The importance of a reliable and high-quality roof cannot be stressed enough. So, whether you’re building a new home or replacing your property’s existing roof, it is necessary to carefully choose what type of roof system and material you are going to install.
Among the good options to choose from is metal roofing. As one of the fastest-growing market segments for both residential and commercial roofing, metal roofs offer a number of benefits. In fact, according to the National Roofing Contractors Association, the popularity of metal roofing products has increased dramatically over the last decade.
If you are interested in installing a metal roof on your home or commercial property, then this post can help you determine if it will actually meet your requirements. I will also share with you other interesting facts and info about metal roofing, so read on!
BEAUTY AND DURABILITY. Metal roofs come in a wide variety of designs, profiles, finishes and colors, making them both a beautiful and durable roofing option.
Made of Tin? The Basics of Metal Roofing
Metal roofs are sensible choice if you want to protect your residential or commercial property the best way possible, particularly if you are in an area that often experiences storms and drastic temperature changes, such as Illinois, Indiana, Oklahoma, Arizona and Ohio, just to name a few.
However, some property owners who have not yet seen today’s metal roofing options easily associate metal roofs with “tin” roofs – those typically installed on barns – which is one reason why they are discouraged from including metal roofing among their shortlisted materials. Little do they know that modern metal roofing products can, in fact, serve as a high-tech answer to their need for a durable, yet lightweight, easy-to-install and beautiful roof.
To make the case for metal roofs, you must understand that not all are made of tin. Below are some of your options when it comes to metal roofing:
- Tin – Also more accurately called terne or terneplate, tin roofs may be composed of different soft metals that have been treated with lead or tin coating. But make no mistake, a properly installed and maintained tin roof can last up to 50 years.
- Galvanized steel – This type of metal roof is made of alloyed steel, typically with a protective coating of zinc, making it highly rust-resistant. When properly treated, installed, and maintained, this generally inexpensive metal roof type can last up to a minimum of 60 years.
- Aluminum – The use of aluminum for metal roofing continues to gain popularity as it can effectively resist corrosion and rust. Aluminum also requires little maintenance. The material is also known to reflect heat better than steel, helping keep the home or building comfortable during the warm months. Its lifespan is at least 35 years.
- Copper – This material could be the longest lasting metal roof option, but unfortunately, it is quite expensive and not widely available, which is why it is not typically seen on newer homes.
- Stone coated steel – If you want the cost efficiency of galvanized steel, the maintainability of aluminum and longevity close to that of copper roofs, then you should consider stone coated steel roofs. This type of metal roof is made of high-quality, structural-grade steel, coated with an acrylic base coat. During manufacture, earth-stone granules are embedded over the base coat, and a clear acrylic over-glaze is applied and baked on. This special treatment and coating allows the roof to last longer and better resist common damage factors.
Is Metal Roofing for You?
I’ll be honest with you: different roofing types offer different sets of benefits and advantages, and as such, each of them is best for particular needs. There is no one-size-fits-all. If you are wondering if metal roofing is for you, the answer is YES — if you are looking for these qualities:
- Strength and longevity – Metal is practically one of the strongest materials there is. While the sun, wind, rain, snow, ice and hail can all begin to break down other roofing materials as soon as they are installed, a metal roof can actually withstand all of these elements three to four times better than its counterparts. Some metal roofs can withstand wind gusts of up to 140 mph. Metal will not easily crack upon impact and won’t warp. Because of its durability, metal roofs can last up to 70 years or longer, depending on the specific choice of material. Compared to traditional asphalt roofing’s lifespan of around 20 years, a metal roof’s life expectancy is absolutely an advantage in itself.
- Beauty – Gone are the days when metal roofing was only suitable for barns and industrial buildings. As manufacturers began to reach out to more consumers, they started producing metal roofing products in a wider range of designs, profiles, colors and finishes. You can even find metal roofs that mimic the look of other roof types, such as asphalt and slate. This means it shouldn’t be difficult for you to harness the benefits of metal roofs while giving your home an aesthetically appealing roof at the same time.
- Safety – Metal roofs will not be easily lifted off by strong winds. Being lightweight, they won’t give you many structural concerns either. Metal roofing is also fire-resistant — it will not spark and ignite in flames during a fire or when lightning strikes (contrary to the common myth that metal roofs attract lightning).
- Energy efficiency – Many people are under the impression that metal roofs can make your indoors heat up by absorbing heat, but this is far from the truth. Metal roofs can actually effectively reflect the sun’s rays, reducing the need for maximum cooling efforts during summer. According to the Cool Metal Roofing Coalition, metal roofs can help you save as much as 40% in summer cooling costs. All in all, metal roofs can reduce annual cooling costs by 10-25% as it can minimize midday heat gain, helping cool your home towards the evening.
- Environment friendliness – Metal roofs are often made of 25-95% recycled materials and, when the time comes that they need to be removed and replaced, can be also fully recycled. Unlike other roofing materials, metal roofs have the potential to not end up in landfills.
EASY AND AFFORDABLE INSTALLATION. Metal roofs are lightweight, allowing for easier, faster and cheaper installation.
Other Benefits of Metal Roofing
Aside from the primary advantages mentioned above, metal roofs are also:
- Lightweight and easy to install – Metal roofs only weigh between 50 and 150 pounds per square. Because of its light weight, it can be easily and quickly installed, which also translates to more affordable installation costs.
- Requires minimal roof pitch – Metal roofs can be installed on minimally pitched roofs without the risk of leaks unlike other roof systems, such as asphalt shingle roofing.
- Offer maximum rain and snow shedding – Metal roofs have a hard and slippery surface, which makes for easier and better shedding of rain and snow.
Metal roofs continue to gain in popularity for both residential and commercial applications for good reasons. So, if you are considering it for your property, make it a point to work with a trusted roofing contractor that can offer you high-quality product options and services, so that you can make the most out of your investment.
About the Author
John Rogers is the president of Rogers Roofing. A passionate roofer himself, he has spent most of his professional working with a team of equally experienced and knowledgeable industry experts. John enjoys playing baseball with his sons, and he never misses an opportunity to attend his daughter’s dance recitals. Catch his updates on their company blog.