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In a previous blog, we talked about the main different kinds of siding that are available today. Well, today we are doing the same for roofing, and going over the most popular roofing materials out there for your home. Your roof is undoubtedly one of the most important parts of your home, so it’s vital that you choose the right materials for its shingles. Different materials have different properties, and it’s important that you choose the right one for the conditions your home will be in. To help you, here are the top 4 you will most likely have to select from.

Asphalt Shingles

This is arguably the most popular form of roofing for most people, taking up a whopping 84% of the roofing market. Its popularity is largely driven by its wide versatility with most climates and its affordability. It’s fireproof, resistant to insect damage, and easy to install on most roofs. However, there are some downsides to asphalt as well. Its lifespan is shorter than other roofing materials and can be subject to cracking from prolonged exposure to heat. It can also have problems with excessive moisture and can have moss and algae grow on it in particularly humid climates.

To mitigate these downsides, it’s best to invest in the highest quality asphalt shingles to get the best and longest life out of your roof. Our recommendation would be Owen Corning asphalt shingles, whose multiple lines cater to various conditions, styles, and budgets. Find what works best for you from Owen Corning’s extensive array of products.

Wood Shingles

Few materials can match the classic and natural beauty of wood shingles, and with many of the oldest homes in the US still retaining its original shingles, it’s safe to say that its longevity speaks for itself. They also have twice the insulation value of asphalt shingles and are eco-friendly thanks to the fact that most wood shingles are made from salvaged or fallen trees. In addition to that, it isn’t as large a fire hazard as you’d expect, as treated shingles have a Class A fire rating.

It is worth noting, however, that untreated wood shingles have a Class C fire rating, and are prohibited in some areas due to the risk of wildfire. Also, like most other wood exteriors, maintenance and upkeep is high, with constant cleaning to keep out moss and algae, and clearing of debris to allow the wood to breathe. Plus, if any damage or improper installation has occurred, fixing/replacing it will be expensive. Overall it is best to not choose wood if you live in an area with excessive humidity or heat.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing has been a staple in farmhouses and rural areas for almost a century, and for good reason. With its strong resistance to all forms of weather and long lifespan, it is the common choice for those who live far away. This form of roofing is seeing a resurgence thanks to a demand for eco-friendly roofing options, and the rise of industrial-style homes.

There are several benefits to metal roofing, including longevity, fire resistance, water resistance, and resistance to insect damage. It is also usually very strong, depending on the type of metal used, and is resistant to most debris and even hail. However, in the case that it does dent, fixing metal roofing tends to be more expensive, and often requires replacing whole pieces as opposed to repairing them. It is also quite expensive in comparison to other materials, although the durability and longevity of the material tend to offset the cost. Overall it is a great option if you are planning to keep a home for the long term.

Slate Roofing

Genuine slate is one of the highest quality roofing products you can buy and has been known to last for centuries. Composite slate, its artificial counterpart, tends to last 40-60 years. Its luxurious look and minimal maintenance make it coveted by many homeowners, and while it is the most expensive option available, composite slate gives you many of the same benefits while being at a lower price.

That being said, it’s not without its downsides. In addition to its high cost, it is also very heavy, which means you will likely need to pay for additional support to install it. However composite, with its lower price tag and lighter weight, avoids this problem. Repairs will also be difficult, as slate can break if walked on, and is expensive to fix/replace. And it’s important to hire a contractor well-versed in installing slate, as improper installation can lead to moisture damage. In summary, slate is great for the best upscale housing, so long as you can bear the initial expense of installing it.

We hope this post served as a helpful guide to help you begin your selection of the right material for your home. If you are planning an upcoming roof installation/replacement, contact us via phone or through our contact form. We’d love to work with you!

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