Nothing quite compares to the look of a well-weathered cedar shake roof. From lakeside cabins to mountain chalets, there’s a certain warmth and feel that just yells “home.” But this material is also quite popular in residential homes with a certain type of architecture, especially farmhouses and cottages.

There are also practical benefits to owning a home with cedar shake roofing. The wood is naturally resistant to the elements, which is important in the Pacific Northwest. The material can be treated for protection against insects and algae. They also offer a measure of energy efficiency, providing double the amount of insulation as asphalt shingles.

How long does a cedar shake roof last?

While cedar shake shingles check a lot of aesthetic and durability boxes, there are other choices that are longer-lasting and require less maintenance. Still, if properly installed, treated, and maintained, you should be able to get 30 years out of your cedar shake roof. Even up to 50 years if you are particularly mindful of its upkeep.

There are a few steps you can take to keep your wood shingle roof looking great and standing strong against the elements. Although in some cases, you may want to consider hiring a professional roofing contractor. Cedar shakes are strong enough to walk on, but depending on the slope, they can be precarious.

Cedar is a strong material and repels the true four-season weather we get in the Pacific Northwest. After a time, however, that resistance can break down. By applying treatments specifically for rain and sun, algae, fungi, and burrowing insects every few years, you can help extend the life of your cedar roofing.

Clear Overhead Branches
Large trees are the cornerstone of many an established residential neighborhood. But branches that reach out over any roof, not just cedar, can provide shade or cover for growing moss. By removing these branches, the cedar shakes can dry out faster after rain. And if those branches should break, it could cause damage to more than a few shingles.

Keep Your Roof Free of Debris
If your roof is covered in pine needles, leaves, and other debris, water is being held in place for longer periods than usual. Not only does this promote moss growth, but it can also weaken your cedar shingles. Not to mention obscuring the beauty of the roofing.

More Power!
In many cases, removing stuff from your roof only requires quick brooming or removal by hand (branches and such). But if you are noticing vegetation getting a foothold, you may want to consider pressure washing the roof. This also readies the roof for another application of treatment. Just be careful not to damage the shingles with direct and up-close water jets.

Part of the appeal of cedar shake roofs is the uneven appearance and ridges of the material. However, that rustic look can also hide cracks, splits, and other damage that allows water to invade your home. This is a time when the trained eye can spot little issues before they become big water damage problems.

As with any type of roof, installing a cedar roof properly will go a long way to meeting the life expectancy of the material. Along with proper maintenance, the lifespan of a cedar shake roof should meet and even exceed a few decades. If you are thinking of installing cedar roofing material, make sure to reach out to Warner Roofing and Construction.

We’ve been providing Clark County and surrounding areas with a full slate of roofing service for decades. Along with roof replacements and roof maintenance, we also install skylights, solar tubes, gutter systems, and even support systems depending on the scope of the project. Contact us today if you have questions about your roof regardless of the material.


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