Pros and cons of common roofing materials.

As a natural consequence of Australia’s expanding population, the number of new residences being built is increasing. More homeowners than ever are facing the questions: which roofing solution best suits my home? What are the pros and cons of each?

Some types of roofing materials are unsuitable for certain roofs. For instance, a flat or low-sloping roof sometimes requires different materials than roofs with steeper pitch. Certain materials, such as slate and tile, are too heavy for some houses and cannot be used.

Below, we will discuss the relative advantages and disadvantages of some of the most popular roofing materials.

1. Asphalt shingle roofs

Asphalt shingle is still far the most common roofing in Australia. It is the least expensive option and is easy to install. Asphalt shingles are made of a fiberglass and asphalt mixture, with a grainy surface of ceramic. Laminated shingles have an aesthetically pleasing textured appearance and last longer than their non-laminated counterparts, though they are more expensive. Colour options are virtually limitless.

There are, however, some drawbacks to asphalt shingles. The biggest is that they offer little in the way of thermal protection. They absorb heat and transfer it into your house. Excessive heat can also curl tiles, allowing strong winds to eventually lift them away. Asphalt shingles are also susceptible to moisture. If located in damp and shady areas of your roof, asphalt shingles can rot. They do not last as long as some of the other roofing options.

2. Wooden tiles

Wooden roof tiles, generally made of cedar or pine, have declined in popularity somewhat. One of the clear drawbacks to wooden tiles is that they cannot be used in fire-prone areas unless pressure treated. In addition, they are more difficult to install than asphalt shingles and generally require a professional to do so. Their life expectancy is roughly similar to that of asphalt shingle, but they are more costly.

One of the advantages to wooden shingles is that they are one of the lighter roofing materials. They are aesthetically pleasing and provide more insulation than asphalt shingle roofs.

3. Metal roofs

Metal roofs are potentially some of the most durable. They are fire-resistant and practically maintenance free. A metal roof can significantly cut energy bills as they reflect heat in the summer, and metal roofs can be cast to mimic other roofing materials aesthetically. Metal roofs are often made from recyclable materials as well, which is positive for the environment. Metal roofs are very lightweight and good for buildings where structure is a concern.

Perhaps the biggest disadvantage to metal roofs is their cost. The exact figure depends upon the metal used, with common choices being Aluminum, steel and copper. But metal roofs are nearly always more expensive than shingled ones–sometimes several times more expensive.

4. Clay and concrete tiles

While not quite as durable as metal roofs, tile and cement roofs last for a long time. They are more heat, fire, and wind resistant than asphalt or wooden shingles.  They are also more expensive. An additional disadvantage to tile roofs is that they must be installed by a professional and you cannot easily walk on them to perform maintenance without breaking the tiles. Clay and concrete tiles are also heavy, causing structural issues in some cases.

5. Slate roofs

Slate is one of the most expensive roofing options, but it is also one of the most durable. In fact, according to Bob Vila.com, the best slate will outlast the fasteners that hold it into place. Often, old slate is recycled for reinstallation. Slate, however, is also one of the heavier roofing options.

6. Green roofs

An interesting and unusual option is the “living” roof. This roof does carry the benefits of very excellent insulation and reduced run-off. The disadvantage is that these roofs have a complex installation process, requiring the installation of a waterproofing membrane and in some cases, an irrigation system.

7. Roll Roofing

Roll roofing is used solely on flat roofs. It is inexpensive and easy to install. The drawback, however, is that it has a very short lifespan. As a general rule, roll roofing is used as a stopgap until a more durable material can be installed.

How to decide on a roofing material

If you’re remodeling an older home, the previous roof will likely dictate what you replace it with. It can be problematic to replace a lighter roofing material with a heavier one. Colour, texture, durability and expense are all considerations.

DO YOU KNOW THE CONDITION OF YOUR ROOF?

Chances are very good that when you purchased your house, you didn’t physically climb a ladder to inspect the condition of the roof that will be over your head for the next several years, possibly decades.

A home inspector is always a must have when it comes time to purchase a home, even if it is new construction, and you are not aware of the building ordinances or what you should be look for as warning signs before you buy, especially when it comes to a roof.

Now if you already own your home, it’s best not to rush to the conclusion that you do need a new roof.  Step back and take into consideration the age of your home.  Most residential contractors build their roofs to last thirty-years.  If your house is well under thirty-years old, it may be another issue.

DO YOUR HOME WORK

The internet is a great tool as you can ­­research the issues that you are having with your roof to see if there is anyone else having similar issues as well as how they resolved the problem.  Keep in mind that while the internet is a helpful tool to research the topic, it can also make you worry about your roofing problem being larger than it actually is.  So be careful when you do your research and don’t panic.

Another option is to talk to other homeowners in your neighborhood; especially those that used the same builder as you to see if they too are experiencing any roofing issues.  It is safe to say that you do not know what issues are going on within your neighbor’s homes unless you see a Plumbing or Electrical Service vehicle at the house or a large roll of wet carpeting or padding at the end of the driveway.

If houses within the same area that were built by the same contractor are having similar issues, maybe the issue is with the material that was used.  If you have a homeowner’s warranty you might not have to spend any money to have your problem resolved.

Again, this is just ONE thought.

STAY OBSERVANT

My wife and I purchased our home in 2006 and it was already eleven-years old.  Three years later my wife noticed an off color on the ceiling in one of the bedrooms on the second floor.  To my eyes, it looked as if I might have grazed the section with the paint roller while painting the walls several weeks ago.  The color of the spot was similar to the color on the walls.

During one storm, my wife made it a point to check on the spot while it was raining.  Sure enough, the same spot was wet to the touch.  We kept our eyes on the spot during the storm to see if it was growing and possibly turning into a larger problem for us.  As it turns out, the spot was not growing in size and by the next afternoon it was dry to the touch.

GET SEVERAL QUOTES

Let’s be honest, companies are in the business of making a profit.  If we simply took the word of the first roofer to come out to look at our roof, we would have spent a large amount of money for a whole new roof.  Not just new underlayment and shingles, but new plywood to repair the damaged area.

Another roofing company came out and said that the plywood should be fine as he did not see any signs of significant hail damage (there were two hail storms months prior to his visit) but he did notice a few shingles in the questioned area would need to be replaced.  He said that would resolve the issue for us.

The third company came out and informed us not to disclose we were having our water issues.  After inspecting our roof, we were told that the shingles were in good shape, but that we would probably need a new roof in roughly fifteen years.  We were then asked if we were having any sort of leaking issues on the Northeast side of the house.  When we told him that was where we were having the issues, he recommended that he replace the air vents and the weather-stripping as the old one looked to be in bad shape.

For a fraction of a whole new roof, our problems were resolved with a small roofing repair from a company that will be getting out business when it is time for us to really get a new roof.

Awesome Video

Check out this roofing video..

Common Roof Revival Methods

Do you want to revive your roof to its original beauty? You have a problem reviving your roof and you do not know how? If your answer is “Yes” to both, then we will help you solve your problem. Reviving your roof will not only restore its beautiful design, it can also add more value to your home.

Common Roof Revival and Restoration Methods Used:

Pressure Cleaning

highpressurepumpThis method is the best way to get a new look to your roof. This is the best way to get rid of the dirt or stains. As you may know, roofs can build up dirt in a span of just one year. So you need to preserve the appearance your roofs by having it pressured clean. This will not consume much of your time and less effort compared to heavy scrubbing or manual labor. The pressure washer does the job for you in less than a few hours. The high-speed water flow can remove the years of grime and contaminants that have built up on your roof.

The downside of this method, the high-pressure can damage your shingles, tiles and concrete. It breaks down the protective layers of your roof. Other roof manufacturers will not honor their warranty if you have used pressure washer on your roof. It will also not remove the dirt and grime especially if these are caused by algae.

Painting

Not just the roof got a paint.

Not just the roof got a paint.

Aside from it costs less compared to replacing the whole roofing system of the house. Make sure that the paint you are using is specifically made for roofs otherwise it will crack and peel quickly. For best results, it is best to hire a professional to paint for a long lasting performance. Re-painting entails a lot of proper surface preparation which includes power washing and putting a primer before painting it to your desired color.

The disadvantage of repainting especially if not done well, there would always be traces that would reveal it as repainted. The roof will no longer be waterproof; the water will just run off instead of soak through them. There will come a time that it will peel off and fade. When this happens, it will be time consuming to get rid of the old paint for a new one. If you live near a high risk of bush fire, your roofs will have higher chances of quickly catching the fire.

Re-roofing

Though this is the most costly method in reviving your roof system, it has more benefits than its disadvantages. Reroofing increases the value as well as gives more beauty to your home. It reduces huge repair and maintenance costs in the future. Know that the roofs have their own lifespan; make sure that these roofs are durable and long enough to protect you from severe weather conditions. Reroofing reduces the risk of water leaks as they are brand new. And most especially this makes your home more comfortable all year round. You do not have to worry for any roof problems for quite sometime.

Roofing Materials – What are your options?

Roofing Materials, Your Options.

Roofing material is the outermost layer on your roof that is sometimes self-supporting or it has underlying structure that supports it. This material offers shelter from natural elements and it insulates against hot and cold weather. There are different materials that you can choose when you decide to change them. It ranges from the natural roofing materials like thatch and slate to those that are produced commercially like tiles.

Here is a list of roofing materials that you can choose from:

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt Shingles are considered as one of the heavyweight roofing material that has become the favorite among consumers. These are cheap and fire resistant. Their warranty runs from 30 years, however; it will last for more than 30 years which can save you money. The modern asphalt is now created thicker and even looks like wood or slate.

Wood Shake

It is an organic material making it environmentally-friendly. This is cut from the cedar tree and will last from 30-50 years especially if properly maintained. The wood shake material is a dream to any household due to its attractive finish look.

Metal Roofing

If you want a roofing material that would last for long, go for this material. This would last for 50-75 years. The only downside with this kind of material is that less roofer do not prefer installing this one. You really have to find a professional to install it for you for a good amount of money. If you want to have the same effect, you can choose the galvanized sheet.

Slate Roofing

This is not a DIY roofing material. As this is heavy, you need to look for a roofer to help you with it. Aside from this, it is difficult to look for a replacement and it is slippery when you walk on it. However, if you would prefer to have a slate finish, you can use the rubber slate or composition slate as an option.

Ceramic Roofing

The so-called Spanish red tile roof has faded its popularity as there are other roofing options that are less heavy but meet the ceramic look on it and it is also fire resistant.

Lightweight Roofing Materials versus Heavyweight

When changing your roofing materials it is always best to know the advantages and disadvantages before you purchase. Lightweight roofing materials are cost efficient compared to heavyweight. Installing lightweight materials can save you $1,000 when done by a professional while buying one can save you at least $2,000. Aside from that great benefit, lightweight roofing materials are stylish and the designs are flexible. They are also environmentally-friendly as less structural materials are being used. Heavyweight materials are difficult to install and labor is expensive. You also have to make sure that the underlying structure that support the roofing materials are durable enough to handle it otherwise it will collapse. If you want to have that heavyweight look but actually using a lightweight material, the best alternative to use is the metal tiles. They offer a conventional or modern finish but without the burden of clay or concrete.

 

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