What is Metal Roofing?
Metal roofing, as the name suggests are made up of metals like, aluminum, copper, steel, tin, and zinc. They come in the form of corrugated metals, slate roofs, or tile roofs.
Having a metal sheet up on the roof can prove advantageous if you are looking for a long term investment because of its longer life span, sturdiness, low maintenance, and great return on investment. It is a one time investment which can last up to 50-80 years depending upon the metal type.
Types of Metal Roofing
Here are the most common types of metal roofing on the market:
- Aluminum Roofs
- Copper Roofing
- Corrugated Metal Roof
- Metal Tile Roofs
- Metal Slate Roofs
- Standing Seam Metal Roofs
- Steel Roofs
- Tin Roofing
- Zinc Metal Roof
Metal Roof Prices by Type
It’s important to understand that “metal roofing” is a broad term covering a range of materials with a large disparity in price. Metal roofing will generally run you anywhere from $5.00 to $12.00 per square foot, depending on which kind of metal roof you choose to install. There are more affordable metal roofing options, like steel panels, which usually cost you slightly less, as well as high-end materials, like copper roofing, which tend to average out on the pricier side and new roof replacement costs could reach up to $48,000 to install. See our chart below of the most common metal roof types and the average costs to install each.
Aluminium Roof Costs
Aluminum roofing is one of the most long lasting metal roofing options. The reflective pigment from the aluminum reflects the radiant heat and maintains a cool temperature inside your home. This, in turn, provides reduced usage of AC and reduced power and energy bills.
Aluminum roofing costs run from $3.00 to $9.00 per square foot. They come in the form of tiles and shingles instead of metal panels. Aluminum shingles costs anywhere from $15,500 to $28,000 to install. Though metal shingles aren’t as affordable as corrugated metal roofing panels, they are a better deal overall. Aluminum shingles typically last 40 years or more and are much more resistant to leaks and rust than corrugated metal roofing panels.
Aluminum roofs are also fire resistant and can withstand harsh climates like hurricanes and other severe weather conditions.
Copper Roofing Costs
The beautiful copper color on the roof can look pretty amazing if you go for copper roofs. These roofs will last for 60+ years and their fire resistant quality makes them the best choice in warm regions. Even though copper is a good electric conductor, electricity is not drawn to it. And hence, its fire resistant qualities reduce fire caused by lightning.
But it is very common for copper to oxidize and turn green in approximately 20 years. So while installation you can ask your contractor to give a clear polyurethane coat or a clear lacquer to preserve the natural new shine of your copper roof.
Copper roofs cost between $4.00 to $15.00 per square foot, and are considered one of the highest quality metal roofing types you can install. The average cost to install a new copper roof can range from $23,00 to $48,000. Copper roofing can last up to 80 years if well maintained.
Corrugated Metal Roof Costs
Corrugated metal sheets have a usual shape of repeated wavy pattern or rippled pattern throughout. A plain metal roof is strong and has a great life expectancy but a corrugated metal roof increases the strength-to-weight ratios which withhold perfectly in harsh weather conditions.
Corrugated steel panel roofs are the least expensive type of metal roofing, costing about $1.20 to $5.00 per square foot comparable to the price of asphalt shingle roofing. Average costs to install a corrugated steel roof would be from $10,500 to $19,500. You can choose from corrugated aluminium roofs, steel or copper roofs according to your needs.
Corrugated steel roofing panels are thin and lightweight, which means it can be installed over an existing roofing. This cuts down on the costs of removing old roofing. However, the quality tends to match the price, as these metal panels are vulnerable to leaks and rust.
Metal Slate Roofs
Metal slate roofs or stone coated steel roofs are a little different from the natural slate roofs. Natural slate roofs are made from natural stones and are super heavy. You first need to check whether your home has the structural capacity to hold the weight.
Stone coated metal roof types allow for aesthetic diversity by offering the benefits of metal roofing with the look of more traditional clay or slate shingles at a fraction of the cost. Stone coated metal roofing is lightweight, durable and will offer a long lasting roofing option.
Stone coated steel roofing costs can range from $5 to $12 per square foot of roofing material. The total cost for installation on a 2,400 square foot home would average to be around $21,000.
Standing Seam Metal Roof Costs
Standing seam metal roofs have far superior longevity and last two or three times longer than non-metal roofs. They are the most common metal roof design due to its availability all over the U.S. to roofing installers and easy access to metal materials. The design features vertical panels that are joined by interlocking seams as seen below.
Standing seam metal roofs will cost you about $4.00 to $6.50 per square foot. The average cost to install a standing seam metal roof on the average size home can range from $23,000 to $30,000 in total. They come in painted aluminum, galvalume steel, galvanized steel, and copper or zinc metal roof types. They perform extremely well in harsh weather conditions like heavy snow, hail and fire.
Steel Roofing Costs
A steel roof is more resistant to cracking, shrinking, and erosion. This increases the life of your roof, the expected lifespan of steel roofs is 15-30 years. Their energy efficiency and recyclability makes them a favorite choice. Steel roofing costs run from $3.00 to $9.00 per square foot. Steel shingle roofing on a standard size home would cost around $15,000 to $25,000 to install.
While the initial material and installation cost of a metal roof is higher, installing a steel roofing system will earn you a discount on your insurance premiums because it’s superior to new asphalt roof shingle installations.
Tin Roofing Costs
Tin roofs are actually rolled steel with a coating of tin. Tin is chemically bonded to steel through a plating process where steel is heated and saturated with tin. The steel and tin molecules rapidly vibrate, interlock, and bond due to heat making your tin roof durable and resistant to cracking.
The life expectancy of tin is for up to 40 years and it is eco-friendly as tin is made from 30 to 60 percent recycled materials. Tin roofing costs run from $3.25 to $14.65 per square foot.The average tin roofing installation cost is anywhere between $9,000 to $45,000 depending on the slope, pitch, and size of your roof.
Zinc Metal Roofing Costs
Zinc metal roofs have been around for more than 150 years now. Zinc is an easily foldable material which makes them quite famous for designing unique roofs. And since their foldable quality does not change their structural strength and durability, they are crack and erosion resistant and can withstand harsh climatic conditions as well.
Zinc roofing costs run from$5.65 – $11 per square foot. The average tin roofing installation cost is anywhere between $8,475 to $16,500.
Zinc is a green environment material and is completely recyclable and maintains a low toxicity level. And as it has a low melting point the energy required to produce zinc is lesser too. If properly installed, zinc can last up to a century as well.
Metal Roofing vs Asphalt Shingles
When comparing metal roofing to asphalt shingle types there are a few things you’ll want to take into consideration such as price, durability, roofing style preference, overall maintenance, and lifespan of each roof type.
While the initial material and installation cost of a metal roof type is higher than asphalt shingle roofs, their longevity is far superior lasting 40 to 80 years depending on metal type. Metal roofs last two to three times longer than a typical asphalt shingle roof, which sometimes only lasts 7 to 14 years.
Return on Investment:
Metal roofing can also increase the resale value of your home. Homeowners who invest in metal roofing get an average return on investment of 85.9% on their home’s resale value. Metal roofing can also lower your insurance rates and save you money because of its fire resistance, especially in states like Texas and California that are vulnerable to wildfires. Metal roofs boast a contemporary style, extensive warranties (30 to 50 years), and are very durable even in extreme elements such as heavy snow, hail, and even fire. It is best to find metal roof installers near you to help with any roof installation projects you want to complete. It takes an advanced knowledge to properly install metal roofs and it’s best left up to the roofing professionals in your area.
Metal Roof Underlayment Costs
When installing a new metal roof, you’ll want to keep in mind that roofing underlayment and the other accessories needed for a successful metal roof installation can cost between $4.00 to $5.00 per square foot, which you will want to factor into the total installation price. Your roofing contractor will usually have this cost factor already integrated into your metal roofing installation estimate.
Metal Roofing Maintenance
The long-life of your metal roof can be enhanced with these proper maintenance tips.
From the factory, your metal roof products will be coated with either zinc (galvanized) or a mixture of aluminum and zinc (galvalume or zincalume). Of those options, galvalume is the longest lasting. All coatings are available in varying levels of thicknesses. Thicker coatings will absolutely last longer, but will also cost more initially. No matter which coating you select though, at some point, long term exposure to the elements will deteriorate the protective finish and you’ll need to recoat. A simple recoat with a polymer coating (Kynar is the most popular) will restore your metal roof to like-new conditions.
To wash, use simple soap and water–a hose or a pressure washer can be used, but avoid abrasive tools like wire brushes or steel wool that can scratch your roof. If you do scratch your roof, the scratched area can be wiped down with mineral spirits and touch up paint can be applied with a paintbrush. The long-life of your metal roof can be enhanced with proper maintenance.
Metal Roofing: Energy-Efficiency
Traditional roofing products contribute an estimated 20 billion pounds of waste to U.S. landfills on an annual basis. Metal roofing systems are more eco-friendly options as they are made from 30-60% recycled material (and is 100% recyclable) and can be installed over an existing roof, eliminating the out-of-pocket cost, as well as the environmental impact of taking off and disposing an old roof.
Most metal roofing products make use of reflective pigment technology, making your home more energy efficient and decreasing your monthly utility bills by up to 40%. Reflective pigment technology comes in the form of a simple coating that enables metal roofs to reflect heat in the summer, while providing superior insulation in the winter. Metal roof systems provides long-term energy savings, while decreasing your overall environmental impact.
Things to Consider with Metal Roofs
If you are unfamiliar with metal roofs, you may have concerns about the potential for rust, noise from rain and wind, and denting, but rest assured that modern engineering addresses these concerns. Additionally, some believe that metal roofing will increase your likelihood of a lightning strike. While metal does conduct electricity, electricity is not drawn to it. In fact, because metal roofing is fire resistant, if your home is struck by lightening, your risk of fire is actually decreased with a metal roof. Finally, a metal roof will not make your home colder in the winter. As long as your attic is properly insulated, your home will stay just as toasty as any other home in the winter.
Metal Roof Installation
Though you may be tempted to skim a little off the price by hiring less expensive labor, you’re going to want nothing but a highly qualified licensed and experienced contractor installing your roof. It’s a demanding job that requires a technical knowledge base. Additionally, the old roof may need to be ripped off, which requires extra time and transportation of the used materials.
Labor will cost you anywhere from $2.30 to $5.80 per square foot. Keep in mind that roofing contractors have many expenses and generally make a 25% profit from their labor.
The Bottom Line
The average cost of metal roofing is $6000. You can save up to 40% in cooling costs with reflective metal roofing. You can also raise the resale value of your home. You will very likely see a return on your investment in these ways, but make sure to calculate your unique roofing costs before deciding whether a metal roof is right for your home.