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The Pros and Cons of a Standing Seam Metal Roof in 2021

Published on Friday September 17, 2021
A photo of a standing seam metal roof in 2021

Standing seam metal roofs are well-loved for their many advantages. As one of the most durable types of metal roofing on the market today—with a life expectancy of 50 years or more—many homeowners wonder about the pros and cons of standing seam metal roofs.

Alternatively to traditional metal roof panels that are attached using exposed fasteners, a standing seam metal roof has concealed fasteners. These fasteners eliminate the risk of many leaks, rust, and loosening screws. That is just one of the many advantages of a standing seam metal roof. 

Read on for the full list of standing seam metal roof pros and cons.

What is a Standing Seam Roof?

Standing seam metal roofs are an intricate metal roof panel design made to keep fasteners concealed and unexposed. This metal panel roof design keeps the roof fasteners protected against UV rays, wind, rain, snow, and all other elements that cause roof wear and decay. This specific design is what sets standing seam metal roofs apart from other metal roof types as it allows them to be much more durable.

Standing seam metal roofing is easily identifiable by its concealed fastener metal panel system and raised seams (or vertical legs) that lift above the flat panel. While many homeowners only know it to be used on roofs, one of the advantages of standing seam metal roofing is it can also be used for walls.

Pros and Cons of Standing Seam Metal Roof


There are plenty of standing seam metal roof advantages: especially if you’re looking to make your home an energy-efficient abode, or just in need of a secure roof that will keep your family safe from the elements.


More and more homeowners are seeking ways to make their homes more environmentally friendly, and the type of material you choose for your roof can make a big difference. If you’re looking into eco-friendly roofing options for your home, it’s best to avoid the traditional asphalt shingles and go with something recyclable, such as metal roofing.

Standing seam metal roofs are made of recycled and recyclable materials like aluminum. They are easy to work with and can be reused for different projects when the time comes to replace them. No need to add to landfills, with this type of roof.

Energy Efficient

Most homeowners who are looking for eco-friendly options are also in search of energy-efficient ones, too. While these options can be more expensive upfront, choosing energy-efficient material types for your home upgrades, repairs, and replacements can end up saving hundreds every year on energy bills. If you’re looking to save money and energy on your home, a standing seam metal roof could be the perfect home upgrade.

Standing seam metal roof panels reflect solar radiant heat coming from the sun. While some homeowners wonder if a metal roof will make their home hotter (since metal heats up under sunlight), a standing seam metal roof allows your home to stay cool easier and substantially reduces the cooling costs of your home.


While your home’s roofing structure is designed to withstand a great deal of weight, choosing something lightweight can help your home in a lot of ways. Lightweight roofing options are a popular choice among homeowners looking to add the least amount of stress to their home’s structure. Lightweight roofing material types are also easier to handle, carry, and install for roofing contractors.

Standing seam metal roofs are wonderfully lightweight and flexible. This makes them easier for your roofing company to move around and carry up to your roof, allowing for a faster and safer installation. Standing seam metal roofing also creates less of a load on your roof’s supporting structure which is much better for your home overall.


Metal roofing is one of the most durable types of roofing you can get at a reasonable price. Metal itself is highly durable and can withstand elements like wind, rain, sunlight, and ice. 

Out of all the metal roofs available, standing seam metal roofs are some of the most durable options thanks to their hidden fastener system. While standing seam metal roofs are lightweight, they are incredibly resilient and have concealed fasteners that allow them to endure extreme weather conditions without rusting, coming loose, or allowing any leaks.

Hidden Fasteners

Hidden fasteners are one of the biggest standing seam metal roof advantages. This hidden fastener technology protects your roof’s fasteners from exposure to UV rays, wind, moisture, and any other elements that cause other roofing types to wear away quicker. This fastener system also helps your metal roof last longer since there aren’t any holes put into the panels themselves. Standing seam metal roofs are installed with clamps or clips, creating less opportunity for your metal roof to wear down against screws.


While there are a lot of standing seam metal roof advantages, they don’t come without their list of cons. If you’re on a tight budget or don’t properly insulate, you might find that a standing seam metal roof isn’t right for your home.


Their cost is one of the biggest disadvantages. A standing seam metal roof needs to be installed by a skilled, professional roofing contractor since they are so complicated, which already costs more than a job you could do yourself. Additionally, standing seam metal roofs cost more in materials than many other roofing types. When compared to asphalt shingle roofing, you can expect standing seam metal roofing to cost about double.


If your home’s roof isn’t insulated properly, then sounds can easily carry from your roof throughout the rest of your home. A standing seam metal roof can be especially noisy during rainfall or storms, so be sure to consider that or insulate properly when choosing a roofing material for your home.

Types of Standing Seam Metal Roof Pros and Cons

Just like there are many metal roof types, there are also different types of standing seam metal roofs. Standing seam panels come in different shapes and sizes depending on what is needed for your particular home. Standing seam metal roof pros and cons differ slightly depending on what type of standing seam roof you’re dealing with. 

There are three main types of standing seam metal roof panels: snap-lock, mechanical, and batten panels. While each standing seam panel has a concealed fastener and is secured to your roof using clamps or clips, they are unique and offer different advantages.


Snap-lock standing seam metal roofs are known for their easy installation process, a wide variety of color options, and affordability (when compared to other standing seam metal roofs). They aren’t ideal for low-slope roofs but are great if you are working with a tighter budget. You can expect a snap-lock standing seam metal roof to last up to 50 years.

This type of panel features a male and female leg which snap together (which is where the name stems from). It’s a favorite among roofing contractors since it’s such a low-maintenance, easy-to-install metal roofing type. 

It’s important to note that while they are affordable and easy, snap-lock standing seam metal roofs are not as weathertight as other options. Homes in areas with heavy rainfall may want to consider a more secure option.


Mechanical standing seam metal roofs are known for their durability and excellent weather-tight seal. They are fairly labor-intensive to install and cost more than their competition, but many homeowners find their advantages far outweigh these cons. 

If you live in areas with more extreme weather or have a low-slope roof, this roofing type will work wonderfully for you. You can expect your mechanical standing seam metal roof to last up to 50 years.

It’s important to note that both mechanical and snap-lock standing seam metal roofs have a similar appearance, but they are different. Mechanical standing seam roofs are mechanically seamed together, which allows for them to be much more weathertight (and more expensive).

Batten Panels

This type of standing seam metal roof is known for being wind-resistant. With two legs placed beside each other, a batten clip is drilled to the surface underneath, keeping the panels locked together and secured. A metal cap is then put over them, seaming them together fully.

Batten panels can be either snap-locked or mechanically sealed together. If a mechanical seam is used, then the batten panels are weathertight and perform beautifully under low-sloped roofs and extreme weather conditions. If a snap-lock system is used, the batten cap is capable of sliding off the seam and they are not as weathertight.

Is standing seam metal roof worth it?

Now that you’re aware of the good and bad that come with installing a standing seam metal roof, it’s time to consider if a standing seam metal roof is right for you.

It’s no secret that standing seam metal roofs are quite a bit more expensive than traditional asphalt shingle roofing. That being said, standing seam metal roofs last 20 to 30 years longer than asphalt shingles. While the initial investment and installation can be expensive, over time the cost will be less than multiple asphalt shingle roofs. 

If you plan on living in your current home for a long time, or keeping the home in your family, then investing in a standing seam metal roof could be the right option for you. Thanks to hidden fasteners and durable metal material, standing seam metal roofs are one of the best roofing options when it comes to durability and longevity.

Additionally, standing seam metal roofs hold up well against weather, so if you’re looking for a low-maintenance roofing option then a standing seam metal roof could be perfect for you. They don’t require a lot of attention or upkeep and last for decades. 

Essentially, if you’re looking for the cheapest roofing option, then standing seam metal roofs are not right for you. 

However, if you’re looking to invest in something durable for your home that will add value, be durable, and last a long time, which are advantages of standing seam metal roofs, then a standing seam metal roof is a great option. 

We’ll Help You Find Your Best Roof

If you’re still unclear if a standing seam metal roof is right for you, reach out to our team at Long Roofing. When it comes to a big home upgrade like a roof replacement, you deserve to have all of your questions answered. Schedule an appointment for more information about standing seam metal roofs and advice on your specific roofing project.

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