Modern roofing systems have come a long way over the last century or so. For many years, the most prominent roofing system used for commercial buildings was the BUR or built-up roofing system. Sometimes known as tar and gravel roofs, these systems became popular as the many applications of crude oil came into widespread usage. But these roofing options have gradually been replaced over the years with far more sophisticated flat roof solutions.


If your business is still relying on an outmoded tar and gravel roof, it may be time to consider switching to a rubber membrane or another flat roof solution. In this post, our commercial flat roof pros at A-Plus Roofing compare commercial membranes to gravel and tar so you can see the many benefits of switching your commercial roof.


What is a BUR or Tar and Gravel Roof?

BUR systems are made up of layers of alternating materials built up to form a completed membrane. They are usually made with reinforcing fabrics known as ply sheets or roofing felts. The reinforcing fabrics are alternated between layers of tar. This tar is typically either coal tar or asphalt, which is heated and then spread between the plies.


Over the years, asphalt can end up losing its elasticity. When this happens, the protective membrane of the commercial flat roof becomes compromised.


How Does a Membrane or Single-Ply Roof System Stack Up?

There are several alternatives to BUR systems available on the market today. EPDM membranes, TPO membranes, and Duro-Last are three high-performance commercial roofing solutions offered at A-Plus Roofing. These roofing systems offer many advantages over their tar and gravel counterparts.


Here are just a few:


1.      They are safer to install.

Tar and gravel roofs require a high amount of insurance due to the inherent danger of working with heated bitumen. Exploding kettles, scorching injuries, and noxious fumes are just a few of the dangers of BUR roof installation.


2.      They weigh much less than BUR roofs.

Built-up roofing systems can weigh as much as twenty or more pounds per square foot. Membrane roofs, on the other hand, weigh only a fraction of their tar and gravel counterparts. EPDM rubber roofs, for example, only weigh around two pounds per square foot.


3.      They are far simpler to repair.

Tar and gravel roofing systems can be difficult to repair due to the many challenges of working with gravel. However, single-ply roofing solutions are simple to repair. Instead of sweeping rock around in search of roofing damage, our commercial roof repair crew can use infrared technology to inspect your roof and get right to the heart of the problem.


Call Your Twin Cities Commercial Roofing Contractor

If you’re ready to update your commercial roof, we can work with you to choose the best high-performance roofing solution for your business. Whether you choose to install modified bitumen or a single-ply roofing solution, our pros at A-Plus Roofing can help.


To learn more about the benefits of commercial flat roofing solutions, give us a call at 952.894.5435. Or contact us on the web to schedule an appointment to discuss roofing solutions for your business.