September 29, 2022 at 3:00 p.m.

By Cass Jacoby. 

Assessing how different roofing materials handle high winds and which one is best for wind-resistance. 

All it takes is one high windstorm to destroy a roof. Between wind-driven rains and wind speeds of over 150 mph it is no surprise that traditional roofing materials like shingles struggle to stay intact during an intense storm. When it comes to servicing a location in a location where severe winds are common, choosing the right materials can be the difference between costly repairs and damage and making it through the storm. 

Fortunately, we know about roofing solutions that are better suited for protecting your home in heavy storms. Roofing materials come in a variety of types and shapes with their own set of advantages against severe winds. When it comes to materials that have the highest chance of survival in high winds here are some top choices you want to keep in mind. 

Metal roofing 

Some roof materials can withstand high winds much better than others, and metal is chief among materials that can take the wind. While McElroy Metal writes that no roof hurricane-proof, a properly designed metal roofing system can be capable of handling wind speeds higher than other roofing types. This is due to how metal panels interlock and overlap when attached to their metal roof underlayment. Metal roofs are designed to create a watertight surface, with the pieces of the roof joined so tightly together there are virtually no pathways for wind to travel through.  

According to the Metal Roofing Alliance, metal roofs receive a 140-mph wind rating in wind uplift testing, and some can sustain gusts up to 180 mph! For these reasons, metal roofs are a smart investment in hurricane-prone or severe wind areas.  Metal roofing is often highlighted for its extreme durability, however this kind of roofing is uniquely poised to withstand heavy winds for the entirety of the roof’s life (up to 40 years!) much better than other roofing alternatives that have more seams and overlaps.   

Clay tiles 

Although clay tiles aren’t the first roofing material that comes to mind for roofing a high-wind area, they come with some advantages. Clay tiles are heavier than lighter asphalt and fiberglass shingles that are simply easier to blow around. Properly installed and secured clay tiles can withstand particularly strong hurricane winds. Vents Magazine suggests that, to avoid these heavy tiles flying off the roof and becoming dangerous, these tiles be laid down with a foam adhesive to hold them to the roof deck. This glue will help keep the tiles from flying away, ensuring that this type of roof will survive for a long time.  

Cement S Tiles 

Concrete roof tiles have proven to be worth adversaries to high wind when installed properly. These tiles are made of cement and concrete, so their weight is something to consider on your roof, however, Vents Magazine reports that they can withstand up to 120 miles per hour! Because of their shape and construction wind freely glides across it without wind slipping underneath the heavy tiles. 

Conclusion 

With over half of the United States prone to high-wind events, it is critical to choose the right material to withstand the wind. Roofs are meant to shield and protect us from the elements, however, the materials that we choose decide if our shelter is effective or not. Make sure that your homeowners are aware of which materials will serve their home best in windy locations, so you can assure them that the roof will do its job and protect them from whatever winds mother nature is throwing at it. 

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About Cass  

Cass works as a reporter/writer for RoofersCoffeeShop, AskARoofer and MetalCoffeeShop. When she isn’t writing about roofs, she is putting her Master degree to work writing about movies and dancing with her plants.





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