A Cedar shake roof has a distinctive appearance which people often find appealing, but using cedar shakes for roofing has a number of advantages beyond basic aesthetics. When considering roofing options, cedar shakes are certainly something to think about. Although a roof made with cedar shakes can be more expensive to install than some roofing materials, the cost may be outweighed by the numerous benefits, including long term durability.
Cedar shakes are made by carefully cutting down and splitting pieces of cedar, a softwood which grows in many regions of the world. In some areas, cedar is a very traditional roofing material, due to the natural abundance of cedar trees, and many roofs with wooden shingles are made from cedar. A shake roof tends to have a more rustic look, and it can mesh well with a wide variety of architectural styles. It can also be environmentally friendly, if the cedar is harvested and processed in a sustainable way, in contrast with roofing materials made from nonrenewable resources like petroleum products.
One big advantage to a cedar shake roof is durability. Cedar resists insects and UV damage naturally, and it also withstands hail and heavy storms. The shakes should remain flat, with minimal shrinkage and splitting over their lifetime, and if the roof is installed properly, minimal loss of shakes should be experienced in heavy weather. Several manufacturers also treat their cedar shakes with fire-resistant chemicals to make them safer for roofing than ordinary shakes.