Tile vs. Shingle Roof: Which Roof Is Right for Me?

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Are you building a new house soon or making renovations to your existing home? In any case, you’re probably trying to decide what type of roofing material to use. 

You’ve narrowed it down to a binary decision: a tile vs. shingle roof. However, you need help deciding between the two. Fortunately, we can help you with that matter. 

So, without further ado, here’s a comparison in the battle between a tile roof vs. shingle roof. 

The Pros of Shingle Roofs

Shingle roofs come with a variety of positive attributes. They’re also a very common roofing choice.

We’ll discuss the most prominent of these attributes now. 

Affordable

If you’re looking for the most affordable roofing material available, you needn’t look any further than shingles. These can be installed for between $3.50 and $5.50 per square foot, a paltry expense when compared to those of many other materials. 

Also, because they require very little in the way of upkeep, their maintenance costs are very low as well. Typically speaking, you’ll only need to pay for soap and water. 

Low Maintenance

As was just noted, shingle roofs require very little maintenance. In most cases, they just need to be cleaned on occasion. This will help to keep algae at bay and will also maintain the roof’s pristine look. 

It’s important to note that on occasion, shingles will fall off due to inclement weather. If this occurs, you will have to replace those missing shingles. This will cost you a few more bucks. 

Aesthetically Safe

Though they might not be all that exciting when it comes to aesthetics, shingle roofs are an exceedingly safe option. Why is this? Because they’re used by almost everyone and are entirely normalized. 

So, if you just want your home to blend in with the others, there’s really no debate: shingles are the best option for you. Available in a variety of colors, shingles match with homes of all kinds. 

The Cons of Shingle Roofs

Though they offer a good many benefits, shingle roofs have their downsides just the same. These downsides include the following. 

Lack of Durability

Shingle roofs will generally thrive for around 20 years. Once they hit this point, they become discolored and start to curl. This isn’t a short amount of time by any means, but it’s much shorter than what is offered by some other roofing materials, including tiles. 

The big tradeoff is that they’re cheap—both to install and to maintain. So, while you might not get tons of traction out of them, you’ll still get decent bang for your buck. 

Struggle With Temperature Fluctuations

Another problem you’ll find with shingle roofs is that they struggle with temperature fluctuations. So, if you live in an area with exceedingly cold winters and blazing hot summers, your shingles are bound to crack and curl much earlier than they normally would. 

Note, extreme heat alone can wreak quite a bit of havoc on shingles as well. This is why you don’t tend to see as many shingled homes in states like Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada. 

The Pros of Tile Roofs

Tile roofs come with more than their fair share of pros. These include the following. 

Extreme Durability

Tile roofs are the most durable roofs on the market. These can last well over 100 years, withstanding the effects of rain, sunlight, and even physical trauma. If you’re looking to get the absolute most out of your roofing material, tile is the option for you. 

Low Maintenance 

Like shingles, tiles are exceedingly low-maintenance. In most cases, they just require cleanings from time to time. This can be facilitated with a power washer, making it a fairly quick and convenient task. 

Note that like shingles, tiles can break or fall off. So, from time to time, it might be necessary to replace individual tiles. 

Aesthetically Unique 

The vast majority of houses in the United States contain shingles. Relatively few of them contain tiles. As such, tiles provide a unique aesthetic that might help your home to stand out among the rest. 

That is unless you’re in the southwestern United States. As was explained above, due to the heat, roofing tiles are fairly common in that part of the country. 

The Cons of Tile Roofs

Now that we’ve covered the pros of tile roofs, let’s move on to the cons. They include the following.

Exceedingly Expensive

There’s no getting around it: tile roofing prices are exceedingly expensive. In fact, they’re one of the most expensive roofing materials on the market. Whereas shingles can be installed for between $3.50 and $5.50 per square foot, tiles generally cost between $10 and $25 per square foot. 

It’s important to note, however, that tiles last much longer than asphalt shingles. As such, they can actually end up being the more cost-effective option in the long-run. If you’re planning on being in your home for the rest of your life, these would probably give you the most bang for your buck. 

Extremely Heavy

Unfortunately, not all homes are built to withstand the weight of roofing tiles. When added up, tiles can subject homes to an additional 800 to 1,000 pounds. For some structures, that’s just too much to handle. 

So, before going through with the installation, make sure to have your home tested by a seasoned and knowledgeable roofer. The last thing you want is for your roof to slowly destroy your house. A roofer will ensure that it doesn’t. 

Tile vs. Shingle Roof: Which Is Right for You?

In truth, both tile and shingle roofs are worthwhile. When it comes to deciding the battle of tile vs. shingle roof, it’s really down to personal preference. Assess your needs and choose the material that best accommodates them. 

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