Metal Shingles – A Great Roofing Solution

Real Estate

Metal is an ideal material for roofing because of its durability, as well as it’s recyclability, resistance to mildew and algae growth, low weight, wind resistance and fire safety. I recently wrote about standing seam roofs which are metal and are growing in popularity. Another popular metal roofing is with metal shingles, particularly for those people who prefer a shingle look. Although they may be more costly at the outset, they offer the appearance of natural materials, but without the maintenance cost or other risks associated with many other materials, as well as possibly lowering insurance premiums.

Metal shingles are formed with an airspace between the metal and the roof deck. That airspace acts as a thermal break to stop the conductive flow of heat from the surface of the roof into the attic. (Think about what the dead air space between two layers of glass in a thermal pane window does.) Testing done by Florida Solar Energy Center showed high reflectance brown metal shingles were reducing heat gain by 40.9% compared to standard asphalt shingles. This is all because of the airspace between the metal and the roof deck. In cold climates there needs to be insulation on top of the ceilings as there would be with all other tiles.

Steel metal shingles are made from steel that has a zinc or zinc and aluminum metallic coating on top of the carbon steel. This anti-corrosive metallic coating protects the steel from rusting. On top of the coating, manufacturers typically have a paint finish or an aggregate coating for added protection. Many metal shingles are also produced from aluminum and copper, which are inherently rust-free metals.

Metal has been used for many years as a roofing material. Thomas Jefferson worked with metal shingles for his home at Monticello and other buildings. Metal shingles have also been used for many years by commercial chains such as IHOP and Dunkin’ Donuts. According to the Metal Roofing Alliance . Residential metal market share for metal roofing is currently 14%.

The oldest commercial metal shingles were developed in 1959 by Kaiser Aluminum; their product line was later bought out by Isaiah Industries, Inc. in 1980. Most other metal roofing products available today were invented in 1980 or later.

Recent developments in the metal shingle roofing industry have made them increasingly popular.  There are products that are stamped to look like standard shingles, slate, wood shakes, and tile. One of the recent advancements in metal shingle technology has been paint coatings that are variegated so the products can have multi-hued finishes designed to look even more like slate, wood, asphalt shingles, and so on.

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