Myths of Metal Roofs

Myth #1: Lightning will more likely strike a metal roof

A metal roof will not increase the likelihood of lightning striking your home. However, if your home were hit by lightning, your metal roof would disperse the energy safely throughout the structure. Since metal roofing isn’t combustible or flammable, it’s a low-risk roofing option.

Myth #2: Metal roofs are noisier than other types of roofing

A common misconception is that a metal roof will be noisier than other types of roofing. This is the most common question about metal roofs because we have all been inside an old barn or metal building or even a metal canopy that can get somewhat noisy when it rains. The difference is, a metal roof in a residential or commercial application is typically installed over some type of roof substrate or possibly even an existing roof. This substrate combined with the building’s insulation provides not only the solid backing for the metal roofing but insulation for any potential sound dampening. Most of us can tell when it is raining outside either from the sound of the rain hitting the roof, the gutters, the skylights, or the building’s windows. The sound will remain the same with a metal roof system.

Myth #3: A metal roof will rust

Today’s metal roofing systems are built to last. Certainly, copper or aluminum roofs will not rust. The technology in steel roof coating today includes heavy zinc or zinc-aluminum alloy coatings that provide excellent protection to the steel core. Even field or factory cut edges are protected due to the sacrificial qualities of zinc in the coating. We would be happy to explain this process to you thoroughly so you can appreciate the long life qualities of steel roofing.

Myth #4: Heavy snow or hail will cause dents in a metal roof

In most cases, a metal roof can withstand decades of abuse from extreme weather like hail, high winds, and heavy snow. Today’s systems also have a 150-mph wind rating (equal to an F2 tornado), meaning your metal roof is also safe from wind gusts that can accompany hail storms.

Myth #5: You can’t walk on a metal roof

Many people think you can’t (or shouldn’t) walk on a metal roof, but the truth is that you can safely walk on any metal roof without damaging it. Before you walk on your roof, however, we recommend you talk to your installer or roof manufacturer first. They will have the details on how to walk the particular roof you have, based on the style you chose and your roof pitch.

Myth #6: You can’t put metal over other roofing

Metal roofs are regularly installed over other roofing materials. Building codes will prevail but there are many cases where the metal roof is the third roof covering on a structure. Because metal is so light it is rarely a weight concern. We think installing a metal roof over built-up, composition or three-tab, tar, and gravel, or roofs of this nature is a very appropriate use of metal roofing. We will not install a metal roof over wood shakes or shingles as we believe this is a very inappropriate installation method. Wood roofing materials should be removed before the installation of a lifetime roofing product.

Myth #7: Metal roofing won’t last longer than the more conventional types of roofing

Wow, how incorrect this is. Metal will last the longest of any roof out there, likely a lifetime! Certainly, several variables impact life expectancy. Mostly the environment and the application. Fortunately, here in the Pacific Northwest, our environment is ideal for a long-life metal roof system. Typically, chemical environments are the only things that negatively affect metal roof performance other than the poor application. The Lifetime and 50 Year Warranties that are typical with many metal roof products verify the manufacturer’s comfort with the long-life performance of these products. There are metal roofs in use over 100 years old and copper roofs are recorded over 300 years old. Proper installation and a careful understanding of the environment will ensure a very long life performance.

Myth #8: A metal roof is difficult to repair or replace

Metal roofs are no different than any other roofing material. Whether they are long length panels or modular shingles, they can be replaced with relative ease. The real benefit of the metal roof is it is most resilient to damage. Metal roofs will not crack, break, peel, or blister which are the primary reasons other roofing materials need replacement. Certainly color change would be a primary concern from a new roof replacement to an older original roof but this is the same concern with all roofing materials.

Myth #9: Metal roofs are expensive

Expensive is a very relative term. Yes, a metal roof is more expensive than many other roofing products but it also provides a better value. This value comes in the long life expectancy as well as the benefits of low to no maintenance and the aesthetic beauty it adds to any structure. It is easy to justify a metal roof as the best value although it may have a higher initial cost.

Myth #10: A metal roof will make my building hot inside

No, a metal roof will reflect more heat than most roofing materials. A metal roof is also very easy to incorporate continuous venting options for better building circulation and cooler conditions during warmer weather. Many of our customers have commented on how much more comfortable their home is year-round. In very hot areas of the country, metal roofs are used to significantly decrease energy costs for cooling. With today’s modern paint coatings “cool” technologies have been incorporated to substantially enhance the heat reflectivity characteristics of the entire roof system.

For more information on the benefits of Metal Roofs:

Architectural Metal Roofing