Synthetic Slate Roofing Shingles

Fake Slate Roofing Shingles Provide the Look of Real Slate at a Fraction of the Price and Weight

By Mark J. Donovan

Slate Roofs provide a historic and natural look to a home, and are frequently found on older homes with steep sloped roofs. Slate roofs however are very expensive to install and maintain, both from a materials and labor cost perspective. Synthetic slate roofing shingles provide a wonderful alternative to natural slate as they offer the best of both worlds. Synthetic slate shingles are about half the weight of real slate shingles and are much less expensive to install. And from the street, it is nearly impossible to tell the difference between synthetic slate roofs and natural slate roofs.

Synthetic slate roofing shingles (a.k.a Fake slate roofing shingles) are manufactured out of rubber and plastic materials, and in many cases recycled rubber and plastic.

Consequently they are much lighter than natural slate shingles and are Eco-Friendly. They are also much easier to transport and install.

Synthetic slate roofing shingles can be cut with a utility knife and fastened to the roof sheathing using a pneumatic nail gun and corrosive resistant roofing nails. In addition, due to the fact that the synthetic slate roofing shingles are much lighter than natural slate shingles, a normally constructed roof can support their weight.

With natural slate shingles, additional roof framing lumber is required to support the heavy load of natural slate roof shingles. In addition, the installation of a natural slate roof is about twice as much as a synthetic slate roof.

Synthetic Slate Shingles

Synthetic slate roof shingles also offer a number of advantages over other roof shingle types. First, many synthetic slate roof shingle manufacturers offer material warranties up to 50 years and wind warranties up to 110 MPH.

Most asphalt shingle material warranties, on the other hand, typically have shorter length material warranties (e.g. 20-40 years) and lower speed wind warranties (e.g. 50-80 MPH).

Second, synthetic slate roofing shingles are available in a variety of styles, sizes and colors from numerous manufacturers. Synthetic slate roofing shingle manufacturers include TAMKO, EcoStar, and DaVinci Roofscapes, just to name a few.

Besides synthetic slate roof shingle offerings these manufacturers also offer other synthetic roof shingle surfaces, such as wooden shake, stone and tile.
In terms of sizes, synthetic slate roofing shingles are available in widths including 5, 7 and 12 inch. They can also be purchased with square, diamond, and scalloped patterns.

Asphalt Shingle Roofing Bid Sheet

In terms of color and textures, besides numerous options the manufacturers have done a phenomenal job of mimicking the real materials. Even up close, they look exactly like the real deal.

So if you are looking to restore your old slate roof, or include a slate roof in your new custom home, consider synthetic slate roofing shingles. They are a great alternative to natural slate and cost about half as much. And with 50 year material and 110 MPH wind warranties they are virtually maintenance free.

For more help on Shingling Your Home’s Roof, see’s Asphalt Shingle Roofing Bid Sheet. The Asphalt Shingle Roofing Bid Sheet will help to ensure that your roof won’t end up with a blue tarp over it and a dumpster sitting in your yard for weeks as you wait for the roofing contractor to come back and finish roofing your home.

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