The Importance Of Fire Safety
Your roof is a large exposed area thats prone to acts of nature and is prone to accidents. Depending on where you live, wildfires are a real possibility. Even if there is no real danger of wildfires, there are other potential dangers to be aware of, especially during the summer. Some common circumstances to bear in mind include:
- Sparks from a nearby house fire
- Bonfire or barbeque embers
- Lightning strikes
What Is The Most Fire Resistant Roofing Material
What Is the Most Fire Resistant Roofing Material?
How should we protect our roof from the fire? What is the most fire resistant roofing material? Homeowners spend a lot on their roofs. They do all the possible efforts to protect their roofs from the harsh weather as well as fire. Different types of roofing materials are available. Some of them are fire-resistant. Others are more inflammable. The key is to use the right material to make the roof fireproof.
What Does It Mean To Have A Fireproof Roof
The terms fireproof roof materials and fire resistant materials can be used interchangeably to describe how easily a material burns.
All materials, including those used for roofing, are categorized according to their relative fire resistance.
The independent safety and certification company Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. also known as UL, created standardized categories, or rating, to describe a materials flammability.
In order to receive a rating, the manufacturer must submit its material for testing.
Having such a rating system helps customers easily distinguish the safety of all fireproof roof materials available to them.
The tests look at three characteristics:
The fireproof ratings are referred to as Class A through Class C. Below theyre described in order of increased flammability.
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Best Fire Resistant Roofing
Two roofing materials, in particular, combine Class A fire-resistance, style, low maintenance and durability.
Metal roofing is non-combustible and offers Class A protection in combination with a fire-resistant underlayment. Its lightweight, wont corrode, and requires little maintenance. Metal roofing can be made from copper, zinc and steel, as well as various alloys, and comes in a variety of finishes, colors, and designs. Even better, most types of metal roofing are heat reflective and meet Energy Star efficiency requirements making them a great option for the Las Vegas desert climate.
Natural wood shakes are a popular roofing choice for their natural look and beauty, but are prohibited in many fire-prone communities for safety concerns. Fortunately, there is now asynthetic option on the market called CeDUR which replicates the look of natural cedar shakes and tiles but is designed with high fire resistance. CeDUR tiles self-extinguish and create minimal heat transfer, which helps prevent the spread of flames across the surface of the roof.
CeDUR tiles are also rated for impact and high winds, and wont rot or split unlike natural wood or asphalt shingles.
Roof Fire Ratings Explained
When you hear a roofer talk about roof fire ratings, it means how your roof performs in a fire on the exterior of your property where coverings are installed on a non-combustible or combustible deck. The rating is determined by a set of fire tests in a simulated fire. Here are the three rating categories you need to know:
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Most Fire Resistant Roofing Materials
While wildfires dont occur often in the Northeast, it is certainly not unheard of, and homes often burn down due to human error as well. When it comes to a fire affecting your home, most homeowners assume that as long as theyre careful and take precautions in places like the kitchen, it wont happen to them. However, even if your home doesnt catch ablaze, that doesnt mean that a neighbors home couldnt catch fire and spread to your home.
In the unlikely event that your home needs to resist fire from an outside source, having a fire-resistant roofing material can make an enormous difference in how much the fire is able to damage your home. If youre interested in learning more about the most fire-resistant roofing materials, take a look at our blog for more information!
Best Fire Resistant Roofing Materials
The dry climate in Southern California and Southern Nevada along with the strong winds make the entire region highly prone to wildfires. When building, renovating or re-roofing a home in these areas be sure you and your builder select quality, fire-resistant materials, especially for your roof. The roof plays an important role in maintaining the structural integrity of your home, so its important to keep it safe and intact. Of course, due to its large surface area, a roof is highly vulnerable in the event of a fire. Burning embers can easily blow over and settle on rooftops. Radiant heat from large fires can cause roof materials to hit their flash point, or a temperature at which they self-ignite. Your roof might also come into contact with open flame if a fire moves into your area. Using quality fire-resistant roofing materials gives the entire structure a better chance of surviving a fire.
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Other Tips For Reducing The Risk Of A Roof Fire
Simple maintenance can go a long way to help mitigate the risk of a roof fire. Periodically inspect the condition of your roof, checking for gaps in the tiles, areas where shingles have fallen away, or where the surface is damaged. Also, make sure to remove wind-blown debris, such as leaves and pine needles that accumulate on your roof and in gutters.Its important to have a fire-resistant roof when living in a fire-prone area like Las Vegas. By choosing Class A roofing materials and keeping up with maintenance, you can help prevent fires from destroying your home. If you have any questions,contact the experts at Prestige Roofing. We will help you find the right option to match your style and budget.
Concrete Or Clay Tiles
Clay tiles were used for centuries in warm climates and large cities where the spread of fire was a concern even centuries ago. In the modern-day, you can find concrete tiles that mimic the look of clay tiles, but which are more durable. Concrete is obviously highly resistant to flame, but just as with metal roofing, it is important to make sure that the specific tile products youve chosen are Class A fire rated.
Clay tiles are not typically as durable as the other roofing materials were covering. They can be a challenge to install, and it is therefore, sometimes hard to find a roofer who can work with the material. They are more cost-effective than metal roofing, but they will need to be replaced earlier.
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How Are Roofing Materials Tested For Fire Resistance
Fire resistance ratings have been established for building materials and building codes. There are three resistance ratings: Class A, Class B, and Class C rated materials. The safest and most fire resistant roof is a Class A rated fire resistant roof.
Class A rated – severe fire test exposure – able to withstand severe fire exposure
Class B rated – moderate fire test exposure – able to withstand moderate fire exposure
Class C rated – light fire test exposure – able to withstand light fire exposure
There are 6 different test sections that a roof covering can be tested on depending on the type of roof covering and associated characteristics.
The sections are: Spread of Flame test, Intermittent Flame test, Burning Brand test, Flying Brand test, Rain test, and Weathering test. . The three tests that examine a products fire resistance are the Intermittent Flame test, Spread of Flame test, and the Burning Brand test.
Learn more about fire resistance ratings, wildfire mitigation, and creating defensible space to protect your home by
There Are Four Commercial Roof Fire Ratings: Class A B C And Unrated
Class A ratings are obtained when material survives a severe fire test. Class B ratings are awarded after successfully withstanding moderate fire exposure and Class C demonstrates survivability of only the lightest fire test.
The International Building Code , states that all roof coverings are required to be tested in accordance with ASTM E 108 or UL 790.
According to Carlisle Syntec:
The Standard Test Methods for Fire Tests of Roof Coverings, UL 790 , includes three key tests to provide fire classification of roof covering materials and systems. These are the Spread of Flame Test, Intermittent Flame Test, and Burning Brand Test. During the Burning Brand Test, heat is transferred directly through the roof covering as well as the other roof components , which protect the roof deck.
In most Burning Brand Tests conducted over a combustible deck , the roof components play a significant role in achieving the fire rating of the overall roofing system. Accordingly, many certifications of roof covering materials describe the specific types of roof components to be used based on the testing conducted.
That means the roof material is tested, as is the underlying insulation and roof deck, whether combustible or not.
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Making A Smart Choice
If you walk through a typical residential neighborhood after a high-impact hailstorm, you are likely to see shingles strewn all over the ground. In the days that follow, you are also likely to see several homes with men on their roofs, either inspecting or repairing damage.
Hail damage can be very expensive, and the costs add up quite quickly. Even if the damage is relatively minor and doesnt require total replacement, the total repair price can be considerable, especially if you live in an area that is prone to hail. Whats more, sometimes hail damage can go unnoticed until a leak develops in a homes attic. If it goes unnoticed, even a minor leak can cause thousands of dollars in damage, especially if it leads to mold
With that said, some people worry that they may have to sacrifice aesthetic if they choose a more durable roof. If you are concerned about balancing protection against potential hail damage with the aesthetic of your roof, its important to work with a reputable, experienced roofing contractor who knows how to strike a perfect harmony between beauty and durability.
For over two decades, National Home Improvement, Inc. has provided Colorado businesses and homeowners with beautiful, weather-resistant roofs that stand the test of time. Contact us for a free consultation and take steps to protect and beautify your most important investment.
What’s The Difference Between A Class A And B Roof
In the world of roofing, the difference between Class A and B roofing is how well they perform in fire-resistance tests. In one test, they measure how much a fire spreads on that material within 10 minutes. Class A roofs spread the fire 2 feet less than Class B roofs do. This is because Class A materials are typically non-combustible while Class B are combustible materials that are treated with chemicals to make them more fire retardant.
If you’re replacing your roof and concerned about choosing fire-resistant materials, knowing the roof fire ratings can make all the difference. Speak with a roofer and know exactly what types of materials they use and the classes they fall under. In addition, the value of your home will increase with a Class A roof versus a Class B roof.
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Additional Fire Protection Methods For Roofs
- According to the National Roofing Contractors Association, homeowners should keep tree branches trimmed and away from the roof. Not only do branches scratch and damage roofing materials, if they catch fire, they can ignite the nearby house.
- Use only roof vent covers manufactured of materials that will not readily burn or melt.
- Have a professional roofer inspect your roof regularly. Clear off flammable debris such as pine needles or bird nests. Any missing or damaged shingles or roof cracks should be replaced or repaired promptly to keep embers from getting into your home in the event of a nearby fire.
Since the roof is a structure’s most vulnerable area, a fireproof or fire-resistant roof is particularly important in areas at high risk of fires. By carefully choosing the roofing materials and properly maintaining their roof, property owners can prevent wind-borne embers from damaging or destroying the property.
The Importance Of Fire
Did you know that house fires happen about every 93 seconds and three-quarters of all fire deaths are caused by fires in the home? Preventing fires should be of primary importance to every homeowner, and the primary area to focus on protecting is the roof.Fires that start in the wild can quickly gain enormous strength and the winds that are generated can blow sparks and burning embers for over a mile. The most vulnerable part of the house to embers is the roof since they have a large surface area to rest on.
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What Do You Need To Know About Fire
Materials are tested for resistance and receive a rating based on how they respond and react to fire testing. A professional roofing company will work with you to find the right materials for your building and the area that you live in. It is also important to understand the ratings so you can discuss the options with your roofer.
Fiber Cement Can Withstand High Heat From Fires
An alternative to vinyl siding, fiber cement, a mixture of cement, sand, and wood fibers, manages to achieve very high fire resistance without sacrificing convenience and durability. Many fiber cement products carry a Class A fire rating, meaning that they can withstand several hours of heat before melting down. Additionally, they slow fires from spreading into buildings and damaging propertyso thats more time for the fire department to reach your home in case of an emergency.
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If Needed Replace Your Roof Covering
If your roof has reached the end of its service life, it should be replaced. IBHS recommends hiring a professional roofing contractor to replace or repair your roof covering.
If you have an untreated wood shake roof, the only solution for reducing your wildfire risk is to replace it with a rated roof covering. Regardless of your fire hazard, given that many Class A roof coverings are available, IBHS recommends installing a Class A covering if you are living in a wildfire-prone area.
The roof covering and edge are the most vulnerable part of a home. Because of its large, relatively horizontal surface, the roof has the most severe exposure to all elements, including sun and rain, and during a wildfire, embers. Because of these exposures, roof coverings tend to require more maintenance and typically have a shorter service life than other construction materials used on the outside of homes.
Fire ratings for roofs provide a measure of the amount of protection. Class A provides the highest protection and Class C the lowest. At a minimum, unrated roofs, such as an untreated wood shake roof, should be replaced by a rated roof. Class A roofs are commonly available and can be very affordable, so they can be well worth the cost. Regardless of roof type, it should be kept in good condition and free of combustible debris. Your local building and fire departments would know about any special requirements that may apply to your community.
Slate Tiles Or Shingles
Made from slate or slate-composite tiles and shingles are exceptionally durable . With a closed assembly , slate tiles and shingles are completely impervious to fires because there are no flammable materials to ignite.
That said, slate is a stone and its heavy. Unless you are building a new home that plans for a slate roof, the building may need more structural reinforcement to handle the extra load.
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How Fire Proof Are Asphalt Shingles And Can I Get Fire Proof Shake Shingles
Colorado wildfires have people asking how fire-proof are their roofing shingles? As far as I know all granulated asphalt shingles manufactured today carry a Class A Fire rating.
The granules used on shingles are ceramic and protect the asphalt from sparks. You can also get a Cedar Shake or Shingle that is Class A fire rated. I should specify here that while a Class A rated shingle is the best you can get for a fire rating, it is in no way Fire Proof. Class A is a determination of how quickly and easily a product will burn. Class A This is determined by testing done by the Underwriters laboratories In order for Cedar Shakes & Shingles to get a Class A fire rating they must be treated with a fire-retardant and then for best results kiln dried with the retardant so it becomes part of the wood on a cellular level. This is an expensive process and in our area Insurance Companies typically still rate them as wood and will up your insurance rates if they will cover you at all.
Metal Roofing, Stone Coated Metals, Concrete Tile, Clay or Natural Slate all carry the same Class A rating as asphalt shingles. Knowing how and what shingles are made from, common sense would suggest these products are more fire resistant than shingles, however the industry classifies them as the same. There are 3 Fire Ratings Class A, B or C. Class A is the best and Class C is the least. Non-treated cedar shakes or shingles fall into this category.