The Difference Between Metal Roofs vs Asphalt Shingles - Behmer Roofing

Since the turn of modern time, the choice between house owners and builders is either to stick to the metal roof system or go with asphalt shingles. As a potential homeowner considering installing a new roof over your head, you’re presented with a wide array of options. 

The composition asphalt shingles appeal with its enticement which includes reliability, durability, cost-effectiveness, and ease of maintenance. Asphalt shingles roofing method also average between 12 to 17 years of service life, at least in temperate climatic zones.

On the other hand, the metal roof system presents you with similar but often superior features, including variety, reliability, durability, superior energy efficiency, and often significant energy savings. The method is also said to easily stay on your house two to three times longer than asphalt

No doubt, both systems offer great value and are great options for residential roofing, even though one may be better than the other based on the builder’s needs. We’ve stacked one against the other, making comparisons from themes such as beauty, design, economy, eco-friendliness, and lots more. This is to allow you to make informed and correct decisions for your roof.

Yet, you can’t leave your house unroofed, at least, if it is to have a secure home that boasts strong defense against the harsh weather elements. Ideally, a roof should fit structural design, insulate you from summer’s heat and winter’s cold, and also protects you from the elements. Yet, you’d desired more than just a basic shelter when you first conceived the idea of having a house.  

How many of the differences do you know between the two contemporary building and construction designs we’ll be discussing in this work? If you know the difference, this post will open you to more new areas. If you don’t, here is an opportunity to tap the knowledge and discern which of the metal roofs and asphalt shingles you should go for.

Tables showing the Differences between Metal Roof and Asphalt Shingles in terms of their Pros and Cons


Metal Roof  Asphalt Shingles
Can be installed over an old roofMore popular with homeowners
Material is lighter   Multiple varieties of colors
More energy efficient Easier and faster to install
Little maintenanceMaterials and installation cost less
Eligible for tax credits and insurance discountsPerforms well in winter
More durableLess expensive to repair
Fire resistant Less expensive to repair
100 percent recyclableCan be recycled
Higher home resale value
Longer warranties


Metal Roof Asphalt Shingles
Require specialized skills to installRequires old roof to be removed before installing a new one
Improper installation can cause noise pollution Heavier materials 
Higher cost of materials and installationDurability is low 
Cost and technical difficulty of repair are higher Can be affected by wind and hail damage
Absorbs of heat from the summer sunSusceptible for mildew, algae, and mold
Low warranties

Similarities Between Metal Roofs & Asphalt Shingles

Interestingly, one thing you find out about the two options is that they both boast finish materials for all housing styles. Although they possess their traditional look, asphalt shingles have been made to imitate tile, wood shakes and slate. Most often, they come with scalloped edges which make them a great option for 17th-century homes; they could also be made with a terra cotta perfect for the 21st-century buildings. 

The metal roof materials, whether in shingle, slate, or shake styles, are often made of corrugated tin panels and they feature incredible images of barns or sheds. However, they come in galvanized metals, zinc or aluminum. Above all, metal roofing fits quite well into refined and rustic structures, with a spectrum of colors and finishes like the ones you find in California and the East Coast Victorians.  

The Difference Between Metal Roofs vs Asphalt Shingles

One feature that distinguishes shingle roofs from metal ones is that they are cheaper and cost-effective. But just as you’re aware there’s a price to pay for anything that comes on the cheap. While you can save some money off it, asphalt shingles will require you to pay the price in return when you’re installing because they require more specialized skill and expertise. Metal roofs come costlier but you’ll get more life out of it.

However, the cost of replacement, in the long run, may make you not have to choose asphalt shingles over metal roofs; you won’t have to replace them quite often unlike the shingles options. Besides, installing a metal roof offers you the opportunity to get tax credits. With asphalt shingles, the cost of running heating and cooling can be unfriendly to your budget.

Energy Cost & Efficiency

A metal roofing system is friendlier with the ecosystem. This is because manufacturers don’t have to be buying metal roofing materials all the time as they’re largely reusable and can be recycled again and again.  In that way, metal roofs are seen as a more eco-sustainable choice than asphalt shingles. 

Also, metal roofs do not consume much energy. The superior energy efficiency advantage that metal roofs offer is due to the reflective qualities of the materials. The materials of which metal roofs are made can ward off heat transfer to the home’s interior. 

In the summer, for instance, a metal roof will lower the amount of energy consumed due to the specialized paint coatings that reduce cooling. In that way, it can bring down your energy bills by close to 40%  in the summer. 

In terms of energy efficiency, asphalt shingles are energy absorbent. They absorb the solar heat, and transmit it through the roof into the home. In that case, the home’s cooling system works harder. No wonder, they are recommended for temperate climatic zones.

A metal roof like asphalt shingles, perform well during the winter season. This is because metals lower the amount of energy saved all though the year more than asphalt will do. Asphalt shingles, however, are better during winter.

On the other hand, asphalt shingles, because they are a product of petrochemicals, jerk up the dependency on fossil fuels; they are not eco-friendly.  The cost of getting these products is high and risky for the environment. For example, an estimated 20 billion pounds is said to have been spent by the U.S. landfills on old asphalt of old asphalt shingles annually.


When it comes to durability, metal roofs are often preferred due to the longevity of life expectancy of the materials of which they made. It is estimated that a metal roof can last for as long as 60 years with little maintenance cost.

However, the same rule does not apply to an asphalt roof which needs to be replaced at most once every three years.

The reason is simple: asphalt shingles have higher susceptibility hail and high wind damage. To reduce the cost of maintaining or replacing asphalt shingles, the fiberglass shingles are recommended because they show more durability strength than the organic asphalt shingles.

One other factor that reduces the life span of asphalt shingles is the accumulation of algae, mildew, or mold, which is due to a lack of adequate sunlight. On the other hand, the metal roofs stand as superior performers, able to withstand high winds and bad weather. 

Even with an obvious lack of sufficient sunlight, metal roofs made of high-quality materials are not susceptible to molds, mildews, and bugs. It affords homeowners insurance for more than 25 years. 

To avoid metal roofs being vulnerable to harsh weather conditions, avoid the use of steel without an adequate rust-resistant coating in their production. Instead, rust-resistant metal alloys and coatings are preferred materials.

No doubt, each of these roofing methods has its advantages and disadvantages it all depends on what suits the homeowner and what its taste, choice, and needs are. Overall, the metal roof proves to be better and of superior advantage over its asphalt shingles counterparts. 

If you want to consider which of these two roofing methods to go for, it is important to look out for some of the factors we have discussed in this article. As a way of reminding you, durability, resale value, cost of production and maintenance, energy efficiency, recyclability, fire resistance, installation, appearance, and varieties, are some of those themes under which we have considered the two roofing styles. 

Your will is still your will, regardless of the differences.  


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