When our client contacted us, he had a common but serious problem: his roof was leaking. Roof systems can easily be out of sight, out of mind for homeowners, but when they do have an issue it’s often a tough one to ignore.
As we assessed the roof’s condition and determined the best course of action, Keith Gerety, owner of Gerety Building and Restoration, suggested a long-term solution. Rather than work with asphalt shingles, Keith recommended a copper roof installation.
Why Choose a Copper Roof?
Before we dig into the more practical details, let’s start with an obvious benefit. Simply put, copper roofs are stunning. The photos above and below were taken after replacing a section of this client’s roof in Pound Ridge, NY.
Copper offers not only classy, timeless style, but also incredible longevity. Asphalt shingles have certainly improved over recent years, and many boast impressive lifespans, but you likely will see the cycle of several roofs in your decades of homeownership.
Copper, on the other hand, can last up to a century, and sometimes longer than that. To get a sense of its longevity you need only look across the pond to Europe where many historic structures are proudly capped with copper. It takes on a greenish patina over time, but that simply adds to its character and charm and is not a sign of decay.
If beauty and longevity doesn’t quite do it for you, here are a few other benefits to keep in mind:
- Style Versatility – Copper can work beautifully with a wide variety of architectural styles. From more modern homes to wise old structures, this roofing option is highly adaptable.
- Weather-resistant – Copper can stand up to weather with ease, and it only grows stronger as its greenish patina develops with age.
- Naturally Strong – This material requires no painting or finishing; its natural qualities are all it needs.
- Flexibility – Because of copper’s malleable nature, a professional with the proper tools can shape and mold it to fit even the most unique architectural features.
- Longevity – Did we mention that it can last over a century? We thought it might be worth bringing up again.
- Lightweight – Unlike many other roofing materials, copper is relatively lightweight. This means that there is less stress on your home’s structure overall.
- Efficient – Copper is an excellent material for controlling the temperature in your home.
- Fire-Resistant – A copper roof will never burn.
- Maintenance-Free – In addition to being strong and weather-resistant, repairs and upkeep are just not necessary.
- Increases Resale Value – The benefits of copper roofing can be enjoyed by anyone (who doesn’t love the idea of a beautiful, maintenance-free roof?). Because of this, a copper roof offers fantastic resale value and marketability to your property.
Did You Know that Copper Roofs Are an Environmentally Friendly Option?
With an increased focus on making decisions that are positive for the environment, many homeowners are looking for globally responsible building materials. Because of its value, there is a huge effort to recycle copper rather than rely on new extraction and processing. To name just a few examples, wiring, pipes, fixtures, and even old roofs are recycled and repurposed consistently.
What Does a Copper Roof Cost?
The primary disadvantage to a copper roof is simply the price of materials. On average, a copper installation costs 2-3 times as much as a standard asphalt roof. While this might make the option prohibitive for many, it’s still important to think bigger than sticker shock.
If the installation of asphalt shingles is ⅓ the cost of its copper counterpart, that may be attractive at first blush. If, on the other hand, copper will last four or five times as long it suddenly becomes the better long-term investment. As with any upgrade to your home, it often pays to consider the benefits of better quality options with a larger perspective.
Installing a Copper Roof
This kind of installation requires a special skill set. Zooming back in on the example of this home in Pound Ridge, the work was completed by our elite, qualified coppersmiths. Just as the use of copper roofing has a rich history, the trade itself is old, unique, and respected as well.
Our coppersmiths were trained as apprentices for many years before being ready for this kind of work. This dedication is apparent, however, as the craftsmanship is absolutely phenomenal, and the results breathtaking.
Do you have any other roofing questions or concerns? If so, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Gerety Building and Restoration. Home building, remodeling, and improvement has been our specialty for over 35 years.