When you live in a hurricane zone, your home's roof undergoes a lot of wear and tear. Between the high winds, hail, and driving rainstorms, if you don't have a strong roof, you're going to find yourself calling your company for roofing repairs more often than you'd like. Thus, if you're in the position to have a new roof put on your home, it's important to choose one that's going to stand up to this wear and tear with minimal damage. Here's a look at three types of roofs that are particularly well suited for homes in coastal hurricane zones.
Metal roofs are typically inexpensive, durable, and easy to install. However, not all metal roofs are well suited for coastal areas. Steel roofs will fall into disrepair quite quickly, as the salt in the air will cause them to corrode. Thus, if you like the idea of a modern metal roof, an aluminum alloy is the best choice since this material is corrosion resistant.
Aluminum roofs are also a good choice for hurricane zones because they resist wind uplift. Whereas it is easy for a high wind to tear off a small shingle if it happens to be a little loose, the large, heavy roofing panels are less likely to become separated from the roofing underlayment when a strong gust blows in. Though some people are hesitant to have metal roofs installed in hurricane zones because they fear the sound of the rain on the roof will be noisy, this is not typically an issue as long as your roof is well insulated. The insulation will absorb the noise.
If you have a more traditional looking home and can't bear the thought of topping it with a modern metal roof, then slate roofing is another good choice. The slate tiles are heavy enough that the wind is not likely to lift them up. However, they may crack in heavy hail. Luckily, it is not too difficult or expensive to replace a cracked slate tile. Most roofing companies that work with slate roofs will offer this service at a reasonable rate.
Slate is a natural material, which also makes it an appealing choice if you're trying to "go green" with your building choices. It's impervious to the salt in the air in coastal regions. While you may pay a bit more for a slate roof upfront, it will likely be the last roof you every have to put on your home, since a hard slate roof will last 75 - 200 years.
Clay Tile Roofing
If your home as a traditional, coastal look to it, then a clay tile roof may be the ideal choice. Though they are now available in colors other than the traditional terracotta orange, their interlocking pattern still gives them a distinct style that pairs well with the beach house-type look. Clay tiles are durable, though slightly less so than slate, and they are easy to replace when they crack after a heavy hail storm. They generally cost less than slate, and in coastal areas, it may be easier to find a roofing company that works with clay tiles than one that works with metal or slate, since clay tiles are just so common.
Slate roofs last between 50 and 100 years on a home, and like the other materials on this list, they will not rot when exposed to long period of moisture.
All of the materials above are sturdy enough to protect your home in salty air and hurricane weather. Which one is best for your home simply depends on your preferences. Do you like a more modern look? Go with aluminum. For a more traditional look, slate or clay tiles may be a better bet.