Built Up Roof Basics

In an industry where innovation is king and roofing materials come and go, built up roofing has stood the test of time. It’s used regularly on flat roofs and has firmly established itself as “old reliable” in the roofing world. Because of that don’t expect any bells, whistles, or lace trim with these roofs: The formula for a quality built up roof is more or less the same as it was over 100 years ago. And the old adage definitely holds true: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Read more: Built Up Roof Basics

The Different Roofing Materials

Knowing your options is the first step to making the right replacement roofing choice. There are roofing materials available that have been tried and tested and have been around for centuries. Other roofing materials are relatively modern and take advantage of innovative technologies that offer the look of traditional roofing materials but with better performance and at a fraction of the cost. Below is a list of some of the most popular and readily available replacement roofing options available, as well as their pros and cons.

Composition Shingles

Composition or composition asphalt shingles are one of the most popular and widely available roofing materials. Composition shingles are comprised of a backing (like fiberglass or cellulose), asphalt and mineral granules. These types of shingles are very easy to work with, making them a good option for those who want to give DIY a go. However, composition shingles can be more expensive than other types of roofing materials.

Wood Shingles

Wood shingles are another common and popular roofing choice. They are usually made from cypress, redwood, pine or western red cedar. Wood roofing shingles offer a beautiful aesthetic and are an especially good choice for more steeply-pitched roofs. However, one of the cons of wood shingles is its susceptibility to fire and pests. While wood roofs can be treated to be fire retardant, they will not be fireproof and over time its fire-resistant properties might reduce.

Metal Roofing Shingles

Metal roofing shingles come in a variety of materials, including: steel, aluminum and copper. It also comes in several different forms such as sheeting and tiles. Metal roofing shingles offer a smooth texture, however, if you do not like that particular style, you are able to buy stone-coated steel roofing, which has the texture of asphalt roofing but has the longevity and durability of metal.

Clay or Concrete Roofing Tile

Tile roofs that are not comprised of metal or composite are usually made from clay or concrete. Tile roofs are popular due to their durability, but they are also extremely heavy, making them unsuitable for some homes. You need to ensure your underlying roof structure is designed to withstand the heavy load of clay or concrete roofing tiles. Tile roofs can also be expensive, with clay tiles generally costing more than concrete tiles.

Slate Roofing

Slate roofing is made from real stone and is one of the most durable roofing materials on the market. This roofing material is incredibly striking and comes in several shades of slate to suit almost any home and style. Similar to clay or concrete roofing, however, a slate roof is quite heavy, so your roofing frames needs to be designed to support a heavy load. And, with beauty and durability comes a big price tag. Slate is one of the most expensive roofing materials available.


Additional Things to Consider When Choosing the Right Roof Replacement

Cost Vs ROI

A good roof can set you back several thousand dollars, depending on the size of your home and the roofing material you choose. That is why it is important to consider how long you plan on staying in your home before you choose a replacement roof material. If you need a new roof but plan on moving soon after, you might be tempted to make the most economical choice to suit you, rather than installing an expensive roof for the next owner to enjoy. However, a high quality new roof is a majorly attractive selling point to home buyers. And if you are planning to live in your home longterm, it makes sense to choose something you love as it will be with you for a long time.

Using Energy Efficient Roofing Materials

Energy efficiency should play an important role in helping you choose the right roofing material for your replacement roof. Energy efficient roofing, also known as ‘cool roofing’ offers homeowners both financial and environmental benefits. Energy efficient roofing basically helps reduce your home’s cooling needs by helping deflect the sun’s energy, which in turn keeps your house cooler naturally.

The Architectural Style of Your Home

The architectural style of your home should come into consideration when choosing the right roof replacement. Most homes are suited to composition asphalt shingles but certain types of homes, such as historic homes, may be better suited to a different style of roofing such as tiles or slate. In these situations, faux roofing materials are especially good as they can mimic slate or wood shake roofs at a fraction of the cost and with less maintenance.


What is a Cool Roof?

A cool roof is a roof that has been designed to reflect more sunlight and absorb less heat than your average roof. Cool roofs can be made from a highly reflective type of paint, a sheet covering, or reflective tiles or shingles. Almost every type of building would benefit from a cool roof, but it is important to consider the climate you live in and a few other factors before you decide to install one.

The Benefits of Installing a Cool Roof

A cool roof offers a range of benefits for a building and those who live in it, including:

  • Reducing utility bills by decreasing air conditioning needs
  • Improving the comfort of indoor spaces that are not air conditioned (e.g. the garage)
  • Decreasing the roof temperature, which can extend the service life of a roof

Furthermore, cool roofs do not just benefit homes and buildings, but can also benefit the environment by:

  • Reducing local air temperature, also known as the ‘urban heat island effect’
  • Lower electricity demands, which can help stop power outages and brownouts
  • Reduce power plant emissions, such as carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and nitrous oxides by reducing cooling energy used in buildings

How do Cool Roofs Work?

Cool roof metals include unpainted, pre-painted and granular-coated metal. Basically, unpainted metal roofs inherently reflect more solar radiation than asphalt shingles, which are known to absorb and hold heat. Cool roofs made of pre-painted or granular-coated roofing furthermore re-emit most of the solar radiation they absorb, helping to make buildings and houses much cooler.

“A highly reflective and highly emissive painted or granular-coated metal roof can re-emit up to 90 percent of absorbed solar radiation. That’s optimal for reducing energy consumption,” said Renee Ramey, executive director of the Metal Roofing Alliance. “For homeowners who have installed cool metal roofs, not only will they benefit by reducing their long-term energy costs, there’s still time to take advantage of the tax credit extension to save even more money.”

What is the Metal Roofing Alliance (MRA)?

The Metal Roofing Alliance (MRA) was formed in 1988 and represents metal roofing manufacturers in the United States and Canada. It was created in order to help educate consumers about the numerous benefits of metal roofs. The MRA’s main objective is to increase awareness of the benefits, durability and money-saving advantages of quality metal roofs for homeowners. The MRA also works to provide support for metal roofing businesses and contractors. Eric Novotny, founder and president of Windows on Washington, sits on the MRA’s national, six-member expert panel, which educates consumers on the benefits of metal roofing.

For more information, please visit the MRA. Or for more information about ENERGY STAR certified products, head here.


A New Roof - Is It Worth It?

There are many benefits to a new roofing system. Some homeowners balk at the cost of a roof, especially if they are planning on selling their home. Yes, a roof is a significant investment, but like any sound investment, there are returns.  Here are the top 6 benefits that you can expect when your replace your roof with Cannon Roofing.

Return on Investment (ROI)
Combined estimates put a quality roofing system ROI at approximately 70%. This means that you will recoup around 70% of each dollar spent on this particular home improvement when you sell your home. Because a new roof has a likely lifespan of 20 or more years, it is worth investing in quality materials and expert professional installation from the start.  Spending wisely once to secure the best materials and most proper installation means no additional, unforeseen expenditures down the road.

Energy Savings
In addition to your return on investment, when considering a new roofing system, there are a number of other factors to take into account. A professionally installed roofing system from a trusted manufacturer can help you significantly reduce your energy costs and make your home more comfortable. Some of today’s quality roofing systems have increased insulating values. Likewise, “cool” roofing options from manufacturers like Englert, Certainteed Solaris, Firestone, Decra and Classic Metal Roofing Systems can increase your heat deflection and save you even more money in energy costs.

Comfort Level
One of the most important things your roof does is keep the temperatures within your home stable and comfortable. An old roof is far less likely to do its job to keep warm air in during colder winter months and keep your home cool during the warmer summer months. This can increase your energy cost significantly in just one season not to mention the compounding long-term costs.

Safety and Security
Beyond return on investment and energy savings, there are also safety issues. Old roofs nearing the end of their usable life may present some possible safety hazards like water damage and the associated risk of health compromising mold and mildew. Additionally, an old roof is far more likely to suffer significant damage during inclement weather like high winds, heavy snowfall or a severe storm.

Curb Appeal
A structurally sound roofing system using the best available materials is an investment in your family’s home. A nice looking and expertly constructed roof can add to the curb appeal of your home for your own enjoyment or when you are selling your home. A quality roof installed by a reputable roofing contractor will help you stay safe, comfortable and may reduce your energy costs.

A professionally installed roof with a strong warranty is a great feature and provides added value when selling your home. In today’s competitive real estate market, features that add value and curb appeal can make all of the difference when it comes to listing price, selling price and how quickly a home is sold. An aging roof is a very hard sell for any potential buyer because of the fear of being saddled with a costly, unplanned repair after the significant expense of purchasing a new home.   
Want more information on different types of roofing and the benefits of each?  Call the experts at Cannon Roofing today and let us help you navigate through your roof replacement project.