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How to Choose the Right Type of Metal Roofing for Your Business

Commercial Roofing

Posted by Emmit | December 2, 2022 | Reading Time:

Metal roofing is a durable, long-lasting material that can benefit many different types of buildings. But the choices may seem overwhelming when it comes to selecting the right material and style.

In many cases, you can expect properly installed metal roofing to last over 50 years. Some residential homes install metal roofing, but steel and other metals are more common on commercial and industrial buildings.

Read on for help choosing the right type of metal roofing for your business.

What Factors Should You Consider When Choosing Metal Roofing for Your Property?

When it comes to commercial roofing, there are a variety of factors that you should take into account to choose the best option for your property. Once you’ve determined that metal roofing is the right solution, consider the following factors to help make a perfect choice.


First and foremost, you need to consider the climate in your area. If you live in an area with severe weather conditions, ensure that your commercial roofing can withstand high winds and heavy snowfall.

You should also consider the amount of sunlight your commercial building receives. Regions with high exposure to the sun will put more wear on metal roofing and shorten the lifespan of the materials.

Building Functionality

The second factor to consider is the type of commercial building you are installing a roof on. Warehouses and manufacturing facilities typically have different roofing needs than office buildings or retail stores.

Metal roofing is generally non-combustible, but consider the following factors when selecting roofing materials and styles:

  • Fire resistance
  • Soundproofing & acoustics
  • Speed of installation (how long can the business shut down?)

Roofing Budget

Finally, you must consider your budget for installing or replacing a metal roof. Make sure to include the following in your roofing budget calculations:

  • Cost of materials
  • Installation costs
  • Maintenance costs

Luckily, there are a variety of metal roofing options available that can fit most budgets. These factors are all worth considering at the beginning of your roofing project.

How to Select the Right Color & Style of Metal Roofing for Your Building

Beyond the type of metal you select, the color and style of the roof also need to be considered. For example, a standing seam metal roof is popular for commercial buildings because it’s durable and has a clean, modern look. However, many other styles can give your commercial building the unique look you desire.

If you live in an area with high temperatures, you’ll want to choose a light-colored metal roof to reflect heat. If you live in a region with cooler temperatures, you can select a dark-colored metal roof to absorb heat. You’ll also want to consider the overall aesthetic of your commercial building when selecting a metal roof.

Some metal roofing materials are available in virtually any color. Consult your professional roofing contractor for available colors for your preferred metal roofing.

Metal roofing is available in various styles but most commonly consists of panels installed vertically and fastened together. Metal roofing can be used on high and low-pitch roofing.

Standing Seam Metal Roofing

Standing seam roofs are a great choice for commercial properties because they have self-sealing, raised ribs along the panel edges that interlock to provide an effective seal. These standing seams create tight water barriers which will keep your building dry in any weather!

This style is also favored for its classic, straightforward styling.

Batten Metal Roofing

Batten seams use an underlying framework where metal panels are mounted between raised strips called “battens,” and caps cover up these joints. This style of metal roofing has high wind resistance and is versatile with non-traditional roofing layouts.

Corrugated Metal Panel Roofing

Corrugated metal roofs are sheets that look like standing-seam but perform very differently because of how the panels connect. The corrugations allow water to pass through more easily, so this roofing style should only be used on sheds or barns.

This style of metal roofing is not recommended for most commercial applications.

Metal Shingles & Tiles

Metal shingles are a popular and affordable choice for commercial building projects. These tiles have an easy installation process that’s quick, reliable, and available with most color options.

Some metal shingle systems use panels to emulate the look of individual tiles. Single metal shingles can also be installed one by one.

Different Types of Metal Roofing Materials

When it comes to metal roofing, there are several different types of materials to choose from, including aluminum, steel, copper, and more. Each type of metal roofing has advantages and disadvantages. So it’s always wise to work with a roofing contractor who can help you make the best decisions for your commercial building.

Aluminum Roofing

Aluminum is a durable metal resistant to fire, high winds, and extreme weather conditions. It is also one of the lightest weight roofing materials, making it ideal for structures that cannot support the weight of heavier roofs.

In addition, aluminum reflects heat, which can help keep a building cooler in hot climates. Corrosion resistance is another benefit of aluminum roofing.

However, aluminum roofing can be expensive and could be better at hiding imperfections. It is more likely to be dented from hail compared to steel.

Copper Roofing

Copper roofing has been used on commercial buildings for centuries, and with good reason.

Copper is an incredibly durable metal that can withstand even the most extreme weather conditions. It is a low-maintenance material since it doesn’t corrode or rust like other metals. Perhaps most importantly, copper provides excellent protection against fire.

However, copper is quite a costly option as far as raw materials go. This metal can also be challenging to work with, so installation costs may be higher than other metal roofing types.

You can expect copper roofing to develop a patina over time, which is a natural blue-green sheen that occurs through oxidation.

Steel Roofing

Steel roofing is one of the most popular metal options thanks to its durability and relatively low cost. The gauge (thickness) of steel roofing will affect its strength and performance.

However, steel roofing has some disadvantages compared to other metals used in roofing. Steel is susceptible to rust and corrosion, and it can be damaged by hail or other debris. In addition, steel roofing is not as fire-resistant as aluminum or copper.

Specialty Metal Roofing

Steel, copper, and aluminum are the most common types of metal roofing, but other materials exist for commercial applications.

Zinc, stainless steel, and alloy metals may be available as roofing options. It’s best to consult with your commercial roofing contractor for niche metal roofing options available in your region.

Making Metal Your Roofing Choice

Climate and budget are 2 factors that should affect what metal roofing material you choose. Consider both aesthetics and performance when picking a style of metal roof to go with.

Selecting the right metal roofing is always made easier with the guidance of a commercial roofing expert. Tidewater Roofing has been working with businesses for over 40 years, installing metal roofing that lasts for decades.

Please give us a call if you have any questions about metal roofing or anything regarding commercial roofs.