Choosing Roofing Materials—Shingles and Shakes

In today’s market you have many options to choose from when putting a roof on a house. Whether you are building a new house, adding an addition, or re-roofing, you will need to consider your options. This could be tough. The choices range from asphalt shingles to clay tiles, steel panels to wood shakes, or rubber slate. Austin area roofers like Accent Roofing are here to help as you make this difficult decision.

Currently there is a move towards using engineered roofing materials for multiple reasons. Wood has become quite costly so only a few people want to spend the money necessary to use wood shakes. Another reason is that many people want a fireproof roof. Many areas’ roofing codes require the use of fireproof construction materials. Lastly, people want to build with long-lasting materials. Let’s look at some of the pros and cons of the most used roofing materials.

Asphalt Shingles

These are traditional shingles. They cover the roofs of the majority of houses in the United States. Shingles are one of the least expensive options and come in a variety of colors both solid and blended. Usually shingles are guaranteed for 20 to 30 years which makes them an excellent value. If you are looking to upgrade your shingles from the standard 3-tab variety you can get a thicker variation called an architectural shingle. These are approximately twice the thickness of the standard shingle. These shingles can be made to resemble wood or slate. The architectural shingles usually have a 30 year warrantee and add a little extra style to the roof.

Wooden Shingles & Shakes

Shingles can be made of wood. Wood roofing can give the house a very nice look. Various species of trees can be used to make wood shingles from Western Red Cedar to Eastern White Cedar or Alaskan Yellow Cedar. Newer woods are being worked with to broaden the types of shingles available. Shingles are cut to a uniform thickness though their widths will vary.

Wood shakes are made thicker and rougher as they are split rather than sawn from the tree logs. Wood roofing is expected to breath therefore your roofer needs to be experienced with laying wood roofs. You need to allow air to circulate behind and under the wooden shingles or shakes. There are various methods to create the base for a wood roof with which being used being determined by your roof and structure.

Wooden roofs are expensive to install and will require periodic maintenance. Any mildew or moss that forms will need to be washed off and the area re-oiled with an appropriate product. When properly installed and maintained a wood roof can be expected to last 30 to 50 years.

Fake Shingle Materials

Many areas now require fireproof roofs, so real wood is not possible. In these areas the roofing options include using fake wood-finish shingles and shakes. A shingle formed form cement has been manufactured to look like a wood shake that can create quite a nice roof that requires very little maintenance.

When you are trying to decide which type of roofing you want consult Austin area roofers like Accent Roofing. Their years of experience will help you understand what will work best for your roof.

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