Why a cedar roof needs a cold roof system

You’ve decided to invest in a new cedar roof. Perhaps you love the timeless, classic look of cedar shingles, or your architecturally controlled neighbourhood requires it. Did you know that not all cedar roofs are created equal? Here are the advantages of a strapped cedar cold roof.

How a cold roof system can make your cedar roof last 2x longer!

Have you heard before that a Cedar Roof should last 30+ years? That they are extremely reliable, long-lasting, insulating and cost effective? Where does this rumour come from?

Out in British Columbia, Cedar roofs are a lot more common than they are in Alberta and are frequently used by hotels in ski resorts. The volume of snow, wind, and weather variations is way higher than in your average Edmonton home.

So why, then, are the cedar rooftops looking old after 10, 12, 15, years?

Because they aren’t installed properly, That’s why!

Installation issues with cedar roofs

In Alberta, the minimum “Code” says that the installer can properly ventilate according to the code and install the cedar directly on the plywood deck of the roof. The problem is that although that works for code, it doesn’t work for the manufacturer’s specifications for warranty or for the long-lasting promise of a cedar roof.

The proper way to install cedar is onto pine strapping for a cold roof system. This reduces ice dams, condensation, mould and accelerated wear and tear. This requires a lot more work, mind you, and about a 20% increase in the cost of installing the roof, but what it does do, is double the life of the cedar.

This is well documented in the manufacturer warranty booklet for low-slope roofs, and many premium roofers in areas all over North America agree. There are plenty of other installation considerations, but proper ventilation of the cedar, allowing it to breathe and remain dry, is the most important!

Check out this video to see another roofing company’s explanation of a cold roof system and its value to you, the homeowner.


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