Cedar Roof Shingles: Installation Costs, Pros & Cons

The average cost of a cedar roof is $9,750-10,500 installed on a simple 1,500 sq.ft. ranch home. If you are looking for a durable, green roof that boasts great curb appeal, cedar shingles is an ideal choice.

It is an eco-friendly material, that offers excellent protection for your home, along with a distinct natural look, and significant energy savings.



Average Roofing Costs:
Low End
$4931
Mid Range
$6288
High End
$8360

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code



Average Cost Of Cedar Shingles

Across the US, homeowners report spending $6.5-7 per square foot to install cedar roofing shingles. Your total roof replacement cost will vary greatly, based on the quality of the wood you select, as well as complexity of labor. Shingles alone run about $2.5-4 per square foot depending on wood grade.

If you love the more rustic, hand-made look of cedar shakes, be prepared to spend more! A cedar shake roof can be 20-30% more expensive compared to shingles, because wood shakes are thicker, and last longer. A good quality cedar shakes roof costs $6.5-9 per square foot. So a roof installed on a 1,500 sq.ft. ranch style home will cost $9,750-13,500.. Shake materials cost about $3.5-5 per square foot, depending on the grade.

Keep in mind that wood roofing is a specialty field. Therefore, if you want you roof to last and remain leak-free, you should only hire a pro who specializes in this material.
Typically, experienced roofer will charge $70-80 per hour to install cedar roof shingles. The following factors will increase your labor charges:

– Number of stories (if your home has 2 or 3 stories, you will have an labor up-charge of 35-45%)
– Penetrations, such as chimneys, vents, skylights, etc
– Roof valleys
– Any irregular roof shapes, presence of dormers, etc
– Very steep pitch
– Condition of the roofing substrate (your roofer will determine whether it will require repair or replacement, before installing a new roof)
– Local labor rates (in high income areas contractors can charge 20-35% more compared to areas with more modest incomes)

Lastly, don’t forget to budget in the cost of tearing off the old roofing material, which can be $2-3 per square foot


Pros

Cedar wood Shingles roof on a stone house

Here are the top reasons why so many homeowners want to install cedar wood roofs on their homes, despite the availability of many other roofing materials.

Exceptional beauty

While cedar wood costs more than many other types of roofs, no synthetic material can match its natural beauty. Most products are manufactured from Western Red Cedar, which grows in the the western part of the United States or western Canada. These shingles are rich in color and can range from a light straw color to a reddish pink. They are sown on both sides for a tailored appearance.

Over time, as cedar wood ages, it develops a distinctive silver grey color, that is truly unique. So much so, that manufacturers of asphalt and metal roofs go to great length to replicate this look in their product lines.

If your home is located in a picturesque area with a lot of natural elements, it will look stunning with topped with a cedar roof. Georgian, bungalow, cottage, farmhouse and cabin style house architecture is the best fit for this roofing material.

Durable and long-lasting

Cedar is considered to be the toughest wood in the world. This means that a roof made of cedar is highly durable, and is the only material that actually adds strength to the structure. It can produce a gain in absolute strength, adding about 4 lbs per square foot. Additionally, it has natural preservatives that resist moisture, decay and insect damage.

However, a cedar wood needs to be properly maintained to achieve maximum longevity. If well cared for, it will last up to 50 years, which is almost double the service life of asphalt roofing.


Energy savings for your home

The cells in wood allow it to function as a natural insulator. This means that cedar shingles will provide natural insulation for your home, helping you conserve energy. In the summer, this material can keep your attic 28°F cooler in severe heat. This will translate into over 20% savings on your cooling system!

In the winter, this roof will help keep your house naturally warm. Since shingles and shakes are heavy, they actually act as a second insulation layer for your home. These properties are particularly advantageous for homeowners who live in cold climates. Your home will loose a lot less heat through a cedar shake roof, significantly reducing your heating bills.

Environmentally friendly building material

Cedar Shingles on a house with white brick siding

Most roofing materials require large amounts of energy for manufacturing. However, cedar wood roofs are produced and processed in a highly energy efficient way.

This minimizes the material’s carbon footprint from the outset.

Moreover, it does not consume resources, such as petrochemicals, gas, or oil.

The CWC (Canadian Wood Council) reports that “Compared to wood construction, steel and concrete embody and consume 12 – 20% more energy, emit 15 – 29% more greenhouse gases, release 10 – 12% more pollutants into the air and generate 225 – 300% more water pollutants.”

Cedar is a renewable, biodegradable, and pollution reducing material.

At the end of its long service life, it can be recycled, instead of filling our overflowing landfills.


Main Disadvantages

Many cedar roofing products are not fire resistant. However, for an additional charge, some can be specially treated in a factory with fire resistant chemicals to achieve a class B or C fire resistance rating.

Moreover, a similar treatment is available to prevent algae growth. However, it is not possible to get both treatments on one roof. So you can determine which of the two potential problems presents more of a threat in your area, and go for that type of sealant.

It is also important to know that to maintain its durability, longevity and looks, a cedar roof must be maintained of on a regular basis. Over the years, rain extracts the natural preservatives from the wood and leaves it vulnerable to deterioration. As the preservatives are depleted, water enters the wood, causing it to expand and contract. This process creates cracks, and allows algae, moss and fungi to grow.

To prevent and minimize the damage, you would need to check out the roof after it rains. Moreover, 2-3 times a year, you would need to remove any algae, moss and fungi, without letting it grow an accumulate on the roof. Necessary maintenance also includes power washing the roof, and subsequently applying a special sealer.



Average Roofing Costs:
Low End
$4931
Mid Range
$6288
High End
$8360

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code



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