The roof is an essential part of a home and other buildings. A roof offers structural support and shelter to the entire building. It saves the house from the external environment and climatic conditions. Moreover, a roof contributes to the energy efficiency of a house if the right material or paint is selected.
Roofs often form a large part of the exterior of your house and it may have a big visual impact. As discussed in the previous article, Tips for selecting exterior paint colours for your home, roofs can impact and compliment your exterior paint choices and they should fit the style and architecture of the house.
There a variety of types and materials used for the construction of roofs. Homeowners need to choose the right material for protecting and maintaining the energy efficiency of their homes. They need to consider the environmental and climatic factors while choosing the best type of roof for their house.
Every type of roof has its pros and cons that homeowners should consider before installing it for their home. Let us explore the various types of roofs with their pros and cons.
Asphalt shingle roofs
Most of the roofs in America are made of asphalt shingles, and they comprise almost 80 percent of the housing market. Installed on sloped roofs, they offer good protection from external weather and environment.
Asphalt shingles offer good wind resistance and protection from fires. They are inexpensive compared to other materials and moderate in weight. They protect your home from snow as it slides down the slope to the ground. Asphalt shingles are suitable for a variety of sloped roofs.
They are less durable and less environment friendly than some other roof choices. The life of asphalt shingles is shorter than other types of roofing materials. They need maintenance after a few years of installation, especially in regions that experience harsh weather. Moreover, asphalt is prone to algae, so homes in humid locations need algae resistant shingles.
Metal roofs come in various materials such as steel, copper and tin. They are durable and have a long life.
Metal roofs are lighter than asphalt and other materials. Therefore, they don't put much weight on the walls and the structure of a house. You can install them on the flat (depending on the type or profile of the metal) as well as sloped roofs. As they come in standard metal sheets, it is easy to install them with the help of professionals.
Metal roofs absorb less heat (despite becoming hot in the sun) compared to asphalt and other materials. They offer good protection from the external environment and the harsh weather. They are resistant to fires and heat and protect the interiors from damage.
They can be expensive, as in the case of copper roofs. Moreover, metal roofs are prone to corrosion. Homeowners need to primer and coat them with anti-corrosion paints to protect them from damage.
Copper can turn green with time, and homeowners may find it unappealing and unattractive. Metal roofs also make a lot of noise in heavy rain and hailstorms. They are prone to dents if heavy object fall on them and they require professional help for repairs.
Because they are light, they must be securely fastened to the roof structure, which in turn must be securely fasted to the house structure, so that the roof is not blown off in severe winds.
Wood shingle roofs
Wood shingles are another good option for the construction of roofs. They are aesthetically attractive and can complement almost any type of home decor.
Wood shingles create a natural look and add charm and character to any house. Moreover, they are environment friendly and recyclable after years of use. Wooden shingles are best to use in the locations that experience warm and pleasant weather, and the temperatures stay in the mid-range.
Wooden shingles have a low fire resistance unless the manufacturers treat them for protection from fires. The lifespan of wooden shingles is short, and they require more maintenance than other materials. They are not suitable for locations experiencing harsh weather conditions such as summer temperatures above 40 degrees and heavy rains or snow in winters.
Most of the flat roofs are made of concrete, which is a thick mixture of cement, sand, stone, and water.
Concrete roofs have the longest life, and they also offer the best resistance to fire and harsh weather conditions. The roofs can be made in any shape and design, but most people prefer flat roofs as they are easy to construct. Concrete roofs can last up to 50 years or more depending on the quality of material used in construction and the climatic conditions of the location.
The weight of the concrete roof is more than any other material available. Moreover, it is prone to leakages, especially in the locations that receive heavy snow and rains so additional waterproofing layers may have to be added - especially on flat concrete roofs. Sloped roofs like asphalt and metal roofs are more suitable for such locations.
Clay Roof Tiles
Clay tiles are another popular option for house roofs. They are heavier than most other materials.
A roof made with clay tiles keeps the roof cool and improves the energy efficiency of homes. Moreover, they can provide an Italian or Spanish appearance to your house. These tiles are natural and environment friendly. Even after using the tiles, users can dispose of them carefully without any harm to the atmosphere.
They are sometimes more expensive compared to other materials and are prone to damage in harsh storms. They require a strong support structure. They can only be fixed to sloping roofs.
These are some of the most common types of roof covering materials used for homes. Homeowners should consider the climatic conditions in their location, the style of their house, the exterior colour scheme, the available roof materials in the region, the shape and structure of the roof, costs and their requirements before choosing a material for their roofs.
You could even choose a green roof. Read our article: 5 Benefits of a Green Roofing System
You can also hire a house roof painting service to paint your roof and enhance its kerb appeal and prolong the roof's life.
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Author Bio: Emily Bartels is a content writer at Brisbane Roof And Paint. She enjoys writing on various topics mainly associated with Home Improvement, Gardening, Technology and Gadgets. Her famous articles are on the topic of Home Improvement , Technology and many more.
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