Roofing Trends: Heavy Metal

Manufacturers introduce a number of metal roofing products among the more traditional asphalt options in response to growing interest.

by Kyle Clapham

Homeowners invest more in their roofing because they want a house where they can build their equity and make improvements. Increasingly common extreme weather events expose homes to hail, high winds, heavy rains and wildfire conditions, so purchasing a roof that can withstand the elements for decades yet to come provides a consumer with protection, as well as peace of mind.

Metal roofing often presents a higher upfront cost but pays for itself over time via longevity and durability. If properly installed, many metal roofs can last up to 50 years and require little to no maintenance. The material came up more than ever before in conversations with manufacturers, although traditional asphalt shingles still account for the majority of new products on the market.

At a Rapid Pace

Early this year EDCO will launch Generations Slate, which combines the manufacturer’s state-of-the-art HD imaging technology with its ArrowLine Slate roofing panel that provides the look of authentic slate, but at a fraction of the weight and cost. Like EDCO’s other roofing products, Generations Slate carries a low cost of ownership while also reducing required maintenance and energy costs, says Kristi Peterson, national marketing manager.

“More than ever before, home and business owners are purchasing products that require very little maintenance, provide an enhanced appearance to their home or business and [promote] sustainability to meet their busy lifestyles,” she explains. “Technological innovations in paint finishes—along with advances in manufacturing processes—has led to the evolution of metal roofing. As a result, metal roofing products are even more attractive and offer a long lifecycle.”

As a result of innovations in oil refinement, Peterson notes, the life of a traditional asphalt roof is shorter than it was not too long ago, so homeowners have to replace their roofs more often. With the introduction of metal into the roofing category, along with the technological advances in both paint finish and product design (slate, shake and tile, for example), homeowners have benefited from the outstanding look and long-term protection that metal roofing provides them, she says.

“Contractors and builders have creatively incorporated metal roofing products into sidewall and gable applications alongside other substrates such as brick to achieve curb side appeal, Peterson adds. “To help designers and remodelers, we have developed a comprehensive list of online and printed material to help everyone understand the benefits of our steel roofing—and [so they can] determine which product and color is best suited for a particular project. We have also developed a comprehensive training program for contractors to ensure that the product is installed correctly.

“New regulations in some states have already been implemented related to the disposal of asphalt shingles, which is driving up the cost of the traditional asphalt roof,” she notes. “As more people continue to look for more unique, effective and environmentally sustainable solutions, then steel roofing will continue to grow at a rapid pace.”

Architectural Accent

Snap-Clad, the most popular of residential roofing products from Petersen Aluminum, offers homeowners the strength of a locking panel system with the labor and cost-savings that come with a snap-style installation. Snap-Clad aesthetic options include 45 standard colors, pencil ribs and striations, as well as multiple panel widths. The 1 ¾-in. seam height creates a residential look that can match many architectural styles, says Rob Heselbarth, director of communications.

“Many homeowners are dipping their toes into the metal roofing water by adding metal roofs as architectural accents on their homes. For example, the roof over a front porch or a bay window will feature a metal roof, but the home’s main roofing will consist of shingles that are made of material that isn’t metal,” he explains. “This is an approach that can add curb appeal while also distinguishing a home from its neighboring homes.”

Petersen offers products and colors for these accent applications including colors such as Copper Penny, Aged Copper and Weathered Steel that come with a 30-year fade warranty, he adds. “It’s tough to sell metal roofs based on how they look because not everyone can afford them, but the longevity and durability of a metal roof are difficult to overlook. Properly installed, a metal roof can last 30, 40 or 50 years with little to no maintenance, which is ideal for any homeowner but especially those [people] remodeling the home that they plan to live out their retirement years.

“We’ve all seen the growth in popularity in recent years of residential metal roofs, and we expect it to continue as homeowners understand the value in a metal roof’s longevity,” Heselbarth says. “As acceptance of metal roofs continues, homeowners are realizing that photovoltaic panels can easily be mounted on the standing seam of a metal roof, which adds to the list of environmental benefits inherent in metal roof systems such as solar reflectivity and recyclability. Homeowners should always look for photovoltaic panel mounting systems that do not penetrate a metal roof.”

Minimal Maintenance

The portfolio for Cornerstone Building Brands includes 16 unique metal roofing panel profiles as well as insulated metal panels that are customizable and backed by industry-leading warranties its customers can count on, says Jessica L. Navascues, president of the Buildings & Components division of Cornerstone, who has seen a rise in the use of metal panels in residential applications.

“In addition to homeowners more frequently choosing longevity, durability and customization options made available through the use of metal panels for roofs on their homes, they are also using metal roofing on their home additions—even when all or part of their existing structure features more traditional roofing materials like asphalt shingles,” she explains. “This includes residential additions such as porches, carports, lean-to shelters that use the wall of an existing building as support, hobby shops, detached garages and fences. The use of metal panels as a roofing/siding solution for spaces that double as homes/businesses has also gained momentum.”

Beyond the color, profile and size customization options available, the durability and longevity of Cornerstone metal panels provide cost-savings benefits to homeowners over time, Navascues says. “Homeowners understand the importance of sheltering their families and property with roofing products that protect against destructive elements like wind, hail, ice, snow and fire.”

The company approaches product development and testing through a rigorous stage-gate process to ensure exceptional quality and market viability, she adds. The process includes in-house and external testing to certify products comply with all applicable codes and customer requirements.

“Our residential metal roofing products qualify for Underwriters Laboratory (UL) Class A Fire, UL 90 Wind Uplift and Class 4 UL Impact Resistance (hail) ratings,” Navascues says. “Simple installation and minimal maintenance requirements also help remove the burden of added labor costs at the start of—and throughout—the roof’s lifespan. To help our customers sell products to homeowners, we provide installation guides and how-to installation videos to support their metal roofing projects.”

Cooler Roofing

Over the past year CertainTeed expanded Matterhorn, its signature metal roofing product, to be offered throughout North America. Available in tile, shake and slate profiles, Matterhorn gives homeowners the beauty of natural roofing materials in a format that is enduring, lightweight and energy efficient, says Alex Pecora, director of residential product management for CertainTeed.

In addition to a life expectancy of 50 years or more with no maintenance required, Matterhorn Metal Roofing also features Class 4 impact resistance, Class A fire resistance, 130-mph wind resistance and an anti-corrosive paint system with color options rated for cool roofing that can substantially lower rooftop temperatures and home energy bills in the process, Pecora explains.

“Cool roofing is an emerging trend across many segments of roofing. Solar-reflective paint systems and roof shingle granules can lower air conditioning usage, thereby reducing energy bills and the strain on local energy grids,” he continues. “We’ve been improving our cool roof technologies to increase product performance, particularly the darker colors that are popular.”

NorthGate, a styrene-butadiene-styrene (SBS) modified asphalt shingle, features Class 4 impact resistance, enhanced weatherability and impressive granule adhesion, he notes. The rubberized aspect of NorthGate makes it highly resistant to hail and other impact damage—as well as the cracking caused by extreme cold weather and freeze-thaw cycles. NorthGate also provides Class A fire resistance, up to 130-mph wind resistance and bold Max Def color options to choose from.

“People are investing more in their roof because they want a ‘forever home’ where they can build their equity and make improvements,” Pecora says. “Simultaneously, changing weather patterns are creating conditions where roofs are being exposed to hail, high winds, heavy rains and wildfire conditions with greater frequency. Having a roof that will stand up to the elements for decades to come is a very desirable feature, and so we work with roofing contractors to help them explain to homeowners the importance and value of investing in durable roofing products.”

The company’s Belmont shingle uses layered construction and blended coloration to emulate the classic look of natural slate without the high price tag. Made from top-grade roofing asphalt and reinforced with a strong fiberglass base mat, Belmont offers homeowners Class A fire resistance, 110-mph wind resistance (upgradable to 130 mph) and six dynamic colors. The luxury shingles also incorporate CertainTeed’s StreakFighter algae-resistant technology, which utilizes copper-containing granules to help prevent black streaking caused by airborne algae, Pecora explains.

“People are looking for products that are both long-lasting and capable of saving money over time. To meet this demand, we continue to develop roof products with specialized performance characteristics such as increased impact resistance and high solar reflectivity values,” he says.

Durable Protection

Boral Roofing designs MetalSeal, a high temperature self-adhered underlayment, especially for metal roofing, but it is suitable for any roof material in any climate, says Rick Hackett, product manager of Boral Roofing. The high-performance waterproofing material provides all-season durable protection, protecting the structure against wind, rain, snow and ice dams by bonding to the base sheet—or directly to the roof deck—and self-sealing around every fastener penetration.

“Boral MetalSeal eliminates the need for an excessive number of nails, reducing installation time and cost,” Hackett notes. “Great surface traction also enables safer, faster and easier installation for the entire roof. The high-strength woven polyester surface remains intact [despite] high foot traffic and provides UV resistance for up to six months.”

Boral Roofing offers a 30-year limited warranty on MetalSeal, which can be installed in freezing or even hot summer temperatures, ensuring the job is completed without weather-induced delay, he adds. It meets or exceeds all national and Florida building-code requirements and is rated up to 260 degrees Fahrenheit. Boral MetalSeal comes in 216-square-foot rolls for a net two squares.

“Homeowners—more than ever—are interested in durability, energy efficiency and resiliency,” Hackett says. “In addition to curb appeal, these are the primary performance attributes of an exceptional roof. Consumers are more aware of the long-term energy savings that result in an energy-efficient roof—as well as the reduced headaches and repairs associated with a roof that can withstand the elements and last over time.”

To help with curb appeal, Boral Roofing recently introduced Vista Collection, a concrete tile collection that includes five varied neutral shades to meet specific architectural, lifestyle and color trends emerging within the state of Texas. The new suite of hues is available on two of Boral Roofing’s most popular tile styles within the region: Saxony Country Slate and Shake.

The shades include Charcoal Brown Blend, Chestnut Burnt, Dark Bordeaux, Weathered Cedar and Weathered Greige. The collection launch is a direct result of extensive research conducted into consumer lifestyle and home design trends happening within the state, Hackett says. “This research concludes that, as with many other key regions across the country, home design within the state is moving toward sensorial relief both in the interiors and exteriors, including roofing. This aesthetic calls for reduced ornamentation and an influx in calming neutral color palettes.”

Boral Roofing also launched a new suite of concrete roofing tile colors in the Southern Nevada region. The range of hues represents a contemporary take on neutral roofing tones and reflects a move toward complementary architectural styles in the region. The shades are Sepia, Graphite, Shadow Black, Charcoal Blend, Appalachian Blend and Saddleback Blend. The collection is available with Boral Roofing tile profiles Barcelona, Saxony 900 Slate and Saxony 900 Shake.

Better Performance

IKO released two products, IKO GoldSeam and EdgeSeal, in response to the need for better-performing roof systems. IKO GoldSeam is a roof deck and perimeter sealing solution that provides critical protection against water infiltration. EdgeSeal, on the other hand, is a performance roof starter roll that bonds shingles to the roof deck at the perimeters—a roof’s most vulnerable area.

“Increases in extreme weather have been pushing customers toward performance products, and consumers are more educated about their purchases than ever before,” says Scott Campbell, director of field sales in the U.S. “As a result, we’re starting to see an added focus from both the contractors and homeowners on installation. These products secure the entire roofing system, particularly when it comes to wind uplift and blow-off, as well as water infiltration concerns.”

The manufacturer’s Dynasty and Nordic shingles both feature ArmourZone technology, a tear-resistant reinforcing band that is designed to help prevent nail pull-through and shingle blow-off. Nordic’s polymer-modified asphalt coating combats hail impact by acting like a shock absorber, qualifying the shingle for FM Approvals’ Class 4 impact resistance rating against hail, he adds.

“When you look at weather patterns across America, it’s clear that high winds and hail are on the rise. As a result, the roofing industry is seeing more of a push toward performance products that have the ability to withstand high-wind events,” Campbell says. “Consumers are now demanding roofing products that can remain intact through extreme weather but don’t sacrifice curb appeal.”

Last summer IKO became the first roofing manufacturer to offer darker-toned shingles that could exceed California’s Solar Reflectance Index (SRI) minimum standards, he notes. In fact, six of the company’s nine Cambridge Cool Colors color options now reach or exceed the new SRI standard, meeting a key demand from homeowners across California. Some cities and counties—such as Los Angeles—are increasing their minimum standards as regulation continues to evolve, he adds.

Efficient Installation

Owens Corning engineers Duration FLEX to deliver pliability and increased flexibility compared to standard shingles, while offering advanced performance in harsher weather conditions. Made with a proprietary blend of SBS polymer modified asphalt and featuring Sure Nail Technology, TruDefinition Duration FLEX provides the highest impact rating available—UL 2218 Class 4.

Duration FLEX offers 42 percent better nail pull-resistance against wind; and in addition, built-in flexibility helps Duration FLEX shingles help resist cracks and tears in all-weather installation conditions, offering more than 10 percent stronger tear strength compared to traditional shingles, the manufacturer says.

Duration FLEX shingles are also manufactured for efficient installation and are formulated to lay flat more quickly than standard shingles in all weather conditions. The rubber-like flexibility that helps the shingle withstand the expansion and contraction stresses also helps to minimize loss of granules and protect the shingle against UV.

Owens Corning enhanced RhinoRoof U20 Synthetic Underlayment in 2019 to deliver improved performance, tear resistance and walkability. Offering protection that is stronger than felt for superior wind resistance and durability, the latest formulation is up to two times stronger than competitive underlayment products, the company says. RhinoRoof U20 features a proprietary back coating that holds tight to the deck, plus a trusted fiber grip topside for security in every step. The enhanced underlayment features 90-day UV resistance and a 20-year limited warranty.

Color continues to be a big part of curb appeal, and to celebrate the introduction of Pacific Wave, 2020 Shingle Color of the Year, Owens Corning has added three new style boards featuring the hue that complement a collection of color style boards. Pacific Wave was selected based on its versatility and how it complements a wide variety of home styles—from a ranch in the Pacific Northwest, to a modern farmhouse in the Midwest or a stately brick colonial home in the South, the manufacturer says.

Unique Design

DaVinci Roofscapes added a fourth shake profile, DaVinci Select Shake, to its roofing product offering. Created with the authentic look of real cedar shake taken from natural wood profiles, the multi-width DaVinci Select Shake tiles resemble a traditional cedar shake look. Available in 8- and 10-inch widths, each Select Shake tile measures 22-inches long with a 5/8-inch thickness.

The 10-inch wide roofing pieces have a simulated keyway to give the appearance of 4- and 6-inch width shakes placed together. The unique tile design of DaVinci Select Shake also allows for faster installation than previous DaVinci single- and multi-width products, the company says.

“In 2016 we updated our slate products to make them more realistic looking, and this year we’ve done the same thing for our shake offering by launching the new DaVinci Select Shake,” notes Michael Cobb, president and chief marketing officer. “If someone is looking for a jumbo shake look, we’d suggest our Bellaforté Shake product; however, if someone is searching for a multi-width shake tile with a truly authentic and traditional shake profile, then we’d recommend the new DaVinci Select Shake product.”

The new DaVinci Select Shake product line comes in eight color blends: Autumn, Chesapeake, Mountain, Tahoe and Weathered Gray. The additional three color blends come from the Nature Crafted Collection and include Aged Cedar, Black Oak and Mossy Cedar. Introduced in 2018, the Nature Crafted Collection colors reflect different progressive aging processes found on real shake shingles. The colors recreate the natural warmth and softness of a patina previously only created by time and exposure to the elements.

DaVinci Select Shake products meet the same testing classifications as other DaVinci roofing products. The tiles are backed by a lifetime limited warranty and resist fading, rotting, cracking and insects. With the addition of the DaVinci Select Shake product line, the company now offers four composite shake tile options: DaVinci Multi-Width Shake, DaVinci Single-Width Shake, Bellaforté Shake and DaVinci Select Shake.

Growing Appetite

Last year TAMKO introduced a new TW Seam Tape to help close sheathing gaps that has been most popular so far for its use on the roof deck, says Kim Eckerman, director of marketing and communications. “We’re getting good feedback from contractors on the product, especially in the Northeast, for how easy it is to use and how well the product sticks to the deck,” she adds. “This new product helps contractors meet new and recently enforced building codes in multiple states now requiring deck tape.”

She notices a growing demand for roofing that can stand up to extreme weather conditions, and those characteristics are going to depend on the area of the country and the most common types of extreme weather there. “There’s a trend of consumers staying in their homes longer, and that may be leading people to install roofing that they both love the color and style of—and that they think will last.

“We’re always listening for the voice of our customer when improving or expanding our product lines,” she adds. “While black and brown/gray shingle blends continue to be our most popular colors nationwide, we’re seeing a growing appetite for dramatic, high-contrast color blends with consumers. They’ve been drawn to TAMKO’s America’s Natural Colors Collection and blends such as Thunderstorm Grey, Mountain Slate and Painted Desert that feature many colors on each shingle. QR

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