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The Pros and Cons of a Cedar Shake Roof

The Pros and Cons of a Cedar Shake Roof

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May 18, 2010

Cedar shake roofing adds a rich, rustic look to a home and is commonly seen on older homes, or on newer homes in upscale neighborhoods. However, it is pricier than asphalt shingles, so it pays to weigh the benefits against the cost before buying.

Cedar Shake Has Lasting Appeal

  • Cedar shake is made from wood so it brings a classic look to a home, particularly when paired with wood siding or a brick exterior. Many people also add some cedar shake to the exterior walls of the house to add that extra design appeal.
  • Not only does it look good, it's also built to last, resisting hail and heavy winds.
  • With the proper installation, cedar shake roofing has a higher insulating value than asphalt shingles.

Cedar Shake Costs

The major disadvantage to cedar shake roofing is the cost, as it can be four or five times higher than asphalt shingles. The life expectancy is higher, however. Cedar shake roofing typically lasts for twenty to twenty-five years, compared with fifteen to twenty years for asphalt.

Cedar shake also is more susceptible to fire than other products, but it can be treated with a fire retardant during production. If you are buying cedar shake roofing, consult your insurance company to see whether the material will affect your premiums.

Maintenance for Cedar Shake

Maintenance is another consideration with cedar shake roofing, as it is more prone to water and sun damage. Talk with a contractor about keeping tall trees trimmed to avoid rotting or algae growth.

The Roofing Contractor

As with any roofing, the contractor is the key to success. Look for a contractor who has experience with cedar shake and can guide you on which products to use.

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