Roofing styles have not changed much in the last several years, but the types and construction of materials available have. Some are completely new options, while others are updated versions of older styles. Because of the differences in the materials, choosing a roof can be difficult. By looking at the different options available, you can narrow your choices somewhat based on longevity and look. You will, however, need to do some sleuthing in your local area to determine the best prices.
Asphalt Composition Shingles
These are the most common roofing materials used today, and the new architectural or dimensional shingles not only add texture to your roof, they also last longer than traditional composite. Made of two layers of bonded asphalt, these last between 30 and 50 years, are wind resistant and offer better fire protection than single layer composite. Using recycled asphalt shingles allows you to make your installation as green as possible. Composite tends to be the lowest priced option for roofing.
This is not a new material, but newer production methods have created a wider variety of shapes, colors and textures. Clay tiles have a lifespan of over 100 years and are great fire protection. The biggest downside for most homeowners is the weight and fragility of the material. Structures may need additional support to hold this type of roof, and the tiles chip easily if dropped or hit by branches.
This material is extremely versatile and comes in a wide range of finishes, textures, colors, shapes and styles. Concrete is low maintenance, fire resistant, lasts for 30 to 40 years and provides noise insulation.
Metal roofs have improved significantly over the years. Today’s choices are lightweight, recyclable and have many color options. Metal is virtually maintenance free, fire resistant and energy efficient. These roofs last 50 to 75 years and can be constructed to resemble shakes or clay tile. Metal is usually the most expensive option on the market, although the longevity and ease of maintenance should be factored into the equation when considering the cost of the roof.
This rubber composite may be an option for consumers who like the look of natural slate but are unable to use the real material on their roofs. It is durable, comes in a range of colors and is made from recycled materials. Installation is easy and the light synthetic doesn’t require the reinforcements that natural slate does. Synthetic slate can last 40 to 60 years.
This is plastic-modified bitumen layered with polyester or fiberglass. The material can be applied with a torch or put down cold and heat-sealed after application. Available coatings make the roof Energy Star compliant and it is a popular choice when retrofitting. Modified bitumen is somewhat durable, with an expected lifespan of 10 to 20 years. High temperatures can cause damage but in hot areas an elastomeric coating can be used to protect the bitumen.
Single Ply Membrane
A popular commercial option, single ply roofing is easy to install, energy efficient, flexible and inexpensive. A number of polymers are available, including TPO, EPDM, PVC, Hypalon and rubber. When properly cared for, the material will last 25 to 30 years. The material is leak-proof, wind resistant and can be fire resistant. The application is very eco-friendly, requiring no unpleasant fumes or heavy equipment. The addition of a reflective membrane increases energy efficiency and helps lower the operating costs of a building.
This article was provided by Anna Roberts, recent environmental studies graduate and earth-conscious consumer. If you’re a Houston roof owner and would love to remodel your home, Remedy Roofing offers just the services you’re looking for.