The Roofing Business Is a Racket

The main functional purpose of a roof is to insulate — to stop anything from coming in to your house (rain, snow, animals, insects, heat, cold), and stop heat or cool from escaping your house.  Why then does it make sense to make a roof out of thousands of little porous pieces instead of a couple big pieces?  To keep the profits up of roof maintenance and installation companies of course!


According to a government study by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, fiberglass shingles have around a 50% market share in residential roofing.  Yet fiberglass shingles require the most maintenance, have the shortest lifespan, and provide the worst insulation of any of the three most popular roofing materials available.

It's simply common sense that a ton of little tiles slabbed over each other are not going to protect a structure from the elements as well as a few big slabs of metal.  So, why do homeowners keep choosing fiber glass tiles?  Well, they do initially cost less than the other materials to install (but this would probably change if the same economies of scale were applied to the other materials), and some do say they subjectively 'look better' than metal.

But, metal roofing can be designed to look almost any way one likes.  In one man's opinion, the fiberglass roofing phenomena is a lot of group think on the part of homeowners and a lot of roofing businesses' self interest at play.

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One Response to The Roofing Business Is a Racket

  1. I agree that replacing a very old roof is important and the right thing to do. I once hired a contractor to check the old roof that my house had. He said age is a key factor until your roof has battled some crazy weather. He was a skilled man. He also shared that the replacement decision must rest upon how old and how much of the roof needs a job. Cost vs benefits is the right approach.steve

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