Bob Vila Radio: Why Metal Roofs Are on the Rise

Find out why more and more homeowners are choosing to install this "old fashioned" roofing material that had been all but ignored for decades.

By Bob Vila | Updated May 2, 2018 7:33 PM

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Curious about metal roofing? You’re certainly not alone. Though at one time its use had been relegated to utility structures like barns and warehouses, metal roofing has rebounded in recent years, once again becoming a popular choice for residential homes. What gives?

Why Metal Roofs Are Popular



Listen to BOB VILA ON METAL ROOFS or read below:

Well, compared to asphalt shingles (by far and away the most popular roofing material), metal boasts supreme durability. If you don’t love the idea of re-roofing every 20 or 30 years—if you’d prefer to do it once and be done with it—then metal roofing is for you. Not only does the material stand up well to high winds, but its special protective coating also discourages rust.

Believe it or not, metal roofs are even considered to be eco-friendly. That’s because recycled scrap metal often makes up more than a quarter of the average metal roof. Additionally, because it’s possible to install metal roofing right over existing shingles, there’s often less construction debris that  gets dumped into a landfill.

Why doesn’t everyone have a metal roof if it’s so wonderful? One word: cost. For the material alone, the sticker price is higher than for most other options, and installation tends to be relatively expensive too, as the job requires special tools and know-how.

Another drawback: metal roofs can be dented by the impact of falling branches or hail. You may not even be able to walk on the roof if it’s made of a softer metal like aluminum or copper. So, if you live on a woodsy lot or in a region prone to icy precipitation, focus only on the metal roofing material with the utmost strength—steel.

Bob Vila Radio is a 60-second home improvement radio tip of the day carried on more than 186 stations in 75 markets around the country. Click here to subscribe, so you can automatically receive each new episode as it arrives—absolutely free!