The Pros and Cons of Copper Roof – Benefits, Costs, Installation

an elegant house with copper roof shingles

Copper is a remarkable roofing material. This is due to its flexible, robust and ductile features. It also comes in fantastic colors ranging from salmon pink to soft grey-green. Consequently, the copper roof is durable and can go for up to a hundred years if maintained well. All these features make it a number one choice in the building industry today. Besides these great features, it is imperative that we also inform you about the issues associated with it as a roofing material as well as the installation process. Read on to find out all the details about a copper roof.

The Application of a Copper Roof

For a long time, the copper roof has been at the core of most of the architectural masterpieces in the world. Such structures have been renovated from time to time whereas their roofs remain untouched. Copper’s timelessness has made it a prime tool in the building industry. Its classic nature is being adopted to accentuate a modern look and feel to the current building structures.

Installation of a Copper Roof

If you chose to build a timber structure with a fourteen-pitch roof, you could go for the standing seam copper. These materials will cost roughly $20,000 to $30,000. Manufacturers usually construct the standing seam roofs from preformed panels, which is an equivalent for building the roof frame on preexisting trusses.

When installing the seam panels, the male edge of the panel is attached to the roof with the help of stainless steel brackets or cleats. The female edge of the next panel is then fastened to the male edge of the adjacent panel. A seamer is then used to create uniform straight seams.

Pros and Cons of a Copper Roof

a simple and flat copper roof


Just as stated earlier in the post, copper roofs have a plethora of benefits. We will now dive deeper into its flagship advantages regarding installation, upgrading, maintenance and repair.

#1. Weight

Copper is extremely lightweight, almost half the weight of the contemporary tiles. When one uses it as a fully supported roof covering, there is no need for a strong supporting structure. Thus, it will help you save on costs for additional supporting timber or metal. You can also make the foundation adjustments to feature the light roofing.

#2. Minimal Thermal Movement

Copper as a metal has a thermal expansion rate of 40 percent less than that of zinc and lead. Therefore, a well-constructed copper roof will thrive despite a variation in weather. Its high melting point is another source of strength since it will not stretch unusually like other roofing metals do.

#3. Copper Requires Little Maintenance

According to its properties mentioned earlier (durable, naturally aesthetic, sturdy) copper requires no decoration, cleaning or maintenance. This makes it a great option for roofs that are difficult to access. It does not need repainting because the colors are innate to its composition and do not wear off easily.

#4. Longevity

Over time, copper develops a coating (patina) when exposed to air. Therefore, prevailing environmental factors will not corrode it often. Consequently, it does not experience underside corrosion as witnessed in other metals.


Despite copper being a superior roofing material, it has some drawbacks which you need to consider.

#1. Price

Copper is one of the most highly-priced materials which you can use to roof a building. In fact, most homeowners will not cover the entire structure with copper. In most cases, roofers use it as a complimentary roofing material to increase the roof aesthetics. Most people think it feasible to opt for an alternative roofing because of the high initial cost of a copper roof installation.

#2. Installation

Copper roof installation can be tricky due to the lightweight nature of each sheet. It, therefore, requires considerable expertise to ensure that they form well on the roofing structure. When you fit them correctly, issues resulting from expansion and contraction with the fluctuation in temperature will reduce. A certified supplier can ensure that you get the appropriate copper roofing to reduce any effects of seasonal expansion or contraction.

What to Expect from a Copper Roof: Guidelines, Standards, and Practices

A copper roof has a high installation cost, but it also offers excellent value for your money. It is a premium roofing material that works well in industries. For homeowners, it is a great option for increasing the curb appeal while substantially increasing a house’s resale value.

Copper has remarkable environmental standards and is a target material for sustainable construction. Most of the environmentally cautious individuals go for copper because they perceive it as a green building material. In the US, for instance, copper makes a large part of the recyclable metal waste. Copper roofing material is made up of 75% of recycled copper metal. This implies that when building with copper, you do not have to worry about its disposal in landfills after it wears out. You can go for retrofitting services where they will be remodeled to serve your roofing needs once again.

Because copper roofs are quite costly, it is important to scrutinize your supplier keenly to make sure you get value for your money. Look at the warranty they offer among other after sales services that can improve your roofing experience.

Summing It Up

After considering both the benefits and the drawbacks of a copper roof, it is evident that copper is a worthwhile investment. The cost of copper should not be a big issue since the material is very durable and will not bother you with frequent maintenance.

Consequently, just like other metallic roofing techniques, do not install copper over an open roof. You should use sound absorbers such as plywood, sheaths and a preexisting shingle when installing the roof. This way, any problems associated with noise will be cut out. You can contact a copper roofing expert to find out the available options and copper finishes for your building.

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