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Comparing Roofing Material

Red clay roofing materials

The number of different roofing materials is expanding as technological advancements create new options. It can be difficult to know whether to stick with the old tried-and-true varieties or go with one of the more recent ones.

Odyssey Contracting is an experienced roofing contractor in the Triangle area of North Carolina, and we are always happy to educate and inform the consumer so you can make the best decision for your roof. With that in mind, let’s break down a few of the main options along with each of the pros and cons that come along with them.


These are the shingles you are likely used to seeing on most roofs in North Carolina. They are generally grayish and are the least expensive of the options. Despite their name, these shingles contain not only asphalt but fiberglass. The lifespan is a solid 25 years, and they are strong enough to be walked on without damage. All of this explains why they are the most common variety.

The downsides to asphalt shingles include the fact that strong winds can pull them up easier than some heavier options. Also, because so many people have this look, some find it to be less exciting and look for a more unique option.

Clay Tile

These half cylinder overlapping tiles are popular in the southwestern United States, Latin America and in the Mediterranean, but some opt for them here in the Raleigh Durham area as well. One advantage of tile roofs is they offer a timeless, stylish look. They also last a very long time. Tile is a bit more expensive though and can crack if repeatedly walked on.

Wooden Shake

Another classic roofing material is wood shake shingles. These are square or rectangle shingles that are cut from cedar, southern pine, redwood or other woods. They can last a long time but do require some extra upkeep and installation time. Problems include the possibility of insect infestation, mold and even rotting if not properly maintained. Wooden shingles are also more expensive.


As you can imagine, a roof made of finished stone can be a bit pricier, but it is a very attractive look. The stone slate is also known to last more than a century, making it likely the most durable of all roofing styles. Stone is by nature heavy, so you’ll also have to make sure the framing underneath was built to handle the load.


Who doesn’t like the sound of rain on a tin roof? Metal has been used for a long time for roofing and is making a comeback. While more expensive than asphalt, it can last many decades, is strong and doesn’t take much upkeep. Copper, tin, steel, aluminum and even lead roofs are available in different colors and styles.

Cement and Composite

A more modern approach is to buy non-traditional materials that mimic the look of wood, stone slate, and other styles. These can last a long time, not be quite as expensive as the authentic wood and stone and not add as much weight.

Odyssey Contracting

We hope you learned something and were able to get a better idea of what might be most appropriate for your home. Odyssey Contracting serves Raleigh, Clayton, Fuquay-Varina, Garner, and Knightdale with roofing information and services. If you have any questions or are ready to discuss your next roof, please give us a call at 919-916-5640.

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Roof Replacement Process In 9 Steps

Roofing Construction and Building New Wooden House Exterior. Constructor Roofer Install Repair Asphalt Shingles on the Rooftop Outdoor. Roofing shingles installation.

It’s perfectly normal and understandable to feel some anxiety when considering a roof replacement. The roof replacement process can seem overwhelming when thinking about everything that goes into the process. We at Odyssey Contracting aim to have all our Raleigh Durham area customers aware of and comfortable with what is about to take place. If you are considering a roof replacement and want more clarity, here are the nine steps that you can expect to see during the process.

  1. Deciding to replace – As much as we’d love to have your business, sometimes the time is not right. If some shingles blew off in a storm, but the majority of the roof is in good condition, a repair could be all that’s needed. This is especially true if the roof was only installed 15 years ago or earlier.
  2. Selecting a roofer – Once you’ve determined to replace rather than repair, it’s time to select an experienced, trustworthy roofer to get the job done. We also are happy to enter the process even earlier when you are trying to decide whether to repair or replace. Regardless, at a minimum, you should try to find a roofer with a good reputation who is insured, licensed and offers competitive prices.
  3. Picking the roofing materials – Your roofer will help you with this decision based on your needs, budget and style preferences. There are many types of roofing materials, the most common being asphalt shingles. Other options are wood shake, stone slate, metal, and clay tile.
  4. Eliminating the old roof – Before you can start installing your new roof, you’ll need to have us remove the old one. We take everything off down to the plywood underneath. This includes not only the shingles but the tar paper.
  5. Inspecting wood for leaks and rotting – Now that we’ve stripped everything down to the plywood, we can get a good idea of what the condition of the underlying framing is. If there are rotten boards or holes and gaps, these will need to be fixed before proceeding with the roof installation.
  6. Installing important barriers – Once the plywood layer has been inspected and is in good condition, certain moisture barriers will need to be put down before the shingles are laid on the roof. An underlayment, like synthetic felt, will need to cover the entire roof surface. Flashing also needs to be placed along seams to prevent leaking. Upgrades could include a drip edge and ice and water shield for extra protection.
  7. Putting down new shingles or other roofing material – Seven steps in and we’re finally ready to put the shingles or other roofing down. A “starter course” is placed along the rakes and eaves before the rest of the shingles are installed. Laying the shingles can be a quick process as our experienced installers snap chalk lines, attach the roofing and secure it in place.
  8. Adding the finishing touches – After the shingles are down, a few last details need to be taken care of. One example, ridge vents, are placed along the peak to allow for proper ventilation.
  9. Cleaning up and breaking down – Once these last touches are done, it’s time for us to make sure we aren’t leaving nails or trash like shingle packaging around the property. Then we pack up our tools and equipment and step back and admire our work.

Hopefully you found these 9 steps helpful in your roof replacement process.

Odyssey Contracting provides roof replacements in the Triangle

We would be honored to help walk you through these steps. It can be daunting to realize you need to have the roof torn off of your home and replaced, but we work hard to make it a comfortable and easy process. Those in Raleigh, Knightdale, Clayton, Garner, and Fuquay-Varina wanting an estimate or to hire an experienced local roofer, please give us a call at 919-916-5640.