Build Your Own Shade Solution

Choosing the Right Roof Panel

Explore the features, benefits, and considerations of Classic, Premium, and Insulated roofing options to choose the best fit for your outdoor structure.

Written ByRodney
Published On
November 23rd, 2023

Choosing the right roofing is a crucial part of any outdoor structure project. Whether it’s a garden shed, a patio cover, or a carport, the type of roofing you choose can significantly affect the project’s appearance, function, and cost. This guide aims to help you understand the differences between Classic, Premium, and Insulated roofing options so you can make an informed decision.

Classic Roof Profile


Classic roofing often refers to corrugated metal roofing. This type of roofing is characterised by its distinctive, wave-like pattern, a feature that provides both aesthetic appeal and structural strength. The undulating design of corrugated roofing isn’t merely an aesthetic choice; it contributes significantly to the material’s overall durability and resilience.

Corrugated metal roofing is made from high-quality steel. Despite being lightweight, this material is remarkably durable, and capable of withstanding various weather conditions. The corrugations in the metal increase its tensile strength, allowing it to span over larger distances between supports compared to flat sheets of the same material and thickness.

Functionally, the wave-like profile of corrugated roofing helps guide rainwater off the roof, reducing the chances of water pooling and potential leakages. This makes corrugated metal roofing a popular choice for outdoor structures in regions susceptible to heavy rain or snow.

Furthermore, corrugated metal roofing is usually available in a variety of finishes and colours. This allows for a high degree of customisation, enabling you to match your roofing to the style and colour scheme of your other structures.

Classic Corrugated Metal Roofing is a proven solution that combines durability, strength, and traditional aesthetic appeal. It’s an excellent choice for anyone seeking a reliable and cost-effective roofing option for their outdoor structure.

Pros & Cons

The iconic look of corrugated metal roofing can give your outdoor structure a classic or rustic feel. It’s efficient at directing rainwater runoff, relatively inexpensive, and lightweight, making it easy to install. However, its cons include a limited span, meaning it may require more support for larger structures. It can sometimes look dated, particularly in contemporary settings, and it offers minimal insulation compared to other options.

Best For

Classic corrugated metal roofing is best for basic shelter needs when working with a tight budget.

Premium Roof Profile


This type of roofing is a modern and stylish choice that adds a sleek, clean look to any structure. These flat sheets crafted from high-grade steel are known for their smooth, unbroken surface that provides a distinct contrast to the wave-like pattern of corrugated roofing.

Premium flat roof sheets are particularly well-suited for contemporary structures, enhancing their minimalist aesthetic while providing robust protection against the elements. The flat surface offers a modern appeal, making this type of roofing a popular choice for homeowners and designers looking to create an up-to-date, fashionable look.

Beyond their aesthetic appeal, premium flat roof sheets also offer functional benefits. They are typically designed to interlock or overlap in a way that helps prevent water intrusion, making them an excellent choice for areas that experience heavy rainfall. They can also span wider distances than corrugated sheets, reducing the need for additional structural supports.

Despite their flat profile, these sheets are engineered for durability and strength. They are resistant to cracking, peeling, and corrosion, ensuring a long lifespan with minimal maintenance. Additionally, flat roof sheets can be coated with special finishes to enhance their resistance to UV rays, further increasing their durability.

Premium flat roof sheets are available in a wide array of colours and finishes. This allows for substantial customisation, making it possible to match your roofing to your desired aesthetic and colour scheme.

Offering a blend of modern aesthetics, durability, and structural efficiency. They are an excellent choice for those seeking to add a touch of contemporary elegance to their outdoor structures while ensuring high performance and longevity.

Pros & Cons

The Premium roof profile offers a sleek, modern appearance and can span wider areas than corrugated roofing. Made from durable metals, it’s designed to withstand harsh weather conditions. However, the upfront cost can be higher compared to classic options.

Best For

Premium flat roof sheets are best for those seeking contemporary aesthetics and versatility in their outdoor structures.

Insulated Roof Profile


Insulated roof panels represent the pinnacle of modern roofing technology, offering superior comfort, energy efficiency, and customisation options. These panels consist of two metal skins sandwiching a core of insulating material, typically foam. This unique construction provides remarkable thermal and acoustic insulation, making these panels an excellent choice for structures where maintaining a comfortable internal environment is a priority.

The insulating core of these panels minimises heat transfer, helping to keep your outdoor structure cool in the summer and warm in the winter. This not only enhances comfort but can also contribute to energy savings, as less heating or cooling is required to maintain a comfortable temperature.

Additionally, the foam core offers excellent noise insulation. This reduces the amount of external noise that penetrates the roof, making insulated panels a great choice for structures in noisy environments or for spaces where you want to minimise disturbance, such as workshops or outdoor living areas.

From an aesthetic perspective, insulated roof panels offer a sleek, modern look. The panels are typically available in a wide variety of colours and finishes, allowing you to customise the look to suit your taste and match the style of your other structures. The flat outer surface of these panels provides a clean, minimalist appearance, adding a touch of sophistication to any outdoor structure.

Despite their advanced features, insulated roof panels are designed for easy installation. The panels are usually large and interlocking, reducing the number of joints and making the installation process quicker and more straightforward compared to traditional roofing materials.

Insulated Roof Panels are a superior choice for those prioritising comfort, energy efficiency, and modern aesthetics. They offer excellent thermal and acoustic insulation, a sleek look, and easy installation, making them a highly versatile and effective roofing solution.

Pros & Cons

The key advantages of insulated roof panels include thermal efficiency, temperature control, noise insulation, and a wide range of customisation options. They can also span wide areas, making them suitable for large structures. However, they are more expensive than the other options and are heavier, which may require more robust support structures.

Best For

Insulated roof panels are ideal for creating comfortable, customisable outdoor spaces where temperature control and noise insulation are important.

Key Factors to Consider

Selecting the right roof for your outdoor structure involves various key factors that influence the final decision. Here are some essential considerations:

Climate conditions

The local climate is a significant determinant in your choice of roofing. Harsh climates with heavy rainfall or snow require robust and water-resistant roofing.

  • Classic: The wave-like design of corrugated roofing is excellent for areas with heavy rainfall as it effectively directs water away from the structure, reducing the risk of leaks.
  • Premium: These are more suitable for moderate climates without heavy snowfall since snow might accumulate on flat surfaces. It’s also a great option for sunny regions, as flat metal surfaces can reflect sunlight, reducing heat absorption.
  • Insulated: If you live in an area with extreme temperatures, insulated roof panels can help maintain a comfortable temperature inside your outdoor structure. They’re also beneficial in areas with high noise levels, as they can provide sound insulation.

Size and Spanning Requirements

The size of your structure and the span it needs to cover directly impacts your choice of roofing material.

  • Classic: This type is more suitable for smaller structures due to its limited span. If you’re working on a larger project, you may need additional supports.
  • Premium and Insulated: These are ideal for larger structures as they can span wider areas without additional supports.

Aesthetic Preferences

The look and feel of your outdoor space are also essential considerations.

  • Classic: This style lends itself well to rustic or traditional aesthetics.
  • Premium: If you prefer a modern, sleek appearance, flat roof sheets are a great choice.
  • Insulated: These offer a clean look and can be customised to fit various design aesthetics.

Budget Constraints

Your available budget is a significant factor in your decision.

  • Classic: This is the most budget-friendly option.
  • Premium and Insulated: These are more costly but offer additional benefits like modern aesthetics (for flat roof sheets) and increased thermal and noise insulation (for insulated panels).

Intended Functionality

The intended use of your outdoor structure also influences your choice.

  • Classic: This is a great choice for simple structures like garden sheds or basic carports.
  • Premium: These are suitable for structures where aesthetics are a priority, like modern carports or patios.
  • Insulated: If the outdoor structure is a space where people will spend a significant amount of time, such as an outdoor living area or workshop, insulated panels provide comfort and temperature control.

By considering these key factors, you can choose the roof type that best aligns with your project’s needs and your personal preferences.

Making the Final Decision: Choosing Your Ideal Roofing Solution

Each type of roofing; Classic, Premium, and Insulated—brings unique benefits to the table. Classic roofing offers a cost-effective and reliable solution, perfect for those who appreciate a rustic aesthetic or are working on a tight budget. Premium roofing, with its sleek modern look and versatility, caters to those seeking a more contemporary vibe in their outdoor spaces. For those prioritising comfort and customisation, Insulated roofing ensures excellent thermal efficiency and noise control.

The key to selecting your ideal roofing solution is to consider your specific priorities and requirements. Think about the local climate conditions, the size and spanning requirements of your structure, your aesthetic preferences, your budget, and the intended function of the structure.

By aligning your choice with these considerations, you can greatly enhance your enjoyment of your outdoor structure. The right roof creates the perfect balance of form, function, and affordability, ensuring your outdoor space is not only practical, but also a place you love to spend time in.

So why wait? Evaluate your needs, consider your options, and start planning your perfect outdoor space today. Your ideal roofing solution is just a decision away!