Wood Shingles and Roofing Shakes

Wood shingles and shakes are are  attractive roof materials.  They are sometimes made from pine, but more often from redwood or cedar because these woods have natural water-resistant qualities.  Wood shingle roofing offers an eclectic look which is suited to traditional homes and some contemporary forms of architecture as well.

Homeowners who are attracted to wood shingles choose them for their many strengths.  Wood shakes and shingles:

  • Provide a natural look of quality.
  • Are environmentally friendly since they are made from natural products.
  • Offer good durability when a quality shingle is used.
  • As a rigid product, they stand up well to wind and hail.
  • Provide a unique look in every roof due to variations in wood color and texture.
  • Offer better resistance to fire when they are pressure-treated with fire retardant.

Wood Shingles Description

Wood roofing material is produced in either shingles or shakes. Here’s a brief description of each to give you an idea of which style might work better for your home.

Wood Shingles: Shingles are sawn on both the top and bottom to give them a more finished, consistent look.    They are easier to install than shakes for this reason. They are installed by overlapping the wood shingles in a staggered pattern.

Wood Shakes: Shakes are typically split rather than sawn, at least on the top side.  This gives them a more traditional and rustic look, as well as a more uneven look.  They can be more difficult to install than wood shingles and care must be made not to split the shake.  They are also installed in an overlapping, staggered pattern.

Cost of Wood Shingles and Shakes

Wood shakes and shingles are  very affordable roofing products. They cost between $2.50 and $5 per square foot, or $250 to $500 per roofing square (100 square feet).  Prices varying depending on the quality and type of the wood.  This puts them in roughly the same price category as asphalt shingles.

Wood Roofing Longevity

Longevity varies quite a bit.  A poor quality wood shingle or shake, without maintenance, may last as little as 15 years.  A top-quality cedar shake or shingle installed by a competent roofer and properly maintained can easily last 40-50 years.  The quality of wood shakes and shingles varies greatly, so take care to select higher-grade products for better performance and durability.

Where is Wood Roofing Used?

Wood shingles and shakes are used throughout the country.  They are especially popular on older, perhaps historic homes, on wood-sided or log homes, and on some upscale contemporary homes.


Wood Shingles and Shakes Articles and Guides

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How Much Does a New Roof Cost?

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