Is a Black Metal Roof Too Hot? [and how to reduce overheating]

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If you live in a warm climate and want to paint your metal roof black, you may wonder if the dark tone will keep your house too hot. In regards to black metal roofing and the various factors that affect its temperature, we found some research that explores how to paint your roof black without significantly decreasing your home’s energy efficiency.

Black metal roofing has the potential to get too hot, reaching temperatures up to 190 degrees Fahrenheit on a 90-degree day, based on three factors:

  • No insulation or old insulation not designed to absorb high heat levels
  • Lack of ventilation beneath the metal
  • The absence of a reflective roof coating on top of the black paint

Can a black roof reflect heat and be more energy-efficient? Is a metal roof better than other materials like asphalt, cement, or clay for preventing high heat levels? What color should you paint your metal roof for the coolest temperature? Continue reading for a full guide on the temperature of black metal roofing and how to prevent it from overheating. 

A house with a black metal roof and snow guard, Is a Black Metal Roof Too Hot? [and how to reduce overheating]

How To Reduce Overheating

Avoid black metal roofing if you lack the necessary factors to keep the temperature within an optimal range in your home. This includes modern insulation, ventilation, and a reflective roof coating. If these three factors aren’t in place, black metal roofing can reach almost 200 degrees Fahrenheit on a 90-degree day. Such temperatures wreak havoc on your electric bill and reduce energy savings.

Insulation

Effective, modern insulation holds the technology necessary to absorb heat and keep it from spreading to the rest of the home. This type of insulation is called R20 or R30. According to Sentry Roof Services, your home’s ability to reflect heat may be dependent on whether or not the insulation is the modern R20 or R30 or if it is an older insulation system.

When you install the right insulation, not only will it keep your home from getting too hot in the summer, but it will also keep heat within your home during the winter.

Ventilation

Two types of ventilation exist for metal roofing in order to reduce heat. The first is a specially designed metal sheet that comes pre-painted and shaped in a way that leaves a space between the metal sheet and the roof deck. This provides airflow directly beneath the metal roof and ensures that the rooms below do not receive the bulk of the heat absorbed by the metal.

The second type of ventilation is a system of battens, which are small pieces of plastic or metal that lift the metal sheets off the roof. This creates a space between the metal sheets and the actual roof below so that the rooms inside the home do not overheat.

Reflective Roof Coating

Matte tones of black paint without a reflective coating tend to absorb more heat.

Black metal roofing with a highly reflective coating, on the other hand, efficiently reflects the sun rays back out of its surface instead of absorbing them. This means a reflective coating helps significantly reduce the heat of your black metal roof.

Most modern manufacturers produce pre-painted metal sheets with a highly reflective roof coating already added on top. If you own an older metal roof, adding a reflective roof coating could significantly reduce heat absorption.

Cool Coat Thermal Defense

This clear roof coating acts as both a rain guard and as a reflective, UV-resistant barrier.

Click here to see more on Amazon.

How Hot Does A Black Roof Get?

Black roofs can reach temperatures between 140 and 190 degrees Fahrenheit on a 90-degree day. This includes all types of roofing, like metal, asphalt, cement, and clay. 

Even so, metal tends to be the best at regulating heat over asphalt, clay, and cement due to its ability to quickly adapt to the changing temperature. This means if the clouds stay out on a hot day or if it is a particularly windy day, the metal adapts with these factors and holds less heat. Also, metal tends to be thinner than all other types of roofing, so metal roofing releases heat more rapidly.

Is A Black Metal Roof Energy-Efficient?

Metal remains the most energy-efficient material for roofing due to its naturally reflective surface. Since black is the darkest pigment, it will absorb more sunlight than any other tone. However, painting your metal roof black should only make it slightly less energy-efficient if the roof is properly insulated, ventilated, and coated. 

A liquid rubber coating can be applied after having your black metal roof installed if it is not already pre-coated. This will help reduce UV rays and heat absorption.

Click here to view this liquid rubber coating on Amazon.

Black metal roofs prove to be excellent options for colder climates since the black helps absorb heat from sunlight. The absorbed heat provides a more energy-efficient way of raising heat levels in your home during the winter. This makes a black metal roof the most energy-efficient option for colder climates.

Does A Black Metal Roof Fade?

No matter what color you paint your metal roof, it always fades over time. Multiple factors cause fading, including sun exposure, temperature fluctuations, moisture build-up of any kind, and pollutants.

Black metal roofing may show fading more prevalently than lighter colors due to its darker contrast. Even so, researchers suggest purchasing a black-toned paint containing a patented substance called Kynar 500 to sustain the longevity of the crisp color with less maintenance. Paint brands with Kynar 500 products include Sherwin Williams and Valspar. 

How To Keep Your Black Metal Roof From Fading

Cleaning your roof regularly and reapplying a protective roof coating helps to keep your roof from fading, rusting, or leaking over time. Refinish black metal roofing with a rubber, elastomeric, or clear thermal defense roof coating every 5-10 years.

An elastomeric black roof coating creates an extra layer of black to your roof in order to prevent fading. It is also UV-resistant and protects against rust. 

Click here to view this elastomeric roof coating on Amazon.

Which Color Metal Roof Is Coolest?

White metal roofing provides the coolest option at 102-120 degrees Fahrenheit on a 90-degree day. Its colorless pigment naturally reflects sun rays instead of absorbing them, even without a reflective roof coating. Not to mention, in a monochromatic color scheme, it adds a level of sophistication to any home’s appearance.

An aluminum coating on a metal roof generates cool temperatures even in hot climates at around 120 degrees Fahrenheit on a 90-degree day. Metal tones naturally retain a reflective appearance, so they mimic white in its ability to reflect sunlight. It also looks sleek and modern with its simple metal tone. 

With modern technology like different types of paint additives (Kynar 500), various UV-resistant topcoats, effective insulation, and ventilation, any color has the ability to be heat-resistant and energy-efficient. Even so, a light-toned paint applied to a temperature-regulating metal roof system provides the coolest and most energy-efficient combination possible, like with this beautiful wood-toned roof.

In Closing

You now have the information necessary for installing black metal roofing in any climate and sustaining an optimal temperature in your home. Even though black roofs have the potential to reach temperatures outside of an optimal range, utilizing modern technologies prevents black metal roofs from being heat-absorbent.

With the right type of insulation, ventilation, and reflective coating, you can install any color of metal roofing and maintain the ideal temperature for your particular climate!

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