different types of roofing materials

As a homeowner, you can reasonably expect that you will have to make some investments into your home –– which includes your roof. You want to make sure that your roof can keep you cool during the summer months, warm in the winter months, and protect you and your family from the elements.

But, what kind of roof is best? What kind of material should I choose? Are some materials better than others? 

These are all suitable questions and they ultimately depend on your budget, the climate that you live in, the type of home you have, and your personal preference. As well, you also have to consider what materials the Indianapolis roofing contractor that you decide to use has experience installing and what they recommend as well (since some houses can only take certain types of shingles).

However, we will get more into the specifics in a moment so keep reading to learn more about what roofing materials you can expect to find and what you should be shopping for.

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles are made from a fibreglass mat that is saturated with hot asphalt and are one of the more common types of shingles found on homes. These types of shingles can be found in 2 different styles including the traditional 3-tab and also the architectural roof shingle. These types of shingles are relatively cheap and can last a homeowner up to 20 years.

If you do decide to opt for these types of shingles, make sure they pass the ASTM D3161 Class F and ASTM D7158 Class H wind tests as well as the AC438 durability test.


Slate shingles are another popular yet expensive roofing material not only because they are natural but also because they come in a variety of colours depending on the type of deposit. Slate shingles are eco-friendly, waterproof (perfect for damp, wet climates), fireproof, and are fungus and mould resistant. They can also last a homeowner up to 100 years –– so a pretty competent roofing material.

On the downside, these types of shingles are heavy and are easily broken especially if they are stepped on. So, if you live in an area that is prone to a lot of hail, you might want to choose a different material.


If you are looking for durable and weather-resistant roofing material, then metal roofing is the way to go. Metal roofing has come a long way from only coming in a couple of styles to now being manufactured in a variety of colours, styles, and textures to simulate any style imaginable.


Metal roofing can last up to 60 years and is waterproof, fireproof, weather-resistant, and very energy efficient. Corrosion depends on the material and the price point is moderate –– somewhere between asphalt and concrete tiles.


Roof tiles can come in an array of colours, styles, and textures as well as be made from a variety of materials like concrete and clay. Tiles are very aesthetically pleasing and a durable option for any homeowner. If you live in places that are dry and hot, then opting for roof tiles is definitely an option and roof tiles can last you between 50 to 100+ years (if they are high quality).

Roof tiles are also weather resistant and can withstand major weather phenomena like tornadoes, hurricanes, and earthquakes. However, they are heavy and are fragile especially when stepped on.


Solar tiles are just like they sound –– mini solar panels that function as shingles for your home. They are more expensive than traditional solar options but are perfect for those looking to be more energy sustainable. Solar tiles come in many styles and can withstand heavy wind and hail storms as well.

Picking The Best Roofing Material For Your Indiana Roof

While this list is certainly not complete, it does cover some of the major categories of roofing materials that a homeowner can expect to find on the market. Each of these roofing materials can make for a great roof, however, the roofing material doesn’t really matter unless you consider other aspects of a great roof like the quality of materials that you purchase and the reputation of the Indianapolis roofing contractor that you choose (making sure that they install your roof shingles properly).

Just like with roofing materials, make sure that you shop around for the best Indianapolis roofing contractor in your area. Look for things like qualifications, certifications, customer reviews, reputation, reliability, price, and more. It makes sense that you should not only choose the best roofing materials but also the best roofing company as well.



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