Steel Roofing Shingles
Steel roofing shingles are a fairly new approach to roofing. While metal roofs have been used for years, in the past decade, roofing manufactures have developed several lines of attractive steel shingles. Metal roofs used to be simple ridged metal sheets. Nowadays, steel shingles are made to resemble cedar shingles, clay tiles, and slate shingles.
Steel shingles are becoming increasingly popular, in part because they are far more lightweight than traditional roofing methods, are more fire resistant than other methods. They also resist mildew, splitting, cracking, curling, or rotting, and are often made from recycled materials. Steel roofs are also reflective, they tend to reflect sun rays back and reduce overall cooling needs inside the house. They also transfer heat evenly across the roof . in cold climates, they tend to aid in snow melting so there is less overall snow buildup. Many insurance companies offer a discount for homes that are roofed in steel shingles.
Steel shingles are available in a variety of textures and colors.
How are Steel Shingles made?
Various metals (aluminum, tin) or fiberglass are used as a core for steel shingles. The core is shaped using an appropriate mold, and then the core is sprayed with steel powder coating or dip coated in stainless steel. Often, the core of the shingle is made with recycled metals or plastics.
How long do Steel shingles last?
Most steel shingle manufacturers warranty their roofing materials for 20, 30 or 50 years. You can expect a steel roof to last at least 50 years, possibly more if the roof is properly maintained.
Common problems with Steel Shingles
Steel shingles are very durable and lightweight. They aren't the ideal solution for every geographic area though, especially areas with high winds or those that are hurricane prone. Steel roofs are very stable, but like almost all roofing methods, can be damaged by hail. Steel shingles can be installed over existing asphalt roofs without adding excess weight burden to the home.
While steel shingles are lightweight and often require less shingles than asphalt shingles, they tend to be more expensive than many methods. Metal shingles are usually ten times the price of an asphalt shingle. Steel shingles can be applied by the home owner, although many home owners experience difficulty when it comes to finishing the edges. It may be best to have an experienced roofer on hand when working on the project.
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Steel Shingle Ratings
Steel shingles carry an A fire rating, which indicate how well the shingles will resist an external fire. (Class A provides the greatest fire resistance.)
Steel shingles carry a "wind resistance" rating up to 120 mph.
Steel shingles are rated to withstand up to a 2.5 inch hail stone without severe damage.