Dwight's Roofing

Cedar VS Architectural Shingles

In Edmonton and area, a vast majority of homes have architectural or asphalt shingles installed on their roofs.  Asphalt shingles are practical, durable, and reasonably priced, so builders and home buyers alike readily accept them.   When the time comes for home owners to consider replacing their roof, it is typical that they would be quite content to use the same shingle material again. Cedar vs architectural shingles is a choice people in Edmonton often have to decide.

Whether a first-time new home buyer or maybe the first time needing to replace your roof, you may not even be aware of the different options available for roofing material.  There are several options which include wood shingles, which are typically referred to more commonly as cedar shingles.

In the same way that homeowners will research and consider different types of flooring, fixtures, windows, or cabinetry, the same level of research should take place when considering roofing material.  The exercise of creating a Pros and Cons list for asphalt shingles versus cedar shingles will allow you to make a more educated decision about the type of new or replacement roofing material for your home.

Pros and Cons for Cedar and Asphalt Shingles:

Asphalt Shingles

  • Easier to install and repair/replace
  • Shorter installation time
  • Available in a variety of designs and colours
  • Typically less maintenance compared to other materials
  • Greater fire resistance
  • More susceptible to weather-related damage such as wind, ice, hail, etc.
  • Prone to age-related issues such as granule loss, buckling or cracking
  • The shortest average lifespan of all roofing materials
  • For the most part, unable to recycle with landfill disposal being the primary option for disposal

Cedar Shingles

  • Cost-effective when considering the 30-year average lifespan (up to 10 years greater average lifespan versus asphalt)
  • Cedar shingles are a natural insulator which makes them more energy-efficient and helps to reduce energy costs
  • Cedar shingles are eco-friendly as they are a renewable resource
  • By offering a greater aesthetic appeal, Cedar shingles can potentially increase your home’s resale value
  • Solid construction and less susceptible to damage from hail, high winds, or infestation
  • Higher initial purchase price
  • More costly to install
  • More expensive to repair or replace
  • Cedar shingles require regular maintenance to prevent mould and mildew growth

As mentioned above, compared to asphalt shingles, cedar shingles are more expensive to install simply because of their composition. While it can be challenging to provide an exact ratio in terms of a cost comparison, several other factors will add to the overall cost of installing cedar shingles over-and-above their base price. These factors will include:

  • The thickness of the shingles
  • Quality of the shingles
  • Overall square footage of the roof
  • Pitch of the roof
  • Number of angles/peaks
  • Installation costs (relative to the three previous points)

Other aspects to consider before investing in cedar shingles would be:

  • Weight of the cedar – can the present structure support it?
  • Building codes – which materials are permitted in the area?
  • Architectural controls in the neighbourhood – aesthetic compatibility or conflict with neighbouring homes?
  • Local weather/environment – Edmonton and surrounding area experiences extreme weather throughout the year, so consideration needs to be given for any special pre-treatment.

Despite the higher initial investment for cedar shingles over asphalt shingles, there are several long-term and cost-effective advantages to installing or replacing a roof with cedar.  It is essential to do your research and, more importantly, seek information from a reputable roofing company experienced in dealing with cedar shingles. 

Whether considering Asphalt or Cedar, your new shingles will need expert installation. The experts at Dwight’s Roofing can install or replace a beautiful and long-lasting roof for your home or business.

For more information, contact one of our experts at Dwight’s Roofing today!

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Detailed guide to help you understand the difference between cedar and architectural shingles.
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Dwight's Roofing
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