Choosing the right type of roofing material is important for several reasons. It is integral to the look of your house, it can affect the heating and cooling of your home, and certain materials last longer than others. Furthermore, different types of roofs will actually protect differently from fires. A fire resistant roof can help to preserve parts of your home in the unfortunate event of a fire. If fire is a big concern, which roofing material should you choose?
Metal is an obvious choice for a fire-resistant roof because metal does not burn. Most modern metal roofs are made of an alloy of copper, iron, zinc, and other materials. They are particularly useful if your roof is sloped because metal tiles will sit strong even on a sloped roof. Some homeowners don’t like the look of metal and would prefer shingles or cedar shake. Many modern metal roofs can be made to look like shingles or cedar shake but with the added benefit of being fire resistant. They might cost you a little bit more money, though.
Slate is a somewhat expensive option, and you have to find the right roofer to install it. There are some special precautions required when installing because slate is brittle. It can be nearly indestructible and fireproof but it can easily crack if installed incorrectly. Slate is also fairly heavy, which means that you have to have the right support for it. A roof will have to be inspected, and support structures might have to be erected to support the weight.
Clay tiles are very popular, especially throughout the American Southwest. The style looks a lot like Spanish missions from old Mexico and the Southwest. Clay is an affordable option for many people who want to have a fire-resistant roof without the expense of slate. Clay obviously does not burn and can protect you in case of a fire.
Concrete is a heavy roofing material that is more often used in commercial structures. Commercial buildings often have flat concrete roofs, but it’s not unheard of for a home. It works best on flat roofs.
These four materials are the highest rated materials for roofing. When roofers evaluate the fire resistance of different materials, they evaluate them based on how a fire performs on the exterior of a home. All four of the named materials are Class A materials, which means they’re the most resistant to exterior fires.