The History of Roofs and Roofing Repairs

Written by Free Online Encyclopedia. Posted in Home

The roof is just about the most essential part of any home. It helps keep your house safe from the harsh weather elements. Every home needs a functional roof in order to maintain a happy and comfortable home life. There are many different styles and designs of roofs. Roofs have changed mightily throughout the years. Follow along to learn more about all the different types as well as the history of roofs.

Roofs Throughout History

Ever since the beginning of civilization, humans have always had a need for shelter. In the early days, they were forced to make shelter out of whatever was available. Early humans had to make do with what they had. As society has progressed, so have the designs of different homes. The design of roofing has significantly changed throughout the entire history of roofs.

Some of the earliest known roofs can be traced back to the Chinese around 3,000 BC. Their structures typically employed clay roofing tiles. First-century Greek and Roman civilizations used slate and tile roofing. In eighth-century Western Europe, thatched roofs were most popular. By the eleventh century, they had transitioned to wooden shingles. The different designs have always come for a variety of different reasons. Functionality, new innovations, and the cosmetics of roofs are some of the major contributing factors in the history of roofs.

One of the most important factors when evaluating the different types of roofs is the type of structure. Residential roofing is often vastly different from the roof on a business building. Home roofs usually have a more distinct design than other buildings. They have also gone through the most changes during the whole history of roofs. Looking at a picture of a roof from one hundred years ago may surprise you. There’s a great chance that it looks overwhelmingly different than a home from today.

More Roofing Advancements

During the twelfth century, thatched roofs came with a host of issues. Fires became a risk with them, and homeowners needed to adapt. In order to prevent fires, clay roofs became the standard. Laws were passed so that homeowners were required to change to clay. In the following century, concrete tiles came into existence.

In the history of roofs, New England architecture is one of the most prominent designs in America. The Cape Cod style emerged in the seventeenth century and was well-known for its relatively simple structure. The Cape Cod eventually gave way to the colonial-style roof. These roofs are sloped like that of a shed. Another name for these roofs is the Saltbox Colonial.

Another popular style of roofing includes the Georgian architecture style. In the history of roofs, this style first surged in popularity in the eighteenth century. They were typically used on the homes of the upper class. Among the common designs of this style included the gambrel and the hipped roof. These designs were frequently among the most common designs of this era. The gambrel is a two-sided roof with one having a shallower angled slope. The other side is much steeper. Hipped roofs have sides that are sliding downwards. These roofs look like pyramids when it is squared. On a rectangular home, these hipped roofs include all four faces on the same slope.

Residential and Commercial Roofs

Home roofs typically are more aesthetically pleasing and contain more distinct design elements. The roof on a business, for example, will not contain similar types of roof design. Something like asphalt roofing is more popular in these roofs. Functionality is the major key element.

When it comes to commercial roofing, the roof serves many purposes. They typically have flat top roofs. This way they can hold things such as the air conditioning unit so they will need a roof that is strong enough to handle it. For commercial buildings, the look of your roof is rather irrelevant since customers typically do not care. They do not have to worry about things such as the property value of the building. Homeowners will go to great lengths to make sure that their roof looks nice as well as being functional.

Modern Roof Design

Many of these classic roof designs have withstood the test of time. There have been, however, several updates and innovations. This is likely because of the expansion of the different materials. When considering roof replacement, many homeowners look for something that looks nice, can protect the home, and are relatively low cost. The history of roofs have seen some fantastic innovations in roof design and installation.

Roof installation can be a tricky business for any homeowner. It can be rather expensive and can come at an inopportune time. If you neglect your roof, you could be facing numerous issues in your home maintenance. If rainwater were to enter your home, mold could develop. This mold can create a nightmare for those of us with respiratory issues. It is important that you get any roofing problems fixed as soon as possible.

Different Types of Roofing Materials

Throughout the entire history of roofs, there have been roofs made out of a variety of different materials. As new advancements come out, the construction of roofs will advance along with it. Today there are several popular choices in roofing for someone building a home or business building.

There has been a growing concern with the environment. There has been a concerted effort to protect this planet earth. There are new materials that are more “green” friendly materials that are being used to make roofs. One such example is sod roofing. Sod roofing first emerged in several Scandinavian countries during the seventeenth century. Its popularity still persists through this day and age. Back then these roofs contained wooden boards and many layers of birch bark. The birch bark would make the roof watertight. Topping it off would be a layer of grass that kept the bark in place.

There have been several changes made to the sod roofing system over the years. These include layers that help with water drainage. There are also systems to protect the roof from wind and others that will help with the growth of the organic material. By using these organic materials already available to us, sod roofing is more environmentally friendly. Sod roofing can also provide excellent insulation for the home. Sod roofing is a unique but eye-catching roofing choice for any home.

Another popular roofing material choice is metal. Metal roofing is a sturdy and long-lasting material that has been returning in popularity. They are known for their durability and fire-resistant qualities. They also require little to no roof maintenance. Many steel roofs are made from recycled materials, which makes them environmentally friendly. The lightweight nature of these roofs has many benefits. They can be installed over the existing roof, so you don’t have to dispose of the old materials. Throughout the entire history of roofs, metal roofing has stood the test of time and have proven to be incredibly efficient.

You can add slate tiles to the list of popular roofing materials. They can be on the expensive side of the spectrum. These materials do boast a long shelf life and are known for their aesthetically pleasing look. Their distinctive look is sure to impress anyone passing by or visiting your home. There are a few cons to them, however. They are rather heavy and difficult to walk on. This may make routine repair jobs difficult. You might have to find another way to clean your gutter, for example. When deciding on the right material, there should always be an in-depth period of research to determine what is best for your home or business.

Composition shingles are one of the most popular types of roofing materials. They are known for their sturdiness and clean look. They are also pretty affordable to most homeowners. They can be made from fiberglass, asphalt, or even recycled materials. Roof replacement can be fairly simple since the shingles can be installed over the existing roof. Maintenance is likely not that difficult and offers quality fire protection. There are a few cons for you to take into account. Strong winds, as well as heat conditions, can do some damage to your roof. You will need to evaluate the pros and the cons during your decision making process.

Finding the Right Roofing Contractor

Throughout the entire history of roofs, there have been countless quality contractors who specialize in this business. If you find yourself in need of a new roof, you will need to search for an exceptional roofer. Roofing is popular and growing industry. The expected growth of this profession is projected at 2% over the course of the next decade. This is not a decision to be taken lightly. The wrong roofing contractor can leave you in a whole mess of headaches.

There are a number of things to consider when evaluating the different roofers in your area. The first step you can take is to ask for any recommendations. Unlike a mechanic or plumber, a roofer is someone who you will use only rarely. You likely will not have a go-to contractor that you can rely on frequently. When discussing your search with friends and family members, you can compile a list from which that you can narrow down.

Once you have your list of roofers, you can cross-reference with them against online review websites. These websites offer unique insight into their business pedigree. However, it is important that you carefully examine the various reviews. A negative review may not be quite as damning as one might assume. Some customers can cause headaches for the business. They may have had unrealistic demands or been a nuisance to their roofer. Look for specifics in the reviews. Did they point out something in particular that highlights or downgrades the performance? This information can really help you make a wise choice in finding a roofing contractor.


Trusses are an essential part of any roof. There are numerous types of roof trusses from which you can choose from. They are an important part of the construction of the roof. They can also have a distinctive look that helps accentuate the beautiful features of your home. Some common trusses include gable trusses, the hip truss, and the attic truss.

Filed under the gable trusses are the King Post, Queen Post, Howe, and Double Howe. The gable truss is also known as a pitched or peaked roof. There are several differences between the trusses. A Howe Post, for example, is much stronger and offers more support than a King Post.

With a Hip truss, there are slopes on each of the four sides. These slopes meet at the center point of the roof. They are built to withstand high winds and snow. They offer more stability than your standard gable roof. Another type of truss is the attic truss. These trusses are most commonly found in garages and sheds. They are used for buildings that need some additional storage space. The support webs will frame the walls of the entire room. In addition to storage units, they can also be found in some homes. It is important to consider the various types of trusses when you are making your decision.

How to Save Money

Roof repair can be a rather expensive process. We all hope that things are built to last and require only the most minimal of repairs. Those in a financially strapped position may have limited options. There are, however, ways that you can save on this process.

One cost-saving measure to consider is to schedule during the off period. The warmer weather months of spring and summer are the high point of the roofing season. Since it is an outdoor job, nice weather is key. The rest of the year is supposed to be the slow season. Many roofing services will offer discounted rates during this time. The company will appreciate the business while they are slow. You can also save by having the company utilize the stacking method. Instead of removing the old tiles beforehand, you can stack the new ones on top of them. This will reduce the labor time and cut down on those costs.

The history of roofs includes some great innovations throughout the years. We have seen some incredible advancements in roofing design. When you are in need of a new roof or some repairs, you have plenty of great options for your home.