We are a full-service roofing contractor located in beautiful Bellingham, WA. We install, maintain, and repair roofs throughout northwestern Washington, including Whatcom, Skagit, and Island Counties.
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Metal vs Asphalt Shingle Roof

Metal Roof vs Asphalt Shingle Roofs

Metal vs Asphalt Shingle Roof

If you’re ready to replace your roof, you may be debating between a metal roof vs asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingle roofs and metal roofs are the two most popular options in the Pacific Northwest.

Asphalt is the most common and metal roofs are growing in popularity. However, it’s a common question we get, “which one is better?”

In this article, we’ll look at the pros and cons of metal and asphalt shingle roofs. We hope you come away with some insights into which type of roof is the right choice for you.

Should I Install a Metal or Asphalt Shingle Roof?

As we look at pros and cons for each type of roof, it comes down to your needs, preferences, and budget. Let’s look at the differences across several categories.

The cost factor

When it comes to cost, asphalt shingle roofs have the advantage. Metal roofs are one of the more expensive roofing material options. Materials cost approximately twice as much as asphalt. However, the cost of installing each type of roofing material is comparably similar.

Durability of metal roof vs. shingle

Without question, metal roofs have greater durability. They last on average between 50-60 years, whereas asphalt roofs average 25-40 years.

Most metal roofs are fire-resistant and can withstand extreme climates and weather. The length of time asphalt shingles last varies by climate along with the slope of the roof. Keep in mind that asphalt roofs do not do as well installed flat as metal roofs.

Home resale value

Homes with metal roofs have slightly higher resale value.

Unless you plan on staying in your home forever, resale value is something to take into account. Metal roofs are growing in popularity because of their lifespan and energy-saving benefits. Homes with metal roofs—especially steel roofing—have a slightly better resale value.

It may be beneficial to invest more in the cost of a metal roof compared to shingles. This is because you’re likely to recoup your investment when you sell your house. Standing seam metal roof costs are especially recoupable. A study showed that there was an increase in resale value between one and six percent for standing seam metal roofs over asphalt shingle roofs.

Environmental impact & recyclability

Metal roofing is considered the most environmentally friendly roofing option available on the market today. Companies build metal roofs out of recycled metal and can recycle them again once they reach their lifespan on a home. Additionally, metal roofs reflect UV rays without absorbing heat so they can increase a home’s energy efficiency.

Asphalt shingle roofing has traditionally been responsible for approximately 11 million tons of waste in the U.S. each year, according to nerc.org. While shingles are not 100% recyclable, many states are reducing shingle waste by reusing them in various road construction projects. Today there are more options for sustainable shingles.

Roofers like Skyline Roofing offer Malarkey roofing shingles that are made with polymers from 90% upcycled materials for a much more environmentally friendly product.


Installing a metal roof requires the expertise of an experienced contractor to avoid making mistakes that can lead to problems down the road. This includes issues such as moisture buildup between the metal roof and the asphalt shingles underneath. Contractors also need to be extremely careful not to scratch or dent metal panels during the installation process.

Asphalt shingles are generally less labor-intensive to install than a metal roof. It’s also easier for contractors to crisscross the roof while installing asphalt shingles because there is less risk of damaging shingles that have already been installed.


Metal roofs are generally maintenance-free, except for periodic cleaning to remove algae and removing branches, leaves, and other debris that collects on the roof and gutters. The only real maintenance factor to consider for metal roofs is that the color can fade over the course of many years.

Asphalt shingles should be monitored and treated for moss buildup that can reduce the lifespan of the roof and look unsightly. Shingle roofs, like metal roofs, require cleaning about once a year to remove leaves and debris that collect on them.

Comparing noise on metal and shingle roofs

With all the rain we get in the Pacific Northwest, you might be wondering if metal roofs are loud in the rain. Studies have shown that metal roofs aren’t any noisier in the rain than a traditional asphalt roof.

Today, we install metal roofs with sound barriers to help reduce noise. In some cases, roof decks are added to the rafters. Another option is for insulation to be added to attics. In addition, metal roofs can be placed over asphalt shingles to add a sound barrier.

Installing solar panels

Solar panels can easily mount on metal roofs at a lower cost compared to shingle roofs. Another advantage is that metal roofs will last as long or longer than the solar panels installed on them.

Most common is to install solar panels on asphalt shingle roofs and it works well. This is as long as the contractor correctly completes the penetration and flashing details that prevent moisture from getting under the roof. Replacing a roof can be difficult when solar panels are installed because it requires removing and reinstalling the panels on the new roof.

So, asphalt or metal?

Both metal and asphalt roofs are aesthetically pleasing and provide an array of colors to choose from that can complement the design of your home. However, metal roofs have a longer life span than asphalt roofs and is usually a deciding factor in which type of roof our clients choose.

We hope this article has been helpful in answering your questions about the pros and cons of both asphalt and metal roofs. We are here to answer any further questions you may have.

Trust Skyline Roofing & Construction for Your Roofing Needs

At Skyline Roofing & Construction our roofing professionals always strive to add value to your home or business for the long term. Contact us today if you are looking for an experienced, licensed roofing contractor to install, repair, or replace your roof. Skyline Roofing is located in Bellingham, WA and we presently serve Whatcom, Skagit, and Island Counties.

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