Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q. Can I inspect my roof without a ladder?

    There are typically several signs that a roof might be failing. Here are some things that you can look for without using a ladder:

      1. Use binoculars to check around the chimney, trim and other flashings for signs of cracks, shingles that are coming up off the roof and general wear
      2. For homes with asphalt shingles, look for dark areas indicating cracking shingles
      3. If you have a home with wood shake or shingles, look for pieces that are curled upward,split, broken off or missing
      4. For homes with slate roofs, look for cracked or missing shingles
      5. Look for heavy wear around the valleys, the place where water runs off the roof into the gutters
      6. Look at the materials around the chimney and vent pipes and check for cracks, gaps and missing or fractured caulking
      7. Check eave overhangs for water damage
      8. Conduct an interior inspection for stained or discolored ceilings, which may indicate roof problems
      9. Inspect the attic to look for damp insulation or mold, which can indicate water damage from a leaky roof
      10. View the roof both close up and at a distance. You may see something from across the street that's not visible in your front yard

    Download this list in PDF format here.

    If you find your roof needs to be repaired or replaced, hired a licensed and insured contractor to handle the work. Click here to Find a Metal Roofing Contractor in your area.

  • Q. Can you give me an estimate?

    metal roof estimateYour local MRA Member Contractor will be glad to help. Before he can give you a true estimate, he'll need to know two things:

      1. The style of metal roofing you'd like for your home
      2. The shape and pitch of your home's roof.
    A contractor will need to see your roof first-hand before he'll be able to accurately estimate. In fact, the shape and pitch of your roof will influence the estimated installation cost more than the style of metal roofing you choose. Other items that your contractor will look at that will directly impact their estimate are property qualities such as staging area, material storage, hips and valleys, etc.

    To get a true estimate, click here to Find a Contractor in your area.

  • Q. Does a metal roof cost more than a typical roof?

    Because metal roofing is a premium home product, you can expect your new roof to cost roughly two to three times what an asphalt shingle roof costs. However, a metal roof is comparable in price to tile roofing or cedar shake roofing. If you currently have a slate roof, you can expect your metal roof to cost less.

    No matter what kind of metal roofing style you choose, you'll never have to worry about your roof again. Most come with a true 30 to 50 year warranty. Plus, your new metal roof will add to the resale value of your home, save you money on your energy bills, and give you piece of mind that you'll likely never have to re-roof again.

  • Q. I'm concerned that a metal roof won't match my home and the roofing style in my neighborhood.

    Today's residential metal roofing is made to look exactly like common roofing material - such as asphalt shingle, cedar shake, clay tile or slate roofing - only stronger and more durable. Click here to see metal roofing's wide variety of styles, colors and patterns - there's certain to be a style and finish to match your home and neighborhood.

  • Q. How much longer will a metal roof last than common roofing like asphalt or wood shingle?

    You can expect a metal roof to last at least 2 to 3 times longer than a regular roof. In general terms, count on a metal roof lasting 40 to 60 years and beyond.

    metal roofTo put it in context, the average life span of an asphalt roof is 12 to 20 years. That lifespan can be shorter depending on the pitch of your roof and the climate in your area. Made of oil impregnated paper or fiberglass, asphalt begins to deteriorate as soon as you expose it to normal weather. A metal roof, however, will never decompose.

    Other roofing materials like wood shingle, shake and tile have varying degrees of weather-related problems that lead to breakdown. Wood shingle and shake roofs often need replacement before twenty years. Concrete tile roofs can crack and warp in the freeze/thaw cycle of more northern climates.

    All of the above roofing materials are well-outlasted by metal roofing, which retains its good looks and durability decade after decade after decade.

  • Q. Is metal roofing noisier in bad weather than asphalt, cedar shake, tile and slate roofing?

    When installed with solid sheathing, a metal roof on your home will silence noise from rain, hail and bad weather as well - if not better - than any other roofing material.

  • Q. How will a metal roof stand up to extreme weather?

    A metal roof can withstand decades of abuse from extreme weather like high winds, heavy snow, hailstorms, and even metal roofingwildfires. Metal roofing has a 140-mph wind rating, meaning it can withstand wind gusts up to 140 miles per hour. Under high wind conditions, says architect Jim Mitchell, "Metal roofing systems have wind resistance and uplift resistance that is above the new building code requirement. That gives us a sense of relief in that we can use the best material to meet those criteria."

    In locations that see heavy snow, metal roofing has been the choice of homeowners for years. It sheds snow fast, which protects the structural integrity of the roof. And it can eliminate ice damming at the eves, so water can't back up and collect under the roof then leak into your home.

    If you live in a part of the country that is prone to wildfires, metal roofing can protect your home should burning embers land on your roof.

  • Q. Is a metal roof environmentally responsible?

    Not only is metal roofing great for your home, it's great for the environment. The recycled content of the steel in a metal roof is about 28% from production to installation to reuse - far superior to asphalt.

    According to the National Association of Homebuilders Research Center, 20 billion pounds of asphalt shingles are dumped into U.S. landfills every year. If you loaded those shingles into tractor trailers, then lined them up end-to-end, they would make a line from New York City to Los Angeles, back to New York City again, then on to Chicago.

    That's a lot of wasted asphalt. But because a metal roof can often be installed over your current roof, without tearing off what's already there, metal roofing helps to reduce this excessive shingle waste.

  • Q. Would a metal roof be too heavy for certain types of homes, or for smaller structures like a detached garage or porch?

    You'll be surprised to learn that a metal roof is, on average, 50% lighter than an asphalt shingle roof, and 75% lighter than concrete tile, fiber cement shakes and slate. With metal roofing, weight on a structure is never an issue

  • Q. Do you have a product catalogue or samples available?

    As a consortium of manufacturers, suppliers and contractors, the Metal Roofing Alliance does not sell products nor do we produce a catalogue.  For a general idea about the different styles of metal roofing, check out our website and the websites of our manufacturers. You may also want to use the Find-A-Contractor area of our website to get detailed information from contractors in your area that can inform you about what is best for your home.


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