What are the Different Types of Metal Roofs?

The builders made an unusual copper-colored roof with a new building under construction

Do Metal Roofs Need Maintenance?

Metal roofing has revolutionized the roofing industry. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance roof that lasts over fifty years, and can be engineered to perform to high standards, you’re going to strongly consider a metal roof. The level of upkeep required for a metal roof is generally minimal, particularly if your roof was well-installed. Maintenance is typically restricted to removing debris like fallen branches and debris from the roof of your home. Regular maintenance should be performed once a year to get the maximum life out of your metal roof.

What Metal Roof Is Best?

There are many types of materials used in metal roofing, but the most common are aluminum, zinc, copper, stainless steel, or tin. Depending on your location, the type of material that you use will be a crucial first step toward determining which direction to go. For instance, an aluminum roof will be an excellent option for salty regions, but it’s durability factor is not as strong as other materials.

  • Copper has been used for centuries around the world. In ideal environments, copper can last over two-hundred years. Coppers roofs are 100% recyclable. As a softer material, copper is easily dented by hailstorms, so if your area is frequently besieged by hailstorms, copper might not be the right option for you. Copper roofs are extremely expensive, as well, so depending on your budget, you might want to reconsider a copper option.
  • Aluminum options are worthy of being considered. In a coastal environment, you can’t beat the weather-resistant option of aluminum. What makes aluminum so attractive as an option for homeowners is the highly-reactive nature of the metal. However, aluminum’s price fluctuates depending on the market, typically lying somewhere between the cost of steel and copper.
  • Zinc is an amazing metal. Zinc is able to use its patina to heal its scratches over time and stay strong for over 100 years. Zinc can easily be formed and manipulated into amazing shapes. The main downside to zinc is the chalking effect from an aesthetic point of view, and the price- zinc is not cheap. Zinc can also be damaged by hail.
  • Steel. Steel is an alloy, made from iron and other elements. Steel has become one of the most common elements in roofing due to its recyclability and availability. Comparatively, steel is the least expensive metal. For high weather options, no better choice can be found, working well in hail storms and able to withstand high winds.
  • Tin roofs are currently in high demand by enthusiasts in North America. Tin is incredibly  rare, and unused metal for roofing. While tin was formerly popular in the early twentieth century, its hay day has long- since passed. It is no longer used as a roofing option.
New corrugated metallic gray roof of new house

How Long Do Metal Roofs Last?

Generally speaking, metal roofs such as aluminum or steel can last for fifty years or more, while copper and zinc often last well over one-hundred years. As with anything, a well-maintained roof will last longer than a poorly-maintained roof.

What Gauge Metal Roofing Should I Use?

The term ‘gauge’ refers to the thickness of the metal panel you are going to install on your roof. 22-gauge is the thickest metal panel and 29-gauge is the thinnest metal panel of the traditionally-sold metal roof and wall panels. Each gauge represents a nominal decimal range. Thicker gauge metal panels are certainly strong, but they are also more expensive, by approximately fifteen percent. For barns, garages, and warehouses, the extra expense makes sense. However, in the residential market, nearly all homes have a layer of plywood or oriented strand board sheathing covered by a weather-resistant barrier. It’s not necessary to have a thicker gauge metal panel in such cases.

Is a Metal Roof Better?

Metal roofs and shingles roofs are measured against each other often in the roofing industry. Asphalt roofs are typically cheaper, but they do not last as long as metal roofs, requiring more maintenance in the interim. Metal roofs cost more at the outset, but they typically last longer and require less maintenance. Homeowners will have to weigh the options for their needs, and adjust their decisions accordingly.

Types of Metal Roofing for House

Metal roofs come in many styles, color, and textures. Perhaps a homeowner likes the design of a standing seam, which is known as a very traditional style of metal roof. New styles of metal roof now include varieties of shake, shingle, tile and slate profiles. The four different types of “modular” panels can vary greatly in terms of look and use. Determine which style most suits your design aesthetic, and consult a trusted roofing contractor. While you’re at it, you might consult water treatment services for your home. Making the most of your water will increase your enjoyment of your home, water treatment in St. Louis, MO.

Metal Roof Types and Colors

Once you have selected the material and gauge suitable for your needs and environment, you may select the style and color of your metal roof. There is a surprising array of colors and textures for your metal roof that will leave you delighted (and perhaps perplexed with the variety!)

Metal Roof Tools

Sheet metal roofers utilize a variety of tools not necessary for asphalt roofing. These tools comprise the following: standing seam, sheet metal benders, sheet metal snips, sheet metal hand seamers, gutter tools, malco tools, sheet metal hammers, marking and measuring tools, Masc tools, sheet metal clamps, roofing shoes, and metal roof cutting tools.

Metal Roofing versus Shingle

Asphalt shingles or composition shingles, as they are sometimes called, are composed of a fiberglass mat core with a crushed rock embedded asphalt coating. These shingles comprise the traditional roofs one sees in a suburban neighborhood. Metal roofs are traditionally more expensive, require less maintenance, and have increased longevity. Depending upon budget, and other factors, asphalt roofs, and metal roofs both have a place in the landscape.

Consult ProCraft Exteriors in Chesterfield and St. Louis, MO for all your metal roofing needs. Call (314) 786-3732 today!