Williams Roofing and Construction Inc.

How Long Does a Metal Roof Last?

how long does a metal roof last

Have you ever thought about the roof that sits above your head? With over 124 million families in America, it’s no surprise that there are many types of roofs to choose from. While traditional asphalt roofs used to be the norm, metal roofs have become a popular choice.

Not only do metal roofs provide practical benefits, but they also look great. Plus, they can outlast other types of roofs. For example, asphalt shingles usually last about 15 years, whereas a metal roof can last much longer.

If you’re considering a metal commercial roof but aren’t sure how often you’ll need to replace it, we’ve got you covered. We’ll delve into the details and answer the question: how long does a metal roof last?

Advantages of a Metal Roof 

As you start to see metal roofs pop up on businesses and homes more often, you may be wondering why. There are several benefits of metal roofs that have led to their popularity boom. 


Most people know metal roofs for their exceptional durability and longevity. A professionally installed and maintained metal roof can last up to 40 years or longer, depending on the material used. You won’t find this type of life in traditional shingle materials. 

Weather Protection 

Metal roofs are also an excellent choice for protection against bad weather. They are very resistant to rain, snow, hail, and high winds. Metal roofs do not rot, crack, or warp like some other roofing materials.

Reflective Surface 

A metal roof has a reflective surface. This means they can reflect a lot of solar heat away from a building. 

This reflective property helps to keep the interior of the building cooler. A cooler building can reduce the need for air conditioning and even help lower energy costs.

Fire Resistance

Metal is a non-combustible material. When you choose a metal roof, your roof will be more resistant to fire than traditional roofing types. 

Metal roofs are very fire-resistant with a Class A fire rating. This fire resistance can give you valuable protection for your property. It can sometimes even reduce your insurance premiums, saving you money. 


Metal roofs are fairly lightweight compared to other roofing materials. This can make them easier to install. The lightweight material also puts less stress on a building’s structure. 

Sometimes, you can even install metal roofs over existing roofs because it is so light. This can help get rid of the need for costly removal and disposal of an old roof. 

Low Maintenance

You’ll need to do much less maintenance on a metal roof over traditional roofing material. They do not need frequent repairs or inspections like other roofing types. 

Metal roofs are also more resistant to mildew, rot, and pests. This can get rid of the need for costly maintenance. 


If you are looking to add some personality to your building, metal roofing is the way to go! Metal roofs come in a wide range of colors, finishes, and styles. This allows you to choose the options that complement your building’s style. 

Environmental Sustainability

Most people consider metal roofs to be an environmentally friendly option. Many metal roofs come from previously recycled materials. You can also recycle metal roofs at the end of their lifespan. 

Metal roofs have a longer life cycle compared to other roofing materials. You’ll likely need to replace materials less than traditional roofs. Fewer materials mean less environmental waste. 

How Long Does a Metal Roof Last?

When you choose to put on a metal roof, it can be hard to know exactly how long it will last. Several elements can help you figure out your metal roof’s longevity. 

Type of Metal

Not all metal roofs come in the same material. Different metals have different levels of durability and resistance to corrosion. The material that a metal roof is made from dictates how long it will last.

The most common material for metal roofs is steel, copper, or aluminum. Each of these materials has pros and cons about how long it will last. 


Steel roofs last for a very long time. Many times, steel roofing can come with a lifetime warranty! Steel roofs have versatile looks and can fit a good deal of different aesthetics. 

The biggest downside to this kind of roof is the rust. Many metal roof installers will coat the steel to help prevent them from rusting. 


The original metal roofing material is copper. This roofing choice is lightweight, lasts a long time, and ages to a beautiful green patina. The patina not only looks great, but it also helps to waterproof your roof for even more protection. 


Aluminum roofing is a popular choice for metal roofs. It is lightweight and doesn’t corrode as easily as steel. 

You’ll need to waterproof the aluminum to get the best protection for your building. To do this, builders use a special elastomeric coating on the metal. 

Quality of Installation

One of the biggest factors in metal roof longevity is proper installation. If builders don’t install your metal roof the right way, it can lead to leaks, rust, and other issues. These problems can shorten a metal roof’s lifespan. 


The climate that your building is in can have a big impact on the lifespan of your metal roof. If you live in a place with extreme weather conditions, your metal roof may not last as long as others. Heavy snow or rain, hail, or high winds can damage a metal roof over time. 

Temperature can also impact how long your roof will last. Hot climates can cause metal roofs to expand and contract. This can eventually lead to warping and cracking. 

Cold climates can also damage a metal roof. Extreme cold can cause metal roofs to become brittle. This can make metal roofs more susceptible to damage from impacts, such as hail. 

If you live in a place with lots of rain, your metal roof can pool water. If your metal roof sees lots of water, it can rust and leak. 

Snow can also damage metal roofs. A lot of snow can add extra weight to the roof. These extra pounds can add stress to the building’s structure. If your roof is not designed to handle the weight of snow, it can lead to damage or collapse. 

Metal Roof Maintenance

All roofs, metal and otherwise, need occasional maintenance. Regular cleaning and inspections can help extend the life of a metal roof. Putting off maintenance can lead to issues that can shorten the roof’s lifespan. 

Coatings and Finishes

It’s not uncommon for a metal roof to have a coating over the metal. These protective finishes can help stop corrosion and extend how long the roof lasts. The higher quality of the coating can mean a longer-lasting roof in the end. 


The cost of a metal roof isn’t a one-size-fits-all calculation. The type of metal used, the size of the roof, and the complexity of the location can impact the final cost.

On average, a metal roof cost can range from $5 to $15 per square foot. For the best quote, find a professional roofing contractor to get an accurate estimate. 

Installing a Metal Roof 

As with any roof, there are several steps your roofers will follow when they install a metal roof. Before you start, choose a professional company to make sure that you have the best experience possible. 

Your roofing company will start by preparing your building for the new roof. Usually, they will remove the old roof and inspect the deck for any rot or damage. If your roof needs any repairs, this is when it will happen. 

Before the roofers put the metal on, your roof will need an underlayment. This step adds an extra water barrier between your decking and roof. It will keep your building nice and dry. 

After the underlayment come the flashings. Metal flashings protect any areas water could get in. Your roofer will install them around things like vents and chimneys to keep those areas dry. 

After the roofers finish the preparations, it’s time for the metal roof. Roofers often install metal roofs in panel sections. 

Most roofers start at the bottom of a roof and work their way up. Each panel gets secured to the roof using screws or clips. 

A roofer usually finishes the roof with a ridge cap and trim. These look great and add extra protection to your metal roof. 

Metal Roofs: The Durable and Stylish Roofing Choice for Your Home 

Figuring out what material to use on your commercial roof can be a daunting task. If you’re wondering how long does a metal roof last, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the answer.  

Metal roofing is an excellent investment for businesses. They fit many aesthetic types and are a sustainable choice. Metal roofs are perfect if you want a long-lasting and reliable roofing solution.

If you are looking for a professional roofing company, Williams Roofing and Construction are here for you. We’ve been helping people with all their roofing needs since 1985. Contact us to get started today!

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Springfield, IL

4225 North Peoria Road
Springfield, IL 62702

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