A quick trip through the European countryside will reveal just how popular wood shakes and cedar shingles are in that part of the world. They look great in combination with the predominantly wood frames and sloping roof style of the average home. Of course they are functional in the European climate - otherwise they would not be so popular - that is generally temperate all year round. In the middle of Germany it never gets colder than 30 degrees fahrenheit in the winter and warmer than 80 degrees fahrenheit in the summer.
What are Wood Shingles?
Wood shingles are rectangular pieces of tempered wood that are designed to cover roofs and sidewalls. They are often made from recycled materials and recycled wood that would otherwise go to waste. A mixture of wood varieties gives each wood shingle a distinctly mixed colour. Seen together on an entire roof this makes for a beautiful array of light and dark browns.
Whether or not wood shake roofs are as functional in the American Southwest is another question indeed. It is a question worth exploring for roofer companies and homeowners in Monterey who might be in need of a new roof. Certainly from a visual perspective wood shingles offer an more appealing alternative to the traditional asphalt variety. However, any homeowner knows that they cannot make decisions solely on visual appeal.
Luckily there are some other benefits to wood shingles than simply visual appeal. Here is a rundown of some benefits and drawbacks to the wood shake and cedar shingle roofing style:
Strong Resistance to the Elements - Cedar shingles are often treated to be resistant to the elements. For most of the elements they do not even need any support, however. The natural preservatives that exist inside the wood make it resistant to moisture, UV, insects, and more. Most cedar shingles are factory treated to be resistant to fire and even fungus growth. Protection against all these special info elemental forces is something that asphalt shingles cannot claim to be.
Natural Insulation - Another great benefit to cedar shingles is their natural insulation capability. Wood is adept at creating a breathable connection between the inside and outside of the home. It is very able to keep the strong beams of the sun out of the house while at the same time view it creating a shady environment inside that stays cool all summer long.
Durability - In warmer climates wood shingles will last for a long time. While they may not be able to remain sturdy in the cold New England winter, in the Southwest the cedar will have not issues dealing with the dry heat.
Hopefully these benefits to wood shingles will help inform the next roof installation decision. As the Europeans have shown us, cedar shingles have a lot more to offer than just a bit of eye appeal.