercial Roofing Materials to Consider in DMV

The top DMV roofing materials for commercial buildings are listed below:

  • Built-Up or Modified Bitumen Roofing (BUR or MBR) Membrane
  • Metal Roofing (sheet, tile or shingle)
  • Spray Foam Roofing
  • PVC Roof Membrane
  • Thermoset EPDM Roof Membrane

Time-Tested Built-up and Modified Bitumen Roof

Built-up and modified bitumen roofing membrane has the shortest expected lifespan. Plan on around 20 years with care. Alternating layers of tar and gravel or tar and rubber make up the roof system. It is one of the least costly and oldest types of flexible roof systems.

The number of layers affects the cost and weight of the roof.  It is the least expensive type of roof to replace and easy to repair. However, it is vulnerable to vibration and sagging if the underlying structure is inadequate or damaged.

This type of roof system is seamless, sun-resistant and heat-absorbent. It can be coated to reflect heat. These types of roofs aren’t pretty and are generally hidden from view.

Metal Roofing for Longest Life

Durable metal roofs are very popular due to their 40 to 60-year lifespan. The Rotunda at UVA is a shining example. There are several different types of metal roofs available. 

Common metal commercial roofing materials include:

  • Corrugated galvanized steel
  • Copper
  • Aluminum
  • Coated steel
  • Tin

Metal roofing is fire resistant and can be finished in a variety of attractive looks. Some builders prefer a shine, others an aged patina.  A metal roof is strong and a “green” choice. Metal roofs are susceptible to corrosion but protective coatings and regular maintenance protect against environmental damage.

Spray Foam Roofing for Repairs or Roof Life Extension 

Spray polyurethane foam (SPF) is a liquid spray roofing material that expands into a foam, then hardens into a solid layer. This type of roofing tops an existing roof. It can seal small cracks and fill dips.

An SPF roofing system is durable, flexible and insulating. It is seamless and waterproof. With regular inspection and maintenance when necessary, a properly installed roof can last 50 years from new or add years to an existing roof system.

Harsh Environmental Conditions Call For PVC Roof Membranes 

Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) roofing withstands adverse conditions. It resists degradation in areas exposed to strong sunlight, pollution, oils, and grease. PVC resists biofilm growth and puncture.

PVC rolls are lightweight, heat-reflective and fire-resistant. They tolerate high wind and high temperatures. This type of roof can handle some walking. It is flexible and withstands moderate walking.

Thermoset EPDM Membrane for Cost-Effective Protection

EPDM roofing resists sunlight and solvents. It is a cost-effective material for many different types of buildings and roof slopes. Thermoset or Ethylene Propylene Diene Terpolymer (EPDM) is a pollution-resistant durable synthetic rubber roofing membrane. 

Its disadvantages are that EPDM only comes in white and black rolls. It isn’t suitable for visible areas. It isn’t puncture resistant compared to other forms of roofing, so avoid areas where walkers or falling debris is a concern.  

The synthetic rubber is resistant to solvents like acids and alcohol, but not to fats and oils.  

Ask a DMV Commercial Roofing Expert

Have questions about the most suitable DMV roofing materials for commercial use? Let our experts talk you through all the options for commercial roofing repair and replacement. 

Let us help you find the right roof to protect your building from DMV’s weather extremes. Wind, rain, ice or sun we can help you find the right roof for your budget. We offer energy-efficient and green options.

We install long-lasting, durable commercial roofing.  Need roofing repairs or emergency service on-call, call us. We also provide regular inspections and maintenance to keep your roof in top condition.

Contact us today for a free inspection and estimate.