When replacing your roof, there are many different decisions you will have to make including which material you want to use. Two of the most common roofing materials are asphalt shingles and metal. To help you choose the best roofing material for your needs, we have compared the pros and cons of each below.
Metal Roof Advantages and Disadvantages
Metal roofing is suitable for use in areas with extreme weather conditions, including hail like we often get in East Texas. They can last for decades and are more versatile than asphalt shingles. Let’s look at the pros and cons of having a metal roof.
Metal Roof Pros
Metal roofing is lightweight, making it easier for roofers to handle and lift it when rollforming and installing. Once it is installed on the roof, it doesn’t weigh it down. Thus, it hardly strains the roofing structure, reducing damage to the framework and preserving a building’s integrity.
2. Low Maintenance
Metal roofs stand out from the rest for the little or no maintenance they require. Once a professional has installed your roof correctly, the only maintenance required is clearing debris. Occasionally, you may also have to clean it to maintain its fresh look.
A metal roof can last anywhere between 40 to 70 years, depending on the type of metal. Some metals like copper and zinc do not corrode quickly and can last for at least 100 years. When you compare it to the 10 to 15 years lifespan of a shingle roof, you can clearly see the appeal of a metal roof.
Compared to roofing materials like wood, concrete, plastic, and glass, metal is the most durable and most robust in all weather conditions. When installed by a professional roofer, a metal roof can withstand:
- Strong winds
- Driving rain
- Extreme cold
- High heat
Metal roofs are more eco-friendly compared to asphalt shingles. For one, metals are highly recyclable, making them reusable in the future. Furthermore, some of the metal sheets and coils feature recycled materials. Roofers also use a polypropylene underlayment that protects against high temperatures, vapor, ice, and moisture. It’s worth noting that polypropylene is 100 percent recyclable.
Metal Roof Cons
1. Higher Initial Cost
One of the major cons of a metal roof is its high initial cost compared to asphalt shingles. On top of the high price of the metal roofing materials, you have to pay more for installation as well.
2. Installation Is Labor Intensive
Metal roofs require more precision installation than their asphalt shingle counterparts. If you make errors during installation, the result is unwanted leaks. Such errors can only be corrected using extra metal, which is expensive. Therefore, installing a metal roof takes more time than asphalt shingles.
You should be ready for the loud noise that comes during hailstorms and heavy rain with a metal roof. To eliminate the noise issue, you might have to improve the attic insulation, which adds to the overall project cost.
4. Fewer Installation Professionals
Metal roof installation professionals might not be readily available in your locality. Because of the scarcity of these professionals, it is more expensive to have one come to your home.
5. Opposition From Homeowner Associations
Before installing a metal roof, it’s essential to check with the local homeowners association to know if it’s acceptable. Because of its unique industrial look, a metal roof might not match with other houses. In some cases, some municipalities may even ban its use.
Asphalt Shingle Roof Advantages and Disadvantages
Asphalt shingles are so popular that people first think of them whenever they want to install a roof. Of course, the roofing material comes with several pros, including ease of installation and low, upfront cost.
Shingle Roof Pros
1. Easy Installation and Replacement
Installing and replacing shingle roofs takes less time and labor. That’s because shingles are ready for nailing to the deck immediately after purchase. Metal roofing panels, on the other hand, are difficult to handle and install.
2. Less Expensive Repairs
Whenever there is a leak, shingles are easier and less expensive to repair. Once you have identified the source of the leak, you can remove the shingles one by one and quickly replace them.
3. Availability of More Contractors
Since they are easy to install, finding contractors for shingle roofs is easier. Consequently, it is cheaper to install shingles.
4. Readily Available
Shingles are available at almost all the local retailers and distributor’s shops. That makes it a popular roofing material for homeowners across the country.
5. Economical in the Short-Term
Shingles are less costly than metal roofing, with a one-time cost of less than half that of metal per square meter. However, its short lifespan means shingles will cost more in the long run.
Shingle Roof Cons
1. Short Lifecycle
The durability of shingles has everything to do with whether they feature asphalt or fiberglass. It also depends on the style and coating of the shingles. In the end, you get a lifetime of 25 years maximum.
2. Higher Long-Term Cost
Even though they cost less to buy and install, shingles cost more in the long-term. On installation, a shingle roof costs only half a metal roof. In the end after several replacements, its cost may skyrocket compared to that of the metal roof.
3. Primarily Only Dull Colors
Shingles often come in dull, dark colors. Therefore, it isn’t easy to find them in light, bright, and vivid colors.
4. Easy To Damage
3-tab shingles easily get damaged, especially during wind, hail, and snow. They also tend to lift or rip gradually with poor adhesive attachment. However, you can solve that using multilayered architectural shingles.
5. Absorbs More Heat
The dark color of shingles causes them to absorb more heat during the day. In the process, they transfer the heat into the house, making the HVAC system have to work harder.
Wrapping It Up
Whether you choose a metal or shingle roof depends on your budget and personal preferences. If you have a large budget upfront and live in a harsh climate, don’t hesitate to install a metal roof. Otherwise, a shingle roof will do just fine.