Worlds of David Darling
Encyclopedia of Science
   
Home > Encyclopedia of Alternative Energy

wood shake roofing





wood shake roof
Cedar wood shake roofing
Credit: Westshore Roofing, Inc

Wood shakes offer a natural look with a lot of character. Because of variations like color, width, thickness, or cut of the wood, no two shake roofs will ever be the same.

Wood offers some energy benefits, too: it helps to insulate the attic, and it allows the house to breathe, circulating air through the small openings under the felt rows on which wooden shingles are laid.

A wood shake roof, however, demands proper maintenance and repair, or it will not last as long as other products. Mold, rot, and insects can be a problem. The life cycle cost of a shake roof may be high, and old shakes can't be recycled.

Most wood shakes are unrated by fire safety codes. Many use wipe or spray-on fire retardants, which offer less protection and are only effective for a few years. Some pressure-treated shakes are impregnated with fire retardant and meet national fire safety standards.

Installing wood shakes is more complicated than roofing with composite shingles, and the quality of the finished roof depends on the experience of the contractor as well as the caliber of the shakes you use. The best shakes come from the heartwood of large old cedar trees, which are difficult to find. Some contractors maintain that shakes made from the outer wood of smaller cedars – the usual source today – are less uniform, more subject to twisting and warping, and don't last as long.


Eco-shake

The eco-shake® is an innovative roofing material comprised of 100% recycled materials, reinforced vinyl and cellulose fiber. The eco-shake shingle is designed to resemble and replace wood shake shingles.

The eco-shake has a Class A fire rating and a Class 4 impact rating, the highest ratings achievable from Underwriters Laboratories (UL®). The eco-shake is lightweight and has been installed in over 45 states, Canada, and the Caribbean. It performs well even in extreme weather conditions with no cracking, fading, or curling. An eco-shake roof requires no maintenance and is so durable it is backed by a 50 year transferable warranty.

For more information, visit the eco-shake website.


Related categories

   • ROOFS AND ROOFING MATERIALS
   • BUILDING AND ARCHITECTURE