Wood Shake Roofing

Wood shakes (more commonly referred to as cedar shake or cedar shingles) can actually be made from any type of wood. Shake roofs offer a natural, classic look with plenty of character and charm. With a more rustic look, shake roofs look great in the mountainous areas of Arizona, New Mexico, California, Nevada and the other mountain states.

Because of variations like color, width, thickness, or cut of the wood, no two shake roofs will ever have the same look. Shake roofing can mesh well with a wide variety of architectural styles. It can also be environmentally friendly, if the cedar is harvested and processed in a sustainable way, in contrast with roofing materials made from nonrenewable resources like petroleum products.

Advantages of Shake Shingles: 

  • Durability: Cedar resists insects and UV damage naturally, and it also withstands hail and heavy storms.
  • Natural Insulation: Wood is an excellent insulator since it is filled with numerous large cells that trap air keeping a home warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. In addition, wood allows the attic to breathe (connect to Your Roof Needs to Breathe), circulating air through the small openings under the felt rows on which wooden shingles are laid. 
  • Lifespan: The roof can also last for 30 to 40 years, unlike some other roofing materials, which can have much shorter lifespans.
  • Resale Value: The attractive look of shake shingles will add to a home's resale value.

Is there a fire danger?
It is true that shake shingles are not always allowed by building codes in some communities, particularly in the Southwest. However, there are pressure-treated shakes that are impregnated with fire retardant that do meet national fire safety standards.

Wood Shake Alternatives
There are all kinds of alternatives to real wood or cedar shake shingles. Many materials, including stone, cement, vinyl, plastics and other composite materials are being formed to look like wood shingles.

Maintenance and Repair
Shake roofing can be prone to insect damage, moss buildup, and can be vulnerable to moisture. Inspection of the roof, and repair of cedar shingles should be done at routine intervals; allowing a small problem to go for a period of time, will result in an even larger problem later.


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