When you buy a house, you’re signing up to perform many different home maintenance tasks over the years. One of these tasks is replacing your roof. Your roof is designed to protect your home from the elements, so it suffers from quite a large amount of wear and tear as time goes on. At some point, it will have to be replaced.
But when this point arrives, you may be unsure what material to use for your new roofing. Driving around town, you’ll undoubtedly see a wide range of roof types on the buildings you pass. With so many different types of roofing materials, which choice is the right one?
Nine Roofing Materials to Nail Your Next Roofing Job
There’s no question that roofs can be made out of a vast number of materials, which means you have a variety of options. True, some materials used in roofing probably won’t work for your house — for example, you can’t use built-up roofing unless you have a flat roof — but when it comes to choosing from among those that will work, you have a lot of freedom. Here are nine of the best roofing materials available to you for your next roofing job.
1. Wood Shingles or Shakes
Perhaps the most visually appealing roofing option is wood. With its traditional, natural look, wood can make a roof look far more attractive than many other materials. At the same time, it doesn’t last as long as its alternatives and isn’t as resistant to water damage. It can also prove hazardous in areas where forest fires are common.
If your priority is visual appeal, a wooden roof might be the best choice. But if you’re looking for something with high resilience to the elements, maybe not — in wet climates, a wood roof might only last 20 years.
2. Metal Roofing
If you’re looking for the exact opposite of wood, metal roofing is probably the way to go. It’s incredibly resistant to the elements and fully fireproof. This resilience gives it significant longevity, often around 60 years, with the best ones lasting as long as 75 years. You can get two types of metal roofs — standing seam and metal shingles or shakes.
- Standing seam: Standing seam roofs are made up of metal panels that interlock along their seams.
- Metal shingles or shakes: Metal shingles or shakes are made to look like they’re made of other materials, providing a more visually appealing option while still retaining the advantages of metal roofing.
3. Asphalt Shingles
Asphalt shingles are by far the most common roofing material in the United States. They aren’t the most long-lasting material, typically only holding out for 20 to 30 years, but they have other benefits.
For one thing, they’re very flexible, so they aren’t usually affected by any swelling or shrinking of the roof. It’s also easy to replace individual shingles that become damaged. The durability of asphalt shingles varies across different types and brands, so if you choose this option, make sure you go for one that works for you.
4. Slate Shingles
Slate is generally the most expensive roofing option, but for good reason. Slate shingles are made out of real stone, so they’re incredibly resistant to fire and water alike. They’re also incredibly long-lasting, capable of remaining in place for over a century. They do break easily if stepped on, however, so be careful if you choose to install a slate roof yourself.
5. Clay and Concrete Tiles
A great option for warm, dry climates is clay or concrete tiles. Like slate, these materials are heavy and brittle but excellent at withstanding damage from the elements. They can typically last over 50 years. Clay in particular is also a great aesthetic choice, giving an adobe feel to your home.
6. Rolled Roofing
Rolled roofing is similar to asphalt tiles, but on a much larger scale. It consists of large sheets of mineral-embedded material, which can be rolled onto a roof, cut down to size and nailed on. Like asphalt, it’s incredibly easy to install, though its lifespan is even shorter — often only 10 years. It’s far from the most visually appealing option, but if that’s not something you’re worried about, rolled roofing is an easy solution.
7. Membrane Roofing
Membrane roofing applies a similar method to rolled roofing, in that it consists of large sheets laid out across your roof. However, it lasts much longer than rolled roofing — often up to 35 years. It can be made of various materials, such as PVC or EPDM. EPDM is a synthetic, rubber-like material that’s excellent at keeping out moisture.
8. Solar Panels
If you want a more environmentally friendly option for your roof, solar panels are a great choice. When properly installed in your home, they can serve as a source of energy for your many appliances. They do tend to be one of the most expensive roofing options, but to some extent, this can be balanced out by the decreased energy bills.
9. Green Roof
An additional environmental option is to “go green” in the most literal sense — cover your roof with plants. This tactic is harder to pull off if your roof is at a particularly steep angle, but not impossible. It can improve air quality and make use of rainwater, and it doesn’t give off nearly as much heat as other roofs. However, it can be expensive to create, as it requires significant structural support to hold the amount of soil needed for the plants to grow.
Hiring a Professional Helping Hand
Even after you’ve decided on the roofing material you want to use, you may still have a fair degree of uncertainty about the roofing process. Knowing what you want your roof to be made of isn’t the same as knowing how to install it.
Of course, this may not be the case. You may be thoroughly experienced with home repairs and roof installations. But if you aren’t, don’t force yourself to try installing your new roof without knowing what you’re doing. You have a much easier option available — just call a professional.
Professional roofers can install your roof with speed and efficiency, sparing you a good deal of stress. On top of that, they can prevent you from having to deal with any mistakes you might make on your own.
Get Roofing Service From Brothers Aluminum Today
Looking for a professional to install your roof? Brothers Aluminum has you covered. As a GAF Master Elite roofing contractor, we bring a quality installation procedure to every job we do. We service homes throughout many areas in New York, including Long Island, Queens, Nassau County, Suffolk County, and Westchester County.
To get started on scheduling your roofing project, get in touch with us today!