PVC Roof Options and Costs – PVC vs. TPO

PVC, technically known as Polyvinyl Chloride is really vinyl roofing, though is routinely referenced as PVC roof.

PVC competes with TPO and EPDM in the synthetic roof membrane arena, and indirectly with all other roofing materials including BUR, modified bitumen, and structural standing seam roofs designed for lower sloped roofs.

Membrane roofs are usually applied to flat or low-slope roofs, but using a single-ply membrane on a sloped roof is also possible and common on roofs with slopes between 1:12 and 3:12.

Why not just use traditional roofing materials (asphalt shingles or other tiles) on a low sloped roofs? Because they are very likely to leak unless a minimum specified slope for shingles or tiles has been met.

When used with a slope, the overlap of those materials are designed to shed water away from the roof deck. Whereas flat roofs have only a slight pitch, and any standing, or pooling water, could lead to immediate leaks and rotting soon thereafter.

PVC membrane is a kind of roofing material that can withstand pooling or standing water — puddles of water that accumulate on roofs with low slopes.

Cost

Of the three primary membrane roof types, PVC is the most expensive. EPDM is the least costly option, and TPO is somewhere in the middle.

TPO allegedly offers the benefits of both the other types, yet that material keeps undergoing formula changes, and so compared to PVC and EPDM is considered less reliable, particularly when it comes to warranties.

Prices for residential installs can vary greatly. A roofer is likely to quote differently than a professional PVC installer, probably less, but also likely to not have the proper tools. A fair range, is between $6.00 and $8.50 per sq. ft. if installed by a PVC expert. On the lower end if going with less thick material.

In terms of value, durability and ROI, PVC is arguably the best, or longest lasting of the three. EPDM will go 7 to 15 years before needing replacing or re-coating.

TPO is thought to go as long as PVC, but that information is either suspect or unknown for sure just yet.

PVC has been in the field for decades and unlike TPO isn’t constantly undergoing changes to the formula to address performance issues. Warranties are usually ‘lifetime’ and with proper installation, it ought to retain solid performance for 20 years or more.

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Asphalt Shingle Roof Costs: Materials & Installation

The biggest bang for your buck. That’s what Asphalt Shingles on a roof can provide to you, the homeowner. It’s not the most durable material. Durability and longevity belong to metal roofing and natural slate.

For the value, though, Asphalt Shingles are hard to beat, especially when viewed through the prism of their low upfront cost and high near-term home improvement ROI.

Did you know? An asphalt shingle roof, such as 30-year architectural shingles, can often be installed for under $10,000 on a small or mid-sized single family house in the US.

For a relatively modest upfront cost, you can expect to get at least 10 to 15 years of roof protection or longer, depending on the type of shingle you choose.

Pro Tip: Generally speaking, you will get a much better ROI and longer service lifespan by installing architectural shingles as opposed to 3-tab.

That being said, on a per sq. ft. basis, you can expect to pay anywhere from $3.00 to $5.50 to install architectural shingles on a typical single-family home in the US.

Coastal and metropolitan areas will cost more than roofs in rural areas. States like South Carolina, parts of Georgia, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Kansas will have lower costs than New England, Mid-Atlantic, and West Coast States.

As you can see roof pricing is highly regional, because labor costs are insurance costs vary a lot in different parts of the country.

Note: Larger remodeling companies and general contractors will charge up to 30% more to install a new roof than a smaller roofing company. Reason being is that larger companies have some serious overhead costs that get priced into their roofing services.

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Metal Shingle Roofing Costs and Value

Installing a metal shingle roof on a residential home will cost, on average, between $8.00 and $10.00 per sq. ft. There are a number of factors that determine that cost, and we’ll explore them in this guide.

It’s perhaps most important to realize that of the three primary options for metal roofing (the others being Standing Seam at the high-end, and Corrugated and Ribbed Metal Panels at the low-end), Metal Shingle is in the middle of pack in terms of costs.

Understanding Your Options

At first mention, metal shingles sound bland, or perhaps too risky of an option in an area where they would clearly be outside the norm (i.e. all your neighbors have asphalt shingle roofs).

Yet, when researching metal shingles styles and options for residential homes, you might be surprised to pull up some images that look a lot like asphalt shingles. 😉

Why would that be? Because the reality of metal shingles today, is that these are really metal tiles that are intended to mimic just about all other possible roofing styles designed for sloped roofs.

Slate tiles, ceramic tiles, asphalt shingles, cedar shakes and say redwood shingle are all materials that metal shingles can mimic.

From the curbside view, it would be hard to tell the difference between the metal material and its usual counterparts. That’s how diverse the metal roofing industry has gotten.

Add to this the idea that metal itself can have a pleasing appearance, as is the case with copper, zinc and painted aluminum and steel tiles. Gone are the days when metal shingles only have a silver/gray, metallic appearance.

Key Fact: There are really two basic types of metal shingles, or tiles: metal coated with metallic finish, often second coated with factory finished paint, and the second type which is often referred to as stone-coated metal tiles.

It’s the stone-coated variation that opens the door to having metal shingles that look nearly identical to asphalt shingles, because like asphalt shingles, they are coated with granules.

So, it’s not just color, but texture that allows metal shingles to obtain a great diversity in product options.

With texture as an additional option, slate, wood and ceramic are all possible appearances for metal roofing.

Then there is shape, which varies a bit by manufacturer, but for the most part are rectangular, or diamond shaped.

How it’s installed: Metal shingle installation relies on an interlocking system that makes for quicker installation and ability to hide fasteners.

Some manufacturers still go the route of having panels of say 4 tiles (per panel) that are adhered to the roof deck.

Panels are usually 4 feet long and are often installed over existing roofing (i.e. metal shingles can be installed on top of asphalt shingles).

Did you know? Interlocking tiles are now the 2nd most popular type of metal roofing for residential homes after standing seam.

The other consideration for shingle options is the material, or type of metal itself, but we’ll cover that in the next section.

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