If your home is in a high-altitude area, the type of roofing you need for your home is different than a typical asphalt shingle roof. You have other things to consider, such as resistance to winds and snow loads. Sometimes, you might want to consider alternatives to typical asphalt shingles, such as slate, tile, or other synthetic roofing materials that are designed for high-altitude areas. The following information will help you choose the right materials for the needs of your home:
What Is High-Altitude Roofing?
High-altitude roofs are an excellent choice for homeowners in high-altitude areas, such as the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. Not only do they provide insulation and superior weather resistance, but they are also often more aesthetically appealing than other materials.
Roofing is a critical component of your home's structure and must be designed to meet all applicable building codes. This includes meeting wind engineering standards that apply to tall buildings; this is especially important in high-altitude areas where the air tends to be much drier and windier than in other regions.
Why Is High-Altitude Roofing Different?
The main difference between high-altitude roofing and standard roofing is the greater likelihood of extreme weather conditions. Rain, hail, sleet, snow, high winds, heavy snows, sun exposure, and other factors contribute to an increased risk of damage.
The two most common conditions you'll encounter are hail damage and wind damage. Hail is more common in the Rocky Mountain states, the Midwest, and portions of the Northeast. It causes dents or penetrations in shingles or shakes. Wind damage is more common in the Southwestern U.S., including Arizona, Colorado, and Texas.
Roofing Materials for High Altitude Areas
The best roofing materials for high-altitude areas are those that can withstand the worst weather conditions. High-altitude factors you should consider when choosing the right material for your home's roof include:
- Wind Resistance—The first thing to look at is the wind resistance of the material. Your roof should withstand high winds and other natural disasters without sustaining too much damage. Also, it is important to choose a material that can withstand any possible weight from snow loads and debris on the roof, especially in severe weather with strong winds.
- Heat Resistance—Some high-altitude roofs are also exposed to extreme heat during the summer months. Roof materials tend to accumulate heat from the sun, which gets trapped underneath them. This can significantly raise the temperature of your home, which can end up causing damage over time. High-quality roofing materials will be able to resist heat build-up effectively while keeping your home cool year-round.
- Waterproof—Strong rains and snowstorms are common in high-altitude areas, so waterproof properties are essential for good roofing material. Make sure that your choice can provide maximum water resistance so that leaks don't develop due to snowmelt on your roof.
When choosing your high-altitude roofing, materials like metal and tiles are often good choices because they possess these qualities.
When you need a roof for your high-altitude home, you are going to need to do some planning. Contact a residential roofing contractor for help planning the roof project for your home. Go to websites for roofing companies to learn more.