For years, the default answer when choosing the material for your roof was always asphalt shingles. Metal roofs have been around for years, primarily for industrial and commercial use.
Today, metal roofs are still second behind asphalt shingles, but that gap is shrinking yearly. There is particular growth in residential roofing. With more and more homeowners and landlords deciding to go with metal roofs, this article will dive into why a metal roof could be the right decision for you.
If you’re thinking of replacing your roof, you may consider metal. There must be a lot of positive reasons that so many homeowners are turning to metal roofs over traditional shingles. Some of the primary reasons to go in this direction are:
Perhaps the biggest driver of the metal roof boom is the fact that they last a lot longer than asphalt shingles. They are also more durable when properly installed.
Most metal roofs have a lifespan of 25 to 50 years, with higher-end models lasting longer than that. If you opt for the more expensive copper or zinc material, your roof can last up to 100 years or more.
Most asphalt roofs expect to last between 12 and 20 years. A properly installed metal roof lasts longer and typically comes with a 30 to 50-year manufacturer’s warranty based on the material’s durability.
One of the biggest reasons for damage to roofs is strong gusts of wind. So it never fails that you will see at least remnants of asphalt shingles on the ground after a strong storm. Metal roofs are especially resistant to wind gusts, with most able to withstand gusts of up to 140 miles per hour.
Metal roofing panels usually come in sheets one to three feet wide and are incredibly lightweight. Combine that with the fact that they can be installed on an existing roof, and the installation process is cheaper and easier than asphalt shingles.
The old roofing material must be removed entirely when replacing a roof with asphalt shingles, which takes valuable time. In addition, you must take the costs of disposal into account.
One of the selling points of installing a metal roof is that no matter what the old roof was made of, you can install the new metal roof on top of it. Not only does this save time and money, but it adds an extra layer of protection from the elements and improves the roof’s energy efficiency.
Maximum Rain and Snow Shedding
For homeowners living in rainy or cold environments, this is a huge benefit. With the metal material being slick and smooth, snow and rain glide easily down its surface because of the roof’s pitch.
If you choose a darker color for your metal roof, this helps even more. The darker color will absorb more of the sun’s heat and melt the snow faster.
In all walks of life, energy efficiency is a top priority, especially at home. After all, climate change will get worse if we don’t start changing our lifestyles. Your roofing material choices are no different when it comes to prioritizing efficiency.
Metal roofs reflect the sun’s heat away from your home, meaning less heat enters the attic, and your A/C unit will need to run less, depending on your roof’s pitch. Less energy burned is better for the climate.
Some estimates have metal roofs reducing cooling costs by as much as 25 percent. There are special coating products that can improve the efficiency even more by adding additional reflecting elements to your roof.
Resistant to Organic Growth
Asphalt shingles are susceptible to moss, fungus, and other bacteria that can significantly shorten the lifespan of your roof. Without this threat, metal roofs will hold up far longer than other materials.
Metal roofs are almost impossible for pests and other invasive species to worm their way through into your attic and damage the outside structure of your home.
If you happen to live in an area with the potential for wildfires, that they are fire resistant is a particularly good selling point for metal roofs. Be sure to check the fire rating for the material that your contractors will use on your roof.
Most metal roofing material is rated Class A, with added fire protection to make them fire resistant. Depending on your home’s location, this feature can prove invaluable, especially compared to shingles with pitch. Preventing residential fires is good for the community and our climate, so it’s best to choose fire resistant roofing.
With a wide variety of colors and styles, the metal roof also has an aesthetic appeal that asphalt shingles can’t compete with. Whereas shingles are typically only offered in black or gray, metal roofs can be custom ordered to match and coordinate with the color of your home and/or shutters.
Even if you prefer the look of a traditional roof, there are options for metal shingles designed to look like wood shakes or slate tiles. There is virtually no limit to the design and style capabilities of metal roofing panels.
While there are plenty of reasons to go forward with using metal for your roofing material, there are several reasons why you should think twice about that decision. No matter which material you choose, this will be a significant project costing a lot of money. Before you make that decision, here are a few thoughts that may give you pause:
Metal roofs are more expensive than traditional asphalt shingles. However, if installed properly, metal roofs will last a lot longer and require less repair, which could save you money over your home’s life. It will be up to you to balance the upfront expense of a metal roof versus the long-term possibility of replacing a shingle roof.
When it comes time to replace your roof, these costs could be the deciding factor. Do you plan on being in this home for the rest of your life? Then the added costs of a metal roof could be worth it. Is this a starter or investment home? Then maybe a less expensive alternative is suitable for you.
Metal roofs are known for their strength and durability. However, there are instances where they can be damaged, such as large hail storms and fallen limbs and branches.
One of the drawbacks to metal roofing is when you do have damage, and you aren’t able to walk on the metal to repair it. There are ways to prevent this during installation, but it is another added cost. Some metal roofing materials come with no-dent guarantees, which would be ideal if your home is located amongst trees or other objects susceptible to falling.
Let your installation company know if this is a significant concern for you. You may want to opt for a stronger material, such as steel, as opposed to other options, like aluminum and copper.
For some homeowners, the noise a metal roof makes when it rains is a pro instead of a con. However, some people find the added noise annoying.
If this describes you, rest assured that contractors can substantially reduce noise for a metal roof if precautions are taken during installation. These additional layers will add to the cost of the roof and must be factored in as well.
So, is metal roofing the right choice for your house? Weigh the pros and cons of your home, where you live, and what the weather will be like before choosing to install a metal roof.
If you find it is for you, we will be happy to help you through the installation process. Contact us today to learn more about our roofing services.