Wood Shake Roofing
Wood shake roofs are
gaining in popularity for many reasons. First, wood shake, or
specifically, cedar shake roofs, are stylishly distinctive. But, they
need maintenance and the application of chemicals to keep them in
good shape, i.e., permanently fire resistant. Clearly, wood shakes
are not maintenance free.
Positive qualities of
cedar shake roofs include their extreme wind resistance, the fact
that they have twice the insulating value of standard asphalt, and
the fact that they resist hail damage. They are also a prestigious
roofing material, which has caused the roofing industry to develop
simulated cedar shakes.
The enemies of cedar
shakes are water and sunlight and while cedar contains naturally
occurring chemicals that help to preserve the wood, called
extractives, these chemicals dissolve easily in water. Cedar shake
roofing can last without special treatment to add these chemicals
back into the shakes for up to ten years, a short lifecycle compared
with other roofing materials.
The key to maintaining
a cedar shake roof is to keep it clean and free of moss, fungus,
and debris so that when it rains, it will dry quickly. Tree branches
should be kept clear of a shake roof.
preservatives are available for application by spraying to a clean,
dry roof such that it can add dramatically to the lifecycle of the
roof. Because of the dangers of slipping and falling inherent in roof
maintenance, it makes sense to employ professionals to provide such
service. Another maintenance measure that works well for cedar shake
roofs is washing with oxygen bleach, in a powder form that mixes with
Though still relatively
rare in new construction, wood shingle roofing is gaining popularity
for high-end custom homes. A number of suppliers also provide
realistic wood-shingle replicas in alternative materials.
Cost? Generally twice
the cost of an asphalt roof. Lifespan? Generally 20 to 30 years.
Shingles and shakes are often thought of as hard to differentiate,
but in fact, are recognizably different. A shake is typically thicker
than a shingle and provides a heavier shadow line.
For installation questions or to get a free estimate, find a local, certified roofing contractor.
Many homeowners love the high-end look of wood shake roofing, yet are turned off by the required maintenance and damage susceptibility. If you are considering wood shake roofing for your home, then we have all the information you need to get started.
You can expect to pay between $6 and $9 per square foot for a wood shake roof, including installation. The price will vary depending on the type and quality of the wood used, as well as the cost of labor in your area. Get a couple price quotes from licensed roofing contractors to get a better idea of the cost.
Wood shakes are wind- and hail-resistant.
Many homeowners prefer wood shakes for their high-end appearance.
Wood shakes have twice the insulating value of standard asphalt.
Wood shakes require regular maintenance and the application of chemicals to keep them fire resistant.
They can be susceptible to damage from both water and sunlight.
Wood shakes are more expensive than other materials, like asphalt shingles, for example.
If properly maintained, wood shakes are considered a durable roofing option. They have a lifespan of 20 to 30 years.
Much of the required maintenance associated with wood shake roofing is the application of chemicals to help protect the roof and preserve it for years to come. These are usually applied by spray on a clean, dry roof. Another maintenance measure that works well is washing with oxygen bleach in a powder form that mixes with water.
Other than that, it’s very important to keep a wood shake roof clean and free of moss, fungus and other debris.
Common Questions and Answers
What is the difference between a shingle and a shake roof?
Shingles and shakes are often thought of as hard to differentiate, but are in fact recognizably different. A shake is typically thicker than a shingle and provides a heavier shadow line.
What are some of the options available with wood shake roofing?
Wood shakes come in a variety of colors, finishes, wood types, thicknesses, and cuts of wood, making each wood shake roof drastically different.
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