If you're a homeowner and you don't want to end up replacing your roof or doing significant repairs every few years, you should do your research before installing your next roof. You should know what kind of area you live in and what roofing materials are best for your climate.
For instance, if you live in a high-wind area, you might want to invest in a roof that can withstand high wind speeds. Some roofing types are much better for high-wind areas than others. For example, metal roofing can be highly wind resistant, and so can specially constructed fiberglass-containing asphalt shingles.
High wind-resistance is especially important in these four US climates.
1. Northern Climate
In areas with long or cold winters, blizzards can sometimes bring strong winds that exceed 45 miles per hour. These intense winds can cause damage to roofs and can drop literally tons of snow on your roof as well. So if you live in a northern climate, you need to choose a roof that can both bear a heavy snow load and resist wind.
A metal roof may be the best in these cold areas because it's lighter than fiberglass shingles and it can shed snow on its own. However, some homeowners don't like the snow-shedding feature, because snow can come down in huge icy clumps. So as long as your roof's structure is strong, you can substitute fiberglass shingles, or you can simply install snow guards.
2. Hurricane-Prone Climate
Hurricanes can bring not only high winds, but also wind-blown debris, thunderstorms, tornadoes, storm surge, river flooding, mudslides, and rainfall measured in feet rather than inches. If your roof becomes compromised in a storm like this, rain could flood your house and cause electrical problems, thousands of dollars of water damage, and a huge mold problem.
In a climate that's susceptible to bearing the full brunt of a hurricane, it's critical to not only choose a wind-resistant material, but also to retrofit your home with items such as hurricane anchors to help avoid total collapse.
3. West Coast Climate
Although they're not the same as a category 5 hurricane, high-wind events do occur regularly on the West Coast. These windstorms can include gusts of well over 100 mph. One famous event, the Columbus Day Storm, included several reports of gusts at and above 160 mph in Washington and Oregon.
The winds tend to be strongest right at the coast, but a wind-resistant roof can still be a good idea further inland as well. The Columbus Day Storm was a rare event, but events with gusts over 50 mph can happen around once a year, and those that peak around 70 mph can recur as often as every five years or so.
4. Great Plains Climate
Tornadoes are frequent in the Great Plains area. Although they're much smaller than hurricanes, they can be even stronger, with recorded winds up to 300 mph. That type of force can completely flatten a house, no matter what kind of roof it has. Fortunately, most tornadoes are smaller and weaker than that, so a wind-resistant roof is still likely to minimize damage.
These are just four types of climates that tend to have weather patterns including strong winds. Adding a standing seam metal roof to your house may be just what you need to do if you want to reduce or avoid wind damage.
If you live in or near Columbia, South Carolina, you're in hurricane territory. Although the area isn't close enough to the shore for impacts such as storm surge, high hurricane-force winds and tornadoes spawned by a hurricane can still occur. Call Residential Roofing Services today if you'd like to discuss wind-resistant roofing.