Big hair bands would be proud. A metal roof can be a hardcore rockin’ way to protect your home or business from Mother Nature’s worst. Unlike conventional roofing materials, a metal roof will last for decades, possibly even centuries. And because modern metal roofing comes in a wide variety of colors, styles and materials, they’re able to suit any home’s architectural features. Add in that metal roofing materials are eco-friendly energy savers and you’ve got an affordable roofing material that, when properly installed, can help to save big bucks on your heating and cooling costs. So much money in fact, you could easily buy a flying V guitar, a mullet wig and maybe even a pair of tickets to see The Scorpions at the state fair.
Metal Roofing Benefits
There are a number of great benefits that a metal roof can provide. It’s easy to see why so many people choose to install a metal roof. In fact, it’s one of the fastest growing segments of the home improvement industry. While other roofing systems quickly lose their value as they age, metal roofing provides the following advantages:
- Lifespan- A metal roof is probably going to last longer than you are. Even the cheapest of metal roofing materials are designed to have a lifespan of 30-50 years. Many high quality metal roofs have a lifetime warranty, in some cases, it’s even transferable to the next homeowner if you decide to sell your home.
Beauty- Your home’s metal roof doesn’t have to look like Jed Clampett’s outhouse. Those old rusted galvanized barn toppers are a thing of the past. Most metal roofing companies have a huge variety of colors, styles and design features. Some PVDF powder coatings allow homeowners to mix their own custom colors. Hidden fasteners can even make a metal roof look like one seamless candy coated shell.
- Strength- By far one of the strongest roofing materials available. High winds, fires, heavy snow loads and zombie attacks are nothing for most metal roofs.
- Ecofriendly- Most metal roofing is made from post-consumer recycled metal. Metal panels can be coated with Hi-R heat barrier finishes that reflect radiant heat like a champ. No need for that tinfoil hat. Most metal roofing is going to lower your heating and cooling costs.
- Retrofitting- When you’re looking to ditch your old asphalt shingle roof, metal is sometimes easily installed right over the top, without the need to remove the old shingles.
Metal Roofing Disadvantages
It wouldn’t be fair if I just talked about how great metal roofs are. In fact, you’d probably think I bought a bit of stock in a few metal roofing companies. But even if a metal roof is one of my favorite roofing systems, there are some crappy problems that can take place when metal roofing is installed. The following metal roof disadvantages are worth weighing into the equation if you’re thinking about buying the shiny stuff:
- Costs- While cheaper metal roofing is comparable, if not equal in pricing, to conventional asphalt shingle roofing; higher quality metal roofs can cost a pretty penny. Some metal is downright ridiculous in material prices, especially when you add the many bells and whistles that can come with the product.
Damages- While in the above advantage section I claimed that metal roofing is super strong; it does have its limits. Because metal deforms from high impacts, things like tree branches, hail and the occasional poop bomb from overhead airplanes can put a few dings and dents that are impossible to remove. In some cases, I’ve seen homeowners get on their roof to do some cleaning and put a few million dents in the stuff. Don’t be that guy or gal!
- Nosey Neighbors- While I’d have a ticker tape parade if all the homes in my neighborhood decided to put on a metal roof, not everyone sees it like I do. Your neighborhood homeowner association and local deed restrictions can deny this heavy metal material from being installed on your home or business. Metal roofing isn’t right for every architectural style either, so, your opposing neighbors might have a valid point.
- Tinfoil Hats- I joked before about metal roofing being like a tinfoil hat, but the truth is, some metal roofing can act just like one, blocking out radio, cellphone and the occasional alien spacecraft communique. My parent’s old two story house had a nice metal roof that interfered with cellphone calls in certain areas of the home.
- Stains- If you have a lot of trees or landscaping materials that blow mounds of leaves onto the roof, you’ll likely have a maintenance nightmare. Staining from the tannin in the leaves can affect nearly any metal roof permanently.
Whether you’re looking to re-roof or you’re building a brand new house, metal roofing is definitely a building material to consider. If you already have a metal roof, or have had one in the past, let us know about any pros and cons we might have missed by sharing a comment below.