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What You Need to Know About Metal vs. Shingle Roofing Materials

Henderson Roofing in Blacksburg Gives the Lowdown on Options

For many property owners, it comes down to metal vs. shingle roofing when one seeks to update the roof. Look up at most roofs in the Blacksburg area today. Quality roofing materials make up a large part of the building’s curb appeal. A growing number of customers do seem to choose between metal vs. shingle as their main options.

Last time, we reviewed some of the benefits of asphalt roofing. Asphalt is generally the material that many expect when people think of shingles. But there are other types of shingles to consider, including metal! It all depends on the finished look you desire.

Metal roofing, on the other hand, generally consists of rolled sheets formed into a few standard profiles. As with a shingles, the type you choose will depend on how you would like the roof to look and perform. Taking a look at each may help you decide a winner in the metal vs. shingle contest.

 

First Up: Metal Roof Options, Such as Copper

The growing number of metal roofs is our first look. What makes metal such a popular choice? In updating the roof, we might look upon these metal materials as installing a ‘suit of armor’ to protect the building. With metal alone, options include zinc, aluminum, copper, and steel.

There are several benefits to choosing metal in the ‘metal vs. shingle’ challenge. The primary reason would be the way metal performs, followed closely by how its appearance can change over time. Copper, for example, is a metal roofing material used for centuries around the world. A good cooper roof can last for over 200 years, and develop a patina that many admire.

However, it is also a very thin, soft metal that can dent, expand, and contract. Copper is also a more expensive metal choice than aluminum or steel. When investigating each metal option, it is wise to consider episodes of strong weather. Such experiences as hail, high winds, or other environmental factors can put a strain on any roof.

 

More Metal Roofing Choices to Consider: Aluminum and Steel

Our next look at metal is the debate between using aluminum or steel. While the two may look the same to property owners, cost and performance differ. Aluminum materials are often more expensive because it offers better protection from corrosion. Produced in thinner sheets than steel, aluminum sheeting generally comes with a painted coating.

Steel roofing is generally available in three different types. These include galvanized, galvalume, and weathering steel. The growing amount of steel is made from recycled materials. This makes it a more affordable option. Along with a large paint system choice, property owners can achieve a finished look with colors they desire. This is important to keep in mind when looking at material costs.

 

Examining Zinc and ‘Tin Roofs’ as Options

We mentioned zinc as a roofing option earlier. This is a material with many of the same pros and cons as copper. Zinc can be formed into shapes, which makes it suitable for many projects. One downside can be its patina that can develop a chalky residue. You will want to seek a roofer with experience in installing zinc roofs to make good use of its advantages.

Some building owners may look to install a ‘tin roof’ as a possible metal option. However, today galvanized steel and aluminum have replaced the old-fashioned tin roofs. It was once a popular option, but tin itself is no longer readily available as a roofing material, but many still use the name.

 

Switching to Shingles for Today’s Roofing Variety

If we think of metal roofing sheet profiles as a suit of armor, then shingles might be the chainmail. The use of shingle roofing is popular on buildings throughout the New River Valley. Shingles can be a more affordable option, depending on the type of material and project size.

Shingles made of asphalt are probably the most desired option because of how integrated asphalt is as a recycled material. Color options of asphalt shingles alone provide variety that makes shingle replacement a fast choice. They are lightweight, durable, and easy to install. A primary reason for choosing shingles is how manageable it is to replace them if damage occurs.

 

Thinking Beyond Asphalt Shingles to Additional Options

Similar to the metal roofing options discussed above, shingles come in a variety of materials today. These can offer property owners curb appeal in addition to managing roof performance for weather protection and more. There were as many as 18 different types of roof shingles to choose from in 2020, according to Modernize.com.

Beyond typical materials like asphalt and metal, there are rubber, wood, slate, concrete or clay tile, and composite plastic selections on the market. Solar shingles are another growing option for properties seeking to make the most of renewable energy. Architectural and 3D options can give added textural depth when updating the roof.

 

So Many Choices—So What Are the Problems?

There are similar cons as metal, even with having so many shingle options. As we said earlier with metal, not every type of shingle is suitable for every project. This makes choosing the best style and type of shingle a bit time consuming. Speaking with your local roofing professionals at Henderson Roofing can help you narrow down the shingle playing field.

As the property owner, you may have a certain need or idea in mind for your roof. Most owners desire a new roof to enhance the curb appeal. Others may want to focus on the lowest maintenance cost. The choice between metal vs. shingle itself does not have to be difficult.

 

Experience You Need Right Here in the NRV

If you have a large project or a number of roofing changes to make, consult with Henderson Roofing first. As with any major improvement project, we understand the challenges. With over 25 years of industry experience, we will gladly share the benefits of our knowledge with our customers.

We can help you review the many options in the metal vs. shingle competition. Are you looking to install a new metal or shingle roof in the NRV? Give us the opportunity to review other details involved with installing or repairing your roof.

 

Call Henderson Roofing at (540) 552-8259 to consult with our roofing professionals on your next roofing project. Whether new or replacement, we can give you facts on metal vs. shingle roofing.