Steel Roofing vs Shingles

I am in need of a replacement roof and I am wondering whether to go with steel or shingles. I have heard horror stories about steel expanding and contracting with the heat and pulling the screws out eventually causing leaking. The reason i was considering steel is my roof plywood is only 3/8" and I probably could use the extra support of steel but... any suggestions would help. Thanks Dave
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Dave wrote:

Two points.
1. Steel roofs have been around a long time and they last a very long time. My guess is any problems of the like you noted are not due to steel roofs but do to poor installation or the imaginations of a salesman who does not carry steel roofing.
2. Don't expect a steel roof to provide any structural support. It relies on what is under it just like shingles. If you want additional support add it.
--
Joseph E. Meehan

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I agree. Steel roofs are very popular for homes in areas with a lot of snow as it allows for the snow to slide off the roof easier. These roofs, while more expensive, can have typical lifetimes of 50yrs. and are trouble free.
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There was an article in the local paper recently stating that firefighters are having fits with the steel roofs. In a house fire, the steel roofs hold in the heat much more than shingle roofs, causing the entire house to be many hundreds of degrees hotter, therefore more dangerous to firefighters. Plus internal house/contents damage is much greater. (I'm wondering if insurance will go up because of this).
With a shingle roof they merely chop a hole in the roof to vent the heat, but with the heavier guage steel roofs they have to call for a metal cutting saw, work on a very hot surface, and are blasted by exteme heat when they cut through. They definitely don't like the steel roofs!
Bob S.
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The metal roof people tout safety as a benefit. Steel roof will not ignite from spark coming out of a chimney. Guess it may be a benefit if you have a wood stove or fireplace, a detriment if you do not. Ed
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wrote:

In California forested areas (like where the fires were last summer), they DO NOT allow shingled roofs any longer, nor cedar shakes. They MUST use steel, or something expensive like slate or clay tiles. Nothing is perfect, and these local fire departments should start having metal saws with them.
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I live on a farm, and my barn, and several sheds all have steel roofs. The barn is about 30 years old, and yes, there were a few loose nails, I just hit them down and applied a little silicone caulk over the heads. However, the steel on this barn is the old corrigated type, which was not as good as the newer types, also the barn roof sagged from snow loads, and was not structurally strong enough to begin, and I had to add some supports. Most new steel roofs are installed with screws, not nails, and have neoprene washers, which outlast the old lead washers on the nails. Steel will outlast shingles many times over. If your roof is only 3/8 plywood, you need the extra strength of the steel. I'd recommend puttting 1x4's or 2x4's (ACROSS) the present roof (not up and down). That will provide a good screwing surface for the tin. Then put syrofoam insulation between the boards.
The only disadvantages of steel, it's a little noisier during storms, but the styrofoam will help with that, and if you have a steep roof, it's hard to walk on (slippery). Otherwise it's far superior to shingles, and is also less likely to build up ice dams in the winter.
Good Luck
wrote:

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In Texas, you can usually get a significant insurance discount for a metal roof. They are much more hail resistant than cedar or asphalt/fiberglass roof shingles.
-- Tom

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Dave wrote:

Steel roofs are lightweight but do not provide any extra support. Very hail resistant. No screws.
I put on the Gerard roof about 5 years ago.
http://www.gerardusa.com /
Expensive (about the same cost as heavy shake). Can be installed right over your old roof.
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