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    Home | Our Blog | Metal Roof Maintenance - How To Care For Your Metal Roof?

    Metal Roof Maintenance - How To Care For Your Metal Roof?

    Reviewed by Tomas Kalkys. President.
    Qualifications: More than 20 years of experience in residential and commercial exterior remodeling.
    Founding farther of Legacy Service.
    Written by LegacyUSA Team

    posted on Aug. 31, 2022

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    Metal Roof Maintenance and Care

    Whether you’re buying a home with a metal roof or are considering installing one on your current home, it’s essential to know how to provide it with the proper maintenance and care. Metal roofing is known as a long-lasting and durable roofing material, but it’s still vulnerable to harsh weather conditions, and it requires maintenance to maximize its lifespan.

    In this article, we’ll discuss why it’s important to maintain your metal roof, what types of maintenance it needs, caring for metal roof screws, and some of the most frequently asked questions about metal roof maintenance.

    At Legacy Service, we install and replace metal roofs for homeowners throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. To schedule a free estimate, contact us at 215-798-9790 or

    Do Metal Roofs Require Maintenance?

    Yes, metal roofs require annual maintenance to perform and look their best. This will help prolong your roof’s lifespan, enhance its aesthetic, and prevent costly issues. You can either do the maintenance yourself or hire a professional to do it for you. If you’re considering doing it yourself, continue reading to learn which tasks need to be done.

    Why It’s Important to Maintain Your Metal Roof

    Providing your metal roof with the proper maintenance is essential to maximizing its lifespan while preserving its appearance. In this section, we’ll discuss three reasons why annual maintenance is so important. Continue reading to learn more about the benefits of caring for your metal roof and ultimately your home.

    To prevent potential problems

    Damage such as dents, scratching, leaks, corrosion, and degradation can result in expensive repairs. Problems can occur at any time, so scheduling an annual inspection and maintenance can help ensure they’re caught early enough to prevent them from becoming too large and affecting other areas throughout the home.

    To prolong the life of the roofing system

    Metal roofs are designed to be durable and long-lasting, but harsh weather conditions and other factors may cut their lifespan short. Fortunately, with the proper care, you can keep your roofing components in excellent condition for decades to come. Inspect your roof once a year to fix any problems that need repair and help prevent future replacement.

    To keep your metal roof or wall system looking great

    It’s no surprise that the proper care helps prevent significant problems from occurring down the line, but proper maintenance will also help it look its best. Cleaning the dirt and debris as well as repairing dents or cracks is a great way to improve your house’s curb appeal.

    What Maintenance Does a Metal Roof Need?

    What Maintenance Does a Metal Roof Need?

    So, now that you know why it’s important to do routine maintenance on your metal roof, let’s see what you can do about it. Remember that your roof is a significant investment, and taking care of it will maximize its lifespan as well as its value. Without further ado, let’s check out these metal roof maintenance tips:

    Clean off the metal panels

    You can choose to clean your roof yourself or hire a professional to do it for you. If you choose to do it yourself, remember to keep the proper safety techniques in mind at all times to protect yourself and your roof. First, use dish soap and a bucket of water to clean it by wetting a cloth in the bucket and gently wiping the panels. Then, use a garden hose to rinse the soap off.

    Clean the gutters and drains

    Gutters and drains should be cleaned about twice a year. Spring and fall are usually the best times of the year to clean them out. Leaves, sticks, and other types of debris can cause them to clog and fill with water. Excess water may corrode your metal roof as well as other parts of your property. Installing gutter guards can help prevent debris buildup in the future.

    Keep snow and ice off the roof

    Allowing snow and ice to pile up can lead to damage to the rest of your home. After a winter storm, it’s a good idea to sweep snow off using a long-handled broom or brush. Try to avoid using metal tools that could scrape the roof’s protective coating. Fortunately, metal roofs are designed to be slippery, so in many cases, the snow will just slide off on its own.

    Trim branches near the top of your house

    Nearby trees and branches may scratch the roof’s surface, which scuffs the paint and leaves it vulnerable to further damage. If there are any branches near the top of your house, you might want to get them trimmed by a professional to prevent scratching.

    Remove debris from the valleys

    If your roof has valleys, then you’ll want to inspect those areas for leaves, branches, or other debris that might have gotten stuck. It’s typically best to hire a professional to clean out those hard-to-reach areas, so they can safely dispose of the debris to help prevent the paint from being scratched and the roof’s curb appeal from being ruined.

    Inspect for damage

    While metal roofs are designed to be durable, they can still sustain damage from harsh weather conditions and other elements. Damage that’s not repaired in a timely manner can lead to more significant issues. That’s why it’s important to inspect for damage regularly. You can do this by checking the paint for scuffs, scratches, fading, or flaking.

    Repair minor scratches

    If you’ve noticed any scratches during an inspection, we suggest touching them up as soon as possible. You can buff minor scratches by using a clean cloth to apply mineral spirits. After you’ve wiped the mineral spirits over the area, rinse it with water and allow it to dry. You can also touch it up with a little bit of paint.

    Adjust damaged flashing materials

    Flashing is crucial to protection from water damage because it helps move water away from vulnerable roofing components. If your roof is leaking, broken or missing flashing may be the cause. A contractor will check your flashing’s seal and condition if you schedule a professional inspection.

    Inspect penetration point areas

    Sunlight exposure can cause various areas to degrade, including but not limited to skylights, air vents, solar panels, and the material around chimneys. During an inspection, a roofing contractor will check the paint and metal for exposure to chemicals that could degrade the roof.

    Fix loose or separating panel seams

    During inspection or maintenance, make sure you check the panel seams and get any damage fixed as soon as possible. If they’re loose or out of place, moisture could leak between gaps and into your home, which could lead to more severe issues.

    Check for corrosion

    During an inspection, examine the parts around the ventilation areas and HVAC system. Vented appliances release chemicals, heat, and steam that can degrade a metal roof’s paint and eventually corrode the panels. A way to prevent corrosion is to keep different metals from touching each other.

    Repair rust spots

    Remove rust spots by applying a gentle scrubbing cleanser with a clean cloth. Once you get as much of the rust off as possible, use a garden hose to rinse the debris. If the rust has caused any corrosion, lightly sand the spot and apply a metal primer to help prevent future rusting.

    Can You Pressure Wash a Metal Roof?

    Can You Pressure Wash a Metal Roof?

    Yes, you can use light pressure and hot water to pressure wash a metal roof. Remember that safety always comes first, though. If you aren’t fully comfortable climbing on top, contact a roofing contractor. They’ll also have the proper equipment necessary for the job. If you’d prefer to do it yourself, keep these tips in mind:

    Be safe

    Safety always comes first, so make sure you follow safety tips when working on your roof. Before you begin the job, we recommend investing in fall arrest protection, a harness, and a ladder with stabilizers. It’s also a good idea to have a friend or family member spotting you on the ground in case there’s an emergency.

    Determine what type of roof you have

    To be able to wash it properly, it’s best to know what kind of roof you have. For example: You might want to clean a pitched roof on your ladder because it will be difficult and potentially dangerous to walk on it. However, you’ll most likely be able to walk on a flat roof, but you’ll still need to be careful of slippery areas.

    Avoid using too much pressure

    A pressure washer is safe to use for metal roofs, but too much pressure could cause damage. If you can, keep it on a light pressure setting. A hot pressure washer with a 40-degree tip works well with flat roofs by removing the buildup of grime and debris.

    Do Metal Roofs Need to Be Repainted?

    Although the paint system on metal roofs can last for decades, it might still need to be repainted now and then. If it’s been several decades since yours was installed or painted, or you’ve recently bought a house with old roofing, it’s time to consider repainting or hiring a professional to do it for you. Here’s how this type of maintenance can benefit your home:

    Repair damage

    A fresh coat of paint will not only improve the appearance, but can also help repair minor issues including but not limited to chips, small holes, and surface corrosion. However, if storms or old age have caused significant damage, then you might want to consider replacement.

    Protect your roof from wear and tear

    If you’ve noticed paint chips on your roof’s surface, then you may want to touch it up. Acrylic or oil-based paint can help protect it from wear and tear due to moisture damage and other weather elements.

    Improve curb appeal

    If you’re considering selling your home in the near future, repainting your metal roof can do wonders for curb appeal. The roof is a significant part of your home’s exterior, and its quality will impact guests’ first impressions. Even if you don’t want to sell, paint jobs can help reduce the number of times you need to replace it over the years.

    Caring for Metal Roof Screws

    Caring for Metal Roof Screws

    Screws used for attaching the panels on metal roofs are designed to last for years and even decades. However, it’s still important to have them checked during your annual inspection to make sure they aren’t loose, angled, crooked, or missing, which is possible due to the expansion and contraction of your roof over time.

    What Causes Screws to Back Out of a Metal Roof?

    Screws can back out of a metal roof for several reasons. Let’s take a look at them:

    Thermal expansion

    As the temperature changes throughout the year, your roof will expand and contract. That’s why your roofing contractor should make sure there’s enough space between the panels when it’s being installed. The change in the size of panels could loosen the screws holding the roof.


    The compression process may loosen the screws in your metal roof. For example: When there’s heavy snow or ice on your roof, then it may sink lower than the screws, which leaves the screws exposed. The material will usually go back into place on its own after the snow and ice melt, but the screws may be loosened at that point.

    Water damage

    Any type of moisture that leaks under the panels may damage the underlayment, which can loosen the roof’s screws. This is due to the fact that when the underlayment is corroded, screws might not be able to hold down the roof structure anymore.

    How Often Should You Replace Screws on a Metal Roof?

    Metal roofing screws are designed to last as long as your metal panels. However, their lifespans can differ depending on the quality of the roof installation as well as the weather conditions your roof has had to endure. During your roof inspection, it’s recommended that you check the screws for signs of wear and tear.

    How Long Do Metal Roofs Last?

    Longevity is one of the main benefits and reasons why homeowners choose metal roofs. If properly installed and maintained, metal roofs can last up to 50 years or more. Here are some of the most common factors that affect metal roof lifespans.


    The quality of the installation as well as the type of fastening chosen can affect the lifespan of your roof. For example, standing seam metal roofs tend to last longer than screw-down panel ones because they allow the panels to expand and contract with changing temperatures. Repairs, and potentially a replacement, will also be required sooner if the contractor installed the roof incorrectly.

    Paint finish

    A paint finish will not only enhance the beauty of your roof but also help protect it from the elements. If you find any paint chips or damage to the coating, make sure you get them repaired as soon as possible because it may cut your roof’s lifespan short or cause other types of damage to your home.

    Local weather conditions

    Weather conditions may also affect the lifespan of your roof. Metal roofs are durable and are designed to withstand the elements, but harsh weather conditions can still cause damage. For example, hail or ice can dent metal panels, and changing temperatures can cause the metal to expand and contract, which can lead to other problems if your roof isn’t prepared.

    How Often Do Metal Roofs Need to Be Replaced?

    With the proper installation and maintenance of a metal roof, property owners may not need to replace it for 50 years or more. However, annual roof inspections are still recommended. Contractors may recommend a replacement if they notice severe weather damage, damaged or missing flashing, cracks in the panels, rust or corrosion on any of the panels, or loosened metal screws.

    Frequently Asked Questions about Metal Roof Maintenance

    Frequently Asked Questions about Metal Roof Maintenance

    Here are some of the questions that we’re most frequently asked about the maintenance on a metal roof. If you’d prefer to speak with an expert, contact us at 215-798-9790 or

    What kind of maintenance is needed on a metal roof?

    While metal roofs are durable, they still need to be maintained. This includes keeping snow and ice off the roof, cleaning off the metal panels, trimming branches near your home, removing debris from valleys and gutters, inspecting for damage, repairing scratches and rust spots, checking for corrosion, and fixing damaged flashing.

    Do metal roofs need to be maintained?

    Yes, metal roofs need to be maintained to maximize their lifespan. With the proper maintenance, they can last at least half a century! What maintenance is needed on a metal roof has been answered in the sections above. You can also reach out to our team if you’d like to learn more about installation, replacement, or repair.

    How often should you seal a metal roof?

    A fresh coat of paint on a metal roof not only enhances it visually, but also helps repair minor issues such as small holes, chips, and surface corrosion. A high-quality metal roof may not need to be sealed, or repainted, for over a decade. However, every roof is different, and an annual inspection done by a professional can help you determine when your roof should be sealed next.

    How often should you replace the screws on a metal roof?

    Most metal roof screws are designed to last as long as your metal roof panels. However, they may need to be replaced depending on how your contractor installed them and the weather conditions your roof has endured. During a roof inspection, check the screws for signs of wear and tear.

    What are the problems with metal roofs?

    Potential metal roof problems to look out for include scratching, scuffing, denting, corrosion, degradation, and leaking. Scheduling regular inspections at least once a year can help identify any problems before they cause more significant damage to your home. After, all, metal roof maintenance costs are typically more affordable than repairs to significant damage or full replacement.

    Will leaves hurt a metal roof?

    Too many leaves built up in your roof’s valleys and gutters can lead to damage over time. Leaves stuck in the gutters can cause them to clog, while leaves stuck in the valleys may scratch and stain the paint system. Both lead to eventual corrosion of the roof.

    Do metal roofs leak over time?

    Metal roofs may expand and contract due to temperature fluctuations, which can put a strain on the flashing materials. Flashing is designed to move water flow away from vulnerable parts of the roof, so without proper maintenance, metal roofs can leak over time. Fortunately, you can help prevent that by scheduling regular annual maintenance.

    What Do You Need?

    If you’re interested in metal roof installation, replacement, or repair, let us know! We’ve been serving homeowners throughout southeastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware for nearly two decades. We also provide window, door, and siding installation and replacement services.

    Contact us at 215-798-9790 or to replace or repair your metal roof!

    Posted on Aug. 31, 2022 in Roof

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