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Steel Roofs

A Paneled or Shingled Steel Roof Keeps Your Home Protected and Comfortable

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A favorite of architects for years, steel roofs are becoming more mainstream, especially as the cost of asphalt shingles continues to increase. Strong, lightweight, energy-efficient, and 100% recyclable, steel roofing is poised to be a major player in the residential roofing market for years to come.

Steel Roof Options

The vast majority of residential steel roofing projects are completed with one of the following two product types:

Panel Steel Roofing

The most popular type of steel panel roofing is standing seam. On this type of roof the spaces between the panels are raised, or "standing". Fasteners connect the raised seams and hold the panels together. In most cases, the fasteners are concealed to create a smooth, continuous surface.

It is, however, possible to install an exposed fastener steel roof, such as vertical rib roofing. Similar to a standing seam roof, a vertical rib steel roof is made from profiled metal sheets. The sheets, however, are not fastened to each other, but rather, to the supporting structure. The screws, while visible, are painted to match the panels. An early version of vertical rib roofs was often installed on barns and sheds.

While some manufacturers have limited steel panel color choices, others offer dozens. Steels panels are also available in different widths, lengths, finishes, and profiles.

Steel Roofing Shingles

A gorgeous red steel shingle roof.

Manufacturers now offer steel shingles that resemble a number of other roofing materials, including villa tiles, wood and slate shakes, and asphalt shingles. Steel shingles provide all of the benefits of steel panels but in a more traditional-looking package. Choose from a variety of steel shingle sizes, textures and colors.

Why Steel Roofing?

Steel offers many advantages over other types of roofing materials and as the technology improves, the price will only go down.

  • Because all steel roofing products are galvanized, they resist corrosion, one of the traditional enemies of steel.
  • Steel roofing often contains a portion of recycled materials and is itself 100% recyclable.
  • Most steel manufacturers offer a 50-year warranty on their products. Try finding that on a traditional roof made from asphalt or wood.
  • Durable and lightweight, steel reduces stress on your home's support structure while simultaneously providing enhanced top-down strength.
  • While the initial cost of steel roofing is on the high side, research shows that adding a steel roof increases home value by an average of $1 to $2 per square foot of roof area.
  • Many insurance companies offer discounted premiums for homes with steel roofs.
  • Steel roofs can usually be applied over existing roof coverings, reducing not only labor costs, but landfill debris.
  • There are several different aftermarket steel coatings available to increase the lifespan and energy efficiency of the material. They are very cost-effective and easily applied.

Steel Roofing Costs

  • Standing seam steel roofs typically cost $9 to $13 per square foot installed.
  • Steel shingles cost $11 to $14 per square foot installed.
  • Vertical rib roofing for residential purposes costs about the same as standing seam, while vertical rib for commercial purposes tends to be cheaper, costing roughly $7 to $10 per sq. ft. installed.
  • Please note that the prices above assume a typical roof slope (about 8 inches of rise for every 12 inches of run) and installation over the existing roof. A steep roof or one with a complex design can raise the total project cost, as can removing and disposing of the existing roof.

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