Choosing the Right Roofing System | Print |
There are a number of things to consider when selecting a new roof system. Of course, cost and durability head the list, but aesthetics and architectural style are important, too. The right roof system for your home or building is one that balances these five considerations. The following roofing products commonly are used for steep-slope structures. Asphalt shingles possess an overwhelming share of the U.S. steep-slope roofing market and can be reinforced with organic or fiberglass materials. Although asphalt shingles reinforced with organic felts have been around much longer, fiberglass-reinforced products now dominate the market. Organic shingles consist of a cellulose-fiber (i.e., wood) base that is saturated with asphalt and coated with colored mineral granules. Fiberglass shingles consist of a fiberglass mat, top-and-bottom layers of asphalt, and mineral granules. Asphalt shingles' fire resistances, like most other roofing materials, are categorized by Class A, B or C. Class A signifies the most fire-resistant; Classes B and C denote less fire resistance. Generally, most fiberglass shingles have Class A fire ratings, and most organic shingles have Class C ratings. A shingle's reinforcement has little effect on its appearance. Organic and fiberglass products are available in laminated (architectural) grades that offer a textured appearance. Zinc or copper-coated ceramic granules also can be applied to organic or fiberglass products to protect against algae attack, a common problem in warm, humid parts of the United States. Both types of shingles also are available in a variety of colors. Regardless of their reinforcing type and appearance, asphalt shingles' physical characteristics vary significantly. When installing asphalt shingles, NRCA recommends use of shingles that comply with American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards-ASTM D 225 for organic shingles and ASTM D 3462 for fiberglass shingles. These standards govern the composition and physical properties of asphalt shingles; not all asphalt shingles on the market comply with these standards. If a shingle product complies with one of these standards, it is typically noted in the manufacturer's product literature and on the package wrapper. Wood shingles and shakes are made from cedar, redwood, southern pine and other woods; their natural look is popular in California, the Northwest and parts of the Midwest. Wood shingles are machinesawn; shakes are handmade and rougher looking. A point to consider: Some local building codes limit the use of wood shingles and shakes because of concerns about fire resistance. Many wood shingles and shakes only have Class C fire ratings or no ratings at all. However, Class A fire ratings are available for certain wood shingle products that incorporate a factory-applied, fire-resistant treatment. Tile—clay or concrete—is a durable roofing material. Mission and Spanish-style round-topped tiles are used widely in the Southwest and Florida, and flat styles also are available to create French and English looks. Tile is available in a variety of colors and finishes. Tile is heavy. If you are replacing another type of roof system with tile, you will need to verify that the structure can support the load. Slate is quarried in the United States in Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia. It is available in different colors and grades, depending on its origin. Considered virtually indestructible, it is, however, more expensive than other roofing materials. In addition, its application requires special skill and experience. Many old homes, especially in the Northeast, still are protected by this long-lasting roofing material. Metal, primarily thought of as a low-slope roofing material, has been found to be a roofing alternative for home and building owners with steep-slope roofs. There are two types of metal roofing products: panels and shingles. Numerous metal panel shapes and configurations exist. Metal shingles typically are intended to simulate traditional roof coverings, such as wood shakes, shingles and tile. Apart from metal roofing's longevity, metal shingles are relatively lightweight, have a greater resistance to adverse weather and can be aesthetically pleasing. Some have Class A fire ratings. Synthetic roofing products simulate various traditional roof coverings, such as slate and wood shingles and shakes. However, they do not necessarily have the same properties.

Is a metal roof right for me? Well, that depends. Do you live in an area like Naples Florida where the sun shines most of the year?   Do you live in an area that has thunderstorms with strong winds and heavy rain during the rainy season? Do you live in a hurricane risk area? Do you live in a high-end residential area with beautiful homes that are set off by gorgeous Florida landscape? If so, a metal roof is very likely right for you, but let the experts at Amherst Roofing explain its benefits.

What does a metal roof look like?

Metal roofs look exactly the way you want them to look. You might choose a metal shingles roof, or a stone coated steel roof that looks like natural slate. Or you may choose one that resembles clay roof tiles. Some steel roofs look like hand split wood shakes, and others look like shingles. And in between that most recognizable of sheet metal roofs, the copper roof, and the corrugated sheet metal panel used for farm outbuildings, there are dozens of other styles, colors, textures and designs to choose from. The most popular residential choices are the classic rib panel and standing seam panels. One of the many styles available could be a perfect fit for the architectural design of your home.

Steel roofs are hot, right?

Sheet metal reflects about 70% of the heat it gets from the sun. Heat retention is minimized, causing less heat to be transferred into the building itself. Asphalt shingles actually retain more heat than a metal shingles roof. Also, metal roofs provide insulation during a typical sunny day, another reason metal roofers at Amherst Roofing in Naples Florida offer clients steel roofs.

What about attracting lightning?

A metal roof is no more likely to attract lightning than a clay tile roof, because lightening is attracted to the highest point, not necessarily to sheet metal. S.W. Florida roofs in high terrain areas generally carry lightning rods, whether metal roofed or not. Actually, metal roofs dissipate an electrical charge such as a lightning strike, which can help avoid a roof fire. Metal roofs are also non-combustible.

What about wind damage to a metal roof?

If you are still asking, is a metal roof right for me, consider this: All the various styles of metal roofing are very wind resistant. Many are tested to withstand hurricane force winds, and some metal roofing applications carry a 120 mph warranty. A metal shingles roof can stand up against asphalt shingles in a wild storm, thumb its nose at hailstorm damage, and shed torrents of rain without a wrinkle. With metal roofing, periodic inspection of seams and fasteners are about all the maintenance that is required.

Is a metal roof difficult to install?

Some metal roofs might be put in by amateurs, but when the roof you are installing on your high-end residence carries a warranty of at least 50 years, you want to be sure your metal roofers have the experience and skill to do the job correctly. So, if you are simply putting a sheet metal cover on the shed where you keep your lawn mower, go ahead and do it yourself. However, when the underlayment and sealing and fasteners can make all the difference in the world to your steel roof investment, and to your warranty conditions, you should be sure to hire the best metal roofers available to you. Amherst Roofing in Naples Florida is ready to help you install your new steel roof when you finally decide.

Is a metal roof right for me?

In the S.W. Florida area, more and more high end residential roofing is made of sheet metal or metal shingles roofing. Beauty, versatility, longevity, and reliability are the reasons to choose metal roofing.

Call Amherst Roofing of Naples, Florida today for more information.

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