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Types of Roofing
Asphalt shingles account for about 80% of the residential roof surfacing in the United States. Asphalt shingles are measured against a variety of standards that evaluate fire and wind resistance, tear strength, and other key performance indicators. Asphalt shingles come in "standard" (or 3-tab) and "designer" (architectural or multi-layered) varieties. Standard shingles have a lightly-textured flat surface, while designer shingles have a highly textured surface.
Wood shingles and shakes are made from cedar, redwood, southern pine and other woods; their natural look is popular in California, the Northwest and parts of the Midwest. Wood shingles are machine-sawn; shakes are handmade and rougher looking. A point to consider: Some local building codes limit the use of wood shingles and shakes because of concerns about fire resistance. Many wood shingles and shakes only have Class C fire ratings or no ratings at all. However, Class A fire ratings are available for certain wood shingle products that incorporate a factory-applied, fire-resistant treatment.
Tile — clay or concrete — is a durable roofing material. Mission and Spanish-style round-topped tiles are used widely in the Southwest and Florida, and flat styles also are available to create French and English looks. Tile is available in a variety of colors and finishes. Tile is heavy. If you are replacing another type of roof system with tile, you will need to verify that the structure can support the load.
Slate is quarried in the United States in Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia. It is available in different colors and grades, depending on its origin. Considered virtually indestructible, it is, however, more expensive than other roofing materials. In addition, its application requires special skill and experience. Many old homes, especially in the Northeast, still are protected by this long-lasting roofing material.
Metal, primarily thought of as a low-slope roofing material, has been found to be a roofing alternative for home and building owners with steep-slope roofs. There are two types of metal roofing products: panels and shingles. Numerous metal panel shapes and configurations exist. Metal shingles typically are intended to simulate traditional roof coverings, such as wood shakes, shingles and tile. Apart from metal roofing's longevity, metal shingles are relatively lightweight, have a greater resistance to adverse weather and can be aesthetically pleasing. Some have Class A fire ratings.
Synthetic roofing products simulate various traditional roof coverings, such as slate and wood shingles and shakes. However, they do not necessarily have the same properties.
Before making a buying decision, NRCA recommends that you look at full-size samples of a proposed product, as well as manufacturers' brochures. It also is a good idea to visit a building that is roofed with a particular product.
Source: National Roofing Contractors Association (NCRA)
About the Author: S&K Roofing, Siding and Windows is Maryland's leading company in roofing and maintenance-free home exteriors. Family-owned and operated since 1980, S&K Roofing, Siding and Windows provides high-quality exterior home workmanship and customer service that is among the best in the industry. We offer maintenance-free home exteriors including roofing, siding, windows, doors, gutters and downspouts, custom trim/wrap, and decks.
To learn more visit SKRoofing.com.
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