Residential Roofing Material Types eHow

Residential Roofing Material Types eHow


Asphalt shingles are the most commonly used roofing materials because they are affordable, durable and come in a variety of colors. They adapt to most climates and can last 20 years or more. Asphalt shingles come in four types: single piece, strips, laminated and interlocking. Problems with asphalt shingles include UV-ray damage, which can cause cracking and fading, and damage due to sudden changes in temperature, which can also cause cracking. Additionally, asphalt shingles are prone to algae growth, moisture damage and leaks.


Slate used for tiles and shingles is durable enough to last 30 years, though this type of roofing material often lasts much longer. Slate is fire-resistant. Insects do not get into slate, and it will not rot. The limitations to using slate as roofing material are that it is easily broken and very heavy. Also, because of slate’s heaviness, a house may need extra structural support to prevent the roof from collapsing.

Clay Tiles

In addition to giving a house a European or Mediterranean look, clay tiles have many benefits. They are fire-resistant and good insulators, and they are impervious to insects, mold and rot. They have a long life and can have a warranty of up to 50 years. However, damage can quickly cut short the lifespan of clay tiles. Clay tiles can break easily, especially when someone walks on them. Clay tiles are also quite expensive and very heavy. Homes with clay tiles will probably need extra structural support to carry the load of heavy tiles.

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