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Expert Advice on Metal Roofing and Types of Gutters to Use

By April 24, 2013October 16th, 2023No Comments

Many homeowners have always lived under a roof that was made of asphalt, composite, or wood shingles. They may have never even considered putting a metal roof on their home. But in reality, thousands of homes are topped by attractive, functional, energy-efficient metal roofs these days.

To find out more, we asked Jean Miskimon of MetalRoofing.com to give us some information about the advantages of metal roofing.

What are some of the benefits of metal roofing?

There are a number of great benefits that come with metal roofing.

Valuable Investment: While the initial cost for a premium metal roof is higher than most other roofing materials, you’ll save money in the long run. A metal roof can last a lifetime, whereas materials like asphalt require reproofing every 10 to 20 years. A metal roof can also increase the resale value of your home. In some states (like Texas), a metal roof can even lower your homeowner’s insurance by 35%.

Long Lasting: The average life of a non-metal roof is 17 years. But a metal roofing system offers unmatched durability and can last 2 to 3 times longer. Chances are good that a metal roof will be the last roof you ever install on your home.

Energy Efficient: Metal roofing in both light and dark colors reflects heat effectively to reduce cooling loads in the summer and insulate homes during the winter. This can help to lower energy bills.

How do the costs of metal roofing compare with those of traditional shingle or composite roofs?

Because metal roofing is a premium home product, you can expect your new roof to cost roughly two to three times what an asphalt shingle roof costs. However, a metal roof is comparable in price to tile roofing or cedar shake roofing. If you currently have a slate roof, you can expect your metal roof to cost less. 

No matter what kind of metal roofing style you choose, you’ll never have to worry about your roof again. Plus, your new metal roof will add to the resale value of your home, save you money on your energy bills, and give you piece of mind that you’ll likely never have to re-roof again.

Can a metal roof be as aesthetically pleasing as a standard shingle roof?

Yes. Today’s residential metal roofing is made to look exactly like common roofing material — such as asphalt shingle, cedar shake, clay tile or slate roofing — only stronger and more durable. There’s certain to be a style and finish to match your home and neighborhood.

What are some of the myths concerning metal roofs?

There are a few myths that need to be addressed.

“Metal roofing attracts lightning.”
A metal roof will not increase the likelihood of lightning striking your home. However, if your home were hit by lightning, your metal roof would disperse the energy safely throughout the structure. Since metal roofing isn’t combustible or flammable, it’s a low-risk and desirable roofing option where severe weather is concerned, especially for lightning.

“Metal roofs are noisy.”
A common misconception is that a metal roof will be noisier than other types of roofing. When installed with solid sheathing, a metal roof on your home will actually silence noise from rain, hail, and bad weather — many times much better than other roofing materials.

“Metal roofs rust.”
Today’s metal roofing systems are built to last. Steel metal roofing has a “metallic coating” made of either zinc or a combination of zinc and aluminum. This metallic coating prevents rust from forming and is bonded to the steel at the factory. Paint is then applied over the metallic coating to provide the long-lasting color that homeowners desire.

“Metal roofs dent easily.”
In most cases, a metal roof can withstand decades of abuse from extreme weather like hail, high winds, and heavy snow. Today’s systems also have a 150-mph wind rating (equal to an F2 tornado), meaning your metal roof is also safe from wind gusts that can accompany hailstorms. Many people think you can’t (or shouldn’t) walk on a metal roof, but the truth is that you can safely walk any metal roof without damaging it. Before you walk your roof, however, we recommend you talk to your installed or roof manufacturer. They will have the details on how to walk the particular roof you have, based on the style you chose and your roof pitch.

What kind of warranty can a homeowner expect with metal roofing?

Most metal roofing comes with a true 30- to 50-year manufacturer warranty, plus a workmanship warranty from the installer. Talk to your local MRA Member contractor to learn more about the metal roofing warranties that are available.

With metal roofing, is there any differences in terms of the type of guttering that can be used around the home?

Any standard gutter system, which attaches into the fascia board with either brackets or spikes and ferrules, should work fine with a metal roof. I would advise against using systems that employ straps, which attach to the roof deck.

Gutters should be mounted as high as possible and should have a positive slope for drainage. Every metal roofing system is different. Prior to installing a gutter system, the MRA recommends that the homeowners contact their roofing contractor and the manufacturer of the metal roofing product to request guidelines and recommendations for gutter systems appropriate for their particular metal roof.

The Metal Roofing Alliance was formed in 1998 by a small group of forward-thinking metal roofing manufacturers with the main goal of educating consumers about the many benefits of metal roofing. Since our inception, we’ve shown millions of people just how beautiful, durable and money-saving metal roofing can be for them.

For more information on residential metal roofing, please visit our website at www.metalroofing.com.

Photo credits #1, #3: David Paul Ohmer, Eric Fischer