How to replace your roof

Choose the right material

There are six types of shingles: asphalt, wood, slate, tile, metal and composite.

Asphalt shingles are the most popular. They come in numerous colors and styles, are the most cost-effective and can last 30-plus years. But they may blow off in high winds.

Wood shingles and wood shakes have aesthetic appeal for some homeowners, but many brands carry the lowest fire rating, and some building departments don’t allow them because of flammability concerns. Average lifetime is 30 to 40 years. This material should not be used on low-pitched roofs.

Slate is low maintenance and durable, but it’s expensive to install. Fake slate weighs less and costs less but can also be less durable than the real thing.

Tile shingles, like those often seen on Spanish-style homes, can be made of clay or concrete. They are heavy but can last at least 50 to 75 years.

Metal roofs can last 40 to 100 years. They can be made to look like shingle, shake, slate or tile roofing but may be noisy when it rains.

Composite shingles can mimic the appearance of pricier shingles. They’re made of plastic and are less expensive, yet they can still last for decades.