Although not usually associated with homes, metal roofing was once a staple of the South. It's available today in standing seam-where the raised seam of metal panels run perpendicular to the edge of the roof-or as shingles. The metal can be copper, aluminum, steel, galvanized steel, zinc, terne (an alloy of lead and tin), or terne-coated stainless steel. Characteristics. Although metal is unusual in many areas and might be a bit too distinctive for some homeowners, it does have its advantages. It's lightweight, and it doesn't crack, split, warp, rot or burn. It's also terrific at shedding snow. As you would expect, these long-lived features give metal roofing products 50-year warranties. And while most other materials have special requirements for roofs that are under 3-in-12 (that's 3 inches of rise for every 12 inches of horizontal run), metal can typically be used on roofs with very little slope. Cost. Metal prices also tend to be reasonable. Some of these products start at around $200 per square installed, although they can go much higher. Because metal roofs are not commonly found on homes in many parts of the country, some contractors might not be experienced with the material. Before deciding on a metal roof, be sure the contractor you choose has experience installing metal-roofing systems.
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