How much does it cost to install an aluminum roof?
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Aluminum Roof Cost Guide
Updated: August 17, 2022
Aluminum roofing is a favored premium metal roofing material for standing seam roofs. It is also used for other roofing projects due to its durability and corrosion resistance, which is highly beneficial in coastal regions. It comes in many styles, making it popular for architectural roofing because of its versatile appearance. Many roofers use this lightweight roofing on sheds, agricultural buildings, manufactured homes, and covered porches or aluminum patio roofs because it is malleable and easy to handle.
The national average cost to install an aluminum roof is $18,000 to $30,000, with most homeowners spending around $22,000 on a 2,000 sq.ft. standing seam aluminum roof on a 2-story home. This project’s low cost is $6,500 for a 1,000 sq.ft. interlocking shingle aluminum roof on a single-story home. The high cost is $40,000 for 2,000 sq.ft. of insulated standing seam aluminum roofing installed on a 2-story home with deck reinforcement.
Aluminum Roof Price
|Aluminum Roof Installation Cost|
|National average cost||$22,000|
Aluminum Roof Cost per Square Foot
Like all roofing, aluminum is often priced and sold by the square - or 100 sq.ft. It can also be priced by the square foot to make it easier for homeowners to determine their average costs. Aluminum roofing costs between $4 and $14 a sq.ft. for material and $6.50 to $21 a sq.ft. installed. Interlocking shingles are the least expensive materials, while insulated panels are the most expensive. The aluminum thickness and your roof shape and type influence your final costs. Below are the average costs to install an aluminum roof of varying sizes.
|Size||Average Cost (Installed)|
|1,000 sq.ft.||$6,500 - $21,000|
|1,200 sq.ft.||$7,800 - $25,200|
|1,350 sq.ft.||$8,775 - $28,350|
|1,500 sq.ft.||$9,750 - $31,500|
|2,000 sq.ft.||$13,000 - $42,000|
|2,200 sq.ft.||$14,300 - $46,200|
|3,750 sq.ft.||$24,374 - $78,750|
|4,500 sq.ft.||$29,250 - $94,500|
Aluminum Roof Cost per Square
Aluminum roof prices average $4 to $14 per sq.ft. for the material. A roofing square measures 10’ x 10’, so there are 100 sq.ft. in a single roofing square. That makes the average cost of a square of aluminum roofing $400 to $1,400 per square. With installation, this works out to $650 to $2,100 per square. Most homes need between 10 and 30 squares or between 1,000 and 3,000 sq.ft. of roofing. The exact number of squares you need is determined by how complex your roof is. The more peaks or separate areas of roofing, such as cross gables, the more squares are needed to complete it. Below are the average costs for installing aluminum roofing for the most common number of squares.
|Number of Squares||Average Cost (Installed)|
|10 Squares||$6,500 - $21,000|
|12 Squares||$7,800 - $25,200|
|15 Squares||$9,750 - $31,500|
|18 Squares||$11,700 - $37,800|
|20 Squares||$13,000 - $42,000|
|25 Squares||$16,250 - $52,500|
|30 Squares||$19,500 - $63,000|
|35 Squares||$22,750 - $73,500|
Aluminum Roofing Cost by Type
Aluminum roof costs vary by type from $4 to $14 per sq.ft. for materials. Aluminum roofing is available in a wide range of styles. Some are designed to interlock to create the look of other roofing materials, such as tile, slate, and shingles. Other types are designed to look like what they are - aluminum panels of varying styles fitted closely. These types fall into three categories: insulated panels, screw-down panels, and standing seam panels.
All aluminum roofing types can be powder coated in a range of colors. This means you can have an aluminum roof that mimics red clay tiles, a forest green standing seam roof, or cool roofs in white and other reflective colors. These variations within each type - the roof’s shape, style, and color - can mean a range of costs for each type. Below are the most common types of aluminum roofing and their average costs.
|Type||Cost per Sq.Ft. (Materials Only)||Cost per Sq.Ft. (Installed)|
|Screw-Down||$4 - $6||$6.50 - $10|
|Interlocking||$4 - $9||$6.50 - $10|
|Standing Seam||$5 - $10||$10 - $17|
|Insulated Panels||$12 - $14||$17 - $21|
Screw-Down Aluminum Roofing Sheet
Screw-down aluminum roof sheeting costs $4 to $6 a sq.ft. When installed, this type of roofing costs between $6.50 to $10 a sq.ft. Screw-down sheeting comes in many styles. These include corrugated, smooth, V5 crimp, Tuff rib, and others. These types of aluminum roofing are uncommon on residential homes and are more often used in commercial settings. This is because the screws are visible and make the material less water-tight. This can cause leaks in some areas with inclement weather.
Interlocking Aluminum Shingles
The cost of interlocking aluminum shingles is $4 to $9 a sq.ft. Installed, it ranges between $6.50 to $10 per sq.ft. Interlocking aluminum shingles is a broad category with many styles. If you are looking for an aluminum roof that mimics shingles, shakes, slate tiles, or clay tiles, you want interlocking aluminum panels. These panels are embossed to look like different materials. The panels interlock, so there are no visible screws. The panels are colored to appear like the material they are imitating, so slate-inspired aluminum shingles are varying shades of gray, while clay-inspired aluminum tiles are red. The cost of these shingles varies depending on the embossing - or the amount of detail - and the thickness of the aluminum.
Aluminum Standing Seam Roof
The average price of standing seam aluminum roofing ranges from $5 to $10 per sq.ft. for materials and between $10 to $17 a sq.ft. installed. Each panel sheet has raised legs on the sides. The raised legs of the panels fit and are held with hidden fasteners or clips, so the screws holding the panels are not visible. The center has very thin pencil ribs that create friction when walking on the roofing’s surface. The panels in a standing seam aluminum roof expand and contract easier for greater thermal movement. Installation of a standing seam roof takes longer due to the hidden fasteners and clips that hold the panels in place, increasing the installation price.
Insulated Aluminum Roof Panels
The cost of insulated aluminum roof panels is $12 to $14 a sq.ft. Insulated aluminum roof panels range around $17 to $21 a sq.ft. installed. They come in several types but most commonly standing seam. Because screw-down panels need to break the panel’s surface to attach, this compromises the insulation. Therefore, standing seam panels are the most frequently insulated type. Insulated panels can help make the roof quieter and your home more energy-efficient. When paired with a reflective color coating, these panels can be used in hot climates to create a cool roof.
Average Labor Cost for an Aluminum Roof
The labor costs to install an aluminum roof vary from $2.50 a sq.ft. for interlocking panels to $7 a sq.ft. for standing seam roofs. Because aluminum roofs can be installed over existing roofs in good condition, sometimes a roof replacement does not require tearing off older roofing materials. A tear-off is necessary if the existing roof is in very poor condition or the deck needs repair, costing $1 to $2 a sq.ft., making the total labor in a roof replacement between $3.50 and $9 a sq.ft. for most aluminum roofs. This makes replacement costs for an aluminum roof between $7.50 and $23 a sq.ft. if you require a tear-off. Below is a cost breakdown of a roof replacement using aluminum roofing.
|Project Area||Average Costs per Sq.Ft.|
|Tear Off (Optional)||$1 - $2|
|Installation||$2.50 - $7|
|Materials||$4 - $14|
Cost to Install Aluminum Roofing on New Construction
If you install an aluminum roof on new construction - a new home build or addition - you do not need to pay for the tear-off. The costs are the same as a roof-over replacement - between $6.50 and $21 a sq.ft. for installation. For a 2,000 sq.ft. roof, this works out to between $13,000 and $42,000, depending on the material and roof type. The more complex the roof, the higher the installation costs. Aluminum is a popular material for new construction and replacements because it is lightweight and long-lasting. Using aluminum means you can use standard trusses to build the roof and do not need to reinforce it like a tile or slate roof.
Aluminum Roof Colors
Gone are the days when aluminum roofing was merely silver. Today, you can find roofing materials available in an array of colors. When choosing a color, keep your climate in mind. Darker colors attract more sunlight and make your home warmer. They also fade much quicker. So, a lighter shade like pale blue or gray might be better if you live in a warm and sunny area. On the other hand, you may want to attract more sunlight if you have more cold days than warm ones. In those cases, dark gray or black could be perfect.
Cool roofing finishes are also available for aluminum roofs. These are light-colored and have a reflective surface to keep the sun from heating the roof. This can be a good choice if installing an aluminum roof in a hot climate.
You should also consider the other homes in your neighborhood. Your roof is one of the first things people notice about your home, so you do not want it to clash with others around it. You should also check with your local homeowners association to see if certain colors or finishes are prohibited. As interior paint comes in various glosses, so does metal roofing paint. A higher-gloss finish provides greater durability but reflects light more. Accordingly, many people in cold climates choose a matte finish because it shows off the roof’s color without causing it to appear shiny. Many matte finishes add durability to the roof with how the color bonds to its surface. However, even reflective coatings can be durable for aluminum roofs. The choice between the two finishes depends largely on your area.
Pros and Cons
The sleek surface of aluminum roofing sheds precipitation easily, so snow and ice do not readily build up. Aluminum roofing is not heavy, making it easier on the building’s structure. Aluminum resists corrosion, stands up to salt and sand, and is wind resistant. However, high winds can lift the edges, causing the roof to become noisy and possibly bend. It is also susceptible to hail and debris damage, leaving dents. The wind can loosen the roof’s fasteners and cause it to become compromised. Fasteners help counter this and hold the panels in place. Standard aluminum is slippery to walk on and may become hot from the sun’s rays. There are cool roof alternatives for aluminum roofing. These use a reflective coating along with a light color for the roof. This can help keep your home from overheating if you live in a hot area.
How to Clean an Aluminum Roof
Aluminum roofs are fairly low-maintenance. They are highly durable and last 50 or more years with little upkeep. You can have them cleaned if you want. One of the preferred options by homeowners is having aluminum roofing professionally cleaned. However, you can clean your roof when you notice a stain, mildew, or mold using a bucket of cleaner, water, and a long-handled brush. You should also inspect your roof at least twice a year, especially after major storms, to look for damage. Remove limbs or debris from the roof’s surface and cut back overhanging tree limbs. While cleaning the roof, check the roof’s condition and reapply sealant. Make sure there is no panel movement and ensure the fasteners and screws are still holding. If there are holes in the roof, you can seal them using roofing cement.
Steel vs Aluminum Roof Cost
Aluminum is one of several options for metal roofing. Another popular material is a steel roof, which is less expensive than aluminum at $1.50 a sq.ft. However, it is important to note there is currently a steel shortage and steel pricing is extremely volatile, meaning that while it is currently less expensive than aluminum, this can change.
Steel is less prone to denting than aluminum. It is also heavier and more difficult to work with. Some steel types corrode easily and cannot be installed on homes near the coast due to the high salt content in the air. Steel roofs come in many of the same designs as aluminum but are most common in standing seam panels, while aluminum comes in many shapes and styles, including tile and shingle-look. Both materials can be painted in various colors and have cool roofing options. Below are the average costs for steel and aluminum roofs installed.
|Type||Cost per Sq.Ft. (Installed)|
|Steel||$4 - $15|
|Aluminum||$6.50 - $21|
Metal vs Aluminum Roofing Cost
Aluminum is a type of metal roofing. There is a wide range of pricing associated with metal roofs, from $4 to $40 per sq.ft. because so many materials fall under this classification. The price of an aluminum roof is included in that range, starting at $6.50 per sq.ft. and costing up to $21 per sq.ft. Aluminum is often chosen over other types, such as steel, zinc, and copper, because its strength-to-weight ratio is often greater. It is lightweight and malleable, making it easy for roofers to use. However, aluminum is a thin metal that does not always stand up to strong environmental stresses, such as hail, high winds, or flying debris. These occurrences damage the thin material easily, leaving it bent with dings or dents. Steel is often less expensive than aluminum and less likely to dent but harder to work with and install. It is also not as readily available in the many styles that aluminum is. Copper and zinc are more expensive than aluminum but longer-lasting. While aluminum is usually painted, copper and zinc develop a natural patina, adding to their appeal. Like steel, copper and zinc are not available in the range of styles aluminum is, making aluminum more common. Below are the average costs for an aluminum roof and metal roofs of all types.
|Type||Average Costs per Sq.Ft. (Installed)|
|Metal||$4 - $40|
|Aluminum||$6.50 - $21|
Galvalume vs Aluminum Roof Cost
Another metal roof is galvalume, a steel that has been given a coating of mostly aluminum mixed with other metal ions. This makes the steel less prone to corrosion while still having the strength of a steel roof. Galvalume roofs are inexpensive, with material costs of around $1.50 a sq.ft. They are unpainted, meaning the metal is fully visible and usually highly reflective. They last around 50 to 60 years and are available in screw-down and standing seam panels.
Aluminum roofs are lighter than galvalume and can be painted in a range of colors. They can come in screw-down and standing seam panels, interlocking shingles, and insulated panels, so there are more options with aluminum than with galvalume. Aluminum roofs are more expensive and more likely to dent. However, they can last longer than galvalume. Below are the average costs per square foot for both materials installed.
|Type||Cost per Sq.Ft. (Installed)|
|Galvalume||$4 - $11|
|Aluminum||$6.50 - $21|
Aluminum Roof vs Shingles Cost
Aluminum is one option for roofing to cover your home. Shingles are another popular option that comes in a range of styles and materials. The term shingles is fairly broad and can include a type of aluminum roofing. However, most people refer to asphalt shingles or the newer architectural shingles.
Aluminum roofs tend to be more durable and longer-lasting. They also have more options for cool roofing, insulation, and style than shingle roofs. You often do not need to tear off the old roof to install an aluminum one, making the installation process faster. However, shingle roofs have lower starting points and more material options. You can use a slate shingle roof with more durability and solar shingle roofs that offset energy costs. Below are the average costs per square foot for installing both types.
|Type||Cost per Sq.Ft. (Installed)|
|Shingles||$2.50 - $25|
|Aluminum||$6.50 - $21|
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
The cost of aluminum downspouts ranges from $300 to $600. Aluminum downspouts are a nice addition to an aluminum roof’s gutter system. The vertical downspouts attach to the gutter system to drain water from the home’s foundation. Aluminum downspouts come in round and rectangular styles in various colors. They are easy to take care of but dent easily if rocks or debris hit the downspout’s surface.
Painting an Aluminum Roof
If you do not like the color of your aluminum roof, you can paint the surface of the roofing material a custom shade for $2,550 to $4,250, including labor and materials. Use a resin-based paint coating that safeguards the aluminum from damaging UV rays. The paint creates a high gloss finish that lasts for years.
Aluminum Roof Sealant
You may also want to have someone seal your roof at the time of installation for $150 to $1,000. Sealant provides an added layer of protection from the elements, helping your roof fight rust and corrosion. It also provides extra waterproofing so moisture cannot penetrate the areas in between panels. Roofing sealant extends the life of your aluminum roof.
The cost to install aluminum gutters is $1,100 to $2,000, including labor and materials. Having aluminum gutters installed at the same time as the roofing enhances the building’s appearance. Gutters help remove water from your home’s new roof and keep it away from the foundation. The gutter system collects the water as it runs off the roof, funnels it down the downspout, and routes it away from the home. Aluminum gutters are a very popular material choice, especially if you have aluminum roofing. Installing them at the same time saves money because the installation process is packaged into the final cost.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Permits. Permits are normally needed for roof replacement or new installation. Check with your local building inspector. Building contractors normally pull permits for you and add the cost to their estimate.
- Recyclable. Aluminum roofing is 100% recyclable in most cases. In addition, some manufacturers offer materials that contain as much as 95% recycled product. A square of aluminum roofing materials may contain more than 1,800 recycled aluminum drinking cans.
- Corrosive-resistant. Homes in coastal areas are more susceptible to corrosion from salt and sand. However, aluminum resists corrosion and is less likely than steel to become damaged by sand or sea salt. Additionally, its extreme wind resistance makes it ideal for hurricane-prone areas. Depending upon your area, you could receive a 10% to 20% discount on your insurance by installing an aluminum roof.
- DIY. Serious problems can occur if you use the wrong fasteners, fail to attach material correctly, do not prepare the surface properly, or overlap panels in an unsatisfactory manner. So, you should not attempt this project yourself unless you have extensive roofing experience. You should also avoid amateur contractors with no previous aluminum roofing experience.
- Maintenance. You can wash the aluminum roofing if it shows mold, mildew, or stains. Once every couple of years, you should check to ensure the screws and fasteners in the roof are holding tight. If they have loosened, tighten them. If you notice holes, apply roofing cement to prevent possible leaks or replace the roofing panel.
- ROI. In general, metal roofing and aluminum can increase your home’s value. Aluminum roofs last more than 50 years when installed properly, which can attract buyers.
- Thickness. Your roof’s thickness can vary depending on the quality. Aluminum roofs generally have two thicknesses. Thicker roofs are more expensive but more durable and less prone to denting.
- Pitch. Aluminum roofs are best used on homes with a moderate pitch. They cannot be used on low-slope or flat roofs. Some may be used on high-pitch roofs, but this should be done at the discretion of your installer. Speak to your installer for more information.
- Why are aluminum roofs so expensive?
Many factors go into making aluminum roofs expensive. The cost of the material is extremely volatile, keeping costs high. There is also high demand for the product. To make a good roof, the aluminum needs to be a specific thickness and is usually painted with materials that increase its durability and make it better for producing a cool roof.
- Are aluminum roofs good?
Yes, aluminum roofs are good for many homes. They come in many styles and colors and can create a cool roof. They can last 50 to 60 years.
- How much does it cost to put a metal roof on a 2,000 sq.ft. house?
The average cost to install a metal roof on a 2,000 sq.ft. house averages $8,000 to $60,000, depending on the metal.
- How much is an aluminum roofing sheet?
A sheet of aluminum roofing ranges from $4 to $6 per sq.ft. for materials only, depending on the size and type.
- Is a metal roof more expensive than a shingle roof?
A metal roof costs more money initially but lasts longer than shingles. So, you spend more money upfront, but the investment pays for itself in the long run.
- Are aluminum roofs expensive?
Aluminum roofs fall somewhere in the middle of the cost spectrum. They are pricier than asphalt shingles but less expensive than slate, clay, and copper roofs.
- How much does an aluminum roof cost?
The typical consumer pays $18,000 to $30,000, depending on the size and type, including the cost of labor and materials.
- Which is better, steel or aluminum roofing?
Steel holds more heat than aluminum and might be better in cold-weather climates. Aluminum stays cooler, making it better for locations with more sunny days than cloudy.