Metal vs Shingle Roofing: Which is Right For Your House?

Just when you thought roof replacement was a walk in the park, you are suddenly confronted by another vital decision; metal vs. shingle roofing.

Choosing suitable roofing materials is not easy without the help of an experienced roofing contractor.

There are too many roofing options to choose from, such as:

  • Metal roofing
  • Shingle roofs
  • Wood shakes
  • Clay and concrete
  • Slate roofs
  • Rubber/membrane roofing
  • Various recycled materials
  • Solar panels and other roofing materials

However, if you are in Austin, Texas, the two most suitable roofing materials are asphalt shingles and metal roofs.

This article will look at the pros and cons of metal roofing systems and asphalt shingle roofs.

By the time you finish reading, you will have a clear picture of the advantages and disadvantages of each roofing material and be able to apply this knowledge to your particular circumstances.

What Is a Metal Roof?

A metal roof is one of the roofing materials that take Austin by storm. It is a fire-resistant, lightweight material that comes in various metals, such as copper, steel, aluminum, zinc, and tin.

When it comes to the type of metal roofing, it can be a standing seam, modular panels, or corrugated steel.

These days, a metal roof can even come in metal shingles, which is an option to look out for!

Traditionally, a metal roof was composed of large, flat, and unattractive metal panels that were reserved for barns, sheds, and warehouses.

Rarely would you come across anyone who would install metal roofing because of its curb appeal?

However, all this has since changed as metal roofs quickly overtake other roofing materials in popularity. The introduction of metal shingles will only add fuel to the fire.

Pros and Cons of Metal Roofs

If you are considering investing in a metal roof for your residential or commercial building, there are various pros and cons of metal roofing that you need to be aware of, such as:


  • A metal roof is 100% recyclable.
  • Installing a metal roof will increase your home’s value
  • Metal roofs are long-lasting (50+ years with one metal roof)
  • A metal roof is durable against wind, storms, and hail
  • Excellent insulation and low-maintenance
  • Metal roofs are Fire resistant
  • Boosts curb appeal (especially metal shingles)
  • Lighter than most roofing materials


  • Metal roofing offers fewer color options
  • Aluminum panels can be noisy
  • Expensive installation costs

What Is an Asphalt Shingle Roof?

Asphalt shingles have been the roofing material of choice for homeowners and roofing contractors for many years.

The diversity and curb appeal of architectural shingles are two things that have been difficult to match, which is why new houses are still being covered with shingle roofs to this day.

What makes asphalt shingles so attractive is that they are affordable and durable enough to be used in a wide range of climates.

One of the disadvantages, though, is the relatively short lifespan of shingle roofs, which last less than 20 years in most cases.

There are three main parts of an asphalt shingle roof that you need to know, which are:

  • Asphalt coating (known as tar paper) with granules
  • Felt
  • Metal-nailer sheets to hold it all together

Asphalt shingles are great at keeping out wind, rain, hail, and snow when added onto a roof with a steep slope. However, they are prone to developing leaks on low-slope and flat roofs.

Repairing and replacement are also easier with a shingle roof than with other roofing materials.

Pros and Cons of Asphalt Shingles

Even though they are a widely popular roofing material, asphalt shingles come with their fair share of advantages and disadvantages, such as:


  • Affordable
  • DIY-friendly
  • Durable against wind, rain, hail, and snow
  • Good energy efficiency (especially when combined with shingle solar panels)
  • Easy to maintain and repair
  • Lots of color options
  • Easy to install over any surface, including a metal or concrete base


  • Poor insulation properties over time
  • A short lifespan (15-20 years max)
  • Leaky seals can allow excess moisture inside the house

Metal vs. Shingle Roofing: Which Is the Best?

After comparing the different pros and cons of metal and shingle roofs, it is time to look at the various aspects that each aspect excels.

We will start with versatility and work our way down some of the most important factors to be considered for every roofing project.

The Most Versatile: Metal Roofing

When you install asphalt shingles, in most cases, what you see is what you get. There are a few options to choose from, and you will mostly be limited to architectural shingles or 3-tab installation.

However, with metal roofing, you are spoiled for choice. Many materials are available, including galvanized steel, copper, zinc, and many more.

One of the most interesting things about metal roofing materials is that with the arrival of metal shingles, you can now have access to a wide range of shapes that have been shaped to resemble other types of material.

Adds the Most Value: Metal Roofing

Metal roofs are your best option if you want to add value to your home by adding high-quality roofing materials.

The high initial installation costs are entirely justified when considering the lifespan. Metal roofs can last more than 50 years when installed professionally and still look fresh.

This means when the time comes when you wish to sell your house, you will be able to recoup all your expenses because of the high selling price you can quote for a house with a metal roof.

The Best for DIY Roofers: Asphalt Shingle Roofs

Sometimes, if your roof has been slightly damaged by severe weather events, you would instead climb on top and tend to your roofing needs to save on labor costs.

Most shingle roofs are installed in the simplest way possible, and making some DIY repairs will be easy.

When it comes to metal roofs, though, it is a different story. Although metal requires less maintenance than other types of material, the expense and complexity of the roofing system mean it is not something you would want to try and DIY.

If your shingle roof needs a patch-up, all you will need to do is grab your ladder, nail gun, and a box of nails, and you can get the job done in no time.

The Most Budget-Friendly: Asphalt Shingle Roofs

Metal roofs are great, but they usually cost an arm and a leg. If you do not have home insurance benefits to cover your roof replacement, it will be a very costly roofing project.

Concrete, wood, and tile roofing materials may sometimes cost more than metal roofing materials asphalt shingles are the cheapest by a mile.

You can pay as low as $100 per roofing square foot of asphalt shingles (100 square feet. However, the same area will cost you between $150 and $900 if you go for metal roofing.

The Best Long-Term Investment: Metal Roofs

One of the best ways to settle the debate about metal vs. shingle roofing is to compare the lifespan of each.

You will see that asphalt shingles can last around 15 years or slightly more than that. In contrast, your metal roof will last for three-four times as many years as that.

This means that when your neighbors have replaced their entire roof for the third time, your old roof made of metal will still be in good condition.

By the third or fourth roof replacement, the total cost of an asphalt shingle roof will be much more than that of metal roofing.

The Most Durable: Metal Roofing Panels

Durability is something you will appreciate on the day you see a freak storm blowing people’s roofs halfway across the state.

Only a metal roof can give you peace of mind and guaranteed security in severe weather conditions.

Even though it is relatively lightweight, your metal roofing is still much heavier than asphalt shingles, which must be tied down to prevent them from blowing away.

This means your metal roof will withstand high wind, storms, and hail and still come out looking great without needing any major repairs.

Best for Matching Siding Colors: Asphalt Shingle Roofing

If it is a fantastic curb appeal you are after, your best bet is to go for asphalt shingles. They come in a wide range of color options that make it very easy to match the siding of your house.

The limited number of paint systems that work well with metal roofing means your flexibility is very limited. Usually, you will have to settle for the lesser evil when making your color selections.

However, as the popularity of metal roofing continues to grow, we are seeing many more color options being made for metal roofs.

Best for Residential Roofing: Both Metal and Asphalt Shingles

If you are addressing the roofing needs of your residential home, both asphalt shingles and metal options will work well.

A few years ago, asphalt shingle roofs would have been the clear-cut winners of this debate, but the latest designs for metal roofs have made this a matter of taste rather than anything else.

Your choice of residential roofing options will also affect your budget and the need to cut back on energy costs.

Most Popular Roofing Material: Asphalt Shingles Roofs

The need to save money per square footage of roof installation/replacement seems to be more critical than roofing materials’ energy efficiency and longevity.

This is why asphalt shingles are still the most popular roofing material on the market, despite the recent surge in sales and installations of metal roofs.

Results Tally and Verdict

Based on the above comparisons, the battle between metal vs. shingle roofing options is tighter than ever.

Metal roofing came out on top four times, with asphalt shingles winning four comparisons. Both metal and shingle roofs were tied when it came to use in residential buildings.

How can one decide between these two, you ask? Well, you have to look at what your roofing needs are and focus on the option that caters to them in the best way.

If, for example, energy savings are significant to you, you could opt for metal roofing with excellent energy efficiency qualities.

Austin Roofing Company Is Here to Help!

You do not have to make this tough decision on your own because, at Austin Roofing Company, we have a panel of expert roofers waiting to give you a hand.

Let us help you choose between metal and shingles, an easy one. Call us today, and we will schedule a free appointment.