Celebrate Earth Day Every Day with a Metal Roof

Searching for ideas to make your home a greener place to live, with a smaller eco-impact?  This Earth Day, start by looking up – the roof over your head can make a big difference to the environment.

celebrate earth day Every Day

Most people never think about their roof until there is a problem with it.  Planning ahead is the key to making wise, eco-friendly home choices.  Consider these Earth Day roofing facts:

  • Did you know that asphalt shingles are a petroleum product, with a big environmental impact? Not only are asphalt shingles adding to dependency on fossil fuels, they need to be replaced every 15-20 years, and there is no good way to dispose of them – landfills are full of asphalt shingles.
  • Eco-friendly products, including metal roofs, are rapidly replacing petroleum-based asphalt shingles.
  • Highly reflective “cool” colored metal roofs look just like traditional roofs, provide year-round relief from high energy costs, and are sustainable, green building products.
  • ORNL’s field tests have also shown the combination of venting and increased reflectance can reduce the heat penetrating the roof deck by about 45 percent for stone-coated metal roofs compared to an asphalt shingle roof in certain climates. Ongoing research with standing-seam cool-colored metal roofs is showing similar results.
  • Metal roofing provides a market for recycled materials. An old car, dishwasher or refrigerator can be recycled to re-roof a home.  All steel roofs contain a minimum of 25% recycled content, and many have a much higher percentage. At the end of its useful life, metal roofing is 100 percent recyclable — other roofing materials are routinely removed and disposed of by the ton in landfills.
  • Photovoltaic Systems and Solar Panels can easily be integrated into metal roof systems, making them an even better choice. Metal roofs can also allow consumers to harvest rainwater for reuse.

For more information about Earth-friendly metal roofing, visit the Metal Roofing Alliance website at www.MetalRoofing.com.  You can also use our free tool to see how your home could look with a new metal roof.

Metal Roof Ideas for All Home Styles: Colonial, Contemporary, and Historic

Guest Post by MRA member Paul Kazlov, Global Home Improvement

Throughout history, the process for building homes has changed and improved.  Depending on the aesthetic preference of the generation and the location of your residence, the home styles you see in your neighborhood may vary either subtly or even dramatically from one another. Whereas Victorian style buildings are often complemented by bay windows, dentils, columns, and porticos, the early American traditional homes emphasize more on living comfort than exorbitant designs. As a result, many traditional homes come with a large front porch and are often sided with bricks or wood to create a rustic charm.

No matter what kind of home you may have, it needs a durable roof that offers both longevity and cosmetic appeal. Widely known for their energy efficiency and outstanding performance, metal roofs offer a versatile range of styles and colors to fully enhance the appearance of colonial homes, contemporary homes, and historic homes.

Metal Roofs Fit Any Home

Colonial Homes

Colonial homes  evolved from European influences that began in the 1600s.  According to M.C. Postins, Demand Media, they are “symmetrical, or square, and feature an entry door that can be found in the middle of the front house.” The home usually has a medium-pitched to steep-pitched roof to provide drainage in stormy weather. Most of the colonial homes in America are covered with wood shingles that range from white cedar to cypress.

While wood shingles instill a classic flair and add dimension to your roof, they are prone to rot, decay, and split over time. Using metal roofs that mimic this shingle look gives homeowners the advantage of a strong roof that is naturally fire-retardant and impervious to termite and water. Metal shakes emulate the style of wood shingles and can be coated to match your architectural design. Homeowners can create contrast by choosing a dark color to complement a light-colored home.  A professional metal roofer can also install metal shakes in such a way that they re-create some of the popular wood shingle roof patterns, including fish scale, pointed, and staggered.

Contemporary Homes

Asphalt shingles are one of the most popular roofing choices for contemporary homes. However, a shingle roof will need to be replaced every 15 to 20 years – they begin to break down the first day they’re on your home.  In contrast, a metal roof will last 50 years and beyond, while demanding little to virtually no upkeep on your part. Besides the variety of finish options a metal roof can provide, homeowners can opt for a standing seam metal roof to enjoy a seamless design from its continuous vertical panels. Standing seam metal roofs are popular because they can efficiently shed water and accompany roofs with a low-pitch.  Architects love metal roofs, and often recommend them to their design clients and often choose them for their own homes.

Historic Homes

Buildings with historic significance need the strength of metal to preserve its integrity and significance. In addition to its ability to emulate the texture and look of shakes, slates, and shingles, metal roofs can also be styled to meet the classic and sophisticated design of a historic home.

No roofing product on the market today is as durable, versatile and beautiful as a metal roof.  Learn more about metal roofing, and see what your house could look like with a metal roof, by visiting the Metal Roofing Alliance at www.MetalRoofing.com.

Paul Kazlov is a “green” home remodeling enthusiast and an industry pioneer for innovation in home renovation. Paul writes for the Global Home Improvement blog and strives to educate people about “green” products such as metal roofing and solar. Follow him on Twitter @PaulKazlov.

 

The Real Presidential Debate: Who Had the Better Roof?

This Presidents Day, here’s some food for thought — how are our lives different than that of our presidents?  Yes, they have full time security details, personal chefs and for 4-8 years live in a big white house.  However, before and after the election, presidents past and present also make the same decisions about their homes that we all do. Throughout history, presidents made home improvement choices that are indicative of their personal preferences and the materials available at the time.  

Founding Fathers of Home Improvement

For example, the importance of a sound roof is not a new idea. Let’s compare two of our Founding Fathers, and the homes they built and maintained. In 1784, George Washington complained of being “plagued with leaks,” at his Mount Vernon estate, and he frequently addressed problems with the wood-stained shingle roof that was a common material of the day.  Just last year, a fundraising campaign began to save the iconic red roof of Mount Vernon.  The project will be very costly and quite time-consuming.

In contrast, Thomas Jefferson “approached the roofing question as an architect and engineer and reviewed some of the most progressive roof structures and coverings of his time,” according to Monticello.org.  When planning the iconic Monticello, Jefferson considered a variety of roofing materials, and decided that the lightness and durability of metal shingles (tin) made the best roof.

Roughly 5 million U.S. homeowners will replace their roof this year.  It’s a decision Mother Nature forces homeowners to make.  Every roof has a finite life, but wind, rain, temperature extremes and weather events such as hurricanes and hail can go a long way toward making that life shorter.

“History suggests that Jefferson made the right choice in choosing a metal roof for Monticello,” states Bill Hippard, executive director of the not-for-profit Metal Roofing Alliance.  “While Mt. Vernon’s roof has been a source of concern almost since it was built, the metal roof on Monticello has provided many decades of reliable protection to the home.  That’s a pretty strong endorsement for the durability of metal roofing.”

To learn more about investment grade metal roofing for homes, please visit www.metalroofing.com.

Metal Roof Featured on Magnolia House B&B

The hosts of HGTV’s popular Fixer Upper program, Chip and Joanna Gaines routinely offer advice and help to homeowners looking for the perfect home.    A recent project was truly unique as Chip and Joanna were their own clients.  They renovated a property and will be opening it as the Magnolia House Bed & Breakfast in Spring 2016.  We’re pleased to see that a new metal roof was part of the renovation.

Magnolia House

Clearly, the Gaines recognize the benefits of a durable, attractive metal roof. That white standing seam roof will also be energy-efficient, and protect the home from Texas-sized hailstorms and other extreme weather.

It’s a remodel of a home built in the 1800s in Macgregor, Texas.  Check out the before and after pictures – we think you’ll agree the new roof really increases the home’s curb appeal!

Magnolia House Benefits from a new Metal Roof

To see if a metal roof is the right choice for your home, visit the non-profit Metal Roofing Alliance website and check out our free visualizer tool.  You can test drive several roofing styles or upload a photo of your home!

New $500 Tax Credit for Metal Roofs Installed in 2016

Smart homeowners are recognizing the many benefits of energy-efficient, eco-friendly metal roofing.  In fact, metal roofing is now the second most popular re-roofing product in the U.S.  The federal government recently added another reason to choose a durable, attractive metal roof to protect your home – a $500 tax credit.  Homeowners who add “cool” metal roofs to their primary residence in 2016 are eligible for the $500 tax credit.  What could be better?  In essence, you can save money by saving money!

$500 Tax Credit for Metal Roofs

Today’s metal roofs are high-tech wonders that feature highly reflective coatings that provide year-round relief from high energy costs.  Metal roofs also offer a variety of styles, including tiles, shakes, shingles or standing-seam panels to either make a statement or blend in with the neighborhood.  The latest paint technologies allow even darker colored metal roofs to absorb less heat through the use of highly reflective pigments that reflect solar energy.

Wondering which metal roofs qualify?  A good place to start is at the Metal Roofing Alliance website (www.MetalRoofing.com).  All of our manufacturer members are committed to selling only the highest quality “Investment Grade” metal roofs, and many have reflective coatings that meet the government standards. You can find a quality contractor in your area that can help you to choose the right roof for your home.

To be sure to choose a qualifying metal roof, ask your contractor to provide a copy of the Manufacturer Certification Statement for the product.  This is a signed statement from the manufacturer certifying that the metal roof qualifies for the tax credit. You’ll need it when you file your taxes, along with IRS Form 5695.

Metal Roofing Tax Credit

You can find out more about the metal roofing tax credit here: Energy Star.  Of course, specific tax questions are best answered by your tax professional.

p.s. – if you installed a qualifying metal roof in 2015, you can also take advantage of the tax credit.  Check with your tax professional.