The human race has lived with roofs over our heads for thousands of years. Over time, we have certainly learned a lot about creating great roofing. Here are some fun and interesting roofing facts that range all over history:


Did you know… some of the oldest roofing materials in the world are thatch, clay, and stone. Clay tiles can be traced all the way back to around 10,000 B.C. while thatch was likely used between 5000 and 1800 B.C.

Roofing Types

Did you know…Tile roofing

– Thatch roofs work because the reed used is naturally waterproof and because the reed is bundled so tightly that it just sheds water. A thatched roof can shed water, sleet, and snow.

– Red and white cedar shingles are listed as one of the most “classic” roofing types for homes in the Pacific Northwest.

– Metal roofing materials can actually be lighter in weight than wood shingles.

– Even though asphalt shingles are a newer product (they were invented in the 1900’s), they are by far the most popular roofing product in America.

Green Roofs

Did you know…

– Millennium Park in Chicago is the largest green roof in the world.

Chicago Millennium Park (Picture courtesy of

Chicago Millennium Park (Picture courtesy of

– Asphalt roofing tiles don’t last as long as green roofing materials.

– Traditional green roofs (the type with plants going on them) don’t leak if they are installed properly. This is because the plants and soil protect your roof from sun damage and extreme temperature changes. So, as long as the water barrier is intact, your green roof will keep your home dry for years to come.


Did you know…

– Water often travels before it drips down anywhere visible. In fact, a leak can come out twenty feet away from the original leak in a roof.

– The most common weak spots on your roof are areas that need protection from flashing. However, damaged shingles or damage in the waterproofing material which lays underneath the shingles can also cause leaks.

– A leak may not mean you need to replace your entire roof. However, if the leak has lasted long enough and there is dry rot involved – or the roof is very old – it may be time to get re-roofed.

We hope these fun facts prove to you that roofing can be interesting as well as practical.

Tom Leach Roofing