Home Remodeling | Asphalt or Metal Roofing? Which is Best?
Home Remodeling | When you’re building a new home, your roofing material is going to be one of the most important choices you make. Your roof is essentially your first layer of defense against the elements, and it’s also a highly visible feature that can add to or detract from your house’s curb appeal. With so much at stake, what roofing material is best to use?
Asphalt shingles are by far the most popular option for roofs in the US. Typically thin, flat rectangles made of a combination of asphalt and fiberglass, shingles are fitted together with nails and tacky backing to prevent gaps. An estimated 4 out of 5 roofs are made with asphalt shingles, but this certainly isn’t your only option for a roofing material.
The demand for metal roofing is steadily growing. The modern metal roof is much more than just a sheet of corrugated tin; metal roofs can be designed to look elegant and mimic many other materials. Some homeowners are now choosing metal roofs over shingle roofs because of metal’s durability and minimal maintenance requirements.
In order to decide whether metal roofing or asphalt shingles are best for you, check out some of the comparisons below.
There’s no contest when it comes to cost: shingles are significantly cheaper than metal, which is a large part of why they’re so popular. Metal roofs typically cost between two and three times as much to install, but proponents argue that the steep initial price of metal roofs ultimately pays off due to the fact that they typically require fewer repairs and save on heating and energy costs more than shingles.
As mentioned above, metal is the more energy efficient roofing choice. Asphalt shingles absorb a lot of heat, which means you’ll likely be running your air conditioning more in the summer than you would with a metal roof. Shingle roofs also tend to weaken and curl over time, especially in warm climates, making them a less efficient barrier. MRCA estimates that metal roofs lead to energy savings of about 50%.
Shingles are significantly easier to install, in some cases taking only about a day when you have a team of experienced contractors working for you. Some homeowners even tackle shingle installation on their own, although it’s not recommended if you don’t have previous roofing experience.
Asphalt shingles are a classic, fairly ubiquitous choice for roofs in North America. Basic three-tab shingles are the cheapest option, but homeowners can also select slightly more expensive shingles that mimic wood or slate. Metal roofing can also be designed to mimic other materials, although some detractors argue that it’s not always convincing and can look harsh in contrast to nearby shingle roofs. Metal roofing material is available in a wide variety of sizes, ranging from larger sheets to smaller squares designed to look more like shingles.
Metal’s longevity is one of its greatest assets as a roofing material. Higher-end materials, such as copper and zinc, can sometimes last upwards of 100 years. In general, you can expect a metal roof to last about 50-60 years.
Shingles typically come with a fairly long warranty, but they do not last as long as metal, and poorly ventilated roof deck or lack of maintenance can decrease its lifespan. It’s also more susceptible to weather-related damage, but the good news is that it’s relatively easy to repair.
What’s Best for Your Home Project?
The choice between asphalt and metal roof will in large part depend on the budget for your home project, as well as your intentions for the home. If you’re planning to stay in this house for the next 20 or 30 years, then metal roofing may be worth the additional up-front investment. However, if you think you’ll only be in the house 5-10 years before selling, asphalt shingles are a safe, reasonable choice. – Cole Builders
Interested in home remodeling? Contact Medina Exteriors today, (330)591-4040