Wood Shakes and Shingles

Western red cedar and Southern yellow pine are commonly used for roofing. Both are available as either shakes or shingles. Shakes are thicker at the butt than shingles and their faces are hand-split for a rougher, more textured appearance. Shingles are sawn on both sides for a thinner, more even surface. Both are tapered (thick in the front, thin at the back) and come in various grades and thicknesses. Fire resistance. If you live in the West or Northwest, you probably see a lot of wood roofs in your neighborhood. However, there is a growing concern with using this material in dry, fire-prone areas. A number of municipalities in California, Colorado, and Texas have banned wood roofs because of the danger of brushfires spreading from one roof to the next. These same fire concerns have popularized fire-retardant shakes and shingles, which are pressure treated with chromated copper arsenate. Cost. Wood shakes and shingles cost about $100 to $175 per square, with installed costs ranging from $200 to $300.
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