Roofs typically come in one of two varieties: metal roofs and asphalt shingles. Metal roofs are typically thought of as old fashioned. That is because tin roofs were very popular in the past but have since fallen out of favor. Asphalt shingles are a simple and economical approach to covering a roof. Each one has advantages and disadvantages. For example, asphalt shingles are significantly cheaper than metal. However, asphalt shingles contribute thousands of tons of waste to landfills every year, and asphalt does not readily decompose.
On the other hand, many metal roofs are made from recycled metal. That is a definite bonus. However, metal roofs are much more expensive than shingles. The cost of the roofing material must be taken into account when buying, but roof repair must also be considered. How much will it cost to fix this material if a problem occurs?
Asphalt shingles are fairly easy to repair. If a roofing problem occurs with the wooden support structures underneath the shingles, the contractor simply needs to remove the section of shingles. He can then repair or replace the wood underneath. Then, he just has to put the shingles back. If the shingles have become damaged by whatever also damaged the wood, they are simple to replace. Shingles can be bought in small quantities as well as large. They can be cut using a pair of shears, so the size of the repair does not have to be a common size or a uniform shape. The shingle can be cut to fit the needed roof repair.
Shingles, however, are not very resilient. Most shingles only have a warranty of about ten years. They usually last about thirty, but they are easily penetrated by blunt force. Items such as hail will probably not penetrate shingles, but a tree branch easily will.
Metal roofs are typically made from overlapping sheets of metal. In the past, tin was a preferred metal, but now, other metals are in use. Steel and aluminum are very common. They are much more expensive than asphalt shingles and also much heavier. However, since metal roofs are made of heavy, overlapping sheets of corrugated metal, they are very wind-resistant. They fit together well and the force of normal winds will not pull them up. Also, finished metals that are polished tend to reflect the sun, meaning the inside of your house will be cooler during the summer months.
However, metal roofs are slightly harder to fix. For small problems, such as patches of rust or pin holes, they are not a problem. A contractor will simply buff or sand out the affected part and apply some sort of sealant. For larger problems, entire sections of the metal might need to be cut away and replaced. The contractor could possibly cut away the affected section and replace it with a new sheet of metal, but to make it water tight, he would have to weld it shut.