What Should Your Residential Roof Be Made Of?

Residential Roofing

Residential roofs can be constructed from a variety of materials. If you are thinking about replacing your current roof or if you are building a new property, you must weigh the benefits and drawbacks each option has to offer. Learn more about what residential roofs are made of before deciding which option is the right investment for your home.


Asphalt composite shingles are the most common residential roofing material, found on about 80 percent of homes. Asphalt shingles, with their fiberglass or granule coatings, are extremely fire resistant. They last up to 30 years, but are usually disposed of in landfills, making them a less-than-ideal choice when considering environmental friendliness. They are relatively inexpensive to install and repair and are available in many colors and styles.


Metal roofs, which can be installed over an existing roof, can be constructed of steel, aluminum, copper or tin. They are lightweight and durable, lasting 50 years or more. While some require occasional painting, they have high performance ratings for wind and moisture resistance. They are usually much more expensive up front than an asphalt roof, but last significantly longer and require much less repair work. Metal roofs can be installed in sheet or shingle form. Depending on the material, they also can be completely recyclable.


Slate roofs are attractive, but expensive. The high costs associated with slate roof installation are due to the special training required to complete the project. Also, due to slate’s weight, additional underlying roof beam support is required to ensure structural integrity. Slate roof tiles are made from 100 percent natural rock, the strength of which varies based on the quarry location. Slate is fire resistant and does not require much maintenance, making it an excellent long-term investment for residential roofs.


Wood shingles give a home a historic, classic look. The shingles are bright at first, but will eventually fade to gray after exposure to the elements. Wood shingles are commonly made of cedar, but other kinds of wood can be used as well. They burn easily, of course, but pressure-treated wood is fire resistant. Wood shingles are completely natural, making them an environmentally friendly choice for residential roofs, but they also have a tendency to grow mold and rot. A wood shingle roof requires constant attention, so any problems must be addressed immediately. If the wood is properly cared for, it has the ability to last for over 30 years.

Talk to the Knockout Roofing team for more information about the types of residential roofs and which option is ideally suited for your budget and your home.