When considering a new roof, it is critical that you measure out all pros and cons of the typical roof styles, along with their costs, how they work best with your area’s climate and the type of home you own. To better understand roofing options we’ve compiled a general outline that can help you determine which roof coverings are right -or totally wrong- for your home.
Typically used for most houses, asphalt shingles range in price from pretty cheap to very expensive. But with asphalt shingles you get what you pay for. Though there are inexpensive 3-tab shingles that will save you money, they won’t protect your home like that of a 4-tab architectural. The warranty on a cheaper shingle isn’t nearly as long or comprehensive. A 3-tab generally offers about 20-30 years, whereas a 4-tab can offer up to 50 with a transferable warranty. If you’re curious about whether or not you have Atlas Chalet shingles, read here. There are actually shingles made now that not only guarantee 10 years of no algae but offer limited lifetime warranties against algae growth. These shingles have introduced small amounts of zinc, built strategically into the asphalt itself. That means no more black streaks on your roof! Some of the shingles on the market today that are Energy Star certified may earn you a rebate either through taxes or other incentives. Asphalt shingles are generally used for homes with higher pitched roofs, but can be used in commercial buildings as well.
The classic cabin look and increased resale values of metal roofs make them highly desirable for homes out in the country, or flatter portions of roofs such a front porch. Typically, metal roofs are used on a plethora of commercial businesses like hotels and restaurants that have roofs that aren’t flat. Metal roofs are surrounded by myths that usually must be dispelled. One such myth is that metal roofs will prevent ice damming. This is so not true. Ice damming is caused by improper attic ventilation and inadequate insulation. A metal roof will not solve the problem of ice damming. Another myth is that they are better insulated. While they may be more durable than asphalt shingles, their insulation capabilities lie in how well your attic is insulated.
Likely to be seen in the northeast, slate shingles have an exorbitant price tag. They normally last for about 50 years, sometimes more. There are cheaper alternatives out there, called synthetic slate shingles. They won’t carry as long of a warranty, but they’ll give your home the look you desire for much less than actually slate shingles.
Revered for their classic look and natural appeal, wood shingles, sometimes called shake shingles, can be more expensive than asphalt, but will normally last just as long as architectural shingles. Though the term “shake shingles” refers to shingles that are split wood, not sawn. Though some are still used today, most wood shingles are sawn by machines, not split by hand with axes. There is a downfall to wood shingles, though -they tend to warp, crack, bend, curl and fade over time. An alternative has been created called rubber shake shingles. Mostly made from recycled tires, rubber shakes can withstand weather and avoid the problems wood shingles have. They also act as a moisture barrier, much like vinyl siding.