From natural materials like slate and wood to manmade products such as asphalt, sheet metal, and plastic polymers, there are more types and styles of roofing to choose from today than ever before.
When considering what type of roofing to install, weigh aesthetics against cost. Roofing materials come in varying grades and corresponding prices. Look at the full product range and make a choice based on your budget and needs. Prices and durability can range considerably. Here are the types of roofing to consider.
HOW TO CHOOSE A ROOF FOR YOUR HOME
There are many factors to consider when selecting a roof including:
- How long will it last?
- Does it hold up during natural disasters such as wildfires or hurricanes?
- Is it too heavy for the existing roof framing?
- Does the roof have enough slope?
- Will the look complement the style of the house?
- Are the materials eco-friendly and recyclable?
- Is the type of roofing allowed by local building codes?
- And finally, how much does it cost?
Types of Roofing Materials
There are two types of asphalt shingles:
- Fiberglass shingles start with a fiberglass mesh mat that is covered in asphalt and topped with granules that provide color and reflect some of the sunlight.
- Organic asphalt shingles begin with paper, often recycled, that is saturated in asphalt and covered with granules. The shingles are heavier and harder to work with than fiberglass, but they generally offer better stability in high winds. Although you can still see them on many roofs, organic shingles have been mostly phased out or discontinued over the course of last decade.
Wood shingles and shakes
Unlike wood shakes, which have a rough and varied appearance, wood shingles are smooth and uniform. A wood shingle is usually cut from cedar, though pressure-treated southern yellow pine is also popular. This choice is more expensive due to higher material and installation costs, but wood shingles should last 30 to 50 years.
- Wood shingles are machine-cut and feature cleaner edges and a smooth surface to produce a more uniform appearance.
- Wood shakes are hand-cut from blocks of wood, so have a more rustic appearance. They’re thicker too, so slightly more expensive than wood shingles.
A properly installed metal roof should last as long as your house, providing complete protection from the elements. Metal resists fire, mildew, insects and rot. Warranties vary widely, but most companies back their products for 20 to 50 years. Metal roofs do have some drawbacks. The pitter-patter of rain and hail can make a metal roof sound like a drum, and hail and other wear and tear can dent and mar the surface. Prices can exceed those of more conventional materials, but you might come out ahead if you stay in your house for a long time.