2021 Steel Roof Costs, Pros & Cons – Steel Roofs vs. Asphalt Shingles

For many decades, composition shingle roofs have been the overwhelmingly popular choice for new roof installations and re-roofing applications.

However, thanks to the rapidly growing consumer awareness of all the benefits of modern residential metal roofing, many savvy homeowners are now considering steel sheet panels and stamped tiles as a viable alternative to asphalt shingle roofs. Hence, it is hardly a surprise that metal, which is by and large steel, has become the fastest growing segment in the residential roofing market.

Why Steel Roofs?

Many homeowners concerned with aesthetic appeal are often positively impressed with the wide variety of contemporary styles, profiles, and vibrant colors available in modern steel roofing. Other benefits that help make steel roofs stand out among other roofing products, include low overall life-cycle cost, durability and longevity, superior energy efficiency, and sustainability.

New Shingle Roof

$7,500
Average price
New Metal Roof

$14,500
Average price
New Flat Roof

$8,225
Average price

See costs in your area Enter Your Zip Code

For anyone who wants their roof to be an asset for years to come, rather than it being a constant source of problems, steel roofing can be a wise choice.

Steel is Exceptionally Strong and Durable

Steel is one of the strongest, most durable building materials, which is why it is so widely used in commercial and industrial construction. Your home can benefit from superior durability of steel in several different ways; The inherent material properties of steel make it highly resistant to cracking, warping, curling, or peeling — all of these are common problems associated with asphalt shingles.

Did you know? A steel roof will not be susceptible to rot, decay, discoloration, mold growth or termite infestation. The superior durability of steel will free you from the expensive and time consuming maintenance and repair issues that are often a necessary part of owning most other types of roofing systems.

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Galvalume vs. Galvanized Steel Roofing – What’s the Difference?

If you are one of the many homeowners looking to install a steel roof on your home, understanding the difference between galvanized steel vs. Galvalume is essential to getting the top performance you expect from your new metal roof.

Right off the bat: In most residential steel roofing applications including near-coastal areas — beach homes located near the ocean shore, and even homes located in the middle of heavy salt-spray — severe marine environments, Galvalume steel will be a better and more corrosion-resistant option than G-90 galvanized steel.

The one exception when Galvalume should not be used: Galvalume steel should not be used on, in, or around concrete or mortar. Concrete and mortar are highly alkaline environments.

Did you know? Bare Galvalume steel and painted Galvalume sheets will suffer rapid corrosion when in contact with mortar and concrete. Bare galvanized G-90 steel and especially Kynar 500 painted galvanized G-90 steel will perform better in this type of environment.

Now, because aluminum, one of the two metals in Galvalume coating, provides a barrier protection for steel, instead of galvanic or self-healing protection in galvanized steel, scratches and cut edges in Galvalume are less protected.

Galvalume steel is best for use in prefabricated metal wall panels and standing seam metal roof applications with concealed fasteners.

We would not recommend using Galvalume panels with exposed-fastener steel roofing systems such as corrugated or ribbed steel roofs.

Normally, Galvalume is offered in both bare and pre-coated (pre-painted) versions. Most residential-grade Galvalume metal roofing products – like galvanized steel – are coated with Kynar 500 or Hylar 5000 paint finishes.

New Shingle Roof

$7,500
Average price
New Metal Roof

$14,500
Average price
New Flat Roof

$8,225
Average price

See costs in your area Enter Your Zip Code

Galvalume has an excellent performance lifespan in bare exposures (unpainted panels) as well. Both galvanized steel and Galvalume weigh 100 to 150 pounds per 100 square feet and contain about 35% recycled steel post-consumer content.

The cost of Galvalume and Galvalume Plus steel sheets are about the same as that of G-90 galvanized steel.

A product called Galvalume Plus features an extra coating of acrylic. One advantage of Galvalume Plus is that it can be roll-formed dry, without vanishing oil. Thus, Galvalume Plus is very easy to form and install safely in the field, using portable roll-formers.

What is galvanized steel:

Galvanized steel was invented and developed for commercial use in the first half of the 19th Century, so it has nearly 200 years of proven track record. Carbon sheet steel is dipped in molten zinc. It’s more than a coating, however. A chemical bond occurs and produces the telltale “spangles,” the crystalline surface pattern found on galvanized steel.

Tip: Look for G-90 galvanized steel for residential applications not G-60

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Pros & Cons of Atlas Shingles – Costs – Unbiased Atlas Roofing Reviews

Atlas is a top-five roofing shingle brand in ratings from pros and homeowners. Atlas shingles are a good value, which we define as reasonable price combined with quality that is above average.

Did you know? Online ratings don’t give the whole story for any shingle brand. Ratings on the brand’s website are unrealistically high, posted by happy customers in the first few months after installation – too soon to know how durable the shingles are.

Ratings on review sites are disproportionately low. Unsatisfied customers look for the chance to criticize the shingles. For example, on one prominent review site, Atlas received 49% 5-star ratings, 49% 1-star ratings and 2% in between. People love them or hate them. Yet, the brand was rated in the top few brands reviewed on the site.

We should also mention that Atlas, like other manufacturers including CertainTeed, GAF, Owens Corning and IKO, has been the subject of a class action lawsuit.

The suit against Atlas involved the Chalet line of shingles, no longer produced. The class action was dismissed. Some homeowners filed individual suits with various outcomes.

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