Many homeowners choose a metal roof because of the many advantages it has over other types of roofing material. Steel is the most widely used metal but you can also find roofs made of other metals. In this article, we’re going to take a look at these metals and see how they compare to steel roofing.
Metal roofing materials can be divided into two categories: conventional and high-end. Conventional materials include steel and aluminum. Copper, alloy, and stainless steel are considered high-end products.
Steel roofing is the sturdier and heavier of the two conventional materials. In order to prevent corrosion and rust, it is coated with a variety of finishes. One of the most widely used protective coats is zinc. Then the zinc is usually coated with an epoxy primer and a baked-on highly durable acrylic top coat. Thus adding extra protection and color.
Aluminum is the lightweight alternative to steel, and it comes with natural rust resistance. It can also be painted to improve appearance, with coatings similar to those of steel. Unfortunately, the main downside of this metal is its softness, which makes it more susceptible to damage. It also lacks the rigidity of steel, and the material can raise environmental concerns to some people due to its relative rarity.
Copper and Alloy Metal Roofing
The premium metals come with a higher price but extra benefits as well. Copper, for example, does not need a finish because it is not susceptible to scratches. However, it is extremely expensive.
Alloy metals are built purposefully for strength, resistance to weathering, and durability. Stainless steel comes with all the benefits of a steel roof with a bonus; stainless steel is resistant to rust.
Steel Roofing Versus Other Roofing Materials
Steel roofing and metal roofing, in general, have a longer lifespan than other materials, especially asphalt shingles. You can expect a steel roof to last you for approximately 50 years. On the other hand, an asphalt shingle roof usually lasts for 20-30 years. As opposed to many other roofing materials, steel roofing is usually impervious to leaks.
Steel will also resist damage from hail. During winter, due to its slick surface, steel allows the snow to slide off. Thus avoiding a large buildup that could bend or damage the roof. Finally, steel is typically easier to install when compared to other materials. You can generally find it in large sheets, rather than small shingles.
However, steel roofing does come with its drawbacks when compared to other materials. Steel roofing may have a shorter lifespan in seacoast areas. Check with the manufacturer to be sure. It can also be extra noisy during the rain, which may have to be addressed by installing insulation that acts as a sound barrier.
While steel roofing may require a larger upfront investment, it may prove to have a higher ROI in the long run. Especially when compared to asphalt shingles, steel roofing has better resilience and durability.