The Best Roofing Materials to Choose for Your Home

While more than 80% of homeowners opt for an asphalt shingle installation, there are several other roofing materials that you should consider choosing for your home.

There are quite a few factors that influence choosing a roof material. These range from investing in durability, aesthetics, or resistance to inclement weather, fire, or mold and insect damage.

In this article, we’ll cover 7 possible roofing materials to choose for your Appleton or Fox Valley home, ranging from asphalt and metal to clay tile and solar panel. Let’s dive right in.

Asphalt Shingle - Roofing Material

1. Shingles

Shingle roofing is one of the most common and versatile roofing materials available. Its popularity stems from its relative affordability and ease of installation. Shingles are typically made from a variety of materials including asphalt, wood, and composite materials, offering a range of aesthetic options to homeowners.

Types of Shingles

  • Asphalt Shingles: The most common type thanks to its cost-effectiveness and ease of installation. Learn about the pros and cons of asphalt shingles here to see if they’re right for your home.
  • Wooden Shingles: Offer a natural look, typically made from cedar, redwood, or pine.
  • Composite Shingles: Made from synthetic materials, these mimic the look of wood or slate.

Pros and Cons


  • Wide variety of styles and colors.
  • Generally lower in cost and easy to install.
  • Suitable for a wide range of climates.


  • Shorter lifespan compared to other materials.
  • Vulnerable to high winds and extreme weather conditions.

Related: 5 Benefits of Asphalt Roofing


Metal - Roofing Material

2. Metal

Metal roofing is a durable and long-lasting option, ideal for homes in a variety of climates. It’s available in a range of materials like steel, aluminum, copper, and zinc, each offering unique benefits.

Types of Metal Roofing

  • Steel: Most common, coated with zinc or a zinc-aluminum alloy to prevent rust.
  • Aluminum: Lightweight and resistant to corrosion, ideal for coastal areas.
  • Copper: Offers a unique look, developing a patina over time.
  • Zinc: Durable and environmentally friendly, known for its ability to self-heal scratches.

Pros and Cons


  • Extremely durable and long-lasting.
  • Fire-resistant and energy-efficient.
  • Low maintenance and recyclable.


  • Higher initial cost compared to other materials.
  • Noise during rain or hailstorms without proper insulation.

Related: When’s the Best Time to Install a Roof?


Rubber - Roofing Material

3. Rubber

Rubber roofing, primarily made from ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM), is a great option for flat or low-sloped roofs. It’s known for its durability and resistance to extreme weather conditions.

Types of Rubber Roofing

  • EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer): The most common type, known for its black color and durability.
  • TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin): A lighter color rubber roofing, reflecting more sunlight.
  • PVC Roofing: Made from a type of plastic, known for its strength and durability.

Pros and Cons


  • Resistant to extreme weather and UV rays.
  • Low maintenance and long lifespan.
  • Eco-friendly and recyclable.


  • Limited aesthetic options.
  • Can be more expensive than traditional materials.
Clay Tile - Roofing Material

4. Clay Tile

Clay tile roofing is a popular choice for its traditional and timeless aesthetic. It’s especially common in Mediterranean, Spanish, and Southwestern architecture.

Types of Clay Tile

  • Traditional Clay Tile: Known for its classic orange-red color.
  • Glazed Clay Tile: Coated for additional color and protection.
  • Terracotta Clay Tile: A type of clay known for its durability and color retention.

Pros and Cons


  • Long lifespan and extremely durable.
  • Fire resistant and energy efficient.
  • Offers a unique aesthetic appeal.


  • Heavier than other materials, requiring reinforced roof framing.
  • More expensive and requires professional installation.


Slate - Roofing Material

5. Slate

Slate roofing is a high-end option known for its natural beauty and longevity. It’s made from natural slate rock and is often used in luxury homes.

Types of Slate

  • Natural Slate: Extracted from quarries, varies in color and thickness.
  • Synthetic Slate: Made from rubber and plastic, mimics the look of natural slate.

Pros and Cons


  • Extremely long-lasting and durable.
  • Fire resistant and environmentally friendly.
  • Unique natural aesthetic.


  • Very heavy, requiring a strong structural support.
  • Expensive and requires skilled installation. 
Rolled - Roofing Material

6. Rolled

Rolled roofing is a budget-friendly option, typically used for low-slope residential roofs or outbuildings like sheds and garages.

Types of Rolled Roofing

  • Asphalt Rolled Roofing: Made from the same material as asphalt shingles.
  • Rubber Rolled Roofing: Similar to EPDM, durable and weather-resistant.

Pros and Cons


  • Inexpensive and easy to install.
  • Suitable for less visible or utilitarian structures.


  • Shorter lifespan than other roofing materials.
  • Not as aesthetically pleasing.
Solar Panel - Roofing Material

7. Solar Shingles

Interested in buying solar shingles for your roof installation? Solar shingles are a cutting-edge roofing material that combines traditional roofing with solar technology. They are designed to look like regular shingles while generating electricity.

Pros and Cons


  • Generate renewable energy, reducing electricity bills.
  • Aesthetically pleasing, integrates seamlessly with traditional roofing.
  • May increase home value.


  • Higher initial investment than traditional roofing.
  • Dependence on sunlight for efficiency.

If you’re considering a solar shingle installation, make sure that your company has the expertise in this roofing material. Here are some tips for picking the right roofing contractor.

Choosing Roofing Materials: In Conclusion

Choosing the right roofing material is a crucial decision for any homeowner. Each material offers its unique set of advantages and disadvantages, from traditional shingles and metal to innovative options like solar shingles.

Factors such as climate, budget, and aesthetic preference are all things to keep in mind when choosing the right roofing material for your home. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact our professional roofing contractors!

Related: 6 Key Questions to Ask Your Roofing Contractor Before Hiring

Choose ACS Roofing to Help You Choose the Right Roofing Material

Our company, founded in 2003, has spent more than two decades proudly serving the Fox Cities. When it comes to selecting the right roofing material installation or replacement for your home, the skilled team at ACS Roofing provide expert guidance to help you navigate these choices. We understand the nuances of each material and can provide advice based on your specific needs and preferences.

 Choosing ACS Roofing means partnering with a trusted and experienced home improvement company. We are dedicated to helping you make an informed decision, ensuring your roofing investment is sound and rewarding. We provide roofing services specifically for asphalt, metal, and rubber roofing projects.

Contact us today to discover how we can assist you in finding the perfect roofing solution for your home! We serve the cities of Appleton, Menasha, Neenah, Kimberly, Kaukuana, Oshkosh, and the greater Fox Valley.

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