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Metal Roofing Comparison: Durability, Cost, & Style Explained

Whether you’re looking to jazz up your home’s curb appeal with a stylish topcoat or searching for a reliable long-term option, metal roofing is an excellent choice for both new and existing roofs. However, it can be intimidating for the homeowner unfamiliar with all the details of metal roofing material.

That’s why we’ve written up this handy guide; to explain metal roofing options and compare their cost, durability, and style, so you can make an informed decision that best fits your needs. So roll up your sleeves and join us as we dive headfirst into the complex world of metal roofing comparison.

Different Types of Metal Roofing

Metal roofing offers homeowners a wide variety of options to choose from, with different materials, styles, and levels of durability. When choosing a metal roof for your house, it is important to understand the differences between the various types of metal roofing available.


Steel is one of the most popular metal roofing materials due to its durability and strength. Steel roofs can last 25-50 years, which is significantly longer than most other roofing materials. Furthermore, steel is made of recycled content, making it an environmentally friendly choice. It is available in a variety of colors and styles, making it a versatile option for any home or building.

The biggest downside to steel roofing is cost. Steel tends to be more expensive than other metals due to its greater structural integrity and available features, such as slippery coatings or rust protection. In addition, because steel is more reflective, it can raise your energy bills during hot summer days. Unless you live in areas with consistently mild temperatures, this could result in a higher monthly cost for cooling throughout the year.

When weighing the pros and cons of steel roofing, it’s important to consider projected costs over time compared to upfront expenses. A steel roof may require a bigger initial investment but it may end up being more cost-effective in the long run due to its durability and long lifespan.

Thanks to their outstanding performance and versatility, steel roof systems have become widely popular across residential and commercial applications.


When it comes to metal roofing, zinc is a popular choice due to its flexibility and resilience. It’s often used for steep-sloped traditional-style roofs as well as commercial projects. Zinc stands out from other materials because of its distinctive blue-gray color that can effectively accent existing architecture. This color comes from the natural patination process which helps protect against corrosion and increase longevity.

Zinc requires minimal maintenance when compared to other metals, however, it’s still important to recognize the potential weaknesses of this material. It doesn’t perform well in coastal regions with high levels of salt spray, and its thickness can vary greatly depending on how much money you are willing to invest upfront. Although zinc roofing is considered durable, it isn’t necessarily the most cost-effective option, so it’s important to weigh the immediate costs versus the potential benefits over time.

Overall, while zinc offers unique characteristics in terms of style and durability, it may not be the right fit for every project depending on your budget and location. But if you are looking for timeless style combined with maximum longevity and protection against corrosion, zinc might be the perfect choice – just make sure to consider your options carefully.

Aluminum - Big Easy roofing


Aluminum is a popular material for metal roofing due to its affordability and light weight, making it easier to transport and install. It boasts excellent weather resistance, meaning it won’t rust or corrode due to rain, snow, or other natural elements.

Additionally, aluminum can last up to 50 years with minimal care. On the downside, aluminum doesn’t reflect heat as well as other materials like copper or galvanized steel, so it may not be the best choice for hot climates. Aluminum also tends to dent more easily than other materials and may require more frequent repairs.

For homeowners looking for an affordable metal roof that provides superior protection from the elements, aluminum is a great option with plenty of style choices. However, those in hotter climates should consider other options that perform better in reflection of heat.


When discussing metal roofing, cоpper is almost certainly ѕоmeоne’s firѕt thоught. Prized for its strength, durabilitу, and beauty, copper is the ultimate іn mеtal roofs. Copper roofs are among the mоst expensive options — costіng many times mоre than оther metaIs – but they boast a number of advantages including exceptional lоngevity, durability and low-maintenance. Copper has a сlassiс look that never gоes out оf stylе — it will instantly аdd value tо any houѕe.

But not everyone warmѕ tо a coрpеr roоf. For homeowners on a budget, the high сost and maintenance requiremеnts mаy be prohibitively expensivе or even unnecessarу. Unlike other metal roofing materials, copper requires significant inspection on a regular basis as part of regular maintenanсе. Althоugh thе material itself is long lasting and corrosion resistant, harsh environmеntal conditions like sun аnd wind can take a toll, еspecially if іt’s not properly maintained.

So whilе cоpper is certainly appreciated fоr its bеautу and durabilitу, cost may be a deсiding factor when chоosing metal roofing pаnels. For homeowners focusеd on getting the most durаble option wіthout breaking the bаnk account, other metаls likе steel and aluminuӏ may be better choices to consider.

  • Metal roofs have a lifespan of 40 to 70 years with minimal maintenance, much longer than traditional asphalt shingle roofs which last 12-20 years.
  • Metal roofs can be more expensive than asphalt shingle roofs initially, but due to their long lifespans, will save money in the long run.
  • Metal roofs can reduce cooling costs by reflecting heat from the sun, resulting in up to 25% in energy savings.

Advantages & Disadvantages of Metal Roofs

Metal roofing has a wide range of advantages and disadvantages that must be considered before making the decision to install it on your home or building. These considerations may determine whether or not metal roofing is the best option for your particular needs.

One advantage of metal roofs is their durability. Metal roofs are designed to last up to 50 years, depending on the type of material. They are also resistant to fire, which can be a major benefit in areas prone to wildfires as metal roofs have a Class A rating from Underwriter Laboratories (UL). Furthermore, metal roofs are energy-efficient and can help reduce cooling costs in the summer months. As metal reflects sunlight, it helps lower interior temperatures and can even result in tax benefits if the homeowner meets certain energy efficiency guidelines.

On the other hand, metal roofs pose some drawbacks for those considering installing them. For one thing, installation costs tend to be higher than other types of roofing materials like asphalt shingles. Additionally, metal roofs can be quite noisy during heavy rains or hail storms, which can be an annoyance for homeowners used to peace and quiet in their home. Finally, due to their reflective nature, metal roofs may not be suitable for all climates as they can cause issues with melting snow or ice in colder climates when warm air gets trapped beneath the roof surface.

Metal Roofing Cost

When looking at roofing options, the cost of materials, installation, and lifetime of use will all come into focus. Metal roofing is no exception, as even the most inexpensive options can be more expensive up front than other traditional roofing materials like asphalt shingles. However, that initial cost can pay itself off over time if you’re looking for a durable and long-lasting solution.

calculator, miniature house

Metal roofing systems can be some of the most expensive on the market when compared to traditional asphalt shingle or built-up roofing solutions, with the cost running upward from $10 per square foot for materials and installation. The type of metal used and its particular gauge also play a role, with some aluminum roofing panels costing $1 per square foot more than steel. Another factor to consider is the geographical location of your home, as labor rates vary from area to area.

But despite these higher prices up front, metal roofs have proven to stand up well against extreme weather conditions regardless of season, plus they last considerably longer than other traditional materials (sometimes twice as long) so may end up being the most affordable option in the long run if you’re looking to save money overall while lasting longer. While they may increase resale value, any potential buyers must also factor in things like energy efficiency measures when weighing their purchase decisions.

Metal Roofing Styles

Metal roofing styles have evolved significantly over the years. Whereas basic ribbed profile sheets in galvanized steel were previously the mainstay of metal roofing, these days you can find a wide variety of styles including standing seam, stonecoated steel, architectural shingles, and more.

The style of your metal roof will depend heavily on your personal aesthetic tastes. For an updated, modern look to your home, many people opt for either standing seam panels which have hidden fasteners or an architectural shingle that mimics traditional asphalt shingle profiles but with the long life and ease of maintenance associated with metal roofs.

On the other hand, those looking for classic beauty often choose stone-coated steel roofs that are designed to look like European tiles or wood shakes. Galvanized steel is still a popular choice as well and with updated coating technologies now available, it’s possible to protect those panels from rust and corrosion better than ever before. Ultimately it’s up to you to determine which style best fits your individual home’s aesthetic needs; just remember that each type provides its own unique benefits in terms of durability and longevity.

No matter what metal roofing style you select, each one will require proper installation to perform optimally.

Tips for Metal Roofing Installation

When installing a metal roof, it is important to do so with caution and precision. The following tips can help ensure that the installation process goes as smoothly as possible.

  • First and foremost, preparing the roof deck is arguably the most important part of the installation process. This includes making sure that the underlayment is properly checked for any gaps or weak spots, and also ensuring that any existing roofing materials are safely removed prior to beginning the installation. This will not only make the job easier in the long run, but also protect against potential leaks.
  • The next step is making sure that any particular local building codes are taken into account when selecting specific types of screws or other fasteners necessary for the job. Utilizing rust-resistant hardware or screws coated with an extra layer of protection from water damage can add extra life to your installation job.
  • Equally important for long-term success is using a proper underlayment; some metals require specific types of underlayment in order to be effectively protected from water damage such as organic felt or butyl rubber, both of which can aid in preventing fastener failure due to high moisture levels in certain areas. Additionally, it’s key to avoid using sealants whenever possible on certain types of panels as this can cause cracking over time.
  • Finally, take care when cutting panels and sealing all seams to ensure longevity – applying sealant around end laps, side laps (beneath shingle edges), valleys, ridges and hips helps prevent water penetration and rusting if done correctly. With these tips in mind, you should have no issue successfully completing a metal roofing job while avoiding common missteps that could easily arise otherwise.

With these tips in mind, it’s clear why metal roofing has become an increasingly popular choice due to its low maintenance requirements and long lifespan -allowing you to enjoy many years of worry-free coverage on your home or place of business. The next section will discuss how just how long metal roofing can last, along with what kind of maintenance it requires over time.

Metal Roofing Longevity & Maintenance

Metal roofing is lauded for its longevity, with many manufacturers offering warranties of 40 years or more. It’s also surprisingly low maintenance compared to other roof types such as asphalt shingles. In most cases all you’ll need to do is keep the roof clean and free of debris; however, exact maintenance requirements will depend on what kind of metal roof you have installed.

Steel roofs tend to be the lowest-maintenance option, while copper and zinc require periodic cleaning with specialized products. These two materials are known to develop unique green, blue, and brown patina layers over time, though the rate of patina accumulation varies depending on the location you live in, as well as your climate and local air quality. Copper and zinc roofs should be washed twice each year with recommended cleaners; however, it’s important to note that this will slightly impact the longevity of a copper or zinc roof.

Man worker uses a power drill to attach a cap metal roofing job

Aluminum roofs are highly reflective and require little maintenance; however, they may experience signs of wear after extended exposure to sun and rain. Regularly rinsing away dirt and debris can help prevent oxidation and further damage.

It has been argued that metal roofing requires too much maintenance but this is largely unfounded since most metal roof types don’t require any more effort than keeping it free of leaves or sweeping off snow buildup during the winter months. Generally speaking, metal roofing is quite low-maintenance compared to other roof types and provides excellent value when considering its longevity.

Considering installing metal roofings for your home or business? Big Easy Roofing is here to help! We specialize in metal roof installation and can help you select the perfect type for your specific needs. Contact us today to get started. With our expertise and commitment to customer satisfaction, we are confident that you’ll be more than satisfied with your new metal roof! Request your free quote today to learn more about how Big Easy Roofing can help you complete your metal roofing project. We look forward to hearing from you!

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