A roof is one of the most critical layers of a home. The shingles act as a barrier between a home’s construction and the elements. When in good condition, they add value to a home. If not, they can wreak havoc on belongings and structural design.
Like other materials used to build a home, a roof can only be expected to last so long. In fact, many insurance companies won’t write a new policy on a house with a roof over 20 years old without an inspection. Even then, many companies will only reimburse what a 20-year-old roof is worth if it becomes damaged in a storm as they know a good roof means a home will be protected.
As a Portland roofing company, we concur. A good roof means less potential problems for damage. And one of the favorite and most popular roofing options are shingles.
What are roof shingles?
Roof shingles are a roof covering made up of overlapping flat, rectangular shapes laid in place from the bottom edge of a roof up to the roofline above. They can be made of a variety of materials, including asphalt, wood, slate, clay, metal, plastic, fiberglass, and even cement.
Like any other design aspect, each material has its pros and cons. Because a roof has the potential of lasting 20, 30, even 40 years or more, it’s important to select a roofing material carefully. This is where a Portland roofing company can help.
Let’s walk through several choices and go through the benefits of each.
What shingle choice is the best?
There are typically five different roofing materials to select from:
• Clay or concrete
Asphalt shingles are among the most popular and the most affordable roofing materials. They come in a variety of different sizes, colors, and styles. Many of them meet Energy Star standards, which means they help save money on monthly utility bills.
An organic asphalt shingle is made from compressed recycled paper or cellulose and is quite durable under normal conditions. It can absorb moisture and warp if not constructed from high-quality material.
A fiberglass asphalt shingle is the newest to market, coming onto the scene in the 1980s. This type of asphalt shingle is constructed of interwoven fiberglass covered and sealed in asphalt for ultimate waterproofing. It’s then covered in ceramic granules just like the organic shingles. This gives it a textured look and enhances the waterproofing qualities.
Wood shingles fall right into line with asphalt tiles on the affordability scale. Wood shingles are durable, energy efficient, and are considered to be more environmentally-friendly than other types of shingles.
The major drawback is wood shingles are more likely to catch on fire than other building materials. This is why insurance companies in many drought-ridden areas will no longer offer coverage to homes with wooden roofs.
Still, beauty is an asset and they will usually last between 30 and 50 years when cared for correctly. Be sure to immediately repair shingles that are cracked, warped, broken, or missing.
Metal roofs have been increasing in popularity because of the sleek design and style. They can be quite affordable when constructed from a low-galvanized metal. They can also be made from other metals including copper, tin, zinc, and aluminum.
Metal roofs work best on steep and flat surfaces. Ever seen a ski chalet with a metal roof in place? The steep slopes are the perfect spot for a metal roof. And because of how a metal roof reacts to the elements, it’s the perfect material to help keep snow from building up.
Metal roofs can be quite noisy if there is a lot of rain or hail. Like other roofing materials, it’s important to maintain a roofs over time to ensure a long life. That means watching for loose nails, repair holes or rust patches, and replace missing tiles and tiles with curled seams or edges.
Slate shingles are right at the top of the list for durability. They are also one of the most expensive. But if well cared for, they can last anywhere from 80 to 100 years. They have some of the best water and damage resistant properties on the market.
When choosing to install a slate roof onto a home, keep in mind that it’s also one of the heaviest roofing materials. In some cases, strength will have to be increased in the overall structure to support the added weight. Still, the beauty is unparalleled, as they can add charm and elegance to any home.
Clay or Concrete
Going for the Mediterranean or Southwestern look? Tile shingles may be the perfect option. Clay tiles are often seen on properties that have a Spanish aesthetic and are visually some of the most appealing shingles to use on a home.
Concrete tiles are often used on contemporary properties, providing a clean, unique design. They are long lasting; think 80 years or more. But like slate, they are also heavy. Be sure the home’s structure can handle the extra weight.
Which shingles are the best option?
Every home is different and unique. Every family has its own personality and preferences too. That’s why it’s important to take time and select the right roofing choice for a home.
As a Portland roofing company, we’ve helped many families hone in on their perfect roof choice.
A new roof can completely change the look and feel of a home. It can add beauty and style. It can increase property value and protect investments and belongings for decades to come.