What You Should Know About Zinc Roofing

Zinc roofs are a popular choice due to their durability, versatility, and long service life. However, it’s important to keep in mind key considerations such as the finish, maintenance requirements, and cost when specifying a zinc roof. Despite being a traditional roofing material, zinc roofs are still widely used, having been used to top buildings for over 200 years. In this read, we are going to take a look at zinc roofing options, their benefits and some of the alternatives.

Zinc Roofing Options

Zinc roofs offer a wide range of options when it comes to colours and finishes. To ensure the desired outcome, it is important to discuss roof design ideas with your architectural designer and supplier as early as the design stage of the project.

One of the options is natural zinc, which features a shiny, metallic top that reveals a patina down the line, lending a unique and natural look. However, pre-patinated products have a smooth, matt surface, which is a great option if you prefer a more consistent look. Additionally, roller-applied textures can be incorporated into the fabrication process, creating attractive textured finishes like grooves, ripples, and even fish scales.

The most common type of application for a zinc roof is a standing seam roof, but shingle systems (small individual metal sheets) are also available if you’re looking for a different aesthetic.

The Benefits of Zinc Roofs

  • Longevity: Zinc roofs can offer a service life of between 60 and 100 years when properly installed and detailed.
  • Corrosion-resistant: Zinc is extremely corrosion-resistant and has self-healing properties, meaning any scratches on the surface will recover over time.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: Zinc roofs complement slate roof coverings well and are especially ideal for agricultural-style buildings.
  • Malleable: Usually at just 0.7mm, Zinc is a relatively thin construction material that can be shaped to follow interesting curves and angles while still maintaining its durability.
  • Quick installation: Zinc roof systems are relatively easy to install.
  • Low maintenance: This is another key advantage of zinc roofs. They require minimal upkeep, with the exception of keeping the roof free of fallen debris such as leaves.
  • Zinc is an environmentally friendly option as it is 100% recyclable and takes less energy to produce compared to other metal roofing options due to its lower melting point.
  • Zinc roofs are also weather-resistant and not affected by UV light.

When undertaking a self-build project near the coast, it is important to extra precautions. This is due to the salt content in the air of marine environments, which can lead to staining and corrosion of metal surfaces. Keep in mind that rainfall will typically wash away salt deposits from zinc roofs. If you are looking for zinc roofing in Hampshire, simply search on Google. It will save you time to reach them quickly.

What is the Cost of Installing a Zinc Roof?

Zinc roofs can be more expensive for complex installations such as those with curved or tapered areas or openings for roof windows. Additionally, if access to the roof is difficult, it may also increase the installation cost of a zinc roof.

Zinc Roofing Alternatives

If you’re looking for alternatives to zinc roofing, copper and coated aluminium are two options to consider. Copper is available in different finishes, including raw and aged Verdigris green copper. It will immediately start to oxidize and change colour after installation. Coated aluminium is lightweight and comes in multiple colours. It has similar installation techniques as zinc, but it cannot be soldered, so certain installations may require a different approach.

Widely used in Scandinavian countries, GreenCoat PLX is another option to consider. It is a coated steel that is made with eco-friendly coatings, such as rapeseed oil, making it an ideal alternative to zinc due to its lower cost and similar installation method. It has a similar appearance to zinc but you can get it in RAL colours to match your doors and windows.


Leave a Reply