The two most popular metal roofs are corrugated and standing seam.
Corrugated literally means “shaped into ridges and grooves.” These are the panels most typically found on outbuildings. A corrugated roof has an exposed fastener, which is the way the roof is attached to the home. On a finished project, you will see lines of screw heads holding the panels in place.
Standing seam roofs remove the exposed fastener aspect and hide the fastening system in the seam itself. This offers a visually appealing aesthetic for residential homes and cabins alike.
There are also metal shingles, metal tiles, and metal shake roofs to replicate the classic look of asphalt shingles, clay tiles, and cedar shake roofs, while getting the benefits of metal.
How does metal compare to shingles?
Durability: Metal will hold up significantly better than asphalt shingles over time. Metal can withstand high winds of up to 150 mph and are considered hail rated. Asphalt does not hold up as well against wind, hail, and other harsh conditions.
Longevity: Metal roofs can last anywhere from 40–70 years. Asphalt shingle roofs typically last 15–25 years.
Cost: Metal roofs will cost about two to three times more than a shingle roof up front. This is mostly because labor is more intensive, installation is more complex, and the materials are of better quality. While the upfront cost is higher, metal roofs will be more cost effective in the long term as they last significantly longer and will have fewer repair costs.
Location: Do you live somewhere that is prone to severe weather? This may be something to consider when choosing between asphalt shingles and metal. Metal panels are proven to be better at withstanding strong winds, hail, heavy rain, ice, high heat, and snow.
Why does metal hold up better? Asphalt shingles are fastened at the top of the shingle, so the bottom half is mostly held down by gravity. This means they can curl or be blown up by wind, and the elements can get underneath the shingles more easily. They are also more prone to damage from hail. Metal interlocks on all four sides, giving it higher resistance.
Installer availability: If you go with a shingle roof, there are more roofing contractors to choose from since most install asphalt shingles regularly. It may be harder to find a qualified contractor that is certified for metal roofs, but it is becoming more and more common. Hopkins has years of experience in this area.
In addition, contractors are able to take on more shingle projects since they take less time to install. For metal roofs, they may have to set aside multiple days to complete the project.
How much do metal roofs cost?
The cost of installing a metal roof can vary depending on several factors, including the:
Type of metal roofing material.
Size of the roof project.
Complexity of the installation.
Location of the property.
On average, metal roofs can cost anywhere between $5 to $12 per square foot, including materials and installation. This makes metal roofs more expensive than traditional asphalt shingle roofs, which typically range from $4 to $6 per square foot.
Do metal roofs help with energy efficiency in your home?
Yes. Because of the coating metal panels are dipped in, the roof will be more efficient at reflection, saving you money on energy bills.
What maintenance is required for a metal roof?
Metal roofs are generally low maintenance when compared to other types of roof systems. Thanks to their durability, they typically stay in great shape and need few repairs.
A good practice, regardless of your roof type, is to check your roof once or twice a year to make sure nothing looks out of the ordinary and to remove any debris or branches from the roof and gutters. You can also use water to wipe away any sap or pollen if you have trees close by or hanging over the roof. Never use a power washer, as that can take the paint off.
Are metal roofs easy to install?
Metal roofs are relatively easy to install, especially when compared to other roofing options. Their lightweight nature simplifies the installation process, and most metal roofing systems come with interlocking panels that facilitate straightforward installation.
How long does it take to install them?
The exact time it takes to install a metal roof depends on the size and complexity of the project, the type of metal roof chosen, and the experience of the roofing contractor. However, on average, a metal roof installation can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks.
Metal Roofs: Pros and Cons
Long lifespan of 40–70 years
Energy bill savings
Eco-friendly (recyclable and made from recycled materials)
Cost effective over time
Expensive (2–3X cost of shingles)
Insurance will not cover denting from hail storms*
*While it takes a lot to dent a metal roof, since the integrity is still intact, insurance will typically not replace a metal roof unless there is a hole or damage to the coating that could cause rusting. **Known as “oil canning,” these distortions may not look great, but rest assured, roof performance is not impacted. ***Noise is typically not an issue as long as your roof is properly insulated.
What else should you consider when it comes to a metal roof?
Whether your HOA accepts metal roofs. Some HOAs will not allow metal roofs, but as they are growing in popularity, they are becoming more accepted.
What color and appearance you want. With metal roofs, you will have more options for bright, vibrant colors as well as earth tones. They also have a more modern look. Shingles don’t have as many color options and are more of a traditional look.
How long you plan to stay in your home. If your home is temporary or short term, the cheaper upfront cost of shingles may be a better route. If you plan to stay in your home for the long haul, a metal roof could be a great investment.
What should you do next if you want a metal roof?
If after weighing the pros and cons you decide on metal for your roof replacement, you will want to hire a reputable contractor. To receive all of the benefits of metal, proper installation of your metal roof requires an experienced roofing company.
Hopkins Roofing has years of experience in metal installation. Call us today for a free estimate!