Metal Roof vs Shingles in Hot Climates

Metal roof in a hot climate

Montana is a state of weather extremes: frigid winters and sweltering summers. However, many people forget the hotter months in Montana, especially when choosing a building’s roofing materials. It’s well known that metal roofs are more durable than shingles in snowy, windy, and rainy conditions. Also, with proper insulation, metal roofs can help keep the heat inside a building better than shingles. But what about hot weather? How do metal roofs compare to shingles in warmer temperatures? Knowing this distinction can help you make better, more-informed recommendations to roofing clients. Below, we’ll outline the difference between a metal roof vs shingles in hot climates.

Metal Roofs vs Shingles in Hot Climates

When it comes down to it, metal roofs outperform shingles in warm weather conditions. Let’s compare these two roofing materials based on three factors: heat reflection, durability, and energy efficiency.

Shingles in Hot Climates

Zero Heat Reflection

One of the biggest downsides of shingles is that they absorb heat rather than reflect it. Shingles, particularly asphalt shingles, soak up large amounts of outside heat. This heat then gets transferred into the building below, raising the building’s indoor temperature. Heat transfer from a shingle roof to the building below can raise the indoor temperature by as much as 25 degrees in some cases.

Reduced Durability

While shingles may look aesthetically pleasing, they are not built to withstand hot climate conditions. Sun exposure weakens shingles, causing them to curl and crack over time. Shingle deterioration decreases their effectiveness to protect a building from other types of weather. In Montana, we not only face intense heat but also snow, wind, and rain, so weakened shingles may not stand up to these conditions.

Low Energy Efficiency

Because shingles absorb heat, especially dark shingles, buildings with this type of roofing can become very hot in warm climates. HVAC systems in these buildings have to work much harder to cool the entire structure. This can lead to more energy being expended and increased monthly energy bills.

Metal Roofs in Hot Climates

Excellent Heat Reflection

Roofing customers often falsely assume metal roofs generate excess heat, asking “Do metal roofs attract heat?” You can reassure your customers that, no, metal roofs do not attract heat. In fact, they can help deflect heat from your home. Metal roofing deflects most of the sun’s rays and can be as much as 100 degrees cooler than an asphalt roof in the same conditions.

First-Rate Durability

Metal roofs surpass shingles in terms of durability. Metal roofing is not only strong enough to resist direct heat but also wind, rain, and snow. They are great for all types of weather conditions and are also more fire-resistant than shingles. Metal roofs are made of materials with very high melting points, so they are able to stand up to hot temperatures without catching fire.

High Energy Efficiency

Metal roofing not only helps keep your house cool but energy-efficient, as well. Studies show metal roofing can reduce the need for indoor cooling by as much as 15%, which can help lower your monthly energy bills. Additionally, you can boost the energy efficiency of your roof by choosing a light metal color. Dark colors tend to absorb more heat than lighter colors, so a lighter metal color can help reflect heat away from your building. There is a wide range of metal roof color options available, so talk to one of our metal roofing specialists to see which metal roof color and coating may be best for your project.

How Hot Does a Metal Roof Get in the Summer?

The surface temperature of a metal roof can get very hot in warm climates but not as hot as shingles. While unpainted metal can get up to 145 degrees in the summer, black asphalt shingles can get up to 168 degrees. Metal roofs coated with heat reflective paint can feel up to 42% cooler than unpainted metal. While shingle roofs may transfer heat into the building below, metal roofs do not. With proper insulation and light panel coating, metal roofs should help deflect heat from your building and keep it cool even in extreme heat.

Contact our Metal Roofing & Siding Professionals

For high-quality metal roofing and siding, reach out to our professionals at Great Northern Metal Company today. We’re Bozeman’s premier supplier of metal roofing materials, and our portfolio includes a diverse range of projects. Whether you’re looking for commercial metal roofing supplies or metal siding for a residential build, our team can recommend and supply the best materials to meet your needs. To contact us and get a quote, drop us a line or give us a call at (406) 624-0435.

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