Choosing the Right Residential Roofing Material

Residential Roofing

A roof protects people and things in a building from water, wind and sunlight. Its performance depends on the design and material it is made of.

A high-functioning, aesthetically appealing roof adds significant value to your home or business. It can also help you save on energy costs.

Choosing the right Residential Roofing has a big impact on upfront and long-term cost, maintenance requirements and overall lifespan.

Roof Types

Roofing is an essential investment, and you want it to last for as long as possible. Choosing the right roof for your home requires some research and knowledge of the options available.

Asphalt shingles are the most popular and durable choice for homeowners in America, but they also offer options that can mimic the look of more luxurious materials like cedar shakes or slate. The style of your roof also makes a difference in how well it protects your home from weather conditions.

Gable roofs are common in many homes, featuring two sloping sides that meet at a peak or ridge. This roof type is best for cold climates and pairs well with large windows. Pyramid roofs are often found on gazebos but can be installed on contemporary houses for a whimsical design.


There are many different roofing materials available on the market. Your selection depends on your climate, maintenance needs, and aesthetic aspirations.

Asphalt shingles are among the most popular roofing materials. They are durable and inexpensive, and they provide excellent weather resistance. They are also energy efficient, reflecting the sun’s rays instead of absorbing them.

Wood shingles and shakes are made from natural cedar, redwood, cypress, or pine. Shingles are milled to a uniform length and thickness for clean lines, while shakes are thicker wedge-shaped slabs that create a more rustic appearance.

Slate roofs are long-lasting, fireproof, and water-resistant. They’re often found on luxury homes, and they can increase your home’s value. Concrete and clay tiles are durable, fire-resistant, and come in a variety of colors.

Roof Installation

A top-notch roof can be a great selling point when it comes time to sell your home. Plus, new roofing materials are becoming more energy-efficient.

The roof structure is comprised of rafters and trusses (sometimes pre-fabricated). The sheathing boards are usually plywood or OSB, although some older homes have tongue-and-groove or narrow 1-by skip sheathing boards.

Contractors lay a layer of underlayment (usually felt) over the sheathing boards to create a moisture barrier between your house and the elements. They also waterproof the valleys and install flashing around chimneys, skylights, vents and plumbing vents.

The shingles or roof tiles are then laid starting from the eaves and metal drip edge, working upwards to the ridge cap. The contractor may add a ridge vent to help prevent ice dams and improve air circulation.

Roof Repair

A well-maintained roof protects the home’s structure and everything inside it. A poorly maintained or damaged one allows water, dirt and debris to penetrate the house. In addition, a roof that isn’t in tip-top shape invites insects and birds into the house, creating an environment that is unhealthy to live in.

Most roof damage can be repaired with regular inspections and prompt repairs. For example, if you notice a water stain on your ceiling, go into your attic and find the source of the leak. It’s likely a piece of flashing that’s been damaged. You’ll need to remove the old flashing, then cut and bend a new piece of flashing to replace it.

Many homeowners don’t look forward to taking on a roofing project, but it’s essential for maintaining the value of their property. Having a new roof also makes the property more attractive to buyers, as it’s one less project they have to take on shortly after moving in.

Roof Replacement

A roof replacement is a substantial investment, and the choice of shingle materials has a significant impact on cost. Choosing premium shingles that resist harsh weather conditions can add longevity and enhance the home’s aesthetics.

A roofing contractor will apply underlayment and a waterproofing layer, and shingle or roof tiles are then placed. New ridge vents can also be added to help prevent ice dams. Flashing is installed around chimneys, wood stove pipes, and certain vents. Depending on the homeowner’s request, they may install a ridge vent for aesthetic purposes or to increase attic ventilation for energy efficiency.

Before construction is complete, the roofing contractor will check to ensure that any “punch list” items have been addressed. Then the new roof is ready to protect the house and its contents.