Is a Synthetic Cedar Roof Right for Your Home?

Dec 14, 2022Blog, Cedar Roofing

Synthetic cedar shingles are a newer type of roofing that uses alternative materials to replicate traditional forms of roofing materials. Most of these shingles are made from a mixture that includes recycled plastic or rubber as the main component. A synthetic shake shares many of the same aesthetic characteristics as its traditional counterpart, but synthetic roof offers certain things that traditional roofing doesn’t. Take a look at some of the benefits of cedar shakes, and consider whether synthetic cedar roofing is right for you.

Synthetic Cedar Roof Salina

Better Impact Resistance

One issue with traditional cedar is that, while it is durable, it cannot go completely unscathed from storm damage in a high wind or significant weather event. Large hail stones can damage wood shingles, cracking the wood and causing pieces to break off, which can affect how well the shingle protects your home. Because most synthetic wood shingles are made of durable material, they are much stronger than real wood. Some synthetic shake roofs offer a Class 4 Impact Rating which means that they can withstand the impact of 2-inch diameter steel balls that are intended to mimic hail impact. Some even carry a hail-resistance warranty. For that reason, impact-resistant synthetic cedar shake roofing is an ideal option for hailstorm-prone areas.


Unless you apply a fireproof coating, traditional cedar shake shingles cannot pass most local fire codes. If a fire breaks out, it will burn relatively quickly compared to other roofing materials. Most municipalities now require roofing materials to have a UL Class A fire rating. Synthetic cedar shake shingles can be made in a unique way that makes them fireproof without the need for special coatings. They can have a UL Class A Fire Rating, which is the highest fire rating a construction product can earn. Class A Fire Rated Synthetic cedar shingles take longer than other materials to catch on fire and also limit the ability for a fire to spread, so they are approved for use by the strictest building codes in places like California, Oregon, and Colorado.

High Wind Resistance

Another issue that non-composite shakes suffer from is getting cracked or blown away by strong winds. In most cases, traditional shake shingles are only installed to withstand winds up to 90 mph, so if anything stronger comes along, there is a chance the roof can suffer serious damage. However, most synthetic cedar shake shingles, because of their durable design, can withstand much stronger winds. Most have Class F Wind Rating and can withstand hurricane-force winds up to 110 mph. Some newer models of synthetic cedar shake roofing even offer a Class H Wind Rating, which can handle winds up to 190 mph.

Realistic Appearance

One concern about faux cedar shingles is how realistic looking they are. In the past, most synthetic cedar shake roofing wasn’t realistic in appearance. The cedar “look” was not always UV stable and would fade over time, leaving a dull-looking shingle. Most newer synthetic cedar shingles, however, are made using new processes that allow for a more permanent and realistic appearance. With more modern technology and materials available, the best of the new composite shakes will not fade or lose their appearance over time when exposed to the elements.

UV and Weather Resistant

Over time, traditional wood shake shingles take a beating from the sun’s UV rays and become weathered. This can damage the natural color and will cause them to fade more quickly, leaving the roof looking old and damaged. Most Synthetic wood shingles, on the other hand, are resistant to weathering from the sun as well as being resistant to bugs and insects (which can be another costly problem). The colors will typically fade slowly, and the shingles don’t become weak and brittle over time.

Synthetic Cedar Roof Salina

Choose the Best Roofing Material

There are countless roofing options, but synthetic cedar shingles are even better than their traditional counterparts. Not only do they replicate the appearance of the real thing, but they are stronger, lighter, more durable, maintenance-free, and much more affordable. If you’re looking for cedar shakes as an option as a premium upgrade to your roof, call Shull Roofing Salina today to give your project a one-of-a-kind style.