There are a number of different roofing materials to choose from. As a homeowner you may decide to break away from the majority of the country and choose a material other than asphalt shingles. One roofing material that has endured for centuries is the wood shake or shingle. Let’s profile the wood shake as a roofing material including its advantages and disadvantages.

Qualities of the Wood Shake

Wood shakes have been used for centuries as a roofing material. Many homeowners love the material for its aesthetic appeal and staggered pattern. The wood shake also matches many rustic styled homes, or homes found in a forested of mountain setting. Most wood shakes are manufactured from cedar.

Advantages of the Wood Shake

Very aesthetically pleasing, some homeowners couldn’t imagine their cabin or country cottage with anything but the wood shake. Modern wooden shakes are more durable than you would believe. Many manufacturers now coat or impregnate their wood shakes with preservatives to prolong the material against weather, mold, mildew or insects. These preservatives mixed with the wood’s naturally occurring compounds give a good average lifetime for the wood shake.

Wood shakes are also fairly good against severe weather like high winds and hail. The wood shake seems to have a good “bend but not break” quality that lets it weather any adverse conditions.

Disadvantages of Wood Shakes

While many manufacturers coat their wood shakes with flame retardants this material is still known as a fire hazard. In some states and jurisdictions probe to wildfire wooden roofing materials are being disallowed altogether and in some cases homeowners are being told they have to change their roofing material.

It is the same way with insurance policies covering wooden shake roofs. Many insurers are raising premiums or cancelling policies altogether for wood shake roofs, especially in areas that are susceptible to wildfire. Your policy will depend on where you live and who the insurer of your home is.

Overall wood shakes are a great fit for many homes but you need to make sure they don’t put you at any risk. Talk to your local roofing contractor to find out if wood shakes are right for your home.