min read

Table Of Contents

A robust roofing system is not just an essential part of home construction; it's a critical defense mechanism against the extreme weather conditions often experienced in New York. Each season brings unique challenges, from the biting cold and heavy snow of winter to the sweltering heat and stormy summer weather. 

Ensuring that your roof is prepared to handle these extremes protects your property and enhances your home's overall convenience and energy efficiency. Read on to learn more about roofing for extreme weather and more!

Types of roofing materials suitable for extreme weather

Choosing suitable materials is paramount in fortifying your roof against severe weather. Here's a closer look at some of the most effective materials:

  • Asphalt Shingles: While economical, modern asphalt shingles are also engineered to be more durable. They offer improved resistance to wind uplift and better waterproofing capabilities through upgraded adhesive strips.
  • Metal Roofing: Not only does metal reflect solar heat, reducing cooling costs, but it is also impervious to rot, mildew, and insects, making it ideal for hot and cold climates. Its longevity and minimal upkeep make it a cost-effective option over time.
  • Rubber Roofing: Particularly suited for flat or low-slope roofs, which are standard in commercial buildings, rubber roofing sheets or tiles can be fully adhered to provide seamless protection against leaks. Rubber is also resistant to thermal shock and unaffected by UV rays, which is crucial in fluctuating temperatures.
  • Tile Roofing: Clay and concrete tile roofs are excellent for regions facing hurricanes or heavy winds. Their significant weight helps ensure stability, and their composition makes them resistant to fire and decay.

Features of a weather-resistant roof

A durable and resilient roofing system relies on much more than just the materials from which it is made. Design elements, structural enhancements, and additional protective measures enable a roof to withstand extreme weather conditions. Here's a closer look at these features:

Roof shape and design

The shape of the roof is a fundamental factor in its ability to handle adverse weather:

  • Sloped Roofs: Roofs with a significant slope are better at shedding water and snow, which can help prevent the buildup of heavy loads that might lead to structural damage. The steeper the hill, the more efficiently these elements slide off before causing harm.
  • Hip Roofs: This type of roof design, where all sides slant downwards to the walls, typically offers excellent wind resistance. The aerodynamic shape of hip roofs can effectively reduce the wind load on the roof structure.
  • Multiple Slopes: Roofs with various slopes, such as mansard roofs, not only provide aesthetic appeal but also improve wind resistance and water runoff, further protecting the structure.

Sealants and underlayment

These components are critical in providing an additional layer of protection against water ingress:

  • Sealants: High-quality roof sealants are applied to joints, seams, and other potential entry points for water. They play a crucial role in waterproofing the roof by preventing water from penetrating these vulnerable areas.
  • Underlayment: A waterproof or water-resistant barrier is installed directly onto the roof deck, and underlayment acts as a second line of defense against water and ice. It is precious in preventing water penetration from ice damming, where melting snow refreezes at the roof edges.
  • Flashing: Metal pieces are used to divert water away from critical areas of the roof, such as chimneys, dormers, and skylights. Proper flashing installation is essential to prevent leaks.

Impact resistance

Enhancing a roof's ability to resist physical impacts from external forces is crucial for regions prone to severe weather:

  • Impact-Resistant Materials: Certain roofing materials, such as modified asphalt shingles, rubberized roofing, and reinforced tile, are designed to withstand impacts from hailstones, flying debris, and falling branches.
  • Structural Support: Additional structural supports can be included during construction to help the roof withstand heavier loads, whether from accumulated snow or the impact of debris during high winds.

Enhanced fastening systems

Secure fastening systems are integral to maintaining the roof's integrity under stress:

  • Wind-Resistant Shingles: Special shingles rated for higher wind speeds can be used, along with enhanced nailing techniques that provide stronger attachment to the roof deck.
  • Strapping and Anchoring: In hurricane-prone areas, roof strapping can assist in anchoring the roof to the walls, providing increased resistance to uplift and blow-off during extreme wind conditions.

Note: By incorporating these design principles and protective features, a roof can offer superior performance against the rigors of extreme weather, ensuring the safety and security of the building's occupants and minimizing the risk of damage to the property.

Professional roofing installation and maintenance

The role of skilled installation and ongoing maintenance must be balanced. A roof is as good as its installation; thus, it's essential to ensure it's done by certified professionals following best practices. Regular maintenance extends a roof's lifespan and maximizes its performance by identifying and fixing minor issues before they escalate.

The importance of good insulation & ventilation in roofing

Practical roofing goes beyond the visible outer layer—it includes crucial components like insulation and ventilation, which significantly impact the roof's overall performance and energy efficiency.


Insulation in roofing is pivotal for thermal control throughout the year. It is a barrier to heat loss and gain, particularly in attics and upper floors. The benefits of proper insulation are manifold:

  • Energy Efficiency: Insulation helps maintain a comfortable indoor temperature by diminishing the heat that escapes in winter and enters in summer, leading to lower heating and cooling costs. This efficiency decrypts directly into cost savings and a reduced environmental impact over the building's lifespan.
  • Moisture Control: Inadequate insulation can lead to uneven temperatures inside your home, contributing to condensation and potential moisture problems. By maintaining a more consistent temperature, well-installed insulation helps prevent conditions that allow mold and mildew to flourish.
  • Noise Reduction: Insulation also functions as an effective sound barrier, helping to reduce the noise penetration from outside. This is particularly beneficial in high-traffic areas or urban settings.
  • Increased HVAC Efficiency: Proper insulation reduces the work demanded for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to heat or cool the home, extending their life and reducing maintenance costs.


Ventilation is equally important in the roofing system as it ensures the longevity of the roof and the health of those living beneath it. Here's how proper ventilation impacts a roofing system:

  • Temperature Regulation: Good ventilation helps to expel the heat that builds up in the attic during the hot months and to moderate the temperature during cold weather. This prevents overheating shingles and roof decking, which can warp or degrade under extreme heat.
  • Moisture Management: Ventilation allows fresh air to circulate through the attic, helping to dry out any existing moisture from day-to-day activities such as cooking, laundry, and showers. This circulation is vital to prevent the wooden parts of the roof structure from rotting.
  • Prevents Ice Dams: In colder climates, ventilation helps to maintain a fantastic roof temperature, containing the irregular melting and refreezing of snow on the roof, which can lead to ice dams. These ice dams can force water to back up beneath the roof shingles and leak into the home.
  • Enhanced Air Quality: Effective attic ventilation flushes out volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and pollutants that can accumulate in poorly ventilated spaces, promoting better air quality throughout the home.
  • Insulation and Ventilation: Together, insulation and ventilation create a harmonious system that ensures the roofing is functional and efficient. They protect the structural integrity of the roof and the building while providing inhabitants with a comfortable, safe, and healthy environment. 

Note: For these reasons, consulting with a professional roofing contractor who can assess and implement the appropriate insulation and ventilation strategies tailored to your specific roofing needs and local climate conditions is crucial.

Selecting the correct contractor for your roofing needs

The triumph of your roofing project heavily depends on the contractor you choose. It is advisable to select a contractor who:

  • Offers Thorough Consultation: A good contractor will evaluate your existing roofing system and suggest customized solutions.
  • Provides Detailed Quotes and Contracts: Transparent pricing and detailed contracts ensure there are no surprises down the line.
  • Holds Strong Warranties: Warranties on both materials and artistry are crucial for your investment's protection.


The right roof for extreme weather guards against the elements and significantly enhances your building's energy efficiency and comfort. With the proper materials, expert installation, and regular maintenance, your roof can be equipped to handle anything the New York weather throws its way. Consult a proficient roofing contractor to ensure your roof is prepared to withstand the extremes, keeping your home safe and comfortable year-round.

Roofing services in Boston
Call the exteriors expert that cares!