When homeowners look to replace their roof, they are often surprised by the variety of roofs that roofing contractors can install for them. In this blog, we’ll cover the different types of roofs that roofing contractors install for homeowners and the pros and cons of each material.

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles are the most popular amongst roofing contractors and homeowners because they are resilient and relatively inexpensive. Asphalt shingles also come in a wide variety of colors and styles, are easy to install, provide reliable waterproofing, and are adaptable for a wide range of temperature.

One of the disadvantages of choosing asphalt shingles is that they have a shorter life than roofs made of materials like concrete tiles, metal shingles, or other natural materials. An asphalt shingle roof can last for about 20 years on average. However, living in an area with intense sunlight or temperature extremes can reduce the lifespan. Another disadvantage of asphalt shingles is dark shingles can fade and tend to exhibit inconsistencies in color. Black marks form as a result of algae, which homeowners and roofing contractors can get rid of by applying a sodium hypochlorite bleach solution. Homeowners can also prevent algae growth by looking into algae-resistant shingles which contain copper granules.

Slate and Ceramic Roofing Tiles

Slate tiles are a great choice for homes looking for a more sophisticated, upscale look. Advantages to slate tiles include their natural appearance, fire resistance, invulnerability to rot, ease of maintenance and an expected life of 100 years. Slate tiles are also available in a variety of colors and styles.
A major disadvantage to choosing slate tiles is their weight and cost, and the high degree of expertise necessary for installation. Slate tiles are also easily broken underfoot, which makes gutter cleaning and rooftop maintenance far more complicated and tedious.

Ceramic roofing tiles are generally durable, and advances in their manufacturing process make these tiles resistant to fading. Ceramic tiles are also fireproof, and should last 50 to 70 years.
Ceramic roofing tiles are ill-adapted for climates with fluctuating weather. Ceramic tiles are prone to erosion under tumultuous weather conditions. Ceramic roofing tiles can also be fragile; high winds and walking on the tiles can damage them.

Metal Roofs

More people are choosing metal roofs because metal shingles are low maintenance, light weight, and reduce energy cost. Metal roofs are designed to resist the buildup of water and ice, which can help to prevent potentially disastrous damage. As metal roofs start to lose their shine, they can be repainted as along as the roof’s structure is still in good shape. Repainting a metal roofs usually costs less than to replace it.
A disadvantage to metal roofs is installation can be tricky and require experienced roofing contractors. Metal shingles are also typically more expensive than other types of shingles.

Flat Roofs

Flat roofs are usually less expensive to install than sloped roofs. There is less chance of falling off of a flat roof, and they are usually easy to access.

However, flat roofs can require a great deal of maintenance. If you choose to install a flat roof, you will have to ensure it stays watertight and clean it regularly to prevent leaves and debris from clogging the drain. Sun exposure will also gradually cause the roof to degrade and replacement costs can be high.

Green Roofs

Homeowners who want to have a more environmentally conscientious roof should choose roofing materials that reflect the sun’s rays. The two main factors that affect the environmental impact of a roof are the color of the roof and the materials used to construct the roof. Green roofs reduce environmental impact while providing additional savings to homeowners.
If you install a green roof, however, make sure that your contractor follows the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Certification Standards. Though some green roof options might be pricey, there are several state tax incentives and savings available that you may qualify for that will reduce the cost to install.

So the next time you choose to replace your roof, have professional roofing contractors talk to you about all of your available options. Roofing contractors in Vancouver, WA can make sure you receive the roof that best fits your needs and style.