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Roofing Buying Guide

Your home is most likely the biggest and most important investment you have made in your life. You want your investment to grow over time. In the case of your home, this is possible by increasing the curb appeal. There are many ways you can make your home look more attractive. One of these methods can be keeping the roof of your home in top condition.

This is also necessary for your comfort. Your roof protects you from rain, snow, heat, and other elements of nature. If your roof is leaking, it can damage the appliances, carpet, walls, and even the foundation of your home. You should never underestimate a leaking roof.

If there are problems in the roof and you ignore them, over time they are likely going to become bigger problems entailing a higher cost of repairs. So never ignore small roofing problems as insignificant.

In this post, we will discuss the need for roof replacement and roof maintenance. We will also examine different kinds of roofing materials available on the market.

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Need for roof replacement

Depending on the material and local environment, a roof can last for 15 to 30 years. Although some materials can last up to 100 years, there are other components in the roof that may require replacement. As your roof gets older, it may begin to show missing, cracked, and curled shingles. These are the signs that your roof needs to be examined and assessed for the entire range of problems that it might be facing. Roof inspectors from a Roofing Company or Roofing Contractor can help you choose whether you need a roof placement or roof maintenance.

Once the roof inspector gives his exhaustive report about the problems afflicting your roof, you can hire a roofing company or roof contractor to carry out necessary repair and maintenance or roof replacement.

Types of roofing materials

There is a wide range of options for roofing materials to choose from for your roofing project. Whether you want to replace the existing roof or you want to install a brand new roof, your roofing contractor should help you zero in on the right material. The material you choose should be based on the local climate. Some materials can be good for hot weather. Others could be a better option for very cold regions while some others can be a better choice for a place where rain is abundant. Besides climate, price and durability are the two important factors that can influence your roofing buying decisions.

Here, we have a list of some of the most popular roof materials:

Asphalt shingles

This is an extremely popular roofing material in some markets, notably North America. There are good reasons for their popularity: They are affordable, easy to install and available in many colors and styles. Maintenance and repair of asphalt shingle roofs are easy. There are two types of asphalt shingles available on the market – fiberglass-based and cellulose-based also called organic asphalt shingles.

Metal roofing

Metal roofing options are available both in larger sheets and panels modeled as shingles. These materials are mostly made of aluminum or rolled steel. While large metal sheets as roofing materials have been around for many decades, the shingle-style metal panels have become popular in recent decades. Metal roofing materials need to be treated for making them rust-resistance. Normally, it is done at the production unit itself.

Copper has also been in use for roofing. It is preferred over other metals because of its malleability and water-resistant properties.

Wood shingles

Wood shingles have also been in use throughout North America for a long time. In this kind of roofing solution, wood shingles are nailed to wood shakes to form the roof. It gives your home a rustic and countryside look and feel. Cedar, because of the high oil content that makes it highly water-resistant, is the most common wood species to be used for this kind of roofing. Cedar shakes are obtained by wood splitting while cedar shingles are obtained by woodcutting of the shingles’ thickness.

Clay and cement tiles

Rigid concrete and clay roof tiles are popular in some of the southern states. These roofing materials come in a variety of profiles and colors. The installation techniques for these tiles are different from other materials that we have discussed so far. These tiles need trained professional roof contractors for installations. Some tile profiles are in the shape of a half-tube and they may require the use of vermin screening for their installation.

Synthetic tiles

Synthetic tiles are quite new among roofing products. They have been around for less than 25 years. These tiles come in many different designs and styles and they try to emulate other popular roofing products such as asphalt shingles, concrete, slate, and wooden tiles. However, the availability of synthetic tiles varies depending on the region. The synthetic roofing tiles use a good deal of used plastic as a recycled material. They also use other materials such as rubbers and resins.

Among other popular roofing materials include the following:

  • Slate tiles
  • Solar tiles
  • Rubber tiles
  • Green roofs

How should you choose a roofing material for your home?

The value they offer during their lifespan

Price is of course one of the factors to determine which material offers better value for the money. But you need to look at the overall installation price that the material is going to cost. Special structural construction required for the installation, labor, and accessories required needs to be factored in. You also need to look at the relative durability of particular roofing material.

Appearance

Do you want a radically different look for your roof? If yes, you will need to choose a material that nobody in your neighborhood has used. Normally, people like to use a material, color, and style that blend in with the style of the surrounding areas. What is more important is to give preference to your choice. After all, this is your home and it should look the way you want it. A new roof will certainly look better than an old one. But you should also consider how a particular material is going to look like in the long term.

Climate

Some areas are more prone to heavy rains, tornadoes, hurricanes, hailstorms. General climate conditions can also be extreme in terms of cold, hot, and rain. Your decision for a roofing material has to conform to what is best for your region. Some roofing materials and installation require a special fortified approach to resist blow-off and uplift by high winds. Many roofing materials come with ratings for their performance against different climatic conditions such as heavy rain, heavy snow, tornadoes, etc.

Installation and structural issues

Choosing a material is just a small task. A roof installation is a technical and skilled job that needs to be performed by qualified and experienced professionals. They must have the necessary equipment, insurance, and license to undertake such a job. In many cases, a permit would be required from the local government body to carry out the roof renovation or replacement.

How the roof looks is one matter but how secure the roof is on the structure beneath is more important. The durability and performance of your roof depend on the structure on which it sits. Some materials such as concrete and slate tiles are heavy and require not only a stronger base to stay secure but also a structure that distributes the weight evenly so that no one part of the roof is under more stress.

Should you go for roof repair or roof replacement?

A roof repair may cost less up front than a full roof replacement, but if you have an older roof it might require frequent small repairs that add up over time. Old roofs are also more likely to leak air, causing your HVAC system to work harder to achieve your desired indoor temperature. However, with a new roof you won’t have to worry about air leaks which allows your HVAC system to work more efficiently, thus saving you money on your monthly energy bills.

If your roof is over 15 years old, a new roof rather than a roof repair is always a better option. But if your roof is under 10 years old, a repair may be a more logical option.

Curb appeal

A new roof will increase the curb appeal of your home. If reselling is on your mind, a new roof will help you find a new buyer more easily and it can also get you a better price for your home.

Final thoughts

Here, we have presented you with a roofing buying guide that discusses different aspects of the roofing choices. This provides you with information that is necessary for you to understand the technicalities and expert knowledge involved in the roofing business.

For more information on roof maintenance and roof replacement, contact Semper Solaris today. We will walk you through the logical roofing choices you have based on different variables applicable to your unique situation.