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How to Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles?

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How to Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles

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Whether to replace or overlay when considering a new roof is a pressing concern for many homeowners. 

The process of transition from traditional shingles to metal roofing offers numerous advantages, but how it’s done makes all the difference. 

In addressing the main question of “How to Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles,” we delve into a comprehensive guide that encompasses everything from initial assessment to final installation, ensuring your home not only looks stylish but stands strong against the elements.

For those wondering how to install metal roofing over shingles, the process involves a thorough assessment of the roof deck, adding furring strips for optimum ventilation, correctly applying a suitable underlayment, and then meticulously placing the metal roofing panels using the right fasteners and flashings, all while adhering to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

How to Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles? – Brief Guide

Choosing to overlay metal roofing atop existing shingles is an aesthetic and practical decision. The key lies in the meticulous preparation of the roof deck, ensuring it’s in top condition. Next, integrating furring strips is vital, not just for structural support but for promoting much-needed ventilation. As you move forward, the underlayment acts as a protective shield against external elements. It’s imperative to select the right type for your region and ensure it overlaps correctly for the utmost water and wind resistance. Lastly, as you embark on installing the metal panels, paying heed to manufacturer guidelines will ascertain a flawless finish. Whether you’re a fashion fan or a home enthusiast, embracing metal roofing over shingles elevates your home’s curb appeal and assures longevity and durability.

Can You Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles?

Metal roofing systems have gained significant popularity in recent years, largely due to their durability, energy efficiency, and aesthetic versatility. 

When homeowners consider transitioning from traditional shingles to metal roofing, a common question arises: Can you install metal roofing over shingles?

To answer this, one must understand the compatibility between these two materials. 

Generally, metal roofs can be installed over one layer of asphalt shingles, provided the roof structure is sound and has no underlying issues. This compatibility allows homeowners to bypass the laborious and costly step of shingle removal, leading to a faster and potentially less expensive roof installation.

However, it’s crucial to examine situations where installing metal roofing over shingles is viable. 

If there are multiple layers of shingles or if the existing shingles are in poor condition (e.g., curling, buckling, or showing signs of water damage), it might be necessary to remove them before proceeding. 

The weight of additional layers could compromise the roof’s integrity, and underlying damage can create problems in the future.

Moreover, homeowners should check local building codes and regional guidelines before deciding on this approach. 

Some jurisdictions may prohibit installing metal roofs over existing shingles due to concerns related to weight, ventilation, or other factors. 

Ensuring compliance is not just a matter of adhering to regulations; it’s also about ensuring the longevity and safety of the roofing system.

Should You Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles?

While the feasibility of installing metal roofing over shingles has been established, the question remains: is it advisable? There are several considerations to weigh when answering this.

Firstly, there are undeniable advantages to installing metal roofs over existing shingles. One of the most apparent benefits is cost efficiency. 

Homeowners can save considerably by avoiding the process of removing and disposing of old shingles. This method also provides an added layer of insulation, which can contribute to energy savings, especially in climates with extreme temperature fluctuations.

However, this approach has concerns. One of the primary drawbacks is the potential for trapped moisture between the shingle and metal layers. 

This moisture can lead to mold growth and wood rot without proper ventilation, compromising the roof’s integrity and necessitating costly repairs.

Furthermore, homeowners should know the long-term implications of the roof’s lifespan and maintenance. 

While metal roofing is renowned for its durability, the layer of shingles beneath can deteriorate over time. This can lead to uneven weight distribution or pockets where water can collect. Regular maintenance checks become imperative to catch and address issues early.

How to Properly Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles?

The transition from traditional shingles to metal roofing is about aesthetics, durability, and proper installation. Ensuring the right procedures and considerations are taken into account can greatly extend the lifespan of your new roof and amplify the benefits associated with metal roofing.

Assessment and Preparations

  • Examining the Roof Deck’s Condition: A thorough inspection of the existing roof deck is vital before commencing with the installation. This involves checking for signs of rot, water damage, or other structural issues that might compromise the new roofing system.
  • Removing Damaged or Excessively Layered Shingles: While it’s possible to install metal roofs over a single layer of shingles, it’s important to remove any sections that are damaged or areas where shingles have been layered excessively. This ensures a smooth and even surface for the metal panels.
  • Ensuring Structural Integrity: Before placing a new roofing material, the structural integrity of the roof, including the trusses and beams, should be verified. This will ensure that the structure can support the weight and stress of the new metal panels.

Installation of Furring Strips

  • The Role of Furring Strips in Promoting Ventilation: Furring strips are essential when laying metal over shingles. They create an air gap between the two materials, promoting ventilation and reducing the potential for moisture buildup.
  • Correct Placement and Spacing: These strips should be placed perpendicular to the roof’s trusses or rafters, ensuring proper weight distribution and maximizing ventilation. Spacing typically ranges from 12 to 24 inches apart, depending on local building codes and the specific type of metal roofing system.
  • Tools and Materials Needed: Standard tools include a nail gun or screws, a saw, and a level. It’s vital to use weather-resistant fasteners to prevent rusting and potential leaks.

Application of Underlayment

  • Types of Underlayment for Metal Roofing Systems: Different underlayment materials, such as synthetic or felt paper, can be used. The choice often depends on the regional climate and specific metal roofing product.
  • Proper Overlap and Taping Techniques: To prevent water intrusion, underlayment sections should overlap sufficiently, typically by at least 6 inches. Seams should be securely taped.
  • Water and Wind Resistance Considerations: In areas prone to heavy rain or high winds, additional underlayment layers or specialized products might be necessary to enhance protection.

Metal Roofing Panels Installation

  • Choosing the Right Metal Roofing Panels: Metal panels come in various materials, finishes, and styles. Factors such as local climate, desired aesthetics, and budget will influence the ideal choice.
  • Importance of Following Manufacturer Guidelines: Each panel type may have specific installation recommendations. Adhering to these guidelines ensures the longevity and performance of the roof.
  • Proper Technique for Fastening and Employing Flashings: Secure fastening is crucial to prevent leaks and withstand high winds. Additionally, flashings should be correctly placed at roof valleys, edges, and around any roof protrusions to prevent water ingress.

Benefits of Installing Metal Roofing Over Shingles

Choosing to overlay metal roofing on existing shingles presents homeowners with a myriad of benefits. From cost-saving advantages to enhancing the property’s overall aesthetic, the perks are both immediate and long-term.

Cost Efficiency

  • Saving on Shingle Removal and Disposal Costs: By overlaying metal on shingles, homeowners can avoid the hefty costs associated with tear-off and disposal.
  • Faster Installation Time: Bypassing the removal process translates to faster installation, reducing labor costs and inconvenience.

Enhanced Insulation

  • Natural Insulation Layer Due to Existing Shingles: The existing shingle layer acts as an additional insulation barrier, contributing to indoor temperature regulation.
  • Potential Energy Savings in Specific Climates: The combined insulative properties can result in reduced energy bills, especially in areas with extreme weather fluctuations.


  • Reducing Landfill Waste: Overlaying minimizes roofing waste, which directly contributes to a reduction in landfill usage.
  • Longevity of Metal Roofs Compared to Traditional Shingles: Metal roofs can last 2-3 times longer than traditional shingles, making them a sustainable choice in terms of material longevity.

Aesthetics and Property Value

  • Modern and Diverse Design Options: With an array of finishes and styles, metal roofing can significantly enhance the curb appeal of any property.
  • Potential to Increase Property Value: Due to their durability, energy efficiency, and modern look, metal roofs can boost the overall property value, proving beneficial for homeowners contemplating resale in the future.


Transitioning from traditional shingles to metal roofing doesn’t have to be an overwhelming endeavor. 

Armed with the right knowledge and a structured approach, homeowners can reap the combined benefits of durability, aesthetics, and cost-efficiency. 

This comprehensive guide on “How to Install Metal Roofing Over Shingles” serves as a roadmap for those aspiring for a trendy yet long-lasting roofing solution. 

As with any home project, ensuring proper execution is key, and with this guide, we hope to make your journey smoother and more rewarding.


What are the main steps in overlaying metal roofing on top of shingles?

To overlay metal roofing on shingles, first, inspect the roof deck’s condition, then add furring strips for ventilation, apply the right underlayment, and secure metal panels with suitable fasteners, always following manufacturer directives.

How do furring strips benefit when installing metal roofing over shingles?

Furring strips, placed between shingles and metal panels, facilitate ventilation, prevent moisture buildup, and ensure even weight distribution, optimizing the roof’s longevity and function.

Which underlayment is best when transitioning from shingles to metal roofing?

Choosing an underlayment depends on your region’s climate and the specific metal roofing product, with synthetic or felt paper being popular choices; always prioritize water and wind resistance.

Are there any limitations or regional restrictions to consider before overlaying metal roofing on shingles?

Yes, some regions have building codes restricting metal installation over shingles, often due to weight or ventilation concerns; always consult local regulations before starting the project.

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