How long does a metal roof last in Northern VA?

Residential Metal Roofing – Helpful Tips   |   December 27, 2021


Whether you’re putting a roof on a new home, or your existing roof requires a roof replacement, there are many materials to choose from. A new popular material many homeowners are considering is a metal roof. One of the biggest advantages of this material type is the longevity.

How long does a metal roof last in Northern VA? 

A metal roof in Northern VA can last 40 – 200 years. (By contrast, traditional asphalt roofing typically lasts 12 to 20 years). 

The 5 most common metal roofing materials are:

  1. CopperCopper is an extremely long-lasting metal that can last well over 200+ years. Copper roofs are 100% recyclable too, making them wonderful green roof options.
  2. Aluminum — Aluminum metal roofs are often highly recommended for use in coastal climates. This is mainly due to aluminum’s resistance to salt corrosion compared to other types of metal roofing materials. In regions with high winds, hail, or strong environmental stresses, this can result in damage to the roofing material. Properly identifying the environmental strains that your aluminum roof will face will be crucial in choosing the right design.
  3. Zinc — Zinc is an amazing metal that is resistant to corrosion and can stay strong for over 100 years.
  4. Steel — The lifespan for a steel roof will vary depending on what type of steel material you choose. The options are galvanized, galvalume and weathering steel (Corten).
  5. Tin — The term “tin roofing” is used interchangeably with metal roofing, steel roofing, or galvanized steel. In fact, tin is actually a rarely used type of metal for roofing.

Factors That Influence A Metal Roof Lifespan

Metal roof panels are designed to expand and contract as they warm and cool. However, both exposed and concealed fasteners have varying lifespans. The climate, neoprene washers and the screws used during installation may degrade and become dislodged over time.

Another factor that can influence the lifespan of a metal roof is installation. If water accumulates anywhere on the roof because of poor-quality installation or repair, it can eventually cause serious damage. Low-grade metals may also be thinner gauge and less durable. Some metals rust in certain climates or dent more easily than others during hailstorms or installation.

Choosing the right metal to use for roofing comes down to the installer you choose, the location of your roof and the stresses and strains it will be put through. Make sure to hire an experienced roofing contractor who not only has worked with metal roofing, but the specific metal you choose to use on your next project.

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