Florida can brag about a whole 1350 miles of the coastal area. This aspect of Florida is a significant tourist attraction. Also, many people fall in love with Florida beaches and sea-ward views. Waterfront houses and residential spaces are preferred here. However, one should also mention that Florida weather can be very harsh and unpleasant sometimes. It can be positively dangerous with its scorching hot summers, thunderstorms, and unexpected hurricanes.
The unpredictable weather events have forced the authorities to revise the construction codes to include more specific clauses. Now the Florida building codes contain precise instructions that insist on the synthetic underlayment. The codes also instruct homeowners on the precise spacing of fasteners, and staples are not allowed. All joints should be taped in the sheathing, and retrofitting is recommended as frequently as possible. They also recommend meticulous roof periodic mandatory inspections. All these assiduous measures on the part of the authorities show the need for taking Florida weather seriously when you install your roof.
These extreme weather conditions make it necessary for homeowners to choose their roofing materials prudently. It should be resistant against the hot sun, strong gales, occasional hurricanes, and frequent thunderstorms.
When we consider the above factors, we zero in on five popular roofing materials – Metal, ceramic tiles, concrete tiles, and asphalt shingles.
1. Metal roof
Practical advantages: Metal is the most suitable roofing material for Florida weather. There are ordinary metal roofing and also standing-seam metal roofing. Since it is fastened to the roof structure or locked with each other, as in standing seams, the wind does not displace them. It is not affected by the heat of the Florida sun. The shining surface of the metal roofing reflects sunlight to a great extent, and so reduces the inside temperature of your home. It is also fire-resistant and water-resistant. At the same time, it is easily available in the market.
Aesthetic advantages: – Metal sheets are available in a wide range of colors and shapes from which you can select according to your preference. Now you can get artfully shaped metal sheets. Some are even shaped like tiles. Metal roofing gives your house elegance and style.
Disadvantages: – The most talked about disadvantage of metal roofs is that it is noisy during rains, but when the ceilings are adequately muffled, this is manageable. Another downside is that you need specialized roofers to install a metal roof properly. It sometimes proves to be disadvantageous. A third disadvantage is that the upfront cost is higher than many other roofs. But then, its longevity is considerably higher than other materials.
2. Ceramic tiles
Practical advantages: – Ceramic tiles are wind resistant. The tiles are often locked with each other at the seams and they hold well during storms. It is also rot resistant and you don’t have to worry during the rainy season. Ceramic tiles are fire-resistant to a great extent. Being a bad conductor of heat, the sun’s heat doesn’t disturb your living space. During the winter it prevents the inside heat from escaping, thus keeping your home warm and cozy. It is highly energy efficient.
Aesthetic advantages: – Ceramic tiles give your house a graceful rustic beauty. It suits all types of intricate architecture.
Disadvantages: – The first disadvantage is that it is easily broken and the flying debris can damage your roof considerably. Another disadvantage is that you will need sturdier roof frames to hold the weight of the tiles. During continuous rain, the moss spores in the atmosphere are likely to settle on the roof and germinate to form moss patches which require frequent cleaning of the roof. It is also difficult to walk on the roof because of the brittle nature of the tiles.
3. Concrete tiles
Practical advantages:– Concrete tiles are sturdy and durable. It is wind, water, and fire resistant. Sun does not affect concrete tiles. It is not as breakable as ceramic tiles. It will survive even flying debris like tree limbs. Concrete tiles are highly durable.
Aesthetic advantages:- Concrete tiles are available in many colors and shapes now. By selecting a suitable color you can project it as your style statement.
Disadvantages:- The greatest disadvantage of the concrete tiles is their weight. You will need an extra strong roof frame and it will incur a sizeable expense.
Practical advantages:- Asphalt shingles are the most popular roofing material because they are highly affordable. You do not have to spend much on the roof structure. Almost all the roofers do asphalt installation flawlessly and so, it is easy to get an expert roofer for it. With the availability of fire-resistant treatment, you can make asphalt shingles fairly fire-resistant. It has longevity of 25 to 30 years.
Aesthetic advantages:- The present market offers Asphalt shingles in a wide range of colors. When artfully installed, your roof can look very chic.
Disadvantages:- Asphalt tiles are affected by extreme weather conditions in Florida. It needs constant cleaning and maintenance. The wind blows them away, and the sun curls them. Rain causes extensive bio-growth. So an asphalt shingle roof needs constant inspection and upkeep.