Which Roofing Materials Stand Up Best to Damage?

 

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Since the idea behind putting a roof on a house is added protection from the elements, all materials involved should be of equal resilience. In reality, the materials aren’t created equal. The forces most likely to do damage to a roof around the Toledo OH area include wind, moisture, and hail. With different materials possessing different levels of durability, a general rule of thumb is that stronger roofing will cost more. The good news is that the added expense pays for itself over the long run. To get an idea of a particular method’s damage-resistance, here’s a list of the more common roof coverings.

Asphalt

As the cheapest method of covering a roof, asphalt shingles are used on more residential homes than all the other alternatives combined. They also stand out as fairly vulnerable protection. Their felt base is often too inflexible in very strong winds and can tear. Also, even relatively small hailstones can damage typical asphalt shingles by knocking off the granules coating the surface. These granules act as protection for the asphalt below against harsh sunlight. With this protective layer removed, the asphalt dries and cracks in the sun. With the weather Toledo OH normally experiences, these shingles still do a pretty adequate job for the price. The good news is that modified asphalt shingles are available that are only about 20% more expensive, yet they’re highly resistant to hail and easily bend in high winds instead of tearing.

Metal

metal roofGalvanized steel with a color coating is the most popular material in this category. So long as water can’t accumulate, there’s not much risk of moisture damage. When properly installed, these roofs can also handle strong winds. If they’re incompetently installed, they can suffer more wind damage than asphalt. In the case of hail, the underlying roof structure helps reinforce the metal sheets to minimize denting. More importantly, the roof continues to keep out water even after hail damage. The serious downside to this approach is the cost. They can far outlast asphalt, but the initial expense is higher.

Wood

Whether it’s pressure-treated wood or cedar shakes, wood roofing can be securely nailed down to resist the highest winds. It can casually stand up to hail. Moisture, though, can be a problem. If there are shady spots, prolonged dampness can rot the wood by promoting moss and fungus growth. Wooden roofs also require regular cleaning and treatment with a wood preservative to maintain their water resistance. With an initial high cost, continued upkeep adds another expense.

Slate

This roofing material isn’t practical for every home since its weight demands reinforced support structures. In terms of weather, slate is among the most durable types of roofs. It won’t rot, resists high winds, and easily deflects hailstones. Because it’s brittle, though, walking on it can carry the risk of breakage. While they require little maintenance and can last a century, their initial cost is among the highest.