6 Common Types of Roofing Materials and Which One is Right For YOU
So, you’re looking to replace your roof? You may have figured out that the task isn’t as easy as it first seems.
You have so many choices to make. The first and perhaps the most important thing to consider is what material to select for your roof. What material you choose depends on a series of factors, including your personal taste, budget, region, availability, and durability.
The following is a look at the six most common types of roofing that you can choose for your home and also, what are the benefits and drawbacks of each.
1. Asphalt Shingle
The most common roofing material choice in Canada is far and away asphalt shingles and it’s no secret why. First, it’s relatively low-priced compared to many other options. Also, it’s made of a very durable material with a wide range of colors and designs. “Three-tab” shingles were the most common form of asphalt roofing. They’re used to create a flat and uniformed look for the entire shingle segment.
In recent years three-tab shingles have been replaced in popularity by a different type of asphalt roofing, called architectural or dimensional shingles. Architectural shingles are thicker, heavier, more durable and much more resistant to wind uplift. They come with a longer warranty as well. They don’t’ have a flat look and are designed to look more like a wood shake.
Fiberglass asphalt shingles are the best, most affordable roofing method for 95% of the population. They are also far superior to the organic based asphalt shingles of the past. In addition, fibreglass asphalt shingles offer superior protection with the highest fire rating, when installed in a system, which promises a greater degree of protection against the spread of fire in a home.
Beyond protection, they are also far easier to install than many other types of roofing materials. This not only reduces the length of time the homeowner is inconvenienced throughout the installation process, it also reduces the installation time. This benefits the homeowner by reducing the overall labour costs of the project.
Another benefit of asphalt shingles is, when they are installed by factory certified installation team, the homeowner can benefit from enhanced warranty coverage, meaning a greater degree of protection for the investment you’ve made in your roof.
Metal roofs are appealing for people who value longevity and durability. These people often live in areas that experience storms and other types of inclement weather. Metal roofs can be made from a few different materials including zinc, steel, copper, aluminum, and tin.
Metal roofs are usually more expensive than shingle roofs, however they typically do allow for excellent warranty coverage. Metal roofs have experienced a decent level of popularity in North America. However, many homeowners in Canada opt out of metal roofing because of the risks and hazards associated with ice chunks and snow which are commonly known to slide off and cause accidents and damage on the ground.
You may also find it difficult to find contractors that would need to work off of a metal roof for future projects. One example is replacing siding on a split-level home, where a sided wall extends up from a metal roof. Many contractors won’t be interested in quoting out of safety concerns and the risk of damage to the metal or it’s painted finish.
Tile is some of the heaviest material that people use for roofing, however it is relatively unpopular in Canada. Though to its benefit, tile can be extremely durable, lasting decades on some roofs.
Tiles for roofing can be made from a range of materials, including concrete, ceramic, clay, porcelain, and synthetic materials. The type of tile you choose can help you achieve the look you want. For example, clay or ceramic tiles can help you achieve the look of a Mediterranean or Spanish style home.
Tile roofing is also substantially much more expensive than both shingles and metal but is sometimes known to last longer. Unfortunately, tiles heavy weight can be too much for the roof framing in many Canadian built homes. Therefore, if you’re considering tile, it’s important you have a certified building inspector complete a full structural inspection of the home. This means analyzing the homes overall strength and integrity to guarantee the buildings structure can support the weight of a tile roof.
Slate is a natural stone covering that is well-suited to roofing. It’s resistant to fire and water and has a long lifespan. Natural slate roofing is one of the most expensive roofing options. It’s highly valued for its longevity, beauty, and historic look.
The material does have one drawback to it: fragility. Natural slate can be fragile compared to other roofing materials, making maintenance that requires walking on the roof difficult, and any work related to the roof extremely expensive.
Wood roofing comes in two styles: shakes and shingles. Shakes are split on one or both sides of the wood. They’re usually thicker at the butt end than shingles and are commonly made from cedar.
Shingles are sawn on both sides and have a thinner butt end. Other woods that are used for wooden roofing include pine, cypress, and redwood.
Homeowners find wood-surfaced roofs appealing for the organic appearance it gives to homes. However, wood is the least durable of roofing materials and won’t last even close to as long as some of its counterparts. Wood shake and shingle roofs can also develop rot, brittleness, water penetration, animal damage, moss, and mildew, which means regular maintenance.
If you’re willing to put in regular maintenance and treatments, then a wooden roof might be an option.
Rubber is the newest roofing material to hit the scene. Rubber roofs are usually custom-made to fit the structure although they can also be cut into rubber shingles. Rubber is more durable and less prone to brittleness and disintegration from the weather than other materials. It is also proven to last a long time and offer fire resistance.
While rubber is vulnerable to punctures, the material is relatively easy to repair. However, rubber roofing can be expensive, and many people agree it doesn’t have the same natural appeal and appearance as some of the other options. So if aesthetics are important to you, rubber might not be the right fit.
Other Materials to Consider
Besides these common roof surface materials, there are other materials used to varying degrees for roofing. These include thatched roofs, bitumens blended with plastic or rubber, fiber-cement roofing, polyurethane foam, membrane roofs such as thermoplastics, and others.
How To Choose Which Roofing Material is Right For Your Home
When choosing a roofing material it really comes down to personal preference. However, if you were to compare all the options side-by-side and weigh the benefits and drawbacks of each material, asphalt shingles win by a long shot.
With their excellent protection against our Canadian winters, their durability, the ease with which they can be installed and repaired, the endless colors and designs options, plus the excellent warranty coverage, and to top it off, the most economical and affordable roofing material… It’s no secret why asphalt shingles are the number one roofing material choice for all Canadian homeowners.
If you have more questions about your upcoming roofing project, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 519-727-6622 and speak to one of our roofing professionals.
How Do I Know My Roofing Contractor is Qualified?
Many changes and improvements you make to your home are elective procedures that you’re choosing to help shape your home’s appearance. However, working on your roof is almost never a choice. It’s typically a necessity. It’s an important factor in personal comfort, the resale value, and the structural integrity of your home.
The big investment it requires to install a new roof sometimes drives people to embark on do-it-yourself projects, which are dangerous and can worsen your roofing problems. Hiring a professional is the best route for ensuring your roof is fixed correctly the first time.
The following is a guide will help you to find the ideal roofing contractor for your project.
Get a Referral
A tried-and-true way to determine a good and reliable contractor is to ask your neighbors, friends, and others who have hired companies you’re interested in or are considering using. If you’ve noticed that someone in your life has recently had work done on their roof, inquire into who they used, and if they were pleased with the quality of the work.
Reviews and testimonials can provide some of the most accurate looks into what to expect from any given company. Asking your friends about their experiences will give you some of the most honest feedback you’ll find. You can also look into recommendations from related businesses you potentially have relationships with, like distribution centers, hardware stores and lumber yards.
Do Your Research
Once you’ve gotten at least a few qualified roofers in mind, start your investigation into each one. You’ll want to begin with verifying the business’s contact information. Next, look into whether they are licensed and insured, and also, whether they have a permanent place of business, which can be a great indicator of the type of business you’re dealing with. Just googling the business address will quickly tell you if your contractor has been successful enough to operate out of an actual business establishment, or simply operates from a residence.
Contact the Better Business Bureau or your chamber of commerce to double check that there are no red flags. Finally, check out the online reviews of the company you’re considering.
Meet Face-To-Face with Them
Once you’ve narrowed your choice down even more, you may want to set up meetings with your prospective contractors. This gives them the chance to visit your home, if they haven’t already, and scope out the potential job or project. This will also give you an idea about how your working relationship will be.
If your contractor has an actual staffed business establishment (recommended by the way, as it’s a strong sign of success), you can also stop in and have a look around at the materials, samples and showroom.
You’ll want to discuss possible roofing materials and the extent of work that you want to be done. Remember to ask about the man-power required for the job, and time expected to complete such a project.
During this time, observe your potential contractor. They should be professional, knowledgeable, and enthusiastic about the work which needs to be done. Look out for red flags and pay close attention to everything they tell you and take notes if possible.
While they are an expert and authority in this field, don’t be afraid to step into the process. Ask as many questions as you’d like. They should be receptive to your questions and happy to be helpful, while at the same time providing you with as much information as you request.
Get The Details in Writing
Don’t let any work happen until you and your contractor have come to an agreement. Ensure there is a contract in writing detailing all aspects of the job to be performed, and ensure it’s signed by both parties. Also, look to see and make sure it is 100% professional, the level of quality and work put into the quote and agreement will almost always reflect the level of work which will be done on your home. Also, ensure the agreement covers all safety procedures and liability, including matters of worker compensation.
In this contract, you should also lay out plans for payment amounts, schedule, and clean-up methods.
Remember: You Get What You Pay For
While you’ll want to grab the best deal possible, it’s important to remember that the cheapest bid is rarely ever the best. Remember, a roof is an extremely important factor when it comes to the protection of your home and family, therefore look for the contractor who displays the highest levels of integrity, and review their reputation online, especially with the BBB, to also help ensure the quality of their work is of that same high level.
If you’re worried that the price is too good to be true, it probably is, so don’t risk it. Before choosing your roofer, ask yourself: will the job be done well at this price?
Do Research Beyond Word of Mouth
Property owners often seek out advice for their remodeling needs. When it comes to getting a new roof, “knowing a guy” won’t do it. Roofs are unique. You need a trained professional who can work with you and help you to ensure that the choices you make are ones which will promise a durable, appealing and long lasting roof. If you follow these instructions properly, the investment will be worth every penny you put in.
5 Benefits of Installing Vinyl
Siding on Your Home
When it comes to upgrading the exterior appearance of your home, there are a lot of options to consider, but when analyzing the choices and looking at the pros and cons of each, vinyl siding stands apart from the rest.
In fact, vinyl siding is voted as the number one choice by all Canadians for exterior home cladding. Here are five top reasons why so many Canadians choose vinyl as their homes primary layer of protection against the harsh Canadian elements.
1 – Quick and Easy Installation
Unlike many other types of siding which can be very labour intensive to install, vinyl siding installation is quick and easy. The material is lightweight, making it a relatively simple to install onto your home. This also promises additional benefits to you as the homeowner, by reducing labour costs, and cutting down the length of time the homeowner will be inconvenienced while the installation is completed.
2 – Affordable and Low Maintenance
Vinyl siding is widely popular not only because of the protection it provides and other obvious home improvement benefits, but because of its affordability and cost-saving benefits too. When compared in price to other types of exterior siding and cladding, vinyl is almost always a far less expensive option. Vinyl also requires very little maintenance, unlike wood or stone which can require substantial (and often expensive) upkeep, cleaning vinyl is easy and can be done quickly with a cloth, water, and a general cleaning solution.
3 – Improved Curbside Appeal
Vinyl siding can provide an immediate appearance upgrade to any home, which is why it’s often installed by homeowners prior to putting their home on the market to increase curbside appeal and also, overall home value. It is widely considered as one of the top choices for home improvement projects which can make the biggest difference in general home appeal and value.
4 – Large Selection of Colours, Styles and Accessories
With an enormous selection of colours, styles, and finishes, vinyl siding offers the homeowner an unparalleled number of options during the design process to compliment the appearance and appeal of their home. With additional accent pieces like shutters, louvers and other accessories, vinyl siding allows the homeowner to go beyond and personalize the look of their home to meet their exact tastes.
5 – Durable and Long Lasting
Canadian weather can be incredibly hard on our homes, requiring them to be built to withstand the harshest elements. Vinyl siding goes above the call of duty by being amazingly durable, and capable of withstanding high winds and harsh winters. Vinyl is flexible and therefore doesn’t dent, absorbing the impact from conditions like hail storms, bouncing back and returning to its original position without any sign of damage. Also, unlike wood, vinyl doesn’t chip, warp or peel, it is highly resistant to moisture, and isn’t attractive to bugs or insects.
When it comes to overall protection and improved home appearance…
…You Simply Cannot Go Wrong With Vinyl Siding.
At Gauthier Roofing and Siding, we’re here to help. Check out our website to learn more about who we are and our premiere siding services. We even have a virtual home remodeler where you can get a clear idea of what your home would look like after installing premium vinyl siding.