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Cedar shingle roofing: A complete overview

The modern roofing market is abundant with shingling options. While some solutions are relatively new and based on modern synthetic materials, the old approaches are still in great demand. For instance, even though wood was the primary material used for building homes hundreds of years ago, it’s still a common choice, especially for elegant mansions with a rustic touch. Shakes are the oldest type of wood roofing coverage. Back in the 19th century, they were hand-made by splitting pieces of wood into thin slabs. During the age of industrialization, sawmills made it possible to manufacture shingles. Hence, the processing method is the main difference between these materials - shakes are made by splitting wood while shingles by sawing. Both types of wood roofing are available today, with shingles being more common.

Cedar shingle roofing: A complete overview

Shingles and shakes can be made of wood with different weatherproofing and aesthetic features. The most popular material for today is western cedar. This roofing material is durable, weather-resistant, and has excellent thermal insulating properties. Below, we will take a closer look at wooden roofs and consider the difference between cedar shakes and shingles.

Wood roofing: Pros and cons

Most often, people choose roofings made out of wood for their appearance. This material looks natural, warm, and stylish. Being able to select from many tones, from yellow to amber and red, you can combine wooden roof shingles with different architectural styles. However, a good look is just one of the advantages of wood shingles and shakes. Cedar roof tiles have an average lifespan of 30 years while remaining intact for up to 50 years with the proper care. They possess excellent energy efficiency and insulation qualities, keeping your home cool in summer and warm in winter. They're thick enough to withstand windy weather. Besides, cedar shakes and shingles don't shrink or swell. They are treated with a fire retardant for better fire resistance. Nevertheless, they are not entirely fireproof.

A disadvantage of wood shingles is that they require more maintenance than other roofing types. Unlike synthetic solutions, cedar shakes are prone to algae and moss. The growth of fungi on the tiles' surface creates tiny cracks that get filled with debris, splitting the wood even further. Therefore, wooden roofing should be washed regularly. Besides, individual shakes may split or fall off sometimes, but they are also easy to replace.

What is best for your home - wood shingles or wood shakes?

As we’ve already mentioned, while wood shakes are hand-made by splitting wood, shingles are machine-cut, having a cleaner appearance. Besides, cedar shingles are cut more precisely, while shakes don’t create a flat look, still having a distinctive rustic appeal. If you opt for cedar shakes, you may need to find an experienced contractor who knows how to work with this material to ensure its long life.

While not wholly fireproof, cedar shingle roofs are generally more fire-resistant because they have a smooth surface on both sides. Given that shingles are stacked on top of each other, they can be an excellent solution for a cold climate, eliminating air leaks and keeping your home warm.

When it comes to creating a unique style, shakes can give your wood roof a more authentic feel and an eye-catching design. Homes built in a rustic style look great with cedar shake roofs because they can emphasize the traditional exterior. Generally, if you’re choosing between cedar shingles and shakes, you should consider the existing design of your home and think of what solution would be a better fit visually.

How much do wood shake roofing and cedar shingles cost?

Wooden shakes are more expensive than shingles because they are complicated to manufacture and install. Generally, the cost of cedar wood shingles is about 50% less than shakes. Shingles and shakes are sold in bundles that may cover about one-third of a square. The average cost of a bundle is about $130, so cedar roofing might cost you about $4 per square foot.

Given that the cost of a cedar shake roof is generally higher than that of shingles, you should expect to pay anywhere from $6 to $10 per square foot for shakes. Cedar shingles are a more affordable option, with prices ranging between $4 and $9.50 per square foot. Besides, to install a cedar roof without breaking the bank, you should also consider the labor costs in your region. Generally, the nationwide cost of wood roof installation ranges from $600 to $650 per square.

Why hire proven cedar roof installers for your project?

Cedar shingle roofs look appealing and offer multiple unique benefits. Still, if you want to make the most out of your new wood roof, you should entrust its installation or replacement to a proven roofing contractor. This is particularly important when choosing cedar shakes because they are more challenging to install than shingles.

To find the right professional, you will need to contact different cedar roof installers and discuss your project's details with each of them. Besides, you will also have to allocate time researching the market to figure out the prices in your area. Fortunately, contractor-matching platforms like HomeQuote offer a quick solution for finding certified roofers in different parts of the country. 

All it takes is to answer a few questions about your home's square footage, type of the roof, and preferable roofing material. Once your request is processed, you'll be provided with the local contractors' estimates who possess the necessary experience and meet your budget expectations.

Give our contractor-matching service a try to learn the average roofing installation prices in your area and connect with qualified roofers who have proven expertise in installing wood shakes or shingles. 

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