The Pros and Cons of Interlocking Shingles

October 6, 2016 , In: Exterior Improvements, Outdoors , With: 4 Comments
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If you are looking to install a new roof, you will face a lot of questions. Unfortunately, you can’t just choose a color and call it a day as a roof installer finishes the job. You need to choose the type and material the roofing expert will use as well – cue the headache.

Choosing construction materials is about as boring as watching paint dry; so that’s why I’m giving you the pros and cons of a popular type of roofing material: interlocking shingles. 

Pro: Protects Against Extreme Weather

Because they overlay, interlocking shingles withstand high winds much better than other roofing materials. It’s harder for the wind to get in between or under the shingles and rip them off the roof, which means you will face less damage and less repairs in you live in high-wind areas.

Just as the interlocking design adds extra protection against winds, it also protects other extreme weather. This makes it a great option for homeowners in areas that experience hail and other extreme weather, such as heavy rain and snow. The shingles overlap when installed, so there aren’t any cracks or gaps in between the shingles that moisture or water could easily penetrate and damage your roof’s infrastructure.

Pro: You Can Install Certain Types Over the Existing Roof

Depending on the material and the manufacturer, you can install new interlocking shingles over old roofing material. This reduces the time and expense usually needed to tear off the old material, and makes installation quick and easy.

Pro: Metal Interlocking Shingles Last a Long Time

If you choose metal interlocking shingles, expect to get a great life out of them. They are resistant to fire, rot, mildew and insects and usually, come with a 20- to 50-year warranty. You can count on your metal roof to last as long as – if not longer than – your house.

Pro: Repairs Are Easy With Some Materials

If you have interlocking roofing material that is still manufactured, it is easy to repair. The roofer can simply remove the damaged shingles and patch the area with new shingles to fix the damage. This is much cheaper than having to replace the entire roof, and it can be done as long as the roof as a whole is in good condition.

Pro: Manufacturers Are Offering Interlocking Shingles in Many Materials

Many different manufacturers are producing interlocking shingles. You can get them in different materials, such as asphalt or metal, depending on the company. This gives you the option to customize your roof based on your preference, budget and location.

Metal is a popular choice because of its lifespan and durability, while asphalt is chosen due to its cost and durability.

interlocking shingles - roof repair

Con: Older T-lock Shingles Discontinued in 2014

If you have a home with T-lock shingles, you need to be aware that this specific type of shingle was discontinued in 2014. This makes it impossible to patch an existing roof because the material isn’t available any longer.

Con: Insurance Agencies Don’t Like T-lock Shingles

Since the T-lock shingles were discontinued in 2014, unique challenges have arisen with buying and selling homes. First, some insurance agencies have refused to underwrite a home with t-lock shingles, even if the roof is in great condition.

Without underwriting, a buyer can’t get financing, which means the home won’t sell. Sellers are having to bear the expense of replacing the entire roof if they have T-lock shingles so buyers can purchase the home.

Con: Interlocking Metal Is Expensive

If you choose metal as the material for your interlocking shingles, prepare for the expense. Metal roofing costs anywhere from $150 to $600 per square foot. Since the roof lasts a lifetime, you can expect to not have to replace it, and thus will save money in repair costs.

Con: Interlocking Metal Roofing Is Noisy

If you like to have a quiet house, you probably won’t enjoy a metal roof. Anytime it rains you will hear the rain tapping on the roof. If there is a heavier storm or hail, the noise is much louder. Check with the manufacturer about how they combat noise, but usually, you can have insulation and sheathing installed under the roofing to deaden it.

Con: Interlocking Metal Shingles Can Dent

The metal on your roof is much like the metal on your car – it can dent if you apply enough force. Metal roofing is often made of copper or aluminum, which is softer than steel and tends to experience more dents. A hail storm may be all that’s you need to put small craters on your roof.

To avoid this issue, purchase the most durable material that you can afford; or look for a manufacturer that guarantees the metal won’t dent. That way you won’t have to worry about how it will stand up to hail and other objects falling from the sky.

Now that you know more than you ever wanted to know about interlocking roofing material, you can make an informed decision about roofing materials. And, hey, that’s something everyone can celebrate!

Looking for more information about roofing? Check out this post about how a new roof can improve your home’s curb appeal (among other tactics) or this post about how new roofing (also among other tactics) can help you cut down on energy costs!

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The Pros and Cons of Interlocking Shingles
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The Pros and Cons of Interlocking Shingles
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If you are looking at having a new roof installed, you will be faced with a lot of questions. Here are 5 pros and 5 cons of choosing interlocking shingles.
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Your Wild Home
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Megan

Editor at Your Wild Home
Hey! I'm Megan. I am a dog-lover and enjoy exploring the outdoors. Your Wild Home covers a lot of topics, including (but not limited to) home improvement, home decor, construction, real estate, and sustainability. I enjoy writing in third-person and I am addicted to chocolate, coffee, and terrible puns. Learn more on my About Me page!

Latest posts by Megan (see all)

    • Seal
    • October 19, 2016
    Reply

    How about “coating” roofing? Asphalt, uretane based?

      • Megan
      • October 20, 2016
      Reply

      Hey there!

      Coating roofing can work well when installed correctly. But more often than not, it can cause moisture problems when not installed properly. It is up to the homeowner in that case. They should weigh the knowledge of their potential roofer (would def. not recommend DIY-ing it) vs. the potential drawbacks.

      Thanks for the question 🙂

    • Savy homeowner
    • April 14, 2017
    Reply

    Here is the biggest con with interlock metal shingles. Only one company in an area has the franchise to install them. The manufacturer won’t allow any other roofers to install them. So you are always stuck with going back to the interlock franchise in your area for any repairs. Once they have you and you have no other choice but use them or replace your entire roof they will jack up the costs of your repairs and they will show up to do the work when they want. You can be stuck with a damaged, leaking roof for months and months until they are willing to finally schedule the repair.

      • Megan
      • April 14, 2017
      Reply

      Good point – thanks for reading!

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