Buying a new roof can be an overwhelming task, especially when you’re unfamiliar with the process. The roofing industry has many great options to offer, from asphalt shingles to metal and everything in between. It can also be overwhelming to consider every roofing material in existence.
The roof is an essential element of a home. As a homeowner, you’d want to make sure that you get it right. If you’re looking for a new roof, start the decision process by evaluating the following aspects:
As with any major purchase, the most significant factor to consider when buying your roof is your budget. Figure out the amount of money you currently have and the amount that you’re willing to spend. Think about whether you’d rather spend big now and not worry about the future or prefer the cheaper option and don’t mind replacing it after a few years.
- Length of Ownership
Roof installations are one of the significant investments you can make in your lifetime. It’s safe to say that you’d want to get the most of your investment. Roofing is only worth it if you’re planning to stay in your home for a long time.
Suppose you’re not planning to make the property your forever home. In that case, it might be best to go for the material with a shorter lifespan and less costly.
Roofs come in different shapes and styles, which can make a difference when choosing a roofing material. The wrong roofing material for your home can negatively affect the aesthetics of your home.
Before deciding on the best material for your roof, you should first determine the pitch and square footage of your roof, the complexity of its design, and the parts in the shade and sunlight.
The Difference Between Metal and Shingle Roofs
Metal and shingle roofing systems are two of the most commonly used roofing systems. Truthfully, both materials are great options for your home. It all depends on your individual preferences. Each has its pros and cons that will help you determine the one better suited for your needs.
With the essentials in mind, we’ve stacked up some of the advantages and disadvantages of the two popular roofing choices to further help you with your decision.
Advantages of Choosing Metal Roofing
- Long Lifespan
One of the most significant distinctions that metal roofing has over shingles is its longevity. Metal roofs have a life expectancy of 40-70 years. In some instances, different metal materials such as copper and zinc have been known to last for 100 years or more.
- Weathering Performance
Metal roofs are designed to provide a strong barrier to normal and extreme weather conditions. It’s especially ideal for those who live in a hurricane-prone area as a metal roof will be able to withstand a severe storm, hail, and high winds. Some types of metal roofs can sustain gusts of wind up to 140 miles per hour without cracking while also being impact resistant.
- Environmentally Friendly
Metals roofs are an eco-friendlier option of the two. Depending on the material used, metal roofing is made up of 25-95% of recycled content. This means that it’s made up of previously recycled materials. Metal roofs are also recyclable at the end of its lifecycle. The leftover pieces, tear-off panels, or damaged parts of these materials can be recycled for future use.
- Energy Efficiency
Metal roofing also has advantages regarding energy efficiency. Advancements in roofing technology lead to new energy-efficient options for metal roofing that releases absorbed heat in higher temperatures and retain heat in colder climates. Additionally, mountable energy-saving equipment, such as solar panels, is easier to install on metal roofs.
- Low Maintenance
As long as the roof is installed professionally and correctly, a metal roof will only need a minimal amount of upkeep. Generally, all you need to do is clear leaves, branches, and other debris that get stuck on the roof and gutters twice a year and after intense storms.
- Various Design Options
Metal roofs have a sleeker profile that comes in many shapes and sizes. This roofing material ranges from panel systems to standing seam metal roofing systems to exposed fastener systems. You can even find ones that mimic shingle and tile systems.
Metal roofing is also not limited to one type of metal. You can find various types for your roof, including copper, zinc, or aluminum. Perhaps one of its biggest selling points is that it can come in virtually any color, including bright or vivid colors and earth tones.
Disadvantages of Choosing Metal Roofing
- Higher One-Time Cost
When compared to most roofing materials, metal roofs have a higher up-front cost. Besides the higher cost of materials, the price point for labor and equipment needed to complete the job would also be higher depending on where the installers are getting the metal panels.
However, metal roofs offer a longer lifespan, which would be ideal for those who plan to stay long enough to enjoy the cost benefits.
- Limited Qualified Contractors
There is no room for mistakes in a metal roof installation. Most roofing problems with a metal roofing system stem from improper installation, which is why you need a qualified and experienced roofer to install your roof. Unfortunately, fewer contractors are equipped and skilled when it comes to installing metal roofing.
- Difficult to Modify and Repair
Metal roofs are mostly installed in large panels instead of individual shingles. This makes it more challenging to replace if there’s a particular spot that you want to get it repaired or replace. You would probably have to repair or replace a much more significant portion.
Additionally, it can also be challenging to remodel or expand your roof after 10 to 20 years. It will be challenging to get the same material with an ever-changing plethora of metal roofing options.
Advantages of Choosing Shingle Roofing
- Economical in the Short Term
The main advantage of a shingle roof is the overall short-term costs. It’s why shingle roofs are so much more appealing to many homeowners. In comparison to most roofs, shingle roofing is a much cheaper material. Shingles also don’t require any special tools or accessories to install, making the installation process much less expensive than other roofing.
However, this doesn’t affect its performance. Despite being among the most cost-effective roofing materials, you can still expect a long-term performance and more value for your money.
- Easy Installation
Shingles come prepackaged, so it needs minimal prep work measuring, cutting, or awkward attachments, so they’re ready for installation. This cuts down the time requires for both installation and replacement. However, previous shingle materials need to be removed before installing new ones due to shingles’ weight.
Additionally, it’s generally easier to find contractors who can install a shingle roof. Since it’s a common type of roofing that is relatively simple and easy to install, many more roofing contractors will be aware of its installation process.
- Affordable Repairs
If your roof sustains damage, shingles are also much easier and cheaper to repair as you don’t have to replace the entire roof. Shingles can simply be removed one at a time near the source of the problem. It also requires fewer materials to fix.
- Visually Appealing
Shingle roofing is typically considered one of the most visually appealing roofing options. It’s a versatile material that opens up a range of various colors and textures that makes it easier to find a style that will complement your home. Since shingle roofs are the most popular roofing material in the US, they’ll fit in with the other houses in your neighborhood.
Disadvantages of Choosing Shingle Roofing
- Short Lifecycle Compared to Other Roofing Materials
Asphalt shingle roof has a relatively long lifespan. It should last 15 to 30 years, depending on the type, brand, and maintenance you put into your roof. While this isn’t bad when it comes to a roof lifespan, this is relatively short compared to other roofing materials like metal, which can last for up to 100 years or more.
- Susceptible to Some Types of Damage
Shingles are far easier to damage compared to other types of roofing. Damage usually occurs during extreme weather conditions such as wind, hail, and snow.
During hail storms and heavy rain, the granules covering and protecting shingles can dislodge and weaken the roof. High winds can uplift shingles, especially when an adhesive is either not applied correctly or becomes damaged. This will loosen or tear them off from the roof structure, leaving the roof wide open to rain and other elements. Even the heat rays from the sun cause damage to your shingle roofing.
- Mildew, Mold, & Algae
Shingle roofs on shady lots often suffer from mold, mildew, or algae growth. That unsightly green coating on the section of your roof is one of the most common problems with shingle roofing. This is because its lack of access to the sun makes shingles unable to dry, causing it to be more susceptible to moss growth and mildew.
Whether you end up choosing one of the other, make sure to contact professional and experienced roofing and contracting company to help you with your roofing installation.
Fahey Roofing Contractors has the experienced and skilled contractors you need to help you with any necessary roof repairs and roof replacement. We serve various areas in West Virginia and Ohio. Visit our website today at www.faheyroofingcontractors.com or contracts us at (304) 826-1323 for West Virginia or (740) 523-0380 for Ohio to learn more.