Clients are always asking what types of roofs do well in the coastal sections of Florida. This is why we compiled a homeowners’ guide to the best type of roof for coastal Florida homes. The varying extremes in weather (that Florida is known for) can cause tremendous damage and wreak havoc to the roof of your house. Our Naples Roofing Contractors are always on call in the event of major roof damage; however, we recommend roofs that are built out of one of the categories listed below. 

There is a silver lining to all of this. There are many different options and roofing types to choose from. If you live in one of the hurricane zones, the type of roofing materials that you choose will need to be resistant against sunlight and heat, as well as tropical storms. 

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Clay Tiles

Homes and structures have had roofs made out of clay tiles for centuries. Clay tiles have never gone out of style for a few reasons. This incredibly durable and beautiful roofing material is also expensive when compared to other options due to the amount of material that is used in these thick structures. The reason why they are so expensive is also that they have been known to withstand extremely bad weather, including winds as high and over 150 mph and 2 inch + hailstones. Clay tiles add a lot of value to a home’s resale value because they withstand weathering for a very long time. 

This building material is also a great type of roofing material for hurricane zones because clay is made from the earth, is easily recyclable, and energy-efficient. Ventilation is necessary for the hot summer months and the curved shape of these tiles will not trap hot air or temperature. Their heavy thermal mass will help insulate Florida homes during the colder season and reflect heat during the warmer months. 

Clay tiles require a low degree of maintenance. Maintenance of clay tiles is only needed if tiles are broken, which generally only happens with very severe storms or hurricanes. The good news is that they can be individually installed and easily fixed. 

The only cons to clay tiles are that they are expensive and very heavy. So, you’ll have to check with a contractor to make sure that your roof can support the massive weight of a clay tile roof. Clay tiles are also difficult to install, so you’ll need to employ the help of a licensed and insured professional roofer. 

This is a picture of a roof inspection plywood structure underneath.

Traditional Asphalt Shingles 

Asphalt shingles dominate the market. It is – by far – the most popular roofing material. This is due primarily to its low cost and ease of installation. It is one of the easiest roofing materials to install, especially when you compare it to metal or clay tile installation. 

When you think of a roof, you probably picture asphalt shingles without realizing it. They make up almost 75% of the roofing material market in Florida due to their cost and ease of installation. There are also a huge number of color and texture options available for traditional asphalt shingles. 

Asphalt shingles are made up of fiberglass matting, an asphalt coating, and some sort of stone or ceramic granule to give durability to the material. The most common form of asphalt shingle is the traditional 3-tab variety. 

Also known as dimensional or laminate shingles, architectural shingles are made up of the same materials like asphalt shingle, but are thicker and heavier, thus providing more protection against the coastal elements. Asphalt and architectural shingles won’t stand up to winds past 100 mph, so keep that in mind when installing a new roof or choosing a roofing option for your Florida home.

Metal Tiles or Metal Roofing 

This is a picture of a metal roofing options.

This is, by far, the best option for protecting your home from strong winds and any concurrent damage. Metal roofs are extremely long-lasting and durable. They can withstand hail and very strong hurricane winds. Especially when you compare it to asphalt, metal roofs have about 3x the life expectancy of your average asphalt roof. A quality field-locked standing seam and metal aluminum shingles can last you 50 to 60 years. A quality metal roof made out of copper or zinc can last well over 100 years. 

Metal roofs are much better at withstanding the elements than clay tiles or asphalt shingles, as clay tiles are prone to shattering if hit by debris, and asphalt shingles are easily ripped off at mph over 100. Metal roofs can withstand winds approaching 160 mph and are unaffected by such things as fungus, mildew, and moss. Moss and fungus growth can cut the lifespan of an asphalt roof in half. For metal roofs, mildew is not an issue. Metal roofs are also indestructible to small animals, unlike a traditional wooden roof that can be hacked at by small rodents or animals like raccoons. 

Metal is durable and sustainable, unlike wooden roofs such as cedar. They can also stay cooler than asphalt shingles during the hotter summer months. 

Best Type of Roof for Florida 

Not all things are created equal. This is especially true for roofing materials. For overall durability, we would have to suggest a metal roof. It is very impact-resistant, absorbs heat well, and can last for a lifetime. If the price is an issue for you, consider architectural shingles or clay tiles. While asphalt shingles are the most popular choice in Florida due to its low cost, it is not our first choice for severe weather protection, something that is necessary if you live in a coastal region of Florida. 

If you are looking for a roof replacement or more advice on the best type of roof for coastal Florida homes, give Tornado Roofing a call at (239) 319-4119 for the best roofers in Southwest Florida!