Painting a metal roof

Is painting a metal roof that has faded over the years an option instead of completely replacing it? The answer is “yes”, but there are a few very important preparation steps to do first or the paint will peel off.


painting metal roof

Those of us who have installed metal roofing on our homes know the benefits of a strong and attractive roof. Metal is perfect for harsh weather conditions involving snow and ice.


painting metal roof
Metal roofs look great when the metal is new, but they all fade over time making the home look less attractive. Just a few years ago, there weren’t any options to fix a faded metal roof.

Roof replacement was the only choice if you wanted your home to look new again. That was expensive. Besides, metal roofs are still durable long after they become faded.


metal paint
There are now several brands of paint that adhere to metal roofs and do an excellent job if the surface has been properly prepped.

First of all, I must say that no professional paint vendor like Sherwin Williams will guarantee their paint if you’re going to paint a metal roof. They will even try to talk you out of it.

Painting metal roofs is a new option, but most paint vendors want to stay away from the liability of uncertain situations.

I use Sherwin Williams “Duration” brand paint for metal roofs. It has been a very good quality paint, but there are many kinds of equal quality paint out there.


cleaning metal roof
The most important thing you can do to prepare a metal roof to be painted is to clean it thoroughly. This is something to take very seriously.

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The metal isn’t just faded, it also will most likely have a thick layer of oxidation that needs to be completely stripped away. If you wipe the metal with your finger, you will notice a rusty glaze on the surface. This needs to be removed for the paint to adhere.



I don’t trust power washers for this. I use a stiff-bristle shop broom, a bucket of detergent water and a garden hose. It’s hard work, but it’s much easier than buying and installing new metal.



Once the metal has been cleaned and is dry you can apply the paint. Make sure the temperature of the metal isn’t too hot. Follow the application instructions for each brand of paint.

It’s easiest to apply metal paint with a power sprayer. This type of quality paint only requires one coat, but if you spray it on too thin and patchy, you will want to give it a second coat. These are the basic tips for painting metal roofs instead of replacing it.


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