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Is a Metal Roof Cheaper than Shingles? (Metal Roof vs. Shingles Cost)

September 24th, 2021 | 5 min. read

Is a Metal Roof Cheaper than Shingles? (Metal Roof vs. Shingles Cost)

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Metal roofing is growing more and more popular in the roofing industry. This has sparked homeowners to start comparing the more commonly used asphalt shingle roof to metal roofing. 

One of the biggest comparison questions we get is, “Is a metal roof cheaper than shingles?”

The team at Bill Ragan Roofing has over 30 years of experience answering questions just like this one. To ensure homeowners like you make the right purchasing decision, we’ll be breaking down if a metal roof is cheaper than shingles. 

Not only will we be comparing metal roof cost to shingle cost, but we’ll also be comparing their lifespans, warranties, and more. By the end of this article, you’ll know which one is right for you and your replacement. 

Is a metal roof cheaper than shingles?

Both a new metal roof and an asphalt shingle roof will be an investment. No matter which you choose, it’s not going to be cheap. 

metal roof cost vs. shingles cost

With that in mind, a metal roof will always be more expensive than shingles. Not only do the metal panels themselves cost more than asphalt shingles, but a metal roof also requires more skill and labor to install. 

You can actually expect the cost of a metal roof to be more than double or triple the cost of an asphalt shingle roof. This is based on a standing seam metal roof (the recommended choice for residential roofing) and the 3 types of asphalt shingles. 

For example, an architectural shingle roof (the most commonly used shingle) will cost around $4.76 per square foot, while a standing seam metal roof will cost around $15.00 per square foot. If you’re looking for affordability for your roof replacement, I recommend going with an architectural shingle. 

Metal vs. shingles: 3 more important comparisons 

Now you know that a metal roof is more expensive than an asphalt shingle roof. However, you need to know a few more things before deciding which one is right for you. 

Don’t forget a standing seam metal roof is the recommended choice for residential roofing over a screw down panel metal roof, so we’ll be comparing it to an asphalt shingle roof for the rest of this article. 

1. Metal roof warranties versus shingle warranties

When getting a new roof, you’ll have warranties on your contractor’s workmanship and your roofing materials from the manufacturer. 

The workmanship warranty will depend on the local roofing contractor you hire. However, the warranty you get on the materials for a metal roof and an asphalt roof are very different. 

All 3 types of asphalt shingles come out of the package with a standard manufacturer warranty. For example, a dimensional asphalt shingle comes with a 30-year prorated warranty.

However, if you use all of one manufacturer’s roofing components instead of mixing and matching from other companies, you can qualify to get the 50-year non-prorated enhanced warranty. Once you register your roof with the manufacturer, the enhanced warranty covers your entire roof for the next 50 years. 

Unfortunately, standing seam metal roof panels don’t have an enhanced warranty. It comes with a 30-year paint warranty that covers the protective coating on the metal panels

Even though it’s only covered for 30 years, that doesn’t mean the paint will disappear once the warranty expires. No matter which roof you choose, both have great warranty options if you invest in quality. 

2. The lifespan of a metal roof versus a shingle roof

The lifespan of a roof is the number of years you get out of it. Both roofs have good lifespans, but a metal roof will last longer than a shingle roof. 

For example, a dimensional shingle roof can last up to 30 years, while a standing-seam metal roof can last up to 50 years. Both a metal roof and a shingle roof should get as close as possible to their maximum lifespan as long as they have adequate attic ventilation and are installed properly

Keep in mind, there are always factors like extreme weather, the climate of your area, and more that will ultimately determine how long both roof systems will last. However, as long as you invest in quality materials and hire a great roofing contractor, you should get peace of mind for years to come, no matter which roof you choose. 

3. The amount of maintenance a metal roof needs versus a shingle roof

Roof maintenance is the periodical checking of all the vulnerable areas on a roof that could be susceptible to having a problem. Depending on the type of roof, whether it be residential or commercial, it will be annual, biannual, or quarterly maintenance. 

Every roof needs some form of maintenance, but some roof types require more than others. With that in mind, a standing seam metal roof will need less maintenance than an asphalt shingle roof.  

An asphalt shingle roof needs to be maintained and inspected at least once a year. This includes checking your pipe boots, clearing debris from valleys, or even just cleaning your gutters to ensure a leak doesn’t show up.

On the other hand, a standing seam metal roof requires virtually no maintenance. However, that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be inspected periodically to keep it running smoothly.

Both a standing seam metal roof and an asphalt shingle roof need maintenance to catch future problems and ensure your roof’s life is maximized. 

Is a metal roof or an asphalt shingle roof right for you?

After reading this article, you should have a good idea if a metal roof or an asphalt shingle roof is right for you. Remember, a standing seam metal roof will always be more expensive than an asphalt shingle roof. 

No matter which roofing material you choose, it means nothing if you make the wrong hiring decision. The truth is, the roofing contractor you hire has the biggest impact on every aspect of your roofing project. 

That’s why you need to know how to hire a great one in your area. To help you do this, we created a checklist of 16 questions that every homeowner needs to ask potential roofing contractors. 

Not only does the checklist give you the questions to ask, but it also gives you the right answers you should get back. Don’t get taken advantage of by a roofing contractor; get your checklist now. 

The team at Bill Ragan Roofing has provided high-quality roofing services to homeowners in Nashville and surrounding areas since 1990. When getting a roof replacement with us, your roof gets the attention to detail it needs, and you’ll have a lifetime warranty on our workmanship. 

If you’re local to Nashville, don’t hesitate to contact us for any of your roofing needs. 

Here’s your Checklist of 16 Questions You Need to Ask a Roofing Contractor to help you find a reputable roofer in your area.

roofing contractor questions checklist

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