A Basic Introduction to Roof Fire Ratings

As a homeowner, it’s your responsibility and obligation to make your home as safe and as secure as possible for its occupants. Part of it is making sure you’re using the safest materials for its construction, alongside engineering a design that can make emergency exits, such as during earthquakes or fires, as easy and intuitive as possible.

Roof Fire Ratings

Part of that duty is understanding how well your roof can resist fire. While fire will eventually consume anything given enough time (and combustion fuel), a fire-resistant roof can be instrumental in buying you time to evacuate your family out of harm’s way. In today’s post by your trusted roofer, The Great American Roofing Company, we’ll talk about what fire ratings mean for your roof and what benefit you can actually derive from them.

Underwriters Laboratories (UL)

Underwriters Laboratories determine the fire resistance of certain materials, including roofs. The UL 790 (ASTM E 108) standard, “Standard Test Methods for Fire Tests of Roof Coverings,” are specifically written to identify the fire-resistance rating of different roofing materials. It employs simulations of various fire sources, including wildfires, that come from the outside. The standard applies to all kinds of roofs on any type of building, including roof decks that are made from wood (which is combustible) or otherwise.

Following this standard, UL may categorize a roof into one of three classes: Class A, B, or C. These classes represent “fire exposure classes,” and describe how a roof can resist fire—A for the highest level of fire resistance, and C as the lowest. UL notes, however, that even though roofs may belong to any of these classes, fire exposure may likely render these roofs unusable. You can contact your roofer for a free roof repair estimate or even an outright replacement in such cases.

Which Roof Types Are More Fire-Resistant?

Wood is easily combustible, so wooden shakes may be out of the picture if you’re living in a wildfire-prone area. For more fire resistance, you can install metal roofing, which commonly comes in sheets. Ceramic or clay are also great options for a more fire-resistant roof, and you can use them as roofing tiles.

The Great American Roofer has earned your neighbors’ trust because we suggest roofing materials and practices for their utmost peace of mind. If your roof is prone to fire, or you’ve just managed to fight a fire on your roof, ask us for a roof replacement or roof repair cost estimate. Call us today at (201) 825-2955 or fill out our form to get started.