Until recently, metal roofing was used almost exclusively on commercial buildings. Thankfully, all that is changing, and it’s now just as common to see metal roofs on homes. Read on to find out about just a few of the benefits of installing metal roofs on residential homes to see why so many homeowners have already made the switch.
- It’s Long-Lasting
When homeowners trust expert contractors like those employed by Erie Home Roofing Solutions, they can expect metal roofing to last a lifetime. While asphalt shingles need to be replaced every two decades or so, metal roofing can easily last 50-100 years with proper maintenance. As a result, while it’s true that metal tiles are more expensive to install than asphalt shingles, the longevity of metal roofing more than pays for the initial investment.
- It’s Lightweight
Traditional residential roofing materials tend to be quite heavy. Some high-end materials, such as slate, clay, and concrete tiles, even require retrofitting the home to support their weight. Metal roofing, on the other hand, is so lightweight that it can sometimes be installed on top of existing asphalt shingle roofs. This approach results in less work for contractors, less material waste, and less unwanted heat transfer thanks to the extra layer of roofing materials.
- It’s Easy to Install
Metal roofing still needs to be installed by a team of professionals, but when handled by experienced roofers, it goes up remarkably fast. It doesn’t matter whether homeowners want to install metal panels or tiles that have more of a traditional look. They can expect the material’s lighter weight and easier installation practices to mean that roofing projects will be completed much faster, often in just one or two days.
- It Can Accommodate Low Roof Pitches
Part of the reason that metal roofing has historically been a popular option for commercial buildings is that it can be installed on roofs with just about any pitch. In the roofing industry, a low-slope roof is one that has less than three inches of rise per horizontal foot. Standing-seam roofing can have a pitch as low as 1″ per 12′, which creates some serious roofing challenges. Metal roofing can be installed on any roof, regardless of its pitch. In fact, installing metal roofing on a lower slope can save homeowners money on new-built homes by reducing material requirements.
- It Deflects Snow and Ice
Metal roofing is far more slippery than asphalt shingles, which makes it easier for the roof to deflect snow and ice. PVDF coatings and dark coloring can melt away snow even faster. In areas with extreme winters, the ability to shed snow is crucial since it means homeowners won’t be dealing with water damage caused by ice dams or roof damage due to excess weight during blizzards.
- It’s Energy-Efficient
Homeowners who are still on the fence about whether it’s worth spending the extra money to install metal roofing should note that this materials’ improved energy efficiency can cut back on cooling costs by up to $1.35 per square foot even on the hottest days of summer. There are two reasons that metal roofing is so energy-efficient.
The first is that it’s great at reflecting back UV rays, which reduces the amount of heat transfer that occurs. The second is that metal has a higher emissivity rate, meaning that it releases heat quicker after the sun goes down. On even the hottest summer day, metal roofing will cool off fast and stop transferring heat into the attic, letting the home’s air conditioning system take a much-needed rest at night.
- It’s Environmentally Friendly
Metal roofing isn’t just better for homeowners’ wallets. It’s also better for the environment, not just because it reduces a home’s electrical use but also because it’s 100% recyclable. Having a metal roof will also make it easier to install solar panels. Once the panels are installed, they’ll further reduce heat transfer by shading the roof to maximize cooling.
There are plenty of eco-friendly metal roofing manufacturers, as well. It’s possible to find metal roofing that’s made with up to 25% recyclable materials, and the finished product is always 100% recyclable. While asphalt shingles almost always wind up in landfills, metal roofing can be converted into other products.
- It Doesn’t Collect Mold and Mildew
Asphalt shingle roofs tend to collect mold, mildew, and moss, especially when they’re shaded by nearby trees. Metal roofing, on the other hand, does not offer a place for these destructive fungi to latch on, which leaves the roof looking as good as new for decades and helps to avoid premature roofing system failures.
- It’s Pest-Resistant
Metal roofing isn’t just fungus-resistant. It’s also much better than asphalt shingles at stopping rodents, raccoons, squirrels, and other nuisance animals from gaining entry to the attic and setting up shop. Those sharp teeth and claws may be able to pull off shingles, but they won’t be able to get through the metal.
- It’s Fire-Resistant
Homeowners in fire-prone areas need to pay close attention to fire ratings. Chances are good that they already know that metal is labeled Assembly-Rated Class A. For those who aren’t in the know, that means the covering and underlying subroof both provide added protection against wildfires. It’s worth noting here that metal roofing does not attract lightning. This is a common myth in modern society, but it’s one that has no basis in reality. Metal roofing will help to protect a home against fires, not draw in lightning that could wind up accidentally starting them.
Find the Right Roofing Contractor
Ready to make the switch to residential metal roofing? The first step is to find a roofing contractor that is familiar with these relatively new roofing systems. Because most contractors focus more on cheaper materials like asphalt shingles, it’s important to check the company’s portfolio as well as its reputation.
Even an expert at working with asphalt shingles won’t necessarily be able to install metal roofing correctly. Checking the contractor’s portfolio and following up on references can help homeowners identify good candidates for the job who can install their new roofs correctly and efficiently.