When it comes to choosing the right roof for your home or business, there are a lot of things to consider. Metal and asphalt roofing are two of the most popular material choices when it comes to roofing repair or replacement. However, they both come with pros and cons. To help you learn which option is best for you, here is what you need to know about both.
Metal roofing is exactly what it sounds like. The roofing is made from metal pieces, panels, or tiles designed to provide sound, heat, air, and water resistance. This type of roofing has been gaining popularity in recent years for a variety of reasons, most notably its longevity. Metal roofing is also lighter than other materials and it can usually be installed by roofing services much quicker.
The Benefits of Metal Roofing
Metal roofing has a great number of benefits that are worth considering if you need a roof replacement.
- Longevity: Metal roofing has gained popularity due to its ability to last longer than many other materials. On average, metal roofing can last upwards of 60 years without corrosion or signs of degradation. This makes it a great investment for homeowners who want to get the most out of their roof without worrying about needing to replace it within the next couple of decades.
- Durability: Metal roofs are also highly durable when compared to other options. They can easily resist damage from falling debris, strong winds, snow, rain, mold, hail, and mildew. In states that experience a lot of fire risks, these roofs are also Class A fire-rated, meaning that they have the highest resistance to combustion.
- Low Maintenance: Metal roofs also require much less maintenance than other options. If they do get dirty after a period of time, they’re easy to clean without needing to call in a commercial roofing service.
- Eco-Friendly: Metal roofs are also highly eco-friendly for a number of reasons. One is that metal can be recycled if it needs replacing in the future. You can also have recycled materials used in the construction of your roof to further increase its eco-friendliness. Over 95% of aluminum roofing is comprised of recycled materials, making it a good choice for home or business owners looking to embrace greener practices.
- Warranties: Many metal manufacturers or suppliers provide warranties that you can take advantage of should something go wrong. These warranties often cover leaks and degradation that can provide replacement should either of these problems occur. Warranties can vary widely depending on your location and what environmental conditions your roof will be exposed to, so be sure to ask your roofers about any warranty that might come with a metal roof in your area.
These benefits are something that should be seriously considered if you are looking into getting a metal roof. However, there can be downsides that you should also weigh.
The Downsides of a Metal Roof
While the benefits are appealing, there are also downsides that homeowners might not expect. A few of the most common are:
- Affordability: Metal roofs can be more expensive than other options. While the costs in the long term may be offset by their durability and longevity, the upfront costs are something to keep in mind. If you’re planning on staying in your home for the next couple of decades, it may be a worthwhile investment. However, if you’re planning on moving in a couple of years, you won’t really be able to reap these benefits.
- Noise: When it rains or hails your roof might not be damaged, but the sound can be noisy inside. While some people enjoy the sound of rain on a metal roof, it can be too much for others. To offset this, you could increase the amount of insulation in your attic; however, this will increase costs.
- Inconsistent Colors: If you need to replace panels in the future, it can be hard to match the color to your existing metal roof. This is because the existing panels may lose some vibrancy due to sun exposure or weathering, making the new panels stand out against them.
- Low-Quality Installation or Material: Not all roofing companies install roofs with the same level of consistency, and if you don’t vet your roofers beforehand, you could end up with a low-quality job. Both low-quality installation and low-quality materials can cause water to accumulate on the roof, which can lead to lower durability and serious damage. Make sure to speak with multiple roof companies near you, and preferably find one with experience working with metal roofs. You should also make sure that they are using high-quality materials so that you get all the benefits you’re expecting. You may also want to make sure that the roofers you choose provide construction debris removal once the job is done. You don’t want to end up with a bunch of scraps lying about while you’re trying to enjoy your new roof.
While these downsides may seem daunting, so long as you are vetting your roofers and making sure to choose high-quality materials, metal roofs can be a great investment. However, the noise factor and the difficulty matching colors are still something to consider, as they’re more difficult to overcome.
Asphalt roofing is one of the most common roofing materials available today, and there’s a good chance that your current roof may be constructed with asphalt shingles. In addition to being widespread, asphalt roofs are also easy to install and are available in a variety of styles.
- Strip shingles are the most basic asphalt shingles and they weigh less and cost less than other options. Today, they are most commonly used by homebuilders constructing inexpensive homes or homeowners replacing roofs that already have this type installed.
- Dimensional shingles are the most prevalent, and they provide more layers than strip shingles. This makes them thicker, which provides a dimensional appearance. While they are heavier, they can provide more protection than the above option and often come with an improved warranty.
- Luxury shingles are the highest quality laminated asphalt shingles and they can provide much more protection against weathering than the others. While more expensive than other options, the benefits of the additional protection can help offset costs by reducing the costs of future repairs and replacement.
The Benefits of Asphalt Roofing
Asphalt roofing can also provide its fair share of benefits, making it something to seriously consider if you are in the market for a new roof.
- Appearance: Asphalt roofing can be very beautiful and it can even mimic the appearance of wood, cedar, or slate. This versatility in style, texture, and color, makes them something worth seriously considering for all homes and businesses.
- Affordability: Asphalt shingles are also highly affordable, especially when compared to metal. Because they are available in so many different types, the price point can vary depending on what you want and need. This can allow you to more easily find an option within your price point without needing to break the bank.
- Durability and Longevity: While they won’t last as long as a metal roof, they can still last upwards of 25 years if you take good care of them. With regular roofing inspections and repair when needed, asphalt roofs can last a long while before needing to be replaced.
- Easy to Install and Repair: Asphalt roofing is also easy to install and easy to repair. You also won’t have to worry about color matching as much as you would with metal options. Additionally, there are many more roofers who are qualified to install asphalt singles than metal roofs, so you’ll have an easier time finding a roofing company near you to do the job right.
- Eco-Friendly: Asphalt shingles are also eco-friendly and can also be recycled at the end of their lifespan. When looking to replace or repair your asphalt roof, consider looking for roofing companies near you that offer recycling options so that you can feel good about where your scrap is going.
Asphalt roofs aren’t without their benefits, which can make choosing between them and metal a hassle. However, before you jump to any conclusions, you should know about asphalt downsides as well.
The Downsides of an Asphalt Roof
Just like metal, asphalt can have a few downsides as well. A few of the most common can include:
- Cracking: Asphalt shingles are a lightweight material that has their benefits, but also their drawbacks. Due to their lightweight, they can be prone to cracking when exposed to extreme temperatures. Heat, in particular, can be highly detrimental to asphalt roofing, as can extreme fluctuations between hot and cold. This drawback can be more pronounced depending on the area you live in.
- Vulnerable to Wind: Less expensive asphalt shingles can also be prone to strong winds which can cause them to detach and blow away. This can leave your home vulnerable to leaks and other damage from rain and wind. If you are looking into using asphalt, consider your location and how storms may affect your roofing.
- They Won’t Last as Long: It’s hard to match metal when it comes to longevity. While asphalt can last for a couple of decades, you also will have to ensure that it is regularly inspected for damage and repaired when needed, especially if you’re using thin shingles. You should keep this in mind if you are looking for an option that is going to last you the longest.
- They’re Not Unique: While this doesn’t always matter to homeowners, some people want a unique look for their homes. Since asphalt is so commonly used by so many people, this means that your roof isn’t going to stand out from the rest of your block. If you want something that’s going to make your home look unique, it may be a good idea to select something different.
Now that you’ve seen both the pros and cons of both metal and asphalt roofs, you can begin weighing which ones matter most to you and your family. By doing this, you can have a better chance of finding the perfect solution for your home.
Which Roof is Best For You?
The roof that you decide to go with will depend on a couple of different factors. For instance, if you’re not planning on staying in your home for the next decade, you might not want to spend money on a metal roof. On the other hand, metal roofs can be a great investment for those looking to stay in their current homes long-term. While they are more expensive upfront, they can easily make up for this by lasting longer and being easier to maintain. This can save you more money overall, despite the initial larger costs.
Asphalt roofs are a standard choice for many homeowners; however, they’re not going to make you stand out. They can also not last as long if they’re under extreme heat throughout the year. Additionally, areas that experience very hot summers and very cold winters may experience their roofs aging much quicker. This is something to keep in mind when thinking about what option would benefit you the most.
If you’re still having trouble making a decision, contact a local roofer that you trust. Roofers in your area will have a professional idea of what material will last you the longest and benefit you the most.
Additionally, don’t try to install your roof yourself. While you may think it’s a project you can DIY, it can be highly dangerous and easy to get wrong. You’ll also want to ensure that you don’t just hire the first unlicensed roofer you find. Just as you won’t trust a mechanic with flatfoot reconstruction, you shouldn’t trust just anyone to install your roof.
With all of this in mind, you can begin seriously thinking about finding the roof that’s best for your home.