Metal roofing is experiencing a surge in popularity, threatening to overtake asphalt shingles as the go-to roofing material. Traditionally made of standing-seam metal and found on barns and sheds, steel has gone aesthetic. These days, steel roofs can mimic materials like slate, shingles, tile, wood – and yes, even asphalt – and come in a variety of colors and finishes. In this article, we’ll explain why steel is superior to asphalt as a roofing material for both commercial and residential properties.
Metal roofs are tough, which is why most come with a 30 to 50-year warranty. Metal roofs repel moisture and are fire, wind, and pest resistant, often lasting as long as the house remains standing. Plus, a steel roof weighs less than a standard roof, protecting the structural integrity and life of the building
Asphalt shingles are far less resilient than steel and typically come with only a 15 to 30-year warranty. More vulnerable to the elements, shingles often remain damp leading to moss, algae, and fungus growth. Another downside is that shingle roofs are heavy -100 square feet could weigh 200 to 500 pounds – adding to the wear and tear of the building. Lastly, temperature spikes, UV rays, hail, and ice can all damage asphalt shortening the life of the roof.
Cost and ROI
While true that asphalt shingles cost less and are cheaper to install, metal roofs retain their value and yield a higher return on investment. Here’s a comparison using a 1,500 square foot roof:
- Materials and installation – $2,000 to $10,000
- Labor – $3,000 to $4,500
- Total cost – $5,000 to $14,500
- Materials and installation – $4,500 to $11,500
- Labor – $4,500 to $7,500
- Total cost – $9,000 to $19,000
On the surface, it appears that asphalt is the better value. However, as discussed earlier, metal roofs almost never have to be replaced (while asphalt only lasts about 20 years) making them a better investment in the long run. Additionally, the installation of a steel roof on a primary home often qualifies for tax credits and yields discounts from insurance companies.
When it comes to resale value, a standard asphalt roof doesn’t provide a boost (unless the roof is recently installed.) Metal, on the other hand, is extremely attractive to buyers because it’s long-lasting, weather-resistant, and energy-efficient.
Metal roofs save money on heating and cooling. The insulating ability of steel allows it to retain heat during cold winter months, while a granular-coated finish re-emits solar radiation in the summer keeping the home cool.
Asphalt shingles absorb heat, which can really drive up power bills in the summer.
Mother Nature loves metal roofs because they’re infinitely sustainable and rarely need replacing. Mainly made of recyclable materials, steel roofing can be salvaged again and again.
Conversely, asphalt shingles are made from toxic, petroleum-based products which increases dependency on fossil fuels. And since roof shingles aren’t recyclable and must be replaced every few decades, 20 billion pounds of asphalt are dumped into landfills every year.
Western Building Supply provides the best quality steel roofing available.
We use state-of-the-art technology to manufacture finely made roofing steel from our location in Wheatland, WY, and transport them to you. We stock an extensive range of steel roofing components – in a variety of styles, colors, and design choices – to match the architecture of both commercial buildings and residential homes.
Whether you are installing a steel metal roof yourself, or you require the materials for your customers, look to our team to provide you with precisely what you need. Most roofing supply companies take 2 to 4 weeks to deliver, but not WBS. We can get your supplies to you in a matter of days, or hours if needed. We’re here to make sure that your job gets done without a hitch, which is why our entire team and inventory are at your disposal.
You can count on our reliable steel roofing materials and our speedy delivery service for any of your roofing needs. Visit Western Building Supply’s manufacturing facility to see our process. Give us a call at 307-322-2888 or contact us here to learn more.