Your house is the roof over your head — and without a well-constructed roof, you might feel like you don’t have a home. That’s where we come in. Here at Red Dog’s Roofing, we’re proud to provide premier residential roofing services throughout Fitchburg, Leominster, Gardner, and the surrounding area. We offer roofing installations and roofing repairs. Plus, we’re an Owens Corning™ Preferred Roofer. Learn more about our installs and certification below.

Residential Roofing Installation

For a quality roofing installation that’s built to last, count on Red Dog’s Roofing. We install roofs in a variety of materials, including asphalt shingles, wood shakes, slate, slate composite roofing, and metal. Not sure which material is best for your home? Well let’s weigh the options (and as always, you can reach out to us if you have any questions or if you need advice!). Here are the pros and cons of each of our roofing material options.

Weighing Your Roofing Options

Asphalt Shingles     |    Wood Shakes     |     Slate     |     Slate Composite     |     Metal

Professional solutions for all your roofing and weatherproofing needs.

Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt is by far the most popular choice for homes here in Massachusetts and throughout much of the United States. They’re simply the most economical option, and they’re quite durable for their cost. Now, let’s delve a little deeper into the pros and cons of installing asphalt shingles on your home.

The Pros of Asphalt

Asphalt is the most affordable option on the market. For that fact alone, asphalt shingles may be the best option for your home. In addition, asphalt shingle products are incredibly diverse. Asphalt is available in a variety of colors, shapes, and textures. And when it comes to selecting the shingle for your roof, you usually get what you pay for. More expensive shingles tend to last longer. These days, you can find some shingles on the market that last for 50 years or more. That said, most shingles last about 20 years on average, so they aren’t the most resilient roofing materials on the market.

Shingles are also easy to install. A full-home installation can be completed in a number of days.

If you’re considering shingles, take a look at Owens Corning’s selection of asphalt shingles. Owens Corning provides a vast variety of shingle options, including variations in texture, shape, and color. Plus, when you work with Red Dog’s Roofing, any Owens Corning shingles that you choose are backed by a guarantee. Most Owens Corning shingles come with a limited lifetime warranty.

Cons of Asphalt

While asphalt shingles are inexpensive and easy to install. They do wear out faster than other roofing materials. Take slate for instance — slate tiles can last for a century or more, while the best asphalt shingles on the market tend to fail within 50 years. If you’re seeking the longest lasting roofing solution for your home, you may want to look elsewhere.

Asphalt shingles are liable to weather over the years. They can lose their granules. They can curl. They can crack. And given enough time, they can come off of your roof completely. Asphalt shingles are also liable to blow off of roofs in extreme weather. However, most Owens Corning products, when properly installed, resist winds of over 100 mph!

Asphalt shingles are also rather thin, so they are a bit less efficient than other materials (like wood shakes). However, if you have a properly insulated attic in your home, heat loss should be minimal.

In general, while asphalt shingles can fail over time, they offer an excellent value for homeowners.

Wood Shakes

Wood shakes are a popular choice for their aesthetic appeal. A home simply looks warmer and more inviting with a wood shake roof. Homeowners boast about the natural look of their home. Now let’s take a closer examination of the pros and cons of wood shake roofs.

The Pros of Wood Shakes

Wood shakes aren’t just aesthetically pleasing, they can actually outlast some asphalt shingles. When properly cared for, wood shakes usually last about three decades, although in some cases they can last up to 50 years.

Wood shakes are naturally insulating. So, when you have wood shakes installed on your roof, you will notice a drop in your energy bill.

As we mentioned, wood shakes are aesthetically pleasing. They’re the perfect compliment to brick and stone homes (although they look great with siding too). It’s a look that’s sure to impress your guests and passersby. Plus, if you should ever sell your home, a good looking roof will boost your abode’s curb appeal, while providing added value to your home.

The Cons of Wood Shakes

Wood shakes are expensive, they require maintenance, they take time to install, and they don’t last forever. You could pay double the price to install a wood shake roof instead of an asphalt shingle roof. And when asphalt shingles last about the same time as wood shakes, you might not be getting the value you want from your dollar.

Wood shakes also require maintenance. While cedar shakes are naturally resistant to mold and algae, these tiny pests can eventually take hold on your roof. You’ll have to keep an eye on shakes to ensure that they don’t succumb to an infestation. Wood shakes are more likely to get moldy if they don’t have plenty of time to dry between rainstorms (or if they’re installed in a humid environment). Be sure to keep your shakes dry and free from an infestation.

In addition, wood shakes take more time to install than shingles and some other roofing materials. Since wood shakes have to be installed one by one, a full roof can be a time consuming process.

Finally, wood shakes aren’t the longest lasting material on the market. Slate and metal outlast wood, so if you’re looking for a roofing material that will last as long as your home, you’ll have to look elsewhere.


Slate tile roofing is arguably the pinnacle roofing material. Slate combines longevity with that same natural beauty that wood shakes provide. Let’s take a deeper look at the pros and cons of slate tile roofing.

The Pros of Slate

Slate tile roofing is uniquely beautiful. Each tile is cut from slate rock and each piece has tiny imperfections in color and shape; that gives the whole roof a unique texture and appeal. Depending on the quarry from which you get your slate, the rock can be a variety of colors. Plus, you can find slate tiles that are glossy, and other tiles that have a matte surface. Slate tiles look great on any home.

Slate also lasts and lasts. Depending on the type of slate, your tiles can last anywhere from 50 to 200 years (by the way, soft slate shingles don’t last quite as long as hard slate). Investing in slate tiles is just that — an investment in the longevity of your home.

The Cons of Slate

Since slate tiles are literally rock, they’re quite heavy. All of that weight is demanding on the structure of your home. Slate can weigh up to ten pounds per square foot — that’s like putting a bowling ball on every square foot of your roof! It’s crucial to have a home that’s structurally sound enough to hold slate.

Slate tiles take a long time to install as well. Since slate must be meticulously be placed, and since slate is simply the heaviest roofing material, it can take a few extra days to complete a full roof installation.

Slate is also rather expensive. Slate can cost $1,000 or more per square (a roofing square is 100 square feet). That means that you may be paying several times what you would pay for other roofing materials.

Slate doesn’t require maintenance, but it can be damaged. Even just walking on slate tiles can be enough to crack them. If you have slate tiles installed on your roof, it’s crucial to be cautious if you ever have to get on your roof (or if you hire repairmen to work on components of your roof). If a tile should crack, it’s completely useless, and it will need to be replaced.

Slate Composite

Slate composite roofs have many of the benefits of natural slate roofing, and few drawbacks. These tiles are designed to mimic the look of slate.

The Pros of Composite Slate

Composite slate roofs look nearly identical to traditional slate roofs. Composite slate manufacturers match the slate tile look with similar texture, and an array of similar colors. You can even find composite slate tiles that are varied in dimension, giving your roof even more character.

Composite slate roofs are fairly durable — although they won’t last as long as their slate counterparts. Generally speaking, composite slate tiles last three to five decades. However, you can find products on the market that are backed with a lifetime guarantee.

Composite slate roofs are a breeze to install. Although they may take a tad longer to install than asphalt shingles, a full roof can be completed in a few days.

You can’t beat the price of a composite slate roof. Composite slate is a fraction of the cost of traditional slate roofing. Instead of paying $1,000 or more per square (again, a roofing square is 100 square feet), you’ll pay between $50 and $150 per square.

The Cons of Composite Slate

As we mentioned, composite slate won’t outlast the real deal. Composite slate lasts about as long as many asphalt shingle products on the market. Composite slate isn’t as impervious to weathering as slate is, and it’s more liable to fly off of your roof in heavy winds. In addition, composite slate tiles may not have the best fire rating — most brands are more flammable than slate tiles.


Metal roofing is valued for its longevity. Plus, some folks love the aesthetic of a metal roof on their abode. Here are some more pros and cons to weigh if you’re thinking about opting for metal.

The Pros of Metal

Metal roofs can last 40 years or more (some can last nearly a century), depending on the material used — metal roofing can be tin, galvanized steel, aluminum, or copper (which is difficult to come by these days).

Metal roofs are available in a variety of colors and textures.

The Cons of Metal

Metal is moderately expensive. Roofs can cost anywhere from $700 to $1,200 dollars per square (a roofing square is 100 square feet). However, you’ll likely recoup those costs thanks to the longevity of metal roofs.

Metal roofs can heat up in the summer, which could cause your cooling bill to rise. In addition, they can be noisy — especially in a hail storm. Speaking of, heavy hail can leave your metal roof dinged, although it won’t harm the integrity of this waterproof barrier.

Metal roofs are also liable to warp with extreme temperature changes. However, a properly installed metal roof will hold its shape.

Metal roofing should also only be installed on homes that are grounded to protect the home and residents against lightning dangers.

We’re an Owens Corning Preferred Roofer

Once you’ve decided on the right roofing material for your home, there’s only one crew to call. Count on the professional roofers here at Red Dog’s Roofing. We’re certified Owens Corning roofers, which means that we provide unparalleled service quality, guaranteed workmanship, and unbeatable warranties on Owens Corning products.

Qualified Roofing Contractors

Our roofing contractors are licensed and insured, and we adhere to quality guidelines and craftsmanship standards put forth by Owens Corning. The Red Dog team encompasses trained professional roofers, and locals here in the Fitchburg area.

Guaranteed Work, Unbeatable Warranties

When you use Red Dog’s Roofing for your roof, you get a 10-year workmanship guarantee through Owens Corning. We are authorized to offer exclusive warranties, like the Owens Corning System Advantage™ Preferred Roofing Limited Warranty. The System Advantage Preferred Roofing Limited Warranty not only provides additional roofing coverage for a longer period of time, it also covers our workmanship for a full 10 years. Learn more about Owens Corning warranties.

Get Started Today!

Well, what are you waiting for? Put a solid roof over your head with Red Dog’s Roofing. Get in touch with us today to schedule an appointment.