Guide for Choosing the Right Roofing Material

Construction Worker at the Roof
Roof Installation of Shingles, a roof material.

Are you thinking of replacing your roof? Or building a new home but still unsure what roof material to use? Your roof is important and must be chosen carefully to avoid headache of costly repairs over time. You have to be sure that the roof material is the best to protect you from possible leaks and damage and do its main purpose as barrier to the weather.

Here are few things to consider when selecting material for the roof:

Know your Roof Slope or Pitch

The first thing to do is to determine your roof slope. This will primarily narrow down your roof material choices. If you have low or flat pitched roof, the common and good choices are seamless materials to prevent water ponding. For example, tar-and-gravel or mechanically fastened metal system. On the other hand, steel-slope roofs have more options to choose from. Most common are asphalt shingles, wood shakes or clay tiles.

Roof Design and Look

Clay Tile Roofing is a common roofing material

Most roof designs are based on architectural styles. If you are building a modern home, you must consider the style -metal is a common choice for modern homes. And also, consider the color. It must match the color scheme of the exterior of your home.

Choosing Roof Color

Color is also a consideration. A light-coloured roof reflects more heat than a dark-coloured roof. This helps in thermal resistance and removes more heat that your roof insulation will absorb therefore cooling down the interior of your home.

Roof Durability

Typically, your roof should last 20 years or more. Most roof nowadays comes with extended warranty up to 20 years. Always check the warranty and coverage offer from roof contractors. General rule is to invest in good roof material rather than taking the risk of costly repairs in the future.

Roof Structural

Mechanically fastened Roof and Insulation Underneath
Mechanically fastened Roof and Insulation Underneath

If you are just replacing your roof, the weight of the roof is a major issue. Your current roof structural framing may be designed to carry a certain amount of weight only and this will limit your roof material choice. Lightweight materials such as asphalt shingles or composite roof can be installed directly over an existing roof, while Heavy materials such as clay tiles must be carefully considered before installing. You may have to consult with a roof professional if you are having doubts on your roof structural system.

Roof Fire Ratings

Roof Fire ratings are based in the Underwriter’s laboratory (UL). Ratings are from Class A to Class C wherein A is the most effective against exposure to fire. Check this rating in the product specifications of the roof. 

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