Metal Roofing Buying Guide: Facts, Myths, Installed Prices, FAQs

If you are looking to replace that old asphalt roof on your home with a metal roof this Spring, Summer or Fall, but still have a few lingering questions or concerns, then here are the top 70 metal roofing facts, myth-busters, FAQ, plus an overview of costs and pros and cons to consider before making your buying decision.

A Rustic House with a Multi-Level Standing Seam Metal Roof Designed to Shed Ice and Snow Build-up

via Birdseye Design

Did you know? A metal roof can be a sensible way to protect your home, especially if you happen to live in an area that experiences a lot of storms, rapid temperature changes, beaming sun that melts asphalt, large hail, or heavy snowfall. — Just ask any homeowner in Florida, Oklahoma, Arizona, Texas, Illinois, Ohio, upstate New York, Northern New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont, and they will readily attest to this! 😉

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To help you navigate this long list, we broke it down into the following categories:

Materials Pros & Cons Standing Seam Metal Roof Galvalume Color

Cost of Materials
Cost of Installation
Colors & Styles
Weather Protection
Energy Efficiency
Environmental Impact
10 Bonus Facts

Metal Roofing Materials Pros & Cons:

  • standing-seam Metal roofs can be made from a variety of metals and alloys including
    — Galvanized G-90 steel (hot-dip zinc galvanized high-end steel), and G-60 steel (a less expensive, thinner-gauge steel, often used in low-end, lower-cost corrugated and ribbed metal panels)
    Galvalume steel (zinc and aluminum coated steel) has a more expensive and longer-lasting coating compared to G-90 galvanized steel.
    — stone-coated steel (G-90 galvanized steel), aluminum, copper, zinc, terne (zinc-tin alloy), and stainless steel.
  • The downside of galvanized steel (G-90, and especially G-60) is that it can corrode, eventually, especially when exposed to moist, salt-spray environment such as when your home is situated near the ocean or near the coastal areas.
  • Steel is the most frequently used material in both residential and commercial applications, mainly due to its lower cost.
  • Aluminum is the second most popular material. It is more durable and longer lasting than steel, but only costs a fraction of the price of premium metals, such as copper or zinc.
  • Aluminum is also one of the best metals to use for roofs located in coastal areas (think those beach homes), where there is a heavy presence of salt spray in the environment.
  • Copper roofs are the most durable and can last for hundreds of years. However, due to prohibitively high cost, few people choose to install an entire roof made from copper. Instead, home and business-owners choose copper for architectural details/accents on the roof (bay windows, towers, porches, low slope roof sections, Etc.).

copper standing seam bay windows

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Roofing Materials & Installation Costs: Shingles, Metal, Flat Roofs

Are you exploring the most suitable roofing options for your home? If so, roofing material types and their costs must be top of mind.

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This guide will help you explore the most popular residential roofing materials, including pricing and installation costs.

Roofing Materials Costs

Asphalt Shingles:

Dimensional shingles roof on a house

Asphalt shingles are generally less expensive than other roofing materials like metal and are relatively easy to install (unlike metal roofing), resulting in a lower overall cost for a new asphalt roof. However, premium (designer) asphalt shingles, such as those from GAF, CertainTeed, and Malarkey, can be as expensive as high-end roofing materials like metal. Here’s a breakdown of different types of asphalt shingles:

3-tab shingles (strip shingles):

  • Materials Cost: $90 to $120 per square (100 sq. ft.), excluding trim.
  • Characteristics: Least costly, thin, not designed for longevity, flat appearance without much dimensionality.
  • Top Products: GAF Royal Sovereign, CertainTeed XT 25, Owens Corning Supreme.
  • Wind Rating: Up to 60 MPH.
  • Installation Note: Care needed for alignment to avoid vertical lines running off.
  • Disadvantage: No manufacturer’s warranty for hail damage.
  • Expected Lifespan: 10 years to 20 years, depending on local climate and roof maintenance.

Architectural (dimensional) shingles:

  • Materials Cost: $100 to $150 per square (100 sq. ft.), excluding trim.
  • Characteristics: Midrange, multiple layers, dimensional appearance, thicker, and sturdier.
  • Wind Rating: At least 110 MPH, up to 130 MPH with the 6-nails per shingle installation.
  • Top Products: Owens Corning Duration, GAF Timberline HDZ, CertainTeed Landmark
  • Specialty: CoolRoof rated shingles eligible for rebates in California.
  • Disadvantage: No manufacturer’s warranty for hail damage.
  • Expected Lifespan: 15 years to 25 years, depending on local climate and roof maintenance.

Premium (designer) shingles:

  • Materials Cost: $200 to $400 per square (100 sq. ft.).
  • Characteristics: Custom-looking, multiple layers, distinctive appearance, performance on par with high-end architectural shingles.
  • Top Products: CertainTeed Grand Manor, Owens Corning Berkshire, GAF Camelot, Malarkey Windsor.
  • Disadvantage: No manufacturer’s warranty for hail damage.
  • Expected Lifespan: 20 years to 35 years, depending on local climate and roof maintenance.

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Stone Coated Steel Roof Cost: Gerard, DECRA, Metro, Boral Steel

Stone coated steel roofing is generating a lot of buzz (and sales) with homeowners that want a roof with staying power — one that combines good looks with outstanding protection against the elements including fire, wind, and hail.

Boral Steel (previously Gerard USA) stone coated steel tile roof – Barrel Vault Profile. Source: (previously

It’s certainly a strong plus that stone-coated metal roofing is energy-efficient, uses recycled materials and is recyclable, unlike straight-to-landfill asphalt shingles.

Here’s your complete guide for comparing products, costs, pros and cons, and other options:

What to Expect in Terms of Costs

Total cost to install the product is the first factor many homeowners consider, so let’s see if stone coated steel roofing is in the budget for your home.

Note that 1 square = 100 square feet.

  • Material Costs: $450-$650 per square for stone coated steel shingles, shakes, and tiles, plus the underlayment, fasteners, ridge cap, trim and other accessories required
  • Installation Costs: $550-$1,000 per square depending on various factors affecting cost, which are listed below

Total Installed Cost: $1,000-$1,650 per square.
That seems like a broad price range, but the range for asphalt shingles can be even broader. The best asphalt shingles can cost 3-4 times the cost of the cheapest option.

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