Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Evolution of Wood Shingles

Wood was used for all construction purposes from the early days of American settlement in the 17th century. Wood shingles - lightweight and simple to install - have largely kept their popularity for the centuries to follow. New wood shingles can be designed in different patterns, shapes, sizes and exposure lengths to fit with English, German, Dutch and other styles. With wooden shingles each building looks unique.

History of Wood Shingles

The wood that was used in the past was usually the wood found in the region the home was built. This dependency on local woods contributed to the variety of wood shingles, as did the hand-techniques of using only the inner, heartwood section of the logs for better quality wood, smoothing the wood shingle pine on a shaving horse to make them fit evenly on the roof. Only later, with steam-powered saw mills, did wood shingles become more uniform. This is the time that Carpenter and Queen Anne architectural styles developed. Even though wood shingles are flammable and other roof shingles are widely available, wooden shingles have remained with us to this day. Today’s undressed wood shingles, their rough surface looking historic, are in fact a modern style.

Wood Shingles and Shakes

Wood shingles that are rough and rustic are called shakes. They come in varying sizes and lengths of 16, 18 and 24 inches. Nailing wood shingles is done in a way that enables air circulation, while shakes are laid so that they form a tight surface. Both methods are devised to assure durability and resist decay. Treatment of wood shingles and shakes can slow down natural weathering processes, though expect a 1/4 inch or more to be lost over the period of a century. Wood shingles and shakes alike can be installed over previous layers of asphalt shingles or wood shingles. Furthermore, wood shingle roof repair is made simpler this way.

Cedar Shake Roofing

Cedar is an outstanding insulating material, and can help lower heating and cooling costs more efficiently than metal or asphalt roofs. Roof cedar is resistant to high winds, and does not add excessive weight to the structure of the home. Cedar shingles and shakes have been used for hundreds of years and already proved their durability in all kinds of climates. Its’ rich, warm color and texture blend strikingly in any normal environment.


  1. The information presented here will be a lot of help to those homeowners who are planning to have a redo of their roof. This can help them think about considering wood shingles for their roof. If they do, they can be assured that their roof is resistant to winds and will not add excessive weight to their home. These shingles are worth a try.

    -^ Noreen Saint ^-

  2. Wood shingles give your exteriors a very adorable curb appeal and with its energy efficiency properties, more homeowners will definitely consider this for their roof. In cases like this, your shingles must be properly installed so that you won't have any problems in the future. Make sure that you and your contractors are meticulous in making the best roof for your home.


  3. Wood shingle roofing needs to be inspected annually for cracks or splits in the shingles. Any of these kinds of defects over a joint or juncture can cause problems that can lead to leaky roofs. And I don't need to detail what kind of damage a leaky roof can cause.

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