Roofing is a covering, whether made of metal or timber, that protecting a building from the weather. A roof, typically, is the most extensive coverage of a structure, comprising all forms and materials needed to support it over the property walls on uprights or on the top of the system itself, giving protection from rain, sun, snow, extreme temperatures, and winds. A roof is also a structural component of the entire building envelope. It provides maximum protection to the roof structure, usually the system’s lowest point, against natural forces.
The roofing industry offers a wide variety of options and brands for roofing materials. A roofer may use any number of these materials, and the combination and types can vary dramatically, depending on local weather conditions, aesthetic considerations, cost, and other factors. Metal roofs, such as aluminum or steel, are the most common types used. They are lightweight and durable but are often not weatherproof. Asphalt shingles, slate, tile, wooden shakes, metal clapboards, and gypsum boards are other types of materials commonly used.
Asphalt shingles are the most commonly installed type of roofing material in North America, accounting for about 90% of all asphalt shingles on buildings. Asphalt shingles are relatively inexpensive and fairly easy to install. It is also the most flexible, being able to be cut to nearly any shape and size. However, slate is another highly popular roofing material and when properly installed is very durable and strong. Slate roofs are also somewhat more environmentally friendly than asphalt shingles, because slate production does not deplete natural resources.
Asphalt and clay tiles are two more popular roofing materials that can be used, often in combination with slate. Tiles are highly durable and strong, and they are able to withstand extreme weather conditions. Clay tiles are less flexible than slate, but they are more affordable.
The most common roofing material in North America is asphalt shingles, which account for about eighty percent of all shingles sold. These are the most common type of asphalt roof available to consumers, although there are also composite shingles that combine asphalt with various other materials such as clay. They are available in a wide range of colors, from natural browns and grays to vibrant blues, greens, ochre, earth tones, and even brick red. Although asphalt shingles are relatively inexpensive, they are also susceptible to rapid weather deterioration, especially if left unprotected. Regular roofing maintenance and repair can extend the life of your shingles and prevent premature roofing material damage.
For smaller buildings, there are also different types of recycled tiles, which include corrugated and pre-manufactured corrugated chips. These are made from scrap materials that have been purchased from demolition companies, and the recycled parts have then been processed and re-used to make up different types of shingles for different types of buildings. Since these tiles are made from different types of recycled material, they can be installed in any climate condition; however, it is best to confirm with a roofing company if you want to use one of these tiles in high-traffic areas.
A newer option is metal roofing, which can be extremely stylish, but it is also very expensive. Metal roofing is usually comprised of aluminum and steel tiles, which are extremely tough and durable. Although they can be extremely stylish, they are still considered an expensive roofing option compared to other options. They are, however, great for homeowners who want an attractive and long-lasting roofing solution, without the high labor costs associated with installation.
Flat roofing systems such as fiberglass, clay or ceramic tiles are a relatively inexpensive way to go. These types of roofing systems provide excellent insulating properties, but they do come with the disadvantage of the elements. Due to their inability to be chemically treated, they are prone to deterioration from weather, mold, algae and insects. Asphalt roofs, on the other hand, are one of the easiest types of roofing system to deal with and is made out of relatively cheap materials such as asphalt shingles, which is quite easy to maintain. Asphalt roofs are also very popular with flat roofing contractors since they come in many different colors and styles.