What are the Pros and Cons of Copper Roofing in Building Construction?

Copper Roofing in Building Construction:

Copper has earned a respected place in the related fields of architecture, building construction, and interior design. From cathedrals to castles and from homes to offices, copper is used for a variety of architectural elements, including roofs, flashings, gutters, downspouts, domes, spires, vaults, wall cladding, and building expansion joints.

The history of copper in architecture can be linked to its durability, corrosion resistance, prestigious appearance, and ability to form complex shapes. For centuries, craftsmen and designers utilized these attributes to build aesthetically pleasing and long-lasting building systems.

For the past quarter century, copper has been designed into a much wider range of buildings, incorporating new styles, varieties of colors, and different shapes and textures. Copper clad walls are a modern design element in both indoor and outdoor environments.

Some of the world’s most distinguished modern architects have relied on copper. Examples include Frank Lloyd Wright, who specified copper materials in all of his building projects; Michael Graves, an AIA Gold Medalist who designed over 350 buildings worldwide; Renzo Piano, who designed pre-patinated clad copper for the NEMO-Metropolis Museum of Science in Amsterdam; Malcolm Holzman, whose patinated copper shingles at the WCCO Television Communications Centre made the facility an architectural standout in Minneaoplis; and Marianne Dahlbäck and Göran Månsson, who designed the Vasa Museum, a prominent feature of Stockholm’s skyline, with 12,000-square metres copper cladding. Architect Frank O. Gehry’s enormous copper fish sculpture atop the Vila Olimpica in Barcelona is an example of the artistic use of copper.

The Pros and Cons of Copper Roofing

Did you know that back in 27 BC, the Romans used a copper roofing as a covering for the Pantheon?

The versatility and aesthetic value of using copper were well-known for thousands of years, as evidenced by its use in various historical monuments. With the advancements we’ve made over the years, copper roofing is now something you can have for your own home.

However, as with any decision, you must evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of choosing this for your home.

This article outlines the various considerations of opting for copper roofing.

The Pros of Copper Roofing

Let’s start by outlining the various benefits of having a copper roof for your house. In addition to the beautiful aesthetic it offers, here’s what you need to know.

The Eco-Friendly Alternative

As one of the most widely recyclable metals around, copper ensures minimal exploitation of resources. This is evident because around 75% of all the copper ever exploited is still in use today.

Additionally, it is also worth noting that your carbon emissions from copper usage are significantly lower when compared to other roofing alternatives.

Durable and Corrosion-Resistant

Copper roofs have a long lifespan. You can expect a well-installed roof to last you between fifty to seventy-five years. Its use in older architectural monuments that still stand today is a testament to its durability.

Copper also has the ability to protect itself from corrosion caused by external sources. Through the process of patination, it develops a green layer that serves as protection against bad weather.

A Lightweight Material

A heavy roof can cause immense strain to your house and eventually lead to structural damage. Cooper roofs are especially beneficial if your home is susceptible to heavy snowfall, hail or even heavy rainfall.

Energy Efficient

Copper is a reflective metal that can help keep your home cooler by reflecting heat. The fact that copper absorbs and radiates less heat will serve you well throughout the year.

The Cons of Copper Roofing

There are a few cons to copper roofing. However, these are worth knowing, as they will allow you to make a well-informed decision for your home.

Initial Investment

The initial cost of installation can be expensive. This is because copper is not as commonly used as more conventional alternatives like steel, asphalt or wood.

Expansion and Contraction

Copper roofs can contract or expand depending on changes in the atmosphere or weather. However, do note that this can be easily addressed during the installation process.

Special Care

Finally, copper can be noisy during the rains or snowfall if not cared for or installed correctly. However, with insulation and regular maintenance checks, you should be able to avoid this problem.

Finding the Right Roofing Contractors for Your Needs

There are plenty of great reasons to opt for copper roofing. It is eco-friendly, recyclable, durable, corrosion-resistant, energy-efficient and looks exceptional. However, it can also be expensive and requires extra care during the installation process.

That’s why you need to find qualified roofing contractors for the job.

At Trudel and Sons, we are committed to giving all our customers quality cooper roofing solutions. Get in touch with our team to set up a consultation or request a quote today!


Properly designed copper roofs minimize movements due to thermal changes. Copper’s low thermal expansion, 40% less than zinc and lead, helps to prevent deterioration and failure. Also, copper’s high melting point ensures that it will not creep or stretch as some other metals do.