There are two reasons homeowners want to make their homes greener; some people want to go green to protect the environment. Others will go green because it results in more green dollar bills in their wallet.
Fortunately, the two don’t have to be exclusive; you can protect the environment and save money at the same time. A big way to do so is to make sure that you have adequate insulation and ventilation for your roof and the attic space.
Heat rises, and that means most of the heat loss from your home goes out the top of the house. This is especially true if you don’t have adequate insulation and sealing in your attic’s floor space. To make sure your home is as comfortable as possible, to ensure minimal heat loss, to save money on your heating bills, and to help protect the environment, an upgrade in your insulation is in order.
A Wide Variety of Insulation Options
Making the decision to improve your home’s attic and roof insulation is the easy part. The hard part, however, is determining what type of insulation to use, and where to put it.
The easiest (unless you’re having a new roof put on the house), and most effective, way to boost the insulation in your home is to insulate and air seal the attic floor. Many homes have at least some access to this space, and because of the size attics can hold quite a bit of insulation. But where you put the insulation, and what type, can vary even inside the space.
Between the Joists – If you have an unfinished attic space, the most common area to insulate is between the ceiling joists but leaving the area between rafters uninsulated. This provides for maximum air flow through the attic while keeping the living space insulated.
Most commonly the spaces between the joists are filled with blow-in fiberglass insulation. However, the do-it-yourselfer may want to lay down fiberglass batting as it’s easier to work with and there is no special equipment needed. How much should you have? It’s recommended that the R value be at least R-38; or 10-14 inches of insulation.
Between the Rafters – Many homes have increased their living space by finishing the attic. But without insulating the ceiling, the space would be largely uninhabitable most of the year. If this is the case, then you want to insulate between the rafters.
Before you slap up insulation, however, you must remember that the house needs room to “breathe.” If your insulation is pressed tightly against the bottom of the roof decking, there’s nowhere for the air to go, and you can end up with major problems. To counter these problems, baffles are installed to keep a small space between the insulation and the roof deck. As the air in the baffles heats up, it can flow to the peak and out the roof vent.
The most popular residential roofing material in America vs. the most popular type of metal roofing. A bit like comparing apples and oranges. There are several common criteria where Architectural Asphalt shingles and Standing Seam are worth comparing and contrasting side by side. Let’s explore!
Cost of Asphalt Shingles vs. Standing Seam Metal Roofs
All roofs have a hefty price tag. There’s the cost of the materials and supplies itself, plus labor, building permits and warranty provided by professional contractor. Roofers always price materials and labor by the square.
Note: 100 square feet equals to 1 (roofing) square.
On average, professional roofers charge between $3.50 and $7.50 per square foot or $350 and $750 per square for common roof applications such as 3-tab (low-end), architectural or laminate shingles (mid-range), and premium designer shingles on the high-end. — That’s quite a range, but pricing varies greatly by geographic location, company size and experience of the roofer/crew, familiarity with the product, and competition among roofers in your area.
Average Cost To Install a new RoofTypical Range: $4,593 - $7,479
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Architectural and Premium Shingles: The cost to install architectural shingles (professional labor, materials and supplies, and warranty included) comes in around $4.00 to $7.50 per square foot or $400 to $750 per square (100 square feet) installed, depending on the project specifics and where in the country the house is located.
Standing Seam – Kynar-500 coated Aluminum or Steel Panels: both field-locked and snap-locked panels, the overall installation cost can range between $10.00 and $16.00 per square foot or $1,000 to $1,600 per square.
Cost of Materials Comparison:
The average cost for typical architectural shingles from manufacturers such CertainTeed, GAF, Owens Corning, IKO, Atlas, and Tamko, range between $1.00 and $2.50 per square foot or $100 to $250 per square.
Most Kynar 500 (premium protective paint finish) coated standing seam panels start at around $3.50 per square foot or $350 per square, but generally range in price from $3.50 to $6.50 per square foot or $350 to $650 per square (or 100 sq. ft.) of materials and trim, depending on the order size, color, metal thickness, etc. The smaller the order size the higher the price per square foot will be due to the set up costs necessary for the order fulfillment at a sheet metal shop.
For materials alone, standing seam is roughly two to three times higher in cost than architectural shingles.
Installation costs are almost double (or more) for standing seam compared to architectural shingles. The cost of labor for standing seam may also depend on how the metal panels are fastened:
Snap-locked panels require less effort and tools than the alternative method of field-locked panels. A metal roofing pro will sometimes prefer to go with a field-lock standing seaming installation method (a more tedious approach) because it is inherently more reliable.
On cost alone, architectural shingles are an obvious winner. Yet, there is far more to a roof than the price you pay to install it.