Shingles are only one of numerous roofing options to choose from when you are planning to revitalize your home's roof. When choosing shingles you'll want to consider such variables as cost, design style, energy efficiency, protection and durability before making your final choice.
Roof shingles are the most common choice for homeowners thanks to their reasonable price and relatively longevity. Most standard roof shingles are fire resistant and provide ease of installation. You can expect a lifespan of at least 15 years from shingles, which is longer than the average time most families stay in a home.
Three different types of shingles dominate the market, each with a different price range, lifespan, benefits and drawbacks and durability level.
The least expensive and most popular type of roofing shingle, asphalt is priced between $15 and $25 per square foot and they are relatively simple to install. These shingles are light in weight and come a range of different colors and styles. Resistant to fire, asphalt shingles are capable of lasting as long as 30 years when properly maintained.
On the down side, asphalt shingles can become damaged in extreme weather and they are vulnerable to mold and mildew unless they are properly treated and maintained.
Also known as stone shingles, slate shingles are becoming increasingly popular. Available in a variety of sizes, colors and styles, slate is a high-quality material that can make a home look truly distinct. Extremely durable slate shingles can last 100 years or more with proper care and maintenance. These shingles are much heavier, however, and often require reinforcement of the rafters in your home to keep your roof from caving in. These shingles cannot be installed by hand as easily as other types of shingles.
Wood shingles are also referred to as shakes, and they are constructed with various types of wood that has been treated for durability. The most popular type of wood is cedar, but there are also wood shingles that are composed of pine as well as spruce. These shingles are easy for an average do-it-yourselfer to install, and they tend to look great on any type of home. Wood shingles are more easily repaired than other types of shingles, and when they are treated properly they can easily last for 50 years or more.
Wood shingles have some drawbacks as well. The biggest disadvantage is that wood shingles are not fire resistant meaning that this type of roof may actually raise your homeowners insurance rates.
Once you've chosen your shingle type you'll want to ensure that it is properly installed and maintained to keep your home safe and protected as the year's pass.