Although asphalt shingles still dominate residential areas in the United States, appearing almost anywhere you look, there's also been an upsurge of interest in metal roofing because of its inherent benefits such as recycled content, reflectivity, and so on. Here are some pros and cons of metal roofing that you should consider if you're planning to replace your roof soon and are thinking about using a material other than shingles.
As mentioned above, metal roofing generally contains some recycled content, unlike asphalt shingles, which generally are manufactured using new materials. And although asphalt shingles can be recycled, the content is generally not turned into new shingles; instead it's used for other asphalt products such as roads. Metal roofs can also drastically reduce the amount of money you spend on AC throughout the summer (without drastically increasing the amount you spend on heating during the winter), which also reduces the greenhouse gases that your HVAC system contributes to the atmosphere and the amount of nonrenewable fossil fuel it uses up each summer. Metal roofing even comes in many price points and has extreme durability and longevity.
Of course, nothing is perfect, even metal roofing. Some drawbacks include the price, which is higher than that of asphalt, and the relatively low availability of roofing contractors who install the material. Fortunately, it gets better from there, because as soon as the roof is installed you'll start saving money on energy bills and so on. There's also a concern that if your metal roof is installed without a watertight roof deck, hurricane roof damage could result in extensive water damage to your house because the pieces of material are so large that if one of them blows off it leaves a substantial hole, unlike an asphalt shingle. However, you can simply fix this by making sure to install a watertight roofing deck, which is a good practice anyway if you live in a hurricane-prone area.
Although metal roofing is probably a wiser investment overall, especially if you're keen on eco-friendly roofing, it really depends on your situation. Be sure to do a cost-benefit analysis of each type of roofing before you make your decision. Remember that metal roofing prices and lifespans vary widely, with aluminum being one of the cheapest and shortest-lived, whereas copper is the most expensive and can last for actual centuries. And if you still want a more eco-friendly roof but are unsure about metal, you can choose something such as rubber shingles, concrete tile, clay tile, or slate.
For more information and options, talk with professional roofing companies, such as Advanced Seamless Gutter & Roofing Inc..