If you have a metal roof (or are considering replacing your worn asphalt shingles with a new metal roofing system), the odds are pretty good that you selected metal as your roofing material of choice because you wanted a roof that would last a lifetime.
While there’s absolutely no doubt that metal lasts longer than shingles, there are a few ways you can get even more life out of your new roof.
Inspect Your Roof Regularly
Performing regular inspections of your roof can help you identify potential issues before they become major problems. Make a habit of looking at your roof annually and after major storms to see how well it drains. If water is pooling after a hard rain, you may run into problems down the road. Standing water not only attracts mosquitoes and promotes rust but it can weaken the structural integrity of your roof and the underlying materials. If you live in a state where tropical storms, tornadoes, or hurricanes are a constant threat, make sure that your roofing panels are securely fastened after severe weather.
While you (or your roofing contractor) are up there, be sure to check mechanical units, vents, or chimneys to make sure the seals and flashings are all intact.
Avoid Exposed Screw Installation
Although harsh weather is the most common culprit of roof damage, heat or extreme temperature fluctuations may cause a metal roof to expand and contract. If your roof is fastened with screws, this expanding and contracting can cause screws to back out and leave holes in your roof, which can lead to serious leaks and structural damage.
Instead, look for concealed adhesive roofing systems that allow for expansion and contraction and doesn’t involve thousands of penetrations. StealthBond® is the only concealed adhesive metal roofing installation system on the market.
Keep it Clean
Clogged gutters can cause damaging ice dams or promote soffit damage or rot. Keep your roof and roof-related systems in good shape by keeping your gutters clean. You’ll also want to keep your metal roof free from leaves, branches, or storm-strewn trash. This debris will not only clog your gutters after the next rainstorm, but it may cause permanent discoloration of your roof.
Shovel Your Roof
Okay, so shoveling your roof is a terrible idea! But sweeping it free of accumulated snow is a great idea. Sweep snow and ice off your roof with a long-handled broom or brush. Or, use a roof rake.
Stay off Your Roof
We know, we know! We just told you to inspect your roof regularly and to keep it clean. And you certainly should. By “you,” however, what we really mean is that you should hire a qualified roofing contractor to inspect your roof for loose screws (if you have exposed screws), loose metal, corrosion, and debris. Not only will a contractor keep you safely on the ground, but he or she will wear special roofing shoes designed for walking on metal roofing panels. These shoes keep roofers and your roof safe from treadwear.
Avoid Metal on Metal
If you happen to have copper accents, trim, or gutters, you’ll want to avoid having these pieces come in contact with your metal roof. When the two different metals become wet, prolonged contact will result in galvanic corrosion. Fascinating stuff, but damaging.
Use Coated Metal Roofing Sheet
Chemical coatings can help to combat leaks and corrosion and extend the life of your metal roof. Coatings such as Kynar not only help fight rust, but they help keep the color of your metal roofing rich and vibrant, will improve energy efficiency (while simultaneously reducing your utility bills), and are fire resistant.