If you live on a heavily wooded lot, you may feel as though September, October, November, and even parts of December are a nonstop battle against falling leaves. While these leaves can eventually create a protective layer over your lawn, helping shield it from the elements throughout the cold winter, any stray leaves that remain on your roof or in your gutters can be far less beneficial. 

Not only can rotting or damp leaves lead to mold growth on the outside of your roof, they can weaken its structural integrity, allowing moisture to enter the space between your roof and ceiling and even causing interior damage. What roofing options can protect your home from the hazards of seemingly innocuous leaves? Read on to learn more about your best roofing options for a heavily-wooded lot.

Cedar Shake Shingles

Cedar shingles have been a popular roofing material for centuries, and for good reason: These shingles are built to last. When properly installed, cedar shake shingles often last at least 30 years, ensuring your home won't need to be re-roofed for decades. 

Unlike some other types of wood, cedar has natural anti-insecticidal and anti-microbial properties, helping stave off insect damage and bacterial growth without requiring treatment using potentially harmful chemicals. Even after days of exposure to snow, rain, hail, and other forms of moisture, your cedar roofing shingles will be none the worse for wear, repelling water ably and keeping your home safe and dry.

When it comes to homes with heavily wooded lots, cedar shingles can be ideal; a clump of wet, soggy leaves left lying on a cedar-shingled roof is unlikely to do any damage. Over time and with exposure to the elements, your cedar roof may fade from a fresh red or peach color to a silvery grey but won't show any staining from leaves, twigs, and other debris.  

Cedar shake shingles can be made from either red or white cedar; because each variety tends to thrive in one region, homes on the West Coast are more often bedecked with rich-looking red cedar shingles, while the East Coast and Midwest tend to utilize lighter-colored white cedar. The cost of transporting "non-local" shingles across the country is often several multiples of the cost of local shingles, so unless you have a compelling reason to head across the country for your shingles, buying locally is your more budget-friendly option. 

Aluminum Roofing Panels 

If cedar isn't in your budget, or if you're not sure your roof is capable of supporting these heavy wooden shingles, you may want to opt for aluminum roofing panels instead. These panels are ultra-lightweight and made from rust-resistant aluminum, helping them maintain a like-new appearance for years after installation. 

Some aluminum panels are designed to cover a substantial section of your roof, while others are cut into smaller, shingle-shaped slices. The right choice for your roof will depend largely upon your budget and the amount of weight your roof can bear; layering smaller shingles atop one another is likely to lead to a heavier roof than using a single layer of aluminum. 

Not only can aluminum ably resist any mold, mildew, or bug infestations that may be harbored within the piles of damp leaves that accumulate on your roof during fall and winter, the smoothness of this roofing surface can make it far easier to keep clean than other types of rough-surfaced roofs (like asphalt or rubber shingles). By spraying down your roof after most of the leaves have already hit the ground, you'll be able to keep your gutters clear of debris all winter long. 

Contact a company like Click Lock Roofing to learn about other durable roofing options.