What are Tin Roofs?
Tin roofing is an attractive option for your home that is budget-friendly and easy to maintain. Originally preferred by homeowners in areas with heavy snowfall–because the snow would slide off the roof–tin is so versatile that it can compliment any home style, from a rustic cabin to a Key West style cabana. Tin is a great choice for roofing because it doesn’t corrode from rainwater and is weather resistant. Also, unlike wood or shingles, tin roofing is not vulnerable to insects or mold.
Tin roofing is actually rolled steel, coated with tin. The tin is chemically bonded to the steel in a plating process where the steel is heated quite hot and saturated with molten tin. The steel and tin molecules that are rapidly vibrating because of the heat, interlock and bond permanently to one another. This process makes your tin roof durable and resistant to cracking. Property installed and maintained, a tin roof can last for up to 40 years! The two primary types of tin roof are standing seam and the flat-lock. Both are attached to wood sheathing using blind-nailed clips. The flat-locked tin roof requires superior skill (i.e. not a DIY project) to form the pieces and more importantly, soldering the seams between all the interlocking pieces of metal.
Costs of Tin Roofs
Compared to most roofing options, and especially metal roofing options, tin is affordable. Homeowners should expect to pay $3-15 per square foot. Lightweight tin roofs can also save money in the construction of new homes because they don’t require as many struts and beams as traditional roofing. The durability of tin roofing, combined with prospective homebuyers actively seeking out more eco-friendly home features, will increase the resale value of your home. Across the country, homeowners who invest in metal roofing options get an average ROI of 85.9%. Tin roofing can also lower your insurance rates because of its fire resistance, especially in states that are vulnerable to wildfires.
“Hot tin roof,” may be a popular expression, but tin roofs are actually great at reflecting the sun’s heat away from your home. Metal roofing products can lead to energy savings of up to 50% and can also be about 100 degrees cooler on the surface than traditional asphalt roofing. You may have noticed that traditional shingle roofs can crack and curl over time, too creating a less effective barrier from the elements than a more durable tin roof. Selecting a tin roof is also an environmentally responsible choice. Traditional roofing products contribute an estimated 20 billion pounds of waste to U.S. landfills on an annual basis. Tin (and almost any metal roofing) is a more eco-friendly option as it is made from 30-60% recycled material (and is 100% recyclable) and can be installed over an existing roof, eliminating the out-of-pocket cost, as well as the environmental impact of taking off and disposing of an old roof.
Maintenance of Tin Roofs
Tin roofs are typically simple to repair and easy to maintain. To keep a tin roof in great shape, simply clean and paint it regularly. The paint/coating you apply will increase your roof’s weather resistance and durability, not to mention it’s aesthetic. Often seen in black or red, you can hire a paint company to tint an exterior metal paint to make your roof any color you desire. Recoat your roof every 5-7 years. Be sure to regularly clean your tin roof with soap, water, and a soft scrub brush to remove dirt. If you do scratch your roof, the scratched area can be wiped down with mineral spirits, and touch up paint can be applied with a paintbrush. Tiny areas of peeling paint and minor surface corrosion can be easily repaired, even if you’re not the handiest person.
If you are unfamiliar with metal roofing, you may have concerns about the potential for rust, noise from rain and wind, and denting, but modern engineering addresses these concerns. You do have to properly insulate your attic to prevent your roof from creating too much noise, but that’s sound advice regardless of the type of roof you choose to install. Additionally, with most textured roofs, minor denting if it occurs is not easily visible. Finally, some believe that metal roofing will increase your likelihood of a lightning strike. While metal does conduct electricity, electricity is not drawn to it. In fact, because metal roofing is fire resistant, if your home is struck by lightening, your risk of fire is actually decreased with a metal roof.