The popularity of metal roofing products has surged in the past decade, on the back of greater awareness of its benefits. The market is full of advanced options now, a far cry from the ugly tin roofs prevalent in rural areas.
Metal roof has multiple applications in industrial and large infrastructure buildings such as airports, railway stations etc. In hilly areas, it is very widely used in residential and small commercial buildings as well. In the last few years, with the introduction of new constructions technologies being accepted in urban India, a small percentage of residential buildings have also started using metal roofs.
Metal roofing is available in steel, aluminium, stainless steel, copper, and alloys. Though there are different types of metal roofs installation of which depends upon the area/ region, the starting price is Rs 700 per sq m.
- Steel is the most common used roofing material as it is sturdier, heavier and does not rust when carefully coated.
- Aluminium is used in homes but is lighter and more prone to rust than steel roofing. It also gets dented easily.
- Alloys, copper, and stainless steel are very expensive and are used in high-end projects. Since these are highly durable and have longevity on their side, most of the industries are using these even with the high cost.
Steel and aluminium are by far the most common and sensible of the available roofing materials because they are economical, hold paint finishes well (steel can be galvanised), and are durable. Aluminium is a relatively soft metal, so it is more prone to denting and damage and it is also more expensive than steel. On the flip side, aluminum does not corrode the way steel does if the finish is compromised.
Metal roofing comes in two basic forms that are very different in appearance: sheet-like panels and shingles.
Metal panel roofing: It has a commercial look that is favoured by architects for its honest, clean, and contemporary appearance. It is commonly used for homes ranging from mountain cabins to modern masterpieces but would look very out-of-place in a colonial home.
Metal shingle-style roofing: With this style, metal is formed into shapes that imitate spanish tile, wood shakes, or slate. These shingles are typically given multiple-layer factory finishes that may include granulated-stone topcoats to complete the realistic effect.
Let us have a look at the pros and cons of metal roofing:
Expected life: Properly installed, a metal roof should last as long as the house, sealing out water, surviving high winds, and easily shedding snow. Since metal is resistant to fire, mildew, insects, and rot. Warranties vary widely, but most companies back their products for 20 to 50 years. Paint finishes typically have a 30-year limited warranty.
Weight: Compared with tiles or concrete tiles, metal roofing is lightweight.
Ease of installation: Most metal roofing materials come in multiple-shingle sections or in 12 to 36 inch-wide panels. If your roof is stripped off and a storm is on the way, shortening the process by a day or two may prove to be a critical advantage. Because of the material’s light weight, you can save on engineering and building the supporting structure.
Fire resistance: Because metal roofs are noncombustible, they are given a Class A fire rating, the most resistant.
Heat conduction: Metal reflects radiant heat from the sun, minimising midday heat gain. This means you save energy needed for air conditioning during the day.
Maximum shedding of rain and snow: Metal roofing is practically impervious to rain and snow because of the way it is designed to interlock and the surfaces being hard and slippery.
Cost: The biggest drawback of metal roofing is the initial cost. However, the material’s long-term durability helps homeowners to ultimately make up the expenditure if they hold on to the property for a long time. It also allows them to save on seasonal maintenance. Of course, if you plan to move out in a couple of years, you probably will not get adequate return on your investment.
Noise: For some, the sound of rain tapping on the roof is romantic and homey; for others, it is like living inside a drum. In a rainstorm or hailstorm, living beneath thin sheets of metal is bound to be noisier than living beneath thick slate or tile. However, noise can be controlled both by using materials that have structural barriers to minimise the drumming effect and by applying them over sound-deadening insulation and solid plywood sheathing.
Denting: Just as your car will dent if a golf ball hits it, a metal roof can also dent if large hailstones fall on it. Aluminum and copper, much softer than steel, are more prone to denting.
Chipping and fading: Some painted metal roof finishes can peel, chip, fade, scratch, or chalk, although nearly all are guaranteed for 30 years. Walking on some types, particularly those with a granulated-stone surface may cause wear. Installers must be careful not to scratch or dent the roofing during installation, and panels must be treated with care.
Expansion and contraction: As metal expands and contracts as it warms and cools, respectively, most new products have fastening systems that accommodate movement. Otherwise, fasteners that secure the roofing tend to come loose.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article are solely of the author and may not represent 99acres.com's opinions on the subject. 99acres.com does not take responsibility for any actions taken based on the information shared by the author.