Different Types of Roofing Materials by Texas Star

When considering which type of roofing materials to use on your home, price is always a primary consideration, but there are other factors to think about as well. Durability, maintenance, and appearance should also be considered.

Here are a few choices for your home:

  • Asphalt — Asphalt is inexpensive and very water-resistant. As a by-product of petroleum, it is a great adhesive that is easy to install and repair. Architectural shingles look great.
  • Cedar — Cedar is a good choice for roof tiles, not just because it is very weather resistant, but because it is also a naturally beautiful material.
  • Clay — Clay roofing is generally a lighter color that will not absorb as much heat as darker-colored roofing materials. This makes clay tile ideal for housing in hotter climates like the South and Southwestern parts of the United States.
  • Concrete — Another warm-weather option is concrete. Concrete takes much longer to absorb heat than other roofing materials. Concrete tile can be dyed with lighter colors to further reflect light. Concrete is very durable and is resistant to both water and fire.
  • Slate — Slate would probably be every homeowner’s first choice for roofing material if money were not an obstacle. Slate tiles are heavy and durable. They can last a very long time and their look can even improve with age.
  • Metal — Metal roofs are inexpensive and durable. A white metal roof can reflect much of the sun’s rays away from the building while retaining less heat than other materials. This means the roof will cool more quickly when the sun goes down.
  • Composite — Composite roofing materials can give the appearance of higher quality tiles made of slate or cedar but are much more affordable. Composite materials aren’t as durable, of course, but they are water-resistant and can add to the beauty of any home.

The Pros & Cons of Popular Roofing Choices

Asphalt Shingles

As you drive through your neighborhood, the most common type of roofing material that you will see is the asphalt shingles. The main reason for this is the cost of the shingles. They are generally the cheapest to install on a home. The cost of roofing shingles is determined by the square. A square is 100 square feet. An asphalt roof will cost around $75 to $100 per square. Asphalt shingles are relatively easy to install and they offer reasonable protection for the home. The downside of this type of roof is durability. An asphalt shingle roof will last between 15 and 20 years. These shingles work well but do have a tendency to grow moss if not cared for properly.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing is growing in popularity. Many people think that with a metal roof, the sound of rain on the roof would be annoying to anyone inside the home, but this is not the case. There is no difference in the sound levels inside the home with this type of roof. A metal roof is made of different materials that can include steel, aluminum, copper and other metals or metal combinations. They are very durable and can last 30 to 50 years. They are more expensive and can cost $250 to $450 a square. Metal reflects heat. Metal also can withstand wind, rain, and snow. Metal roofs come in a variety of colors. Moss buildup is not an issue for metal roofs.

Concrete Tiles

One of the advantages of using concrete is the ability to make them look like something else. They can be made to look like wood shingles or clay tiles, but they are not as expensive as these materials. Some of the advantages of concrete tiles are their durability, and the fact they are made from natural materials. These tiles are perfect for anyone that is in an area where a fire is a danger. They are heavier than other types of roofing materials as well. Concrete tiles can last more than 50 years and cost $300 to $500 a square.

Clay Tiling

Clay roofs traditionally have been found in climates that are warmer. It is also a roof option for a Spanish style look. Clay is more expensive than other roofing materials, but it has a long life expectancy of up to 50 years. Another consideration of a clay roof is the weight of the roof. The weight involved can be an issue depending on the style of the house. Clay (and concrete) used to be very limited in color options; however, the choices have increased in recent years.

Wood Shingles

Wood shingles offer a classic look that many homeowners want. The most common wood used is cedar, although other rot-resistant woods can also be used. The biggest appeal for the wood shingles is the look, but these roofs are often the most difficult to deal with. They have a relatively short life of 15 to 25 years. They will require periodic maintenance and can break. Over time the wood will weather and change color. Wood shingles cost around $350 to $450 per square.

Other Options

There are other types of materials that are used for roofing, although they may not be as common. Slate roofs, plastic polymer, and clay tiles all have their advantages and disadvantages can be found with every type of roofing material.

The most expensive material to use in roofing is slate. Slate roofs typically are found on high-end homes or municipal buildings. Slate is an attractive choice and many people choose it for this alone. But the other pluses of a slate roof are that slate is mold and insect resilient and the roof can last up to 100 years.

When building a home there are many styles to choose from. Do you want a ranch? Are you in love with a Victorian style? How about a Cape? You might think that picking the style of the house is all there is to it. Even after you decide on what style home you want, you still can change the look of the home with a roof.

There are many different styles of roofs. Your choice of a roof might be made by considering the look it will add to your house. It might be made considering the layout of the rooms. Your choice should definitely be done with the climate you are living in as a factor. There are steeply pitched roofs and flat roofs. You certainly would not pick a flat roof if you live in an area of extreme snowfall. Imagine what the weight of all that snow on a flat roof would do to your home. A steeply pitched roof would allow the snow to be more easily removed and protect the roof from collapsing. Let’s discuss some of the more popular types of roofs and what style house they are best for.

If you like a more traditional look for your home and more storage space at the top, a Mansard roof is a good choice. A Mansard roof has two slopes on each side of the house for a total of four. The Mansard roof is a French style. A style similar to the Mansard is the Gambrel. The differences are the vertical gable ends and the Gambrel roof hangs over the house where the Mansard does not. The Gambrel is a Dutch-inspired style. The Saltbox is a really neat design. One side is typically longer. This allows for a single story in front of the home, whereas the back of the house might be two stories.

A Pyramid roof looks exactly like it sounds. It’s shaped like a triangle that sits on the house. Multiple Pyramid roofs can be used in different areas of a house. Usually, this roofing style is used in small areas. A Hip roof is very similar to a Pyramid roof; however, the top of the roof does not come to a point as the Pyramid roof does. A Flat roof is the easiest to install and the safest if you are standing on the roof. This type of roof needs more maintenance than other styles due to water accumulating on it.

Your choice of the roof will depend on the style of the house you are building and the climate you will be living in. Different roofs work better in different climates. Just consult the experts at Texas Star Roofing to learn about options for your home.