I’m from Texas, the tornado state. Out here, we don’t just have to deal with rain when it comes to our roofing. There is a genuine possibility of your roof getting blown off into a nearby field when a Tornado hits.
I have been doing DIY projects ever since I was a kid, and when our roof gave out last summer, I decided that fixing it is right up my alley. I talked to a few of my friends in the roofing business and followed their advice to put up a metal roof.
Let me share what I learned with you, and answer some important questions that I often hear when people talk to me about roofing solutions in high wind areas.
Best Roofing Material for High Wind Areas
So my buddies told me that there were only three ways to go about roofing in a windy area. More on the three below:
Fiberglass Asphalt Shingles
People have been using organic asphalt shingles for generations, but they are not so great about being eco-friendly. They aren’t that great with fire hazards either. From what I understand, manufacturers started slowly easing them out of the production lines in 2008.
What has become the industry standard is Fiberglass Asphalt roofing shingles. These are actually fire resistant, cheaper, and more durable than many other options on the market like slate and wood.
To understand how much these shingles will cost you, you will have to spend anywhere between $60 to $120 on a 100 square feet sized roof.
Take care, however, about fastening them onto your roof if you are in a particularly windy area. You might need more nails than usual, and you should also keep a close eye on the shingles after installation to check for loose ones and make repair work before they give out.
Another problem that you will face with shingles is moss. If you get a lot of rain in your region, then moss is a very real problem. It will slow down the drainage, which is always bad because the standing water will damage the shingles.
150 Mph Wind Rated Shingles
If you live in a hurricane or tornado-prone area, you might see winds faster than 150 mph. A low-rated shingle simply cannot withstand these kinds of heavy winds.
Asphalt shingles are rated to their wind resistance based on a fan-wind tunnel test (ASTM D7158). They are classified as follows:
|Up to 90mph
|Up to 120 mph
|Up to 150 mph.
Here are few products that are H-rated and will hold you in good stead at these kinds of speeds:
Metal roofing is probably the best option for protecting your roof from wind. You just have to make sure that you install everything properly. Metal roofs can withstand speeds up to 150mph.
Asphalt shingles are probably a lot more common, but metal roofing is durable. And guess what – it can be inexpensive too! You might spend anywhere between $3 to $18 on one square foot of metal roofing, depending on the type of panels you are using.
If you have an asphalt roof already in place, it’s easier sometimes to just put the metal sheets on top of it. But make sure to assess your old roof before you do this. A damaged roof will not be able to support a metal sheet on top of it.
Next comes installation. There are many things to think of when installing a metal roof, right from the type of metal panels (sheet metal, corrugated, ridged, etc.) to the type and pattern of screws to be put in. Something as small as a screw put in too hard can cause a washer to collapse, leading to a loose screw and eventually a leaky roof.
With metal roofing, there is an ever-present risk of a poorly installed metal sheet becoming a safety hazard, so getting it just right is very important. If you are going about it yourself, you need to cover your bases.
One clear advantage of metal roofs (when installed properly) is that they better protect your home from water. Asphalt shingles are prone to water leakage, especially because moss settles on them so easily. But metal sheets do not lend themselves to moss. If you take proper care with metal fasteners, installing them just right, you will hardly ever face water leakages for years to come.
Best Metal Roofing for High Wind Areas
Metal roof options for high wind areas including many types of metal sheets, including G-60 steel, Galvanized steel, Galvalume steel, copper, stone-coated steel, zinc, terne, and finally stainless steel.
Below are some metal roofing panels available to buy on Amazon:
- Lostronaut Aluminum Panels
- Dechant’s Railroad Express Corrugated Roofing Sheets
- Colorado Steel Corrugated Metal Sheets
High Wind Roofing Systems
There are three main types of high wind metal roofing systems:
- Standing-Seam Hydrostatic: These have standing seams, as the name suggests, which resist water from entering the panel joints. You then use a sealant to shut the seams off, ensuring that the seam does not get filled with water or ice driven in by high winds.
- Hydrokinetic: These are not water-resistant. Instead, hydrokinetic metal panels are sloped quite steeply to let the water flow down easily. An underlayment below the metal layer protects your roof from water infiltration.
- Metal Shingles: Metal shingles are also hydrokinetic; they are shaped like wood or asphalt shingles instead of sheets.
Clay Tiles can also be a good choice, especially in places like Texas, where the heat is quite unbearable in the summers. Clay is great at protecting your home from radiating heat coming from the sun. Just to add to that, clay tiles have a more aerodynamic design, so they naturally circulate air on your roof. This design is also the reason why they are good for windy areas.
If you can get the installation done properly, clay tiles can withstand strong winds. You need to get a foam adhesive to stick the tiles on your roof.
Clay tiles are a bit expensive as compared to asphalt shingles and metal sheets. They will cost you anywhere between $7 to $10 for every square foot of your roof. If you opt for designer tiles, you might have a $10 to $30 hole in your pocket.
Clay tiles are easier to maintain. Apart from stray damage from a flying pebble or stone, you will hardly ever see any major damage. Do be sure, however, to check for clay algae.
You might not think it, but wood shingles are also a good roofing material for high wind areas. They are, of course, a bit more expensive than asphalt shingles, but when you get the installation right, they are just as durable.
Wood shingles are, of course, incredibly beautiful. You can get brilliant colors, and your house will look amazing from afar. But make sure you are not in a forested or wildfire-prone area. Wood shingles are notoriously poor against fires.
Slate is another good option. Slate is durable, much more than asphalt and wood shingles. It’s fairly wind-resistant as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is the Best Roof Shape for High Winds?
If you live in a high wind-prone area, you should opt for multi-slope roofs (such as hip roofs). Gable roofs with only two slopes are cheaper but usually do not perform as well. Multi-sloped roofs are the best roof design for windy areas.
What Is the Best Roof Pitch for High Winds?
You should angle your roof with a slope of 30 degrees for best protection against wind storms and tornadoes. This configuration translates to a 7/12 inch pitch – for every 12 inches run towards the roof peak, you will need to add seven inches to the height of the roof.
What Is the Best Roof Style for High Winds?
Even-sided floor plans (square, hexagon, octagon) are recommended. Having even sides helps improve resistance to high winds due to the symmetrical nature of the structure.
Getting your roofing right is very important in high-wind areas. You need to make sure you are using the right material. It’s not simply a matter of durability- chips and cracks in the roof can cause harm to people and animals around your home if you are not careful during installation.
Metal roofing and asphalt shingles with a high wind resistance rating are good options to consider for roofing in high wind areas. Ensure that if you are using asphalt shingles, they should be rated appropriately to the wind speeds you expect in your area.
I hope I have answered most of your questions. Feel free to leave your comments and questions, and I will try to get back to each of them individually.
Hi, I’m Jim. I was a roofing constructor for 20 years, before deciding to start myrooff.com and gather the best content about roofing. I love woodworking and construction and it was only natural for me to start this passion project of mine. Thank you for visitng.