Best Types of Roofs for Southern Homes

Living in the south, especially along the coast, can be a dream come true. Coastal living is wonderful, with its beautiful scenery and sunny weather. The downside to coastal living is when tropical storms or hurricanes come to call. Becoming knowledgeable about the different types of roofing materials that work best in your area, will help you protect your home. Choosing the best type of roof for your southern home will save you time, money, and stress for years to come.

The following are questions that need to be answered when choosing the best roofing material:

  1. How heavy is this material and will it require special framing?
  2. Is the material available in a variety of colors and styles that complement your home?
  3. Does the material meet the fire codes in your local area?
  4. Are there special installation and maintenance issues to consider?
  5. Does this material offer good performance in extreme weather conditions that are common in your area?
  6. Are the materials eco-friendly and recyclable?
  7. What is the cost, life span, and warranty for this product?

These are the most popular roofing material choices:

  • Asphalt shingles

Eighty percent of residential roofing uses asphalt shingles because they hold up in most weather conditions, easily installed, and less expensive than other materials. However, they may have a shorter lifespan in hot, dry climates.

  • Slate roofs

These roofs have the longest lifespan of any roof material. They stand up to moisture, snow, and heat. They are, however, expensive to install and repair.

  • Metal Roofs

These roofs come in steel, aluminum, copper and alloy strips and have a long lifespan, however, they can be noisy, especially in hard rain. This material adequately reflects the sun’s rays, keeping your home cooler in summer.

Special Considerations for Beach Homes

Homes located on the coast need to consider the wind, salt, and humidity.

Wind-driven rain can be horizontal which can get under the overlapping roofing material, causing additional damage.

Constant sunlight and heat are also factors that impact the life of a roof.

Clay tiles work well for coastal living because they don’t break down in the salt spray and stand up to high winds. Clay tiles usually carry a 30-year warranty, but it is not uncommon for them to last much longer, 50 to 100 years. Also, clay tiles allow a better airflow to the water barrier/underlayment.

Natural slate can be another long-lasting option. Fifty-year warranties are typical. Natural slate is significantly heavier than other roofing materials which may mean your roof framing may need to be reinforced.
Both clay tiles and natural slate cost more than other roofing materials, however, based on their longevity, may prove to be a bargain. Another consideration is their structural integrity when hit by falling objects such as hail or tree branches, which may cause them to crack.

Wood shake roofs have a natural beauty that can hold up near saltwater and can withstand winds up to 245 mph. Even though the installation cost is moderate, wood shake roofs have a lifespan of an average of 30 years and take lots of routine maintenance. Wood must be treated to repel insects, and installation is fairly labor-intensive.

Inland Southern Homes

Inland, southern homes need to withstand a wide range of temperatures. If you decide on asphalt shingles, a wise choice would be algae-resistant shingles used in high-humidity climates. Metal roofs are popular in hot climates due to their ability to reflect heat and long lifespan. Terra-cottaslate, and concrete tiles are all good choices in warm climates due to their heat resistance and longevity.

Southern living comes with all sorts of advantages. Lots of warm, sunny weather with beautiful scenery make southern living highly appealing. Choosing the right roof will keep your home safe in all the various weather conditions in your area.

Harper Roofing has been a trusted name in the Charleston area since 2009. Harper uses quality Owen Corning materials to build or replace your roof. Check out our  5 star rating on Houzz.