From Appearance to Longevity, What To Consider When Choosing Your Roofing Materials

Thinking about a new roof? Your choice of materials is crucial.

Roofing materials determine all of a roof’s performance characteristics. The shingle roof is the most common roof type in Central Florida. Ultimately, that’s what the majority will go with. But do yourself a favor and take the opportunity to check out alternatives. Roofing technology has advanced a long way in the last 20 years!

As a trusted Central Florida roofing contractor, Sheegog Contracting wants to make it easier for you to make an informed decision. With that in mind, we’re here to help out with our guide to Central Florida roofing materials.

Our experienced roofing contractors have been hard at work over the last few months and we’ve installed plenty of roofs. Shingle alternatives are more popular than ever! We’ve also found metal roofs are gaining respect and increasing in popularity.

When comparing roofs, consider the following:

  • Cost
  • Appearance
  • Longevity
  • Maintenance
  • Weather Resistance
  • Special Characteristics
  • Sale-ability

Let’s take a closer look at how today’s Central Florida roof options measure up:

1. Shingle Roof

From coast to coast, the shingle roof is the most popular roofing option in the United States. Although shingles can be made with different mixtures of materials, they typically have a high percentage of asphalt. So, even if you’re looking at different brands with different shingle compositions, materials will be similar.

That said, there are differences in the quality of shingles between different brands and within the catalog of any roofing manufacturer. Cost-effective shingles are the option with the lowest cost, while premium “dimensional” shingles provide more depth, creating a more dramatic aesthetic.

Any shingle roof needs a roof inspection once a year to make sure it’s in tip-top condition. To repair a shingle roof in Central Florida, damaged shingles need to be removed and replaced. Damage can come from storms, pests, or periodic hail – and you won’t always be able to see it from ground level.

Shingle roofing is the fastest to install or replace, making it a lot easier for homeowners. A shingle roof can last up to 20 years but often needs to be replaced after 10-15. Insurers want them to be no older than 10. In some cases, a shingle roof can make it easier to sell your home, as it will “blend in” with the neighborhood.

2. Metal Roof

A metal roof is more than meets the eye. You might envision an older barn roof, but today’s metal roofing is so much more. Not only does it appear more sophisticated, but it can reduce the cost of owning a home in many ways. First and foremost, it lasts an exceptionally long time – anywhere from 30 to 50 years.

While you’d have to check with your own insurer to be certain, companies generally recognize that metal roofs are secure long into their life. So, you might end up skipping one or even two total roof replacements. You can also “skip” roof inspections: One inspection every two years is fine with metal.

Metal roofs are much less likely to be damaged by the elements, including wind, rain, and hail. They resist mold, mildew, and pest intrusion. They are the safest roofs you can have during Florida’s fire season. In the event one metal roofing panel gets damaged, it can be replaced while leaving the rest intact.

One special aspect of the metal roof is its energy efficiency. Installed correctly, a metal roof will reflect about 50% of the solar radiation that strikes it. For Floridians, that means a saving of hundreds or even thousands during the summer, as cooling bills are much lower. Heating is also easier and more efficient.

While not all buyers prefer the look of metal, many are intrigued by the potential savings.

3. Clay Tile Roof

The clay tile roof is closely associated with Florida’s Spanish Mission style. Missions were built all over the Sunshine State during Spain’s colonization, giving rise to the iconic red roof. While there are no examples surviving today, almost everyone has seen a clay tile roof, especially on the coast. Buyers love them.

Clay tile roofing can last even longer than metal roofing, up to a century or more. If you choose carefully, that means the clay tile may be the last roof you ever need. These roofs are resistant to most of Florida’s hazards, including fire and wind uplift. They can be vulnerable to cracking, but cracked tiles are easily replaced.

Most clay tile roofs exhibit their natural reddish color. The color will fade over time as a result of sun exposure. Rather than being a hindrance, though, many people enjoy the look of natural aging. Clay tile roofs tend to be pricier, but they will make up that cost over many years.

4. Concrete Tile Roof

A concrete tile roof is the heaviest type of roof most homeowners will consider. A concrete tile roof can weigh anywhere from 820 up to 1,100 pounds for every 100 square feet. By contrast, a clay tile roof runs lower than the lightest concrete: It usually weighs between 600 and 650 pounds per 100 square feet.

Because a concrete tile roof is exceptionally heavy, not all homes can sustain the extra weight. Before you can go forward with concrete tile roof installation, your roofing contractor should do the necessary checks to make sure it will be suitable. Sometimes, it may be necessary to consult with a structural engineer.

That said, concrete tile roofs are well worth the extra effort. Concrete tiles are available in a wider range of colors and styles than clay tile roofs and will last for about 50 years. Of all the different roofs in Central Florida, they’re the least likely to suffer from wind uplift in the event of a major storm.

5. Flat Roof

Last but not least, the flat roof is an up-and-coming option. Like the concrete tile roof, not every structure can bear the weight of a flat roof, so it may take a little bit longer to verify you can install it. That said, it does more than any other roof on the list when it comes to the versatility of your home.

That’s because it actually gives you more usable space.

Floridians can use a flat roof as their place for a garden, a pool, or any other type of hideaway that you can imagine. In some cases, it may even be possible to add the square footage of the roof to your home’s square footage when listing it for sale, dramatically increasing the total for your buyers.

Flat roofs can be especially attractive to buyers if equipped with a rooftop solar panel system.

A flat roof should last about 20 years at minimum and can last much longer with appropriate maintenance. The overall service life of a flat roof depends to a greater extent on the exact materials used, so you’ll need to review the nitty-gritty details with your Central Florida roofing contractor.

What You Definitely Shouldn’t Get for Your New Florida Roof

In some areas of the United States, roofing contractors offer shingle roofs that are principally made of wood. While these can be beautiful, they are only safe to use in the right climate. They are constructed using local timber, typically red cedar, cypress, pine, and redwood trees.

While a wood roof can be put together similarly to an asphalt shingle roof, unfortunately, it isn’t a good pick for Florida. Not only is there the ever-present concern about weather resistance, but other issues including a high susceptibility to fire, which doesn’t bode well during our dry season.

High humidity and rainfall can also damage these roofs and make them more vulnerable to pests. Needless to say, termites have a ball when they’re unleashed on a wooden roof! With all that in mind, we don’t offer wood shingle or wood shake roof options, and we recommend homeowners pass them by, too.

Not Quite Sure if It’s Time For a New Roof in Central Florida? Let Us Help You Decide

Are you wondering whether to repair a roof or replace it? We can help you decide with a professional roof inspection in Central Florida. Our pros will catch the signs of roof aging and will give you the lowdown on exactly how long you can expect your roof to last and what kind of investment you can expect to make.

In many cases, Central Florida homeowners are opting for roof replacement over roof repair. Even though we are you may be a good way inland, insurance companies are still raising their rates – and they’re using aged roofs as one reason to cancel policies. Over the last year, many homeowners have seen their rates double.

Needless to say, the idea of insurance premiums rising by a third or more every year has homeowners on edge.

While there are only a few ways to help manage your insurance costs, many of the most powerful tools at your disposal have to do with a new roof. Roof replacement not only turns back the clock on the roof itself, but it’s the only time when you can implement the biggest wind mitigation upgrades for your roof.

Naturally, a new roof in Central Florida is a major investment. But sometimes, it pays to act fast. You don’t want to end up in a situation where your roof springs a leak and needs emergency storm damage repair. Sometimes, you end up saving money in the long run by going new. We can assist you with our in-house roof financing, too.

Whatever Your Central Florida Roof Needs, Sheegog Contracting Is Here to Help

As a locally owned and operated Central Florida roofing contractor with years of experience, Sheegog Contracting is here to make a new roof simple. No matter the current condition of your roof, we’ll be glad to walk through your options in person and answer all of your questions.

From start to finish, we help you get the job done with our unique five-step roofing process. The full scope of work and schedule are provided in writing, and you always have direct access to a dedicated project manager.

On the day of your roof installation, we get started early and work late.

During the summer months, we may need to take a brief break during the hottest part of the day. Still, many roofing projects can be done in just one day, and nearly all are done within three days. We’ll always work within your schedule and treat your property with respect.

Contact us to find out more or get started.


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