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Roofing Substances – Understanding the Varieties of Them

Kyle Brink

27 December 2017

If you have never needed to have your roof replaced, or there hasn’t any need for it for quite some time, you might be in awe when you discover the availability of various substances for roofing these days. They have their own advantages and disadvantages; therefore, if you are planning to get one of these, it’s best to make some comparisons to discover the right one that fits your requirement.

The Varieties of Roofing Substances

The selection of substances you make will affect how much you will be paying for the price of your roof, its ability to resist various hazardous elements, the likelihood for it to be repaired rather than replaced when damages occur and its durability. During some instances, your selection of roofing substances will show higher or lower resistance toward environmental elements compared to other selections, and it may have an impact on the cost of maintaining your heater and air-conditioner.

Let us figure out a number of most sought after substances available these days, i.e. composition shingles, slates, metal roofs and wooden roofs.

Composition Shingles

Composition shingles are well-known among many homeowners. These come in the lowest price range and their cost of maintenance is the lowest as well. They are offered in varieties of colors and designs, and they can be recycled. Credible roofers are able to offer more design varieties for composition shingles and most of them are happy to describe the distinctive points among the different types and recommend the most suitable one to cater to your requirements and budget.

Composition shingles are created out of fiberglass or rag fiber. These are mixed with asphalt before they’re coated with mineral-based granules to create the desired color tone and texture. These require very simple installation, and they can be used for various purposes. At times, these are nailed on top of a roof.

One of the typical disadvantages of composition shingles is their shorter lifespan in comparison with other kinds of roofs. They tend to be plain in appearance and may get blown off due to the effects of strong winds.


Slates are produced from natural substances, they look beautiful and have been used for many centuries. They come with a wide versatility, are great in strength, non-rotting in nature and fireproof. Slates can typically improve the aesthetical and monetary value of a home and they contribute to better power saving ability, lower maintenance needs and improved durability. In fact, slates have a typical lifespan of two centuries especially when they’re well maintained.

Since slates are packed with a lot of benefits, they’re commonly expensive. As they’re created from rock, they’re quite heavy. At times, roofers have to include additional support to make sure that the existing roof is able to withstand the weight of tiled slates. Slates are commonly fragile and prone to break when there are ice dams on the roof. Frequent checking and maintenance are required to keep them in good condition.

Metal Roofs

Metal roofing is growing in demand these days. Metal roofs can be found installed on historic residential buildings and monuments, and most of them are made of copper, lead and zinc. Newer versions tend to use steel more than other metals with the exception of some roofers who still choose to use copper. Metal roofs are great to use as they can imitate other forms of roofing such as wooden shakes, tiled roofs and composition shingles.

Metal roofs are long-lasting, fireproof in nature and require little maintenance. They maintain an ideal temperature during summer due to its ability to reflect heat and to block it from transferring into the attic. They are not heavy, has a thin texture and can easily be applied on top of existing roofs.

Nevertheless, the process of installing metal roofs is quite tricky. Therefore, dealing with the right roofers who also have the right experience is crucial. When you have managed to get them installed, rest assured that these roofs which have also been used for centuries will provide you with great and unique experience.

Shingles Made of Wood

Another alternative substance for roofing that uses only natural resources is wood. It is offered inexpensively, it weighs much lighter than a number of stone substances and it can be repaired easily. Being a natural product, you can find a plethora of wood shingle options. The available option allows you to decorate your home uniquely as each shake tend to differ from one to another. Wood can help you save energy, and it insulates as well as ventilates the attic. They are very much sought after by homeowners who adore having historic themes applied to their homes.

However, wood needs to be maintained on a regular basis. Wood is susceptible to rot, mildew and critter invasion, so it means you need to inspect your roof on a routinely basis to maintain its quality. Wood is also difficult to install if compared to composition shingles. If you hire the wrong roofers who haven’t had enough experience in installing wood shingles, the outcome might appear terrible.

Seeking help from expert roofers can help you in selecting the right substance for your roofing needs, your requirements as well as budget.