Commercial Metal Roofing Pros & Cons from Expert Contractors

Close-up image of new metal roof
October 21, 2022

As a business owner, you must choose the right roofing for your commercial building. One popular roofing system you are likely to consider is a metal roof. Metal roofing is preferred by many because of its affordability, longevity, and efficiency.

Today’s guide will walk you through commercial metal roofing, including the different materials and why it’s a popular option.

What are the Various Types of Metal Roofing Materials?

Commercial metal roofing comes in various materials, such as aluminum, zinc, steel, tin, and copper. Let’s discuss each material in detail below.

Aluminum Roofing

Aluminum metal roofing has the highest strength-to-weight ratio compared to other materials. It’s also the most lightweight material. When installed properly, aluminum provides a long lifespan and requires minimal maintenance. Also, aluminum roofing is corrosion-resistant and malleable. However, it’s more vulnerable to denting than steel and tends to be more expensive.

Copper Roofing

Copper is another popular metal roofing system thanks to its attractive and unique appearance. It’s also easy to install and provides extra longevity. Copper roofing is available in different styles, including sheets, tiles, panels, and shingles. One of the most significant disadvantages of copper roofing is that it is prone to denting and can be more expensive than other materials.

Steel Roofing

Steel roofing is probably the most used metal roofing material on commercial buildings. It’s available in various panels, including standing seam and corrugated metal panels. If installed properly, steel roofing panels offer unmatched longevity and cost-effectiveness. Also, steel roofing requires minimal maintenance and is resistant to rot and fires. However, steel roofing panels offer less corrosion resistance and are less durable than copper and aluminum roofing.

Tin Roofing

Tin roofing is made of rolled steel coated with tin. Since the tin is chemically bonded to steel, this roofing material offers excellent resistance to cracking. Tin roofing is also lightweight making it easy to maintain and install. However, tin roofing panels are not readily available.


Zinc roofing offers a striking and unique appearance, just like copper. However, it’s not popular due to its high cost.

What are the Advantages of Metal Roofs for Commercial Buildings

Metal roofing offers a host of benefits to your commercial property. Let’s discuss the pros of metal roofing below.

White metal roof of commercial buildings

Many Roof Color Options to Choose From

With commercial metal roofing, business owners are spoilt for choice. Commercial roofing in Fort Wayne and surrounding areas comes in many color options to match almost all architectural roof designs. The standard color options you can choose from include:

  • Copper brown
  • Deep red
  • Buckskin
  • Sierra tan
  • Parchment
  • Bronze
  • Natural white
  • Zinc grey
  • Matte black
  • Royal blue

When choosing your roof color, remember to think about the architectural style of your building. You also want to consider local regulations and the surrounding landscape. Above all, think about your local climate, solar absorption, and the exterior color palette of your commercial building.

Easy Installation

A significant advantage of metal roofs is that they are easy to install. Nearly all metal roofing materials are lightweight, making them easy to carry and install. Also, metal roofing systems come in different sizes that are easy to install.

Offer Unmatched Longevity

Commercial metal roofing is the go-to option for many business owners because it offers unmatched durability. It’s not surprising that the metal roofing market is set to grow tremendously in the coming years as more business owners switch to commercial metal roofing. Typically, commercial roofing systems last anywhere from 20 to 50 years, depending on the material, climate, installation, ventilation, slope, and maintenance.

Environmentally Friendly

Unlike traditional asphalt shingles, metal roofs are environmentally friendly. Since conventional asphalt shingles are a petroleum product, they increase the dependency on fossil fuels. Moreover,  you must replace asphalt shingles every 15 to 20 years. Unsurprisingly, approximately 12 million tons of worn-out asphalt shingles end up in our landfills every year.

On the other hand, metal roofs are more sustainable because they are recyclable. For instance, steel roofing can be recycled multiple times without decreasing and without losing strength. Metal roofs also allow business owners to install solar panels and harvest rainwater.

Exceptional Energy Efficiency

Once you install metal roofing, you will likely reduce your utility bills significantly. This is because metal roofing offers exceptional reflectivity and emissivity.

Resistant to Fires, Moss, and Fungus

Metal roofing provides excellent resistance against fires, moss, and fungus. That also means that your metal roofing requires minimal maintenance.

Cons of Commercial Metal Roofs

As with other commercial roofing materials, metal roofs also have a few drawbacks, including:

  • They have a higher upfront cost compared to other materials
  • They can be noisier than other materials
  • They are prone to denting

Although most people assume that commercial metal roofs attract lightning, the truth is that nearly all metal roofing is Assembly-Rated Class A. That means it’s one of the best roofing materials for commercial properties in lightning-prone areas.

Frequently Asked Questions About Commercial Metal Roofing

Do you have any more questions about commercial metal roofing? If you do, our commercial roofing contractors will address common inquiries about commercial metal roofing in this FAQ section. We’ll discuss its lifespan and debunk any misconceptions about commercial metal roofing.

A commercial building with green metal roof

How Long Does a Commercial Metal Roof Typically Last?

Many business owners value commercial metal roofs because of their longevity and durability. Unlike conventional roofing materials like concrete tiles or asphalt shingles, commercial metal roofs often offer an impressive lifespan that surpasses the competition. Typically, a well-maintained and properly installed commercial metal roof will serve you anywhere between 40 to 70 years or more. However, the exact lifespan of your commercial metal roof will depend upon various factors.

✅Quality of Installation

The craftsmanship and quality of the installation process will play a significant role in the longevity of your metal roof. Professional installation ensures that your roof is secured correctly and all components, such as flashing and fasteners, are properly installed to withstand harsh weather conditions.

✅Maintenance and Upkeep

Routine maintenance and upkeep can help maximize the lifespan of all roofing systems, including metal roofing. With periodic inspections, cleaning debris, and requesting commercial roof repair promptly, you can prevent potential damage from worsening over time. It’s advisable to schedule professional inspection and maintenance at least once every year.

✅Material Quality

The quality of the material used for the metal roof will also determine its lifespan. Of course, high-quality materials, such as aluminum, copper, or steel, offer unmatched durability and resistance to corrosion. So, take your time to choose a trusted and reputable supplier when buying your roofing materials.

✅Climate and Environmental Factors

Your area’s specific climate and environmental factors will also influence the durability and longevity of your commercial metal roof. Typically, metal roofs are known to withstand harsh weather conditions like snow, heavy rain, extreme temperatures, and high winds. You can also invest in additional protective coatings or maintenance to extend your roof’s lifespan further.

Are Metal Roofs Noisy During Rainfall?

One common concern business owners often have with metal roofs is the perception that they tend to be noisy during rainfall. However, it’s important to note that this is just a misconception. The truth is that metal roofs are not significantly noisier during rainfall compared to other roofing materials. With proper installation and insulation, your metal roofs will not be louder than other roofing materials like asphalt during rainfall. On the contrary, the firm structure of metal roofs can help reduce noise from wind, rain, or hail.

In most cases, poorly installed metal roofs are responsible for this misconception. Raindrops can be noisier if your commercial metal roofing is not properly installed and does not have adequate attic space and insulation. You will also be glad to know that modern metal roofing systems are built to minimize noise transmission.

Can You Install Your Metal Roof Over an Existing Roof?

You’ll be glad to learn metal roofs can be installed over an existing roofing system. This is often known as a retrofit or roof-over installation. A roof-over installation offers many benefits, like reduced labor, minimal disruption, and cost savings. However, the decision on whether to install a metal roof over an existing one should only be made after a thorough assessment by a professional commercial metal roofing contractor. These experts have the skills and knowledge to evaluate your current roof’s structural integrity and condition to make the best decision. There are also up-to-date with local building codes.

Are Commercial Metal Roofs More Expensive than Other Roofing Solutions?

Commercial metal roofs are usually considered more expensive than traditional roofing materials. However, thinking about long-term cost-effectiveness and return on investment is advisable. Compared with most conventional commercial metal roofing solutions, metal roofs can provide long-term cost-effectiveness and a high ROI. According to the metal roofing alliance, metal roofs tend to last two or three times longer than asphalt shingles, offsetting the initial investment. Also, the U.S. Department of Energy maintains that metal roofs offer long-term savings through energy efficiency. They emphasize that metal roofs can help you save up to 25% of energy expenses.

Are Commercial Metal Roofs Prone to Rust?

Commercial metal roofs are built to be highly resistant to corrosion and rust. In fact, manufacturers are using modern technology, like adding protective coatings to improve the durability and ability of commercial metal roofs to withstand harsh environmental conditions. Besides, some commercial metal roofing materials, such as copper, steel, and aluminum, are naturally corrosion-resistant.

Ready to Install a Metal Roof? Work With a Licensed Commercial Roofer Near You

Switching to a metal roof is one of the best decisions you can ever make as a business owner. Metal roofs will improve energy efficiency in your commercial property. Moreover, they are durable and environmentally friendly. Regardless of your budget, style, and preferences, our licensed and experienced commercial roofers at Premier Commercial Roofing are ready to help you find the best roofing solutions for your business.

Contact us today for all your commercial roofing needs, including commercial roof maintenance, restoration, fabric-reinforced roofing systems, and membrane roofing and coating systems.

a man working on a commercial roof