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Atlanta Roofing: Article About Wooden Shake Roofs

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Wooden shingle and shake roofs are some of the most beautiful and enduring roofs available to homeowners, and for many years, wooden roofs were the norm. Over the last century, asphalt shingle has replaced wood as the roofing product of choice because it is economical to purchase and easy to install. However, wooden roofs are once again rising in popularity because of their natural beauty, their longevity and their low impact on the environment. Homeowners who are interested in installing a new wooden shake roof can work with a certified Atlanta roofing contractor in order to make the most of their roofing budget.

Wooden roofs offer many advantages over asphalt shingle. Asphalt products degrade much more readily than wood and don't stand up to the elements nearly as well. Even with exceptional care, an asphalt shingle roof has a limited lifespan, usually only about 20 years. Wood, on the other hand, can be expected to last 30 to 50 years or more with proper care and maintenance.

All types of roofing should be inspected annually in order to maintain the integrity of the roof and to ensure that the warranty stays valid.

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Wooden roofs are no exception, and homeowners should be aware that wooden roofs will need to be cleaned and maintained regularly.

As a wooden shingle roof ages, it undergoes some changes that are both normal and desirable; it transitions from a reddish brown color to a more weathered gray. This does not indicate damage but is simply part of the aging process. Most wooden roofing shakes and shingles are cut from red cedar, a wood that is valued for its durability, straight grain, low weight and resistance to decay.

Even with all these enduring properties, wooden roofs do need to be cleaned regularly. As the wood ages, microscopic cracks open in the wood. This poses no problem unless lichen, moss, mold or fungi invade the roof. These types of plant matter can cause damage over time, but they are generally very easy to remove by spraying the roof periodically. When debris or plant life is allowed to stay on the roof, moisture is retained that can eventually create rot. Regular inspection can help homeowners determine how frequently the roof may need to be cleaned, but generally a good cleaning will last between six and eight years. Providing a little extra care for a wooden shingle roof should ensure that it provides excellent coverage and protection for the home for many years.

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