When it comes time to replace your home’s roofing, balance both cost and durability. Your home’s roof must be able to stand up against the elements for years. This makes choosing the right roofing material especially important if you live in an extreme climate.

While common asphalt shingles are the cheapest way to go, this residential roofing option is also the least durable. Typically, asphalt shingles can last 15-30 years. However, in climates with extreme wind and snow, this longevity can be significantly reduced. If you do decide to go with asphalt shingles, choose a brand with a good hail rating. This will ensure a more durable asphalt shingle.

However, if you are willing to spend a little more money, other residential roofing materials are far more durable.


Slate roofing is the most durable, potentially lasting for a century or more. However, if slate tiles are not properly installed, they could crack if someone needs to walk on the roof or if a branch falls on them. It is very heavy and may not be appropriate for some homes. Finally, it’s one of the most expensive types of roofing. However, because it lasts so long, many people prefer it over other options.

Plastic Polymer

Plastic polymer roofing tiles are a great alternative if you like the look of slate, ceramic, or wooden shake shingles. This is because the plastic polymer can imitate the look of any other roofing material. It is also very durable and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. In fact, plastic polymer roofing can last more than 50 years. If you choose this roofing option, choose a manufacturer that uses recycled plastic.


Metal roofing is an excellent choice, lasting as long as 50 years. Metal is resistant to hail, fire, and snow damage. You can also find metal roofing made from recycled materials, making a metal roof an eco-friendly choice. Metal roofs can be made from aluminum, steel, copper, and zinc, and they come in nearly any color.

Wood Shakes

Wooden shake shingles last longer than asphalt, but are not as durable; they tend to crack and are not fire-resistant. However, wooden shingles do have excellent insulating qualities and can be recycled. They come with a water-resistant coating to help them withstand rain and other precipitation

Solar Glass

Finally, the newest residential roofing material is solar paneling. This roofing material is not only hail resistant and usually covered by a lifetime warranty, it will also produce solar energy. While a solar panel roof is more expensive than many other materials, you may qualify for a tax rebate or credit to have it installed. In the end, the cost of a solar glass roof could pay for itself. It will not only cover and protect your home, but it will also generate your home’s electricity. 

As a note, while solar panels do often go on the roof, they will need another roofing material under them to protect your home. If you don’t want to use both, you might consider solar shingles, though these are more expensive.

While you might not often think about it, your home’s roof has to stand up to a lot. Wind, rain, hail, snow, freezing temperatures, burning temperatures, and falling debris can all damage your roof. However, with a durable roofing material, your home can be protected for decades to come.

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