When you dive into the roofing industry as part of your investigation for the best type of roof, you’ll come to discover that there’s much to learn as far as options go. A new residential roofing system can be comprised of anything from common asphalt shingles to durable yet more expensive slate roofs. What’s best for your home? Well, it depends what qualities you want—or more accurately need—for your home.
Asphalt shingles are among the most popular choice for a roofing system. Reliable, affordable, and simple to install, these shingles will last 20-30 years if well maintained. Even with the introduction of newer roofing systems like metal roofs, asphalt shingles have steadily retained their ubiquity in American neighborhoods.
Asphalt roofing systems consist of two types of base materials: organic and fiberglass. The design allows the shingles to reflect harsh light during hot summer months and the ability to shield its base layers like the underlayment by providing water resistance. An asphalt roofing system is ideal in climates that experience the tumultuous weather of four seasons, standing up to aggressive winds, pummeling hailstorms, and threats of heavy snow, rain, and the threat of falling debris.
Wood shakes have been utilized as roofing materials since the early colonial days. While you might not believe that roof made of cedar shakes would be effective against the elements, you’d be surprised to learn that this material battles UV rays, reduces air conditioning costs, and provides plenty of insulation all while being ec-friendly.
Wood shakes and cedar shingle roof systems play to their strengths in climates susceptible to thunderstorms, hurricanes, high winds, and other harsh weather conditions, but have a natural weakness to fire. Some manufacturers will apply a specialized coating to the shingles or shakes to accommodate for this inherent disability, but this roofing system isn’t recommended for areas prone to wildfires.
Slate roof systems are the cornerstone of the roofing industry. Durable and resistive in the face of fires, rot, and other destructive forces, slate shingles can last a lifetime—quite literally, with a life expectancy of about 100 years if well-kept.
Slate roof systems are made of concrete, hence their superior durability. However, this heavy material comes at a price. Homeowners wanting slate roofs can expect to pay much more than their asphalt counterparts. The costs are derivative of the slate’s sheer weight and demand of expert installation. Slate roofs are not infallible, either, and can be damaged beneath your weight if you walk on them. This makes gutter cleaning and annual maintenance problematic.
Due to their sensitivity to weight that makes gutter upkeep a challenge, slate shingle roof systems aren’t common in the Midwest regions. Homeowners in areas with a fall season find that slate roofs make this chore troublesome and expensive should they need to repair or replace it. On the east coast, however, slate roofs work well and are a popular choice.
Homeowners in recent years have taken a liking to metal roofs. Metal roof systems have noticeably transitioned from a solely industrial use to sheltering residential homes. It’s no wonder this material has become increasingly popular in residential neighborhoods—metal roofs are low in their maintenance, high in their durability, and lengthy in their longevity. Metal roofs, like wood shakes or cedar shingles, are also environmentally kind, another pro for homeowners looking to be more green conscious. These roofing systems can last a homeowner 40-70 years compared to a well-maintained asphalt roof’s 20-30 years.
The material itself is lightweight, but the catch is the difficulty in the installation. Unlike shingles, metal roofs are one solid piece, making the application a challenge. Although metal roofs do stand up to damage of any sort quite well, they require full replacement should they suffer from impact whereas an asphalt roof would only need its shingles replaced.
Among these popular choices for residential roofs, which system is truly the best? The clear winner is asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingles will give you a long lifespan with very little maintenance while being affordable. They also will give your home great curb appeal and are Eco-friendly.
When you decide which roofing system is right for your home, always want to go with professionals. This is essential to quality, safety and security. Enjoy your home for years to come knowing there’s a solid roof over your head.
At Feldco Roofing, we provide breakthrough design and triple layer protection to keep your roof insulated throughout the year. For a roof replacement, our installers are factory trained, experienced and professional to get the job done correctly. Speak to a product specialist and get a free quote online today.