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 $4.50 and $8.50 per square foot or $450 and $850 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.
Like all products, asphalt shingles have advantages and disadvantages for home improvement. However, unlike all other home remodeling projects, a new asphalt shingle roof provides the most bang for your buck in terms of returned value over the short term (read as in the next decade).
In this guide, we’ll explain what makes for a fully installed asphalt shingled roof, how it gets done, but perhaps most importantly how you can be squarely involved in the selection process for all the materials.
Nearly a century and a half ago, asphalt roofing didn’t exist. So, in short order, this product went from being a new kid on the block to the number one way people in North America cover their homes!
Really, it’s more like 1901 as the first implementation of asphalt shingles and roughly 40 years later is when hundreds of millions of feet of the product were being produced.
Since the mid 1900’s, asphalt shingles have maintained popularity and received some changes like fiberglass mat and multiple layers or laminates with dimensional shingles to keep up with an ever-evolving roofing market.
How popular are asphalt shingles? It’s estimated that 70% to 80% of all homes in the U.S. are covered with some version of them.
The industry generates over $10 billion in revenue annually and yet contributes over 20 billion pounds of waste each year. Their ongoing mass production though does have the significant benefit of being able to obtain bundles of the product at a price that no other roofing material can match.
And because the skill set, along with the tools needed for installation are relatively low, the DIY route is more plausible with this product than most other types of roofing materials.
Still, unless you are a professional contractor, the knowledge of what product to select may seem too challenging to go the DIY path. Fortunately, retail outlets such as Home Depot and Lowe’s make the process as easy as possible. Our goal is to help you along that path.
The basics of a traditional asphalt shingle are cloth-like paper or fiberglass mat as a base material, with asphalt layer on top of the base as the primary waterproof material, followed a protective coat of stone/mineral granules made of hard rock.
The stone granules are designed to meet the exact specs for a specific shingle. The granules can also be made solar-reflective to achieve Cool Roof certification ratings that are required in select markets like California (CA Title 24 home building standards).
The cloth-like paper base was traditionally used back in the day with the “organic shingles”, but today, almost all asphalt shingles are made with a fiberglass mat as the base material, hence the name fiberglass shingles.