The roof is one of the most important parts of a home. It protects us from all types of weather, and without it we would be miserable.
Not only does it protect us from rain and snow, but also helps prevent fires and keep our homes cool in the summertime.
- What are the Roofing Materials?
- Common Types of Roofing Materials
- Final Thoughts
There are many different materials that can be used for roofs these days; tar paper, asphalt shingles, metal sheets, etc., but which material lasts the longest?
The longevity of different types of roofing material varies widely depending on climate, building material, installation method and proper maintenance.
What are the Roofing Materials?
Roofing materials are the layers that cover your roof. They protect your house from rain, wind, hail, sunlight and other weather conditions.
Some of these materials also keep heat inside during winter and coldness during summer.
Roofing materials fall into two categories: built-up roofs and single-ply membranes.
- Built up roofs, or BURs, consist of a felt paper saturated with tar and gravel applied over wooden boards or metal sheeting.
- The second category is called liquid roofing system, which refers to a liquid material that is sprayed onto the roof.
- Single-ply roofing membranes are similar to built-up roofs in that they use a sticky base material and granules, but they can be applied as a liquid or with an adhesive.
Common Types of Roofing Materials
Metal roofing is the most durable and can last up to 50 years under the best conditions. Metal has low maintenance and can withstand strong winds, storms, and hurricanes.
The Pros of metal roofing: The durability is the major advantage over all other types of roofs. It will last 4 times longer than shingle roofing and 5 times longer than asphalt roofing.
It typically does not need replacement during the life of a building.
The Cons of metal roofing: There are very few disadvantages to this type of roofing, but it is the most expensive material to install.
Unlike asphalt shingle roofs which have a composition of petroleum products, metal roofs are made with steel or aluminum and more complex installation steps are required.
The initial cost might be higher than other types of roofing, but the lifespan is often 50 years.
What to expect with metal roofs
Metal roofs usually consist of panels or shingles and sometimes a combination of the two. Panels are made from steel and aluminum and can be solid, corrugated, or perforated.
They might have exposed fasteners that require protective coating.
Shingle roofs have a variety of panels that are made from a combination of aluminum and zinc, galvanized steel, copper, or stainless steel.
Some metal roofs have interlocking components which require minimal fastening.
There are various types of “metal roofing” such as standing seam metal roofs which consist of overlapping panels that provide a sleek, uninterrupted appearance.
Some metal roofs are translucent which allows some light to enter the structure.
Shingle roofing is another common material, but it typically lasts 15-30 years depending on climate conditions.
It’s less expensive than other types of roofing materials, but there are different grades and quality can vary widely.
Shingles that are made from polymers are more expensive, but they can last 50 years or longer with proper installation.
Polymer shingle roofs have the following Pros:
There are several types of polymer roofing materials which include acrylic and modified bitumen.
Polymer roofing is made with polymers that create long-lasting durability on any type of building structure.
It’s made to resist mold and mildew as well as environmental damage such as rust, corrosion, and termites. It can survive for up to 50 years in ideal situations.
This type of roofing material typically has a warranty of 10-50 years depending on the brand.
Polymer shingle roofs have the following Cons:
The installation time for polymer roofs is typically longer than asphalt shingle roofs.
It’s more expensive than traditional shingle roofing, but it can last up to 50 years depending on the brand of material.
What to expect with polymer roofs?
Polymer roofing materials are made of 100% polymers and come in multiple different styles including fiberglass, plastic, and rubber.
They are made to resist environmental damage such as fire, water, mold, fading in the sun, acids, corrosion from salt air or snow-melting chemicals. Polymer roofing can come in shingle style or panel shapes.
The panels are similar to metal roofs in that they are composed of interlocking sections that provide a seamless surface.
All types of shingle roofs can be made from polymer and vary in price, durability, and visual appeal.
Some manufacturers offer the same warranty for their polymer roofs as they do with asphalt shingles: 20-50 years depending on brand and installation conditions.
Roofs that are made from polymers typically come with a warranty of 10-30 years it may differ depending on the manufacturer and installation circumstances.
They come in a variety of styles including shingle, panels, and metal. Metal roofs are made from steel or aluminum and typically last 50-100 years under optimal weather conditions
Slate roofing is another type of roofing material that is favored by many homeowners.
It’s made from clay or shale, and installation can take up to 1-2 weeks depending on the size of the building.
Slate roofs are durable, fireproof, and weather resistant making them a popular choice among high-end buildings such as museums.
What to expect with slate roofs?
Slate roofs are created from shale or clay that is mined in quarries. It’s made into tiles, slabs, or shingles depending on the desired style of the building.
Slate roofs are fireproof, long-lasting, and preserve its condition; it requires little care. In ideal circumstances, it may endure for up to 100 years.
Slate roofs are made to be durable and weather resistant making them an excellent choice for any climate or location
Slate roofs come with a warranty of 30-50 years depending on the brand, installation quality, and building materials.
Installation can take up to 1-2 weeks for slate roofs which is much longer than asphalt shingle roofs.
Clay roof tiles are made from clay and last up to 100 years depending on installation. Installation can take 1-2 weeks or more depending on the size of the building.
Clay roofs are fireproof, durable, weather resistant, and require little maintenance.
What you should expect with clay roof tiles?
Clay roof tiles are made from clay that is mined from quarries.
It’s made into tiles and installed on top of a building either by skilled labor or the homeowner depending on the style, size, and design of the roofing material.
Clay tile roofs come with a warranty of 30-50 years depending on installation quality and conditions. They are more expensive than asphalt roofing materials with a price range of $5-12 per square foot.
Concrete tiles are a durable and fireproof roofing material. It can last up to 100 years under optimal conditions.
Concrete roofs are made from fiberglass, steel, or aluminum making them fireproof and weather resistant. This makes it a good choice for locations that see a lot of severe weather.
What you should expect with concrete roof tiles?
Concrete roof tiles are created from concrete that is made into tiles or shingles.
Depending on the style, size, and design of the roofing material, it may be installed by expert labor or the homeowner.
Depending on quality and usage, a warranty of 30-50 years is provided. They’re more expensive than asphalt roofing stuff, with a price range of $4-20 per square foot.
Fiberglass shingles are typically made from recycled materials and are manufactured in the United States.
Fiberglass shingles offer high resistance to fire, wind, hail, rain, heat, and cold weather conditions.
These roofing materials come with a warranty of between 15-50 years depending on color change or fading.
What you should expect with fiberglass roof tiles?
Fiberglass roof tiles naturally last for about 20 to 30 years, but the actual life of the tile depends on several factors including how much remodeling and maintenance has been done around your home.
If your fiberglass roof is properly maintained, it should last you anywhere from 18 to 30 years.
You can expect to pay around $2-9 per square foot for an asphalt roof and up to $30 or more with fiberglass tiles.
Fiberglass roofs are typically available in shingle, panel, or metal styles that offer less visual appeal than clay roofing materials.
Asphalt shingles are a low-cost roofing material. They are noncombustible, weather resistant, and can last up to 20 years depending on the brand.
Asphalt shingles come with a warranty of 10-50 years depending on color change or fading.
What you should expect with asphalt roof tiles?
Roofing built from molded, heated asphalt is the most common roofing material in the country.
The very distinctive black and brown-colored (putty tones) tiles are composed of three things: crushed stone, sand and a petroleum product known as bitumen.
Asphalt roofs last for decades if their installation was done with quality material and workmanship. The life span of asphalt roofs varies.
On average, an asphalt roof will last for ten to fifteen years; sometimes more, sometimes less depending on the warranty that comes with the company and your geographical location (the harsher winters it is exposed to).
They are cheaper than polymer tiles with price range of $2-$10 per square foot.
Polymer roofs are made from polymers that provide long-lasting durability and can last up to 50 years under optimal conditions.
It’s more expensive than asphalt roofing, but it comes with a ten- to fifty-year warranty, depending on the manufacturer.
Additional advantages of polymer roofs is that they are fireproof, weather resistant, and aesthetically pleasing.
If you’re looking for something that’s low maintenance with an extended life span then polymer roofs are right for you.