Guide: The 4 Main Types of Roofing on the West Coast

Is it time to choose a roof for your home? Whether you’re building a brand new home or replacing an old roof, selecting the best type of roof for your house and climate is a big decision, and you’ll want to have all the information you need to make the right choice.

There’s a reason “having a roof over your head” is shorthand for having a home—your roof is the primary thing that keeps the outside out, sheltering your home against the elements of nature. Having the right kind of roof for your climate and geographical conditions is key to ensuring adequate protection for your home. Choosing the right roof for your particular area also means that roof will require less maintenance and last longer before you need to repair or replace it.

Roofing experts can give you great advice when it comes to picking a style of roof that suits your home, your neighborhood, and the part of the country you live in. The final choice still comes down to you, so it’s smart to familiarize yourself with the different roofing types you can choose from.

Metal Roofing

Roofs made out of metal tend to be more durable and long-lasting than roofs made of wood or asphalt, which can make them a more cost-effective choice in the long run. Metal roofs are good insulators, helping you keep your energy costs for heating and cooling your home lower—they might even qualify you for energy tax credits, and the materials can often be recycled at the end of the roof’s lifespan, reducing the impact on the environment.

Metal roofing is resistant to fire, pests, mildew, and rot. A metal roof will easily shed rain and snow, making it an ideal choice for homes in areas that get a lot of cold and wet weather. Because of their durability and aesthetic appeal, a metal roof may even add resale value to your home. In addition to all of these ways metal roofs can be a great value and an environmentally friendly choice, metal roofing can last upwards of 40 years.

Torch-on Roofing

Best used for roofs that are flat or gently sloped, torch-on roofs (also known as torch-down roofs) are durable and can be installed fairly quickly. Made from asphalt-saturated, polyester-reinforced fiberglass rolls, torch-on roofs are applied with an open flame to weld the material together and bond it to the layers underneath. They provide excellent protection from harsh weather, insects, and rot.

Some of the other advantages to torch-on roofing include low maintenance costs and resistance to ultraviolet rays. Properly installed, a torch-on roof will provide a waterproof surface that is completely sealed off and can be expected to last up to twenty-five years.

Asphalt Fiberglass Shingles

Asphalt fiberglass shingles are among the simplest and most cost-effective choices for roofing, and we are experts at installing them. Many homeowners are choosing to upgrade their worn-out cedar roofs to laminate shingles for an affordable way to help their homes hold their value while looking good. Providing a varied, contoured look to the surface of a home’s roof, laminated shingles come with limited-lifetime, prorated warranties, and typically last 25 to 30 years.

One drawback to this type of roofing is that shingles can come loose from strong wind and bad weather, creating weak points in the roof. For homes built in wooded areas or places that get a lot of rain or snow, a more durable roofing option may be a better choice.

Cedar Shake Roofing

For a rustic, appealing aesthetic, cedar shake roofing can give your home a natural, organic appearance that fits in well not only in rural settings but with a wide variety of architectural styles as well. Cedarwood is a traditional, time-tested material that holds its own among more modern roofing styles when it comes to durability, easily withstanding hail, and heavy rain. Cedarwood also has natural insulating properties, helping your home maintain a comfortable temperature in both hot and cold weather and keeping your heating and cooling costs down.

Cedar shake roofs are not as resistant to mildew, moss, and mold as other roofing types, so it’s important to inspect them regularly. When properly maintained, you can expect a cedar shake roof to last for over thirty years.

Making the Right Choice

When choosing a new roof, you’ve got to consider what types of weather you can expect to get, whether you live in a humid climate likely to promote mold and mildew growth, what pests you might need to worry about, and the energy you might use to maintain your home’s temperature during the summer and winter months. You also need to think about how important the aesthetics of your roof are to you, and how much effort you’re willing to put into maintaining it.

A well-chosen roof can protect your home for decades, and Canuck Roofing can help you get the best quality roofing for your needs. If you’ve made your selection, contact us today for a roofing quote!