A Quick Guide to Roofing Materials for Your Home

When it's time to have a new roof put on your home, or when you're having a new home constructed, you want to ensure you know all your options and choices for materials. Some roofing materials may last longer than others and may better protect your home from the elements, and some are more eco-friendly than others. At the same time, you may want to ensure the roof looks as good as the rest of the home. Note a quick guide to roofing materials for your home, and then discuss these with a roofing contractor so you can make the right decision.

1. Composition Shingles

This may be the most commonly chosen option for roofs; these shingles are made with fiberglass between two layers of asphalt. One benefit to these shingles is that virtually every roofer will know how to install them, so you don't need to find a specialty contractor, and they are usually the least expensive material. If you're on a budget, this can be the right choice. 

However, note that while asphalt shingles are recyclable, it does require excessive amounts of heat to melt them down and fabricate them for reuse, and these recycling facilities are not as common as you might expect. Many old asphalt shingles simply wind up in landfills because of this, so they may not be the most eco-friendly choice.

2. Metal 

Metal roofs are very good at insulating your home and, because they're installed with layers of foam or another material underneath them, they aren't as loud during rainstorms as many homeowners assume. That layer underneath the metal absorbs the sound of rain, hail, and the like. Metal is also very easy to recycle, so it is an eco-friendly choice.

Installing a metal roof may require some skill and expertise, so you may wind up paying more for the actual installation than you would if you chose asphalt shingles. A metal roof may last much longer than shingles, however, so the investment may be worth it in the long run. Ask a roofer about the expected lifespan of a metal roof versus asphalt shingles so you can determine the right choice for your overall budget.

3. Wood Shingles and Shakes

One advantage of wood shingles and shakes is that they have a very traditional look to them, and you might paint them a color that easily coordinates with your home's siding or brick. These can often be made from reclaimed wood and are easy to recycle, so they're an eco-friendly choice. Keep in mind that wood shingles need to be cleaned regularly to remove moss and mildew, so they may require more maintenance than other roofing materials.

If you have any questions, consider calling a local roofer, such as a specialist in roofing in Newcastle.