Comparing Asphalt Roof Shingles and Cedar Shake Roof Shingles in Milwaukee

Perhaps you’re building a home from scratch? Maybe you’re looking to replace the roof of your existing Milwaukee home? Whatever the case may be, you’re looking for a new roofing solution.

Though there are all types of roofing materials available, you’ve narrowed your choices down to asphalt roofing shingles and cedar shake roofing shingles. Now, all that’s left to do is to solidify your decision.

Need help making your choice? If so, you’re in the right place. We’re going to help you do just that by comparing the pros and cons of the two materials below.


cedar-shakes-shingle-roofThough aesthetic preferences could be said to be entirely subjective, most would agree that cedar shakes are aesthetically superior to asphalt shingles. This isn’t to say that there’s anything wrong with the look of asphalt shingles. They just pale in comparison to the bold and textured appearance of shakes.

There is a place where asphalt shingles have an aesthetic edge, however: color. Asphalt shingles are available in a wide variety of colors while cedar shakes are available in just one color: cedar.


In terms of durability, there’s no contest. Cedar shakes are substantially more durable than asphalt shingles. Whereas asphalt shingles will generally thrive for between 20 and 25 years, cedar shakes will thrive for 50 years and sometimes even beyond.


When it comes to maintenance, cedar shakes are generally more intensive. This is especially true if you choose to stain and seal them. Cedar shake maintenance, aside from staining and sealing, includes inspecting nails, cleaning, and making cosmetic repairs.

In the case of asphalt shingles, cleaning is generally the only type of maintenance ever needed. A scrub-down every year or so will keep asphalt shingles neat and algae-free.


Both asphalt shingles and cedar shakes provide reasonable amounts of insulation. However, when compared, cedar shakes are far superior. Cedar is inherently insulative, blocking almost all traces of heat and cold. When placed in close succession, cedar shakes do a superb job of sealing out external climates.


As far as installation goes, both asphalt shingles and cedar shakes require a time-consuming process. Regardless of the type of material you choose, you can expect the installation to take a few days.

However, in most cases, the installation of cedar shakes will take longer than the installation of asphalt shingles. This is because the installation of cedar shakes requires much more precision.

Weather Resistance

Because cedar shakes consist of wood, you might think that they’re vulnerable to water damage. However, cedar is actually quite resistant to water, thriving through it for decades, even without the help of regular maintenance.

Asphalt shingles are equally resistant to water. However, because they’re not as durable, they won’t thrive through water exposure for as long as cedar shakes.


The simple fact of the matter is that cedar shakes cost substantially more than do asphalt shingles. Generally, you can expect to pay between $4.50 and $9.00 per square foot for cedar shakes. Asphalt shingles, on the other hand, generally cost between $1 and $2 per square foot.

When you compare these two costs over the entirety of a roof’s area, you could be looking at thousands of dollars of difference.

Utilize a Roofing Contractor and Roofing Company in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Have you made a choice between asphalt shingles and cedar shakes? Looking to utilize the services of a roofing company or roofing contractor in Milwaukee, Wisconsin? If so, JM Remodeling is the company to call.

Featuring a team of seasoned and skilled home remodelers, we’ve installed new roofs on countless homes throughout the Milwaukee area. Regardless of the material you wish to use, we can help you.

Contact us now for a free quote!