Pros and Cons of Cedar Shake Roofs

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Cedar shake roofs have been around for hundreds of years, and it’s no wonder why. With their gorgeous coloring and unique properties, cedar shakes make exceptional premium roofing. However, as with all things, there are a few possible drawbacks that you should consider before installing a cedar shake roof on your home or business.

Pros and Cons of Cedar Shake Roofs

In this article, we’ll go over the main pros and cons of cedar shake roofs to help you make an informed decision on whether they’re right for you.


  • Long Lasting – With the right maintenance, cedar shake roofs can last much longer than asphalt shingle roofs. Their lifespan is typically 30 years but can be as long as 50 with proper care.
  • Durable – While asphalt roofs tend to be more susceptible to storm and wind damage, cedar shake roofs hold up well in heavy wind, rain, snow, and other severe weather.
  • Beautiful – New cedar shake roofs have a warm reddish color that, if untreated, ages into an elegant silvery grey color.
  • Insulating – Cedar shake roofs can be up to two times more insulating than asphalt shingle roofs, saving you money on energy bills.


  • Require Regular Maintenance – While all roofs need to be cleaned and maintained, cedar shake roofs require more routine cleaning to prevent moss, mold, mildew, and other organic buildup. They can, however, be treated with anti-fungal products to help keep organic growth at bay.
  • Initial Cost – Cedar shake roofs have a higher upfront cost than some other roofing options. However, the longevity and insulating properties make it a good long-term investment for those who can afford the higher installation costs.
  • Complex Installation – It’s important to hire someone with experience (like our team at Winters Roofing Inc.) to install cedar shake roofs since they require precise cuts and layering.