Metal Roofs are gaining so much popularity due to their longevity and they are among the most important surfaces of any building. Besides complementing the structure’s look and feel, the roof provides insulation, catches most of the sunlight and keeps out rain, hail, and snow. Additionally, roofs can provide protection against direct exposure to the elements and help reduce the likelihood of structural damage. Therefore, the performance of your roofing system has a direct impact on the condition and functionality of your building.
Old, leaky roofs can lead to severe destruction and damage, from destroyed floors and ruined furniture to life-threatening or highly inconvenient electrical issues. Although roof-related repairs are not always a cheap, some of these secondary damages can cost an arm and a leg. As such, you’ll want to choose the best possible option for your re-roofing project.
For a long time now, asphalt has been the go-to roofing material for commercial and residential use. But over the past few years, technological advancements have given rise to several other roofing solutions. With the introduction of so many alternatives, determining the best-suited variant for your needs and preferences might not be as easy as it was before.
Metal roofs have become increasingly popular, a clear indication that more and more people are learning about the benefits offered. Today, a whole range of new metal roofing products is available on the market. In terms of design, functionality, and overall performance, these solutions are a far cry from the old-fashioned metal roof systems known to many people.
Here’s a detailed metal-roof review to help you make the best buy.
Unlike asphalt roofing products, metal roofing systems are made from several different materials including steel, aluminum, copper, and alloys. But since some of these metals can be quite expensive, aluminum is the most commonly used variation.
Today, metal roof products are designed and formulated with ease of installation, safety, aesthetic value, efficiency, low maintenance, and durability in mind. Metal roof products are generally lightweight, fire-resistant, and long-lasting, all of which aim to ensure optimal performance.
Choosing a look
Before you can determine what type of metal roof best suits your needs, you’ll need to establish the most suitable roofing design for your home. Metal roof systems are available in two distinct forms, at least in terms of appearance. These are panel-style and shingle-style. Each of these styles features many variants.
Additionally, metal roof systems come in a wide variety of color finishes, meaning you can choose whatever suits your personal needs and preferences.
People tend to consider price over every other factor when choosing a roof for their homes, but there’s much more to keep in mind. Since some roofing materials are better than others on several counts, weighing one roofing system against the others is one way of ensuring you’ll pick the right choice for your home. Although there’s much more to keep in mind when selecting a roof for your home, pricing tends to be a priority for many people. You should, however, consider factors like ease of installation, the required level of maintenance, durability, styling options, and the afforded aesthetic value.
The Pros of Metal Roofs and Fast Installation Times.
Durability: Well-maintained, high-quality metal roof systems can outlast any asphalt roofing option. Not only are metal roof systems resistant to rot, fire, extreme weather, insects, and mildew, but they might as well outperform every other roofing solution when it comes to shedding snow and sealing out water.
Metal roof products are also less susceptible to venting problems than asphalt shingle roofs, making the impact of poor ventilation significantly less. In contrast, many asphalt roofs systems will require a well-ventilated attic, hence the importance of a static vent system and a dependable intake system. Poor ventilation can shave years off the roof’s lifespan, and this is one of the reasons why asphalt shingle roofs rarely last as long as they should. With an asphalt roof, the levels of performance and longevity offered are closely related to proper ventilation.
High-quality metal roofs have been known to last as long as the structures they cover, with properly installed models offering up to 100 years of optimal performance. Engaging a reputable and experienced metal roof contractor is, therefore, of vital importance. In addition to providing an unmatched measure of strength, shingle-style and panel-style metal roof systems have been expertly engineered to ensure a lifetime of optimal performance, particularly when it comes to protection and energy efficiency. Besides being a permanent solution, metal roof systems are considered an upgrade.
Metal roofs usually carry a 40-50+ year warranty, but unlike traditional asphalt warranties they are NOT pro-rated. Which means they will hold their value through time.
Weight: Compared to all the other roofing materials available on the market today, metal is arguably the lightest. Most metal roof variants weigh 50-150 pounds per square. In contrast, standard asphalt shingles usually weight 200-240 pounds per square while the high-end varieties weigh as much as 500 pounds per square. Different roofing materials can have varying weights. Although this might depend on the type, metal roof systems are typically 35 percent lighter than asphalt roofs.
Being lightweight means that significantly less time and money is needed to engineer and install the roof support.
Styling options: Metal roof systems offer versatility, a unique and highly beneficial quality. Although asphalt roof products come in several different styles and colors, metal roof solutions offer a lot more options. Metal panels and shingles can be fashioned into a wide variety of artistically designed roofing styles with unlimited options. Metal shingles, for instance, can be formulated to imitate the appearance and beauty of almost anything, from wood shakes and slate tiles to asphalt shingles. Also, metal roof systems can work well for almost all architectural designs. As a result, there is a much higher chance you will find something that complements your home and suits your needs perfectly.
Ease and speed of installation: Metal roofs are as easy to install as asphalt shingle roofs. In fact, you can turn this type of installation into a do-it-yourself project, especially if you don’t mind the work, have some building skills and are comfortable around tools. However, we don’t recommend DIY metal roof installation projects due to safety concerns and warranty issues.
Metal shingles come in multiple sections while metal roof panels are available in sheets measuring 12-36 inches wide, making it easier for experienced contractors to install a metal roof. As a result, metal roof installations require much less time to complete. Professional contractors can take less than a day to strip an old roof and install a new metal roof system. It’s easy to see the benefits of a shorter installation process, particularly when there’s a storm coming and you’ve had your roof stripped off.
Overall performance: Metal is a solid and dependable material, once that will outlast almost every other roofing solution. In general, metal roofs can hold up very well when exposed to hail, driving rain, high winds, or accumulated snow. As a result, metal roof solutions will provide superior protection for a much longer period with very minimal maintenance.
Thanks to their hard, slippery surfaces and interlocking design, shingle-style and panel-style metal roof systems are impervious to water and snow. Besides the ability to shed water and snow easily, installation over a gently pitched supporting structure does not increase the likelihood of developing leaks.
Additionally, metal is noncombustible, which is why metal roof systems have a Class-A fire resistance rating. But this classification partly depends on the type of roof support installed underneath the surface since exposure to intense heat could cause some of the materials used to ignite. As such, installing a metal roof system over wood or any other combustible material could result in a Class-C rating.
Metal is a good conductor of heat, hence its low R-value, which translates to less insulating power. Because of this, a dead-air space is usually used to increase energy efficiency. Aside from the dead-air space, metal roof systems will reflect the sun’s radiant heat, minimizing midday heat gain. Homeowners will, therefore, save the energy they would have used to run their air conditioning units during the day, increasing their homes’ energy efficiency.
Cost: Copper, zinc, and steel roofing solutions are more expensive than aluminum roofs. Even if you don’t choose a premium material, you’ll still pay a higher initial price for a metal roof system than you would for an asphalt roof. However, the overall cost will be considerably low and can match the budget of many homeowners.
For starters, metal roof materials and systems are lightweight, meaning you’ll spend less time and money engineering and installing the supporting structure. Besides reducing the number of roof-support members when building an addition, you don’t have to install extra structural support or strip off an existing roof to apply this lightweight roof material. Because they are a low maintenance option, metal roof systems involve much lower ongoing expenses than other roofing options.