Today we’ll be breaking down the 5 main types of roofing materials and their individual pros and cons. These materials are asphalt, rubber, metal, clay, and cedar shingles. If you want to skip the reading, just watch this video:
To help you choose the best option for your needs, we’re going to cover 6 different categories and how each type of material rates on a scale of 1 – 5 (with 1 being the best, 5 being the worst).
The categories are:
- Wind Warranty
- Life Expectancy
Let’s get started!
Roof Material Cost
Asphalt (1) – A very cost-efficient option, but there is a reason for that. It is not very durable, which is what we’ll get to later.
Metal (3) – Metal shingles used to be very expensive, but now that they’re becoming more popular, and you can find cheaper options.
Cedar (4) – Starting to get towards the more premium pricing. Cedar is a beautiful-looking roof material but will cost a pretty penny.
Rubber (4) – A durable option, but rubber roofing materials also cost quite a bit.
Clay (5) – The most expensive option, clay roofing materials, will be quite a big investment and should only be considered by those who have a big budget to work with.
Metal (1) – Very effective against wind. They can be dented by falling debris, but wind will not cause much damage.
Rubber (2) – Another solid option to deter damage from wind, rubber is quite durable.
Clay (2) – Clay is also quite strong against wind, thanks to its heavy nature.
Cedar (2) – Cedar can also hold its own against wind.
Asphalt (5) – The worst material when it comes to wind damage. As we mentioned before, this is the price you pay for choosing a cheaper option. If you are worried about wind damage with asphalt shingles, seek out more premium quality brands.
Maintenance For Roofing Materials
Metal (1) – Quite sturdy, so it isn’t often you’ll need to perform maintenance on a metal roof.
Asphalt (1) – Pretty easy to maintain; just need to get on the roof every few years and fix any minor issues before they become big issues.
Rubber (1) – Doesn’t take much maintenance.
Clay (2) – Wind can sometimes shift some of the shingles, so you need to check on that every so often.
Cedar (3) – Cedar needs to be cleaned quite often; otherwise, discoloration can be common. It’s not too bad, though.
Metal (1) – Metal roofs can last up to 50-60 years and sometimes longer.
Rubber (1) – Rubber roofs will last 40-50 years.
Clay (1) – Clay can also last 50+ years.
Cedar (4) – Cedar will last 20-25 years, depending on the climate and weather.
Asphalt (5) – The life expectancy of an asphalt roof is about 18 years.
Roof Material Durability
Clay (1) – Heavy and very durable.
Rubber (1) – Also very heavy, the best hail resistance option on the market today. So, if you live in an area that gets a lot of hail, rubber is definitely recommended.
Metal (3) – Hail, as well as falling debris, can put dents in a metal roof.
Cedar (3) – Cedar is also susceptible to some damage from hail and debris.
Asphalt (5) – Asphalt is very susceptible to damage.
Asphalt (1) – Very easy to repair. The material is very flexible and can be easy to fix. If you are comfortable working on roofs, repairs can easily be done DIY style.
Cedar (2) – Not too hard to repair, but will take a little effort and you may need to call a pro to get it done.
Metal (5) – Very tough to repair. Will need to call in a pro to repair, which can be costly.
Clay (3) – Clay can be tough to repair too, but it isn’t as hard to repair when compared to metal.
Rubber (3) – Can be more difficult to repair as well.
It’s important to keep in mind that while rubber performed the best in our rankings and asphalt and cedar performed the worst, that doesn’t mean you have to go with rubber. There are plenty of situations in which going with an asphalt roof makes perfect sense. For example, if your budget doesn’t allow for it or you’re comfortable in paying for the occasional maintenance or repair job. Use these rankings as a means of guiding you to the right decision.
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