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Everything You Need to Know About Cedar Shake Roof Replacements

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If you’re looking to add natural beauty and instant curb appeal to your home through an upcoming roof replacement, you may want to consider investing in a cedar shake roof.

In an are where most roofs are made of asphalt-shingles, cedar shakes offer a rustic, weathered appearance that will make your roof stand out amongst the other homes in your area. Besides their aesthetic benefits, what else should you know about cedar shake roofs?

On Tops Roofing has offered high-quality roofing services to residents in Raleigh and the surrounding areas for over 30 years. We always strive to help our homeowners through the replacement process, including teaching them about all of their roofing options.

If you’re interested in learning more about what it looks like to get a cedar shake roof replacement, this article is for you. Keep reading to find out what the replacement process looks like, plus four important factors to consider before choosing a cedar shake roof for your home. Let’s get started.

WHAT is a Cedar Shake Roof Replacement?

If you’re looking for a premium roof system made out of natural materials, a cedar shake roof may be the right choice for you. While they offer the same function as asphalt roofs, cedar shakes have incredible aesthetic benefits that set them apart from more common roof types. They also take four times longer to install than asphalt shingles.

wood cedar shake

When you choose a cedar shake roof replacement, your contractors will tear off your old roofing materials and install cedar shake roofing materials (cedar shake shingles, ridge capping, etc.) and other crucial roofing components.

If you’re interested in cedar shake shingles, you may have to wait a little bit longer to get a new roof. Cedar shake manufacturers make their shingles to order, meaning they don’t split the cedar sections until an order is placed. This means it could take anywhere between 3 to 8 weeks to get the materials for your new cedar shake roof.

4 Things You Should Know Before Choosing a Cedar Shake Roof

1. The 3 Types of Cedar shake Shingles

There are three types of cedar shake shingles: common, selects, and 100% straight grain.

  • Common Cedar Shake Shingles - These are the cheapest and least reliable of the three types. Common cedar shakes are made out of any part of the tree and are considered the leftovers of other higher-quality cuts. They are typically the first type of cedar shake shingle to split and warp. 

  • Selects Cedar Shake Shingles - These shingles contain a mix of the other two types, somewhere around 80% straight grain and 20% common. Your contractor should sort through the cedar selects to find the best quality shingles for your roof installation.

  • 100% Straight Grain Cedar Shake Shingles - These are the highest-quality type of cedar shake shingle. Each shingle is hand-selected and features a straight-grain. This helps to ensure that the shingles lay flat and won’t curl up over time.

If you’re planning on investing in a cedar shake replacement, you’ll get a higher-quality, longer-lasting roof with 100% straight grain cedar shake shingles.

2. The Materials Included in the Replacement

Wooden shingles aren’t the only components that make-up a cedar shake roof. Every roof features a combination of different roofing materials that work together to form a complete roof system. Here are some of the main materials and components that make up a cedar shake roof: 

  • Roof decking
  • Flashing
  • Underlayment
  • Drip edge
  • Ice and water shield
  • Cedar shake shingles 
  • Ridge capping 
  • Roof vents 
  • Pipe boots

It’s important to know about all of your roofing components so you know exactly what you’re getting when you invest in a new roof. You can read this article on the ten materials included in your roof replacement to learn more about the functions of each roofing component.

3. The Cedar Shake Roof Replacement Process

Your roof must be properly installed using high-quality materials to ensure it lives up to its lifetime. But what does the roof replacement process look like?

The first step towards a successful, long-lasting roof is finding the right contractor for your replacement. After choosing your roofer, the replacement process will begin.

On the first day of your replacement, your contractor will bring in a dumpster to catch old shingles and other roofing debris. They’ll also remind you to move your vehicles out of the driveway, cover your patio furniture with tarps, and take other steps to protect your property

Roofers installing cedar shake shingles

After the job site has been prepped, the contractors will start tearing off your old roof. They’ll inspect the roof deck, prepare it, and then start installing your new cedar shake roofing materials on top of it.

Once your new roof has been installed, your contractors will take several steps to make sure everything gets cleaned up. They’ll also perform a final inspection of your new roof to make sure the quality matches the high standards you expect when investing in a roof replacement.

This is just a brief look at what the replacement process looks like. You can read this article to learn more about what to expect during your roof replacement.

4. The Lifespan of a Cedar Shake Roof

A new roof is an investment. Just like with any other investment, you want to make sure it lasts. So, how much life can you expect to get out of your new cedar shake roof? 

With proper installation and regular maintenance, you can expect to get about 30 years out of a cedar shake roof. Investing in 100% straight grain cedar shake shingles and other high-quality roofing materials could allow you to get up to 50 years out of your roof.

However, if you live in a very moist or especially dry climate, a cedar shake roof might not be the best choice for you. For example, cedar shake roofs are not as common here in North Carolina due to our humid climate. The high humidity levels prevent cedar shake shingles from drying out, which causes them to age faster.

How Long Does it Take to Replace a Cedar Shake Roof?

Now that you know some crucial information about getting a new cedar shake roof, you may be wondering how long the whole replacement process will take.

Replacement times can vary according to the type of cedar shake shingles you choose, the complexity of your roof, and even current weather conditions. You can read this article to learn more about how long your roof replacement could take.

If you live in Raleigh and need help with your roof, don’t hesitate to fill out the form below for an inspection, a free estimate, or to find out if a cedar shake roof will work for your home. With over 900 roofs worked on each year, we know how to provide the high-quality roofing service that homeowners, like you, are looking for.

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