For 30 years now, I've been asked to compare asphalt composition roofing shingles to metal roofing. The answer today isn't any different that it's always been: metal roofing just makes for a better, more expensive roof. As with most things, you get what you pay for. The primary differences between comp and metal roofing become apparent with just a bit of research:
- Metal roofs are lighter and stronger.
- Metal roofs are made of a higher percentage of recycled material and can actually be recycled again if the house was ever torn down, while asphalt shingles are made from petroleum products and are rarely, if ever, considered for recycling. The vast majority of torn-off comp shingles end up as toxic waste in a landfill.
- Metal roofs come in more shapes, colors and configurations than any asphalt shingle, which come as just that - shingles. Metal can be long vertical panels, horizontal panels, shingles, shakes, diamond shingles, tiles and more.
- Metal roofs don't decay in the sun like asphalt shingles do, so they can typically outlast asphalt roofs by decades.
- Metal roofs are much better at staying on in high winds precisely because they don't decay in the sun and so they retain their as-new performance usually their entire light.
- Metal roofs can offer a big selection of reflective finishes and their vented roof assembly makes them more energy efficient.
On top of these obvious features, metal roofs look better, remain incombustible and are often the lowest maintenance option available to anyone considering purchasing a new roof. The difference in price, which can range anywhere from minor to considerable, is more than compensated by the improved quality and performance. For anyone planning on staying in their home long-term, it's really a no-brainer.
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