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Metal Roofs: What You Need To Know

While metal roofing has been around for years, the idea of a metal roof is rather new to many homeowners. And, contrary to what many may think, it’s actually a nice alternative to typical shingles. If you’re new to the metal roofing and considering the material for your home, here’s what you need to know.

What are the advantages of a metal roof?

Metal roofs are a much better overall investment. Metal roofs not only last longer than shingles, but also are more durable and weather resistant, as metal roofing does not rot, warp, crack, split, burn, or peel. It’s also impervious to termites and pests. And, metal roofing also offers lots of options with numerous colors and panels to choose from.

How well do metal roofing systems stand up to the elements?

When properly installed, metal roofing will withstand inclement weather like high winds, hail, snow, and rain better than any other type of roofing material. In fact, metal roofing easily sheds snow and ice and does not absorb water, which can lead to cracking and rotting with other types of roofing materials. In testing, metal roofing has withstood winds up to 200 miles per hour. Historically, metal roofing has survived hurricanes and wind storms when other materials have failed. In addition, metal roofing does not rot, warp, crack, split, burn, or peel and is impervious to termites and pests.

What does metal roofing weigh compared to other roofing materials?
On average, metal roofing weights anywhere from .7 to 1.3 pounds per square foot, depending on the gauge and configuration. Typical shingles average about 2 to 2.5 pounds per square foot. Clay tiles weigh approximately 10 pounds per square foot.

How is metal roofing applied and do I need to be experienced at working with sheet metal to install it?

Manufacturers recommend metal roofing should be applied over a flat deck and felt paper with woodscrews. A basic knowledge of sheet metal work is necessary for trimming panels, cutting valleys, hips and penetrations, fitting of trim and proper application of fasteners.

What is the cost of metal roofing compared to other roofing materials?

Although the initial cost of metal roofing may be higher than typical shingles, the cost/benefit ratio over the life of the metal roof is much greater than shake, slate, or tile. Material cost alone (retail) for metal ranges from about $40 to $200 per square, depending on the gauge, configuration, and finish. Installation costs range from about $75 to $300 per square. The material cost of shingles varies from about $20 to $75 per square, with installation costs ranging from approximately $40 to $115 per square. Installation costs for shake average approximately $190 per square. Clay/concrete tile and slate are usually more expensive than shake.

Will the look of a metal roof fit into my neighborhood?

Metal roofing is available in colors and styles that blend in with typical shingle colors. Yet, local building code and neighborhood bylaws should always be addressed when considering metal roofing.

How is metal roofing ordered?

Metal roofing is custom cut to the inch based on an individual project’s measurements. Panels can be provided up to 40 feet in length, and color-matching trim is available.