Five Best Alternatives to Asphalt Shingles

Alternatives to Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles are the most common materials on residential roofs thanks to their proven durability and efficiency of installation and repairs. However, not all property owners desire this type of roof. So what are the best alternatives to asphalt shingles?

This article focuses on steep-slope roofing materials as opposed to low-slope materials that are frequently found in commercial roofing.

Top Five Alternatives to Asphalt Shingles for Your Roof

Here are the best options to consider when property owners choose not to install asphalt shingles:

  1. Concrete Tile

    Concrete tile roofs are the second-most common roof material installed on residential properties in Colorado. Tile roofs are very durable and well-ventilated, making them a great roof system for Colorado roofs. Note: if transitioning from asphalt shingle to tile, a structural engineer should be consulted to ensure the roof frame can support the additional weight of the tile roof system.

  2. Brava Roof Tile

    Installing a synthetic/composite tile, such as Brava Roof Tile, provides homeowners with an incredibly long-lasting, durable, and aesthetically/architecturally pleasing roofing material option. Brava composite tile is a top alternative to natural slate, cedar shake roofing, and traditional Spanish clay tile.

  3. Standing-Seam Metal

    Metal panel roofs are some of the most durable and longest-lasting roofs available. Roofing metal is most commonly 24 gauge steel with a special coating to ensure the metal does not rust or lose its color for the duration of its life (Kynar 5000 coated metal has a 45 year color-retention warranty!).

  4. DaVinci Synthetic Tile

    Synthetic roof systems, such as DaVinci roofscapes, are designed to appear like genuine slate stone or wood shake. They do an incredible job, so much so that many old-school roofers actually prefer DaVinci roofs over genuine slate and shake. DaVinci roofs retain their color for decades and are impact-resistant, so you can depend on their beauty to hold strong on your roof for the long-term.

  5. Stone-Coated Steel

    For those that want all the durability of a metal roof but prefer the traditional shingle/shake appearance, stone-coated steel is a winning choice. The 26 or 28 gauge steel is formed with a specific profile and coated with ceramic granules. Stone-coated steel roofs are gaining in popularity in the Colorado market.

Stone Coated Steel Roof westlake pine crest shake
Stone Coated Steel Roof

When To Choose Alternatives to Asphalt Shingles

There are several reasons why a property owner might choose an alternative to asphalt shingles. There are no shortage of roofing material options, and property owners have the right to choose the best material for them. Here are some of the reasons to not install asphalt shingles:

  • Ventilation – certain roof systems provide additional built-in ventilation compared to shingles. Your attic can and should be ventilated no matter what material is installed. But roofs built with concrete tile and stone-coated steel are designed to be elevated off the roof deck, meaning more ventilated air flows under the roof.
  • Appearance – Asphalt shingles, even architectural shingles, have a distinct look. Many customers have a desire for their roof to have a different appearance. This leads them to choose an alternative such as metal roofing, among others.
  • Regulation – in certain areas, asphalt shingles are no longer allowed to be installed. This includes certain HOA communities as well as some other local governing bodies. When your area does not allow asphalt shingles, one of the five options above may be a great fit.

Reasons To Stick With Asphalt Shingle Roof Materials

While there are many homeowners that desire one of the alternative materials above, most are still choosing asphalt shingles for their roof installation. What are some of the reasons?

  1. Durability – innovations in asphalt shingle technology from manufacturers like Owens Corning have resulted in increased asphalt shingle durability versus prior decades. Modern asphalt shingles have been proven to last years beyond the shingles of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Not to mention the ability to choose impact-resistant asphalt shingles for those that live in hail-prone areas.
  2. Efficient Installation – asphalt shingle roof systems are simple to install. Especially for certified and trained crews like ours at Sol Vista Roofing. This means that your asphalt shingle roof replacement may only take one day (depending on the size/shape of your roof).
  3. Repairability – asphalt shingle roofs are surprisingly simple to repair, which can keep future maintenance costs low.
  4. Budget-Friendly – Asphalt shingle roofs are still some of the most economically prices roofing options available. With the long expected lifespan of modern shingles, the friendly price-point is very attractive to many property owners.

Whether you choose asphalt shingles or one of the alternatives listed above, be sure to find a roofing company you trust to perform the work!