Comparing Roofing Materials

When it comes to roofing material, asphalt shingles continue to lead the pack. A greater understanding of ventilation practices has led to a lifespan of 50 years for a properly installed roof. This, coupled with its ease of installation and affordability, makes it the number one choice for most homeowners. Our preferred manufacturer is GAF, and our reputation as a GAF-certified installer has earned us several prestigious awards. 

“Ninety-five percent of what we put on a house is going to be asphalt,” says Evan Taylor, a senior project consultant here at G. Fedale. That said, other options remain for the homeowner less concerned with the price tag. Metal, cedar, and slate lend a unique aesthetic and a commanding look to the crowning feature of the homestead. Each has considerations worth noting. Evan cautions homeowners opting for any of these more specialty roofing materials to make certain the roofing company is reputable and has experience working with the chosen product. 

Metal roofs are built to take a beating, and may outlast an asphalt shingle roof as they require less maintenance over time. The reputation of the roofing company however, is critical. Fly-by-night roofers may use a lesser grade of metal than intended for a roof, and install by simply bending the material into roofing panels. The installation process, done correctly, utilizes robots to mechanically seam the individual panels. A repair to a metal roof is a more difficult procedure than a repair to an asphalt shingle roof. Likewise, should a home have multi-level roof surfaces, metal is not a practical option due to its standing seam installation. Metal roofs are more common for some of our coastal homes, as they are more impervious to moisture and resistant to salty conditions. Everlast and Petersen are the two primary manufacturers we utilize. 

A cedar or slate roof adds character and authenticity to a historic home. At times, it is a requirement should a renovation be needed to a home in a designated historic district or one on a registry. Of the four options, cedar offers the greatest energy efficiency. Since it absorbs less heat, it will keep an attic cooler. As members of the Cedar Bureau, a G. Fedale customer opting for cedar can be assured of a 100 percent straight grain product. Slate shingles are a less common option. While offering an aesthetic appeal over the more commonplace asphalt shingle, natural slate is a fragile roofing product. Today, a customer wishing for the look of slate may opt for synthetic slate. In spite of this more durable manmade product, slate still comes with a high price point.