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How To Choose Your Roofing Material

If your home’s roof is looking worse for wear, it may be time to explore replacement options. Replacing a worn-out roof can protect your home from costly water damage caused by leaks down the road. Likewise, a brand new roof can add some resale value to your home and possibly even save you money on your home insurance.

Of course, when it comes to replacing your roof, you have many material options to choose from. From “traditional” asphalt shingles to metal roofing and everything between, how can you know which is right for your home? By exploring some common roofing materials, along with their pros and cons, you can make an informed decision.

Asphalt Shingle

This is the most common material used on residential roofs—and there’s a good chance this is the material you have on your roof right now. Asphalt shingles are actually made of fiberglass, but they’re covered with an asphalt surface that protects your home from water, wind, and other elements. 

Typically, asphalt shingle roofs will last for about 20 years before needing to be replaced. This material is also among the most cost-effective and easiest to install, so it’s a popular choice among homeowners.

Wooden Shingle

A less common option (yet still one to consider) is that of wooden shingles. Up until asphalt shingles became “the norm,” wooden shingles were the primary choice. Not only are they easy to work with, but they can also give your home a very warm and inviting look that cannot be achieved with asphalt shingles. Wooden shingles are typically made of cedar, pine, or redwood—and shingles can be stained to achieve nearly any look or finish.

Do I Need a New Roof 1

These shingles have about the same lifespan as asphalt, but they do require a little more care and maintenance. Likewise, building codes in some areas may prohibit them as a roofing material, so you’ll want to research your local coding restrictions before you move forward. 

Metal Roofing

Another roofing material that’s becoming increasingly popular for residential use is that of metal roofing. This roofing material is known for its extreme durability, even when faced with extreme weather conditions. In fact, it is not unheard of for a metal roof to last for several decades before needing any extensive repair or replacement.

Most metal roofing is made from aluminum, copper, or steel. It is available in the form of shingles or in larger sheets that can be welded together during installation. Because of its durability and more complicated installation, metal roofing does tend to be the most expensive option. 

What’s Right for You?

Ultimately, the roofing type that’s right for your home will depend on many factors. Usually, it’s easiest and most affordable to replace your roof with the same material as the existing roof. However, many homeowners are choosing to “upgrade” to metal roofs. It all boils down to your budget, your aesthetic preferences, and your local building codes or HOA requirements. 

No matter what type of roof you install, hiring a reputable and experienced roofing company is a must. This way, you can ensure that the roof is installed properly and that it will last for years to come.