Addressing aging metal roofs promptly is essential for commercial and industrial property owners to prevent escalating maintenance and repair costs. Neglecting timely interventions can lead to severe structural issues, impacting the overall safety and operational efficiency of the building. Proactive roof management not only protects the investment but also ensures compliance with safety standards, minimizing the risk of unexpected disruptions and costly emergency repairs. By prioritizing roof maintenance, owners can extend the lifespan of their roofs and maintain their property’s value and functionality.

metal roof repair tools and materials

Metal Roof Repair & Replacement Options

Metal roofing systems are a superb option for new constructions, known for their durability, ability to withstand harsh weather, and long-lasting nature. However, over time, metal roofs can encounter several problems, including loose fasteners, deteriorating sealants, and flashings, as well as corrosion and damage due to ongoing thermal shifts. As these issues accumulate, simple repairs may no longer suffice, prompting the need for a more comprehensive, long-term restoration approach.

When choosing the right solution for your metal roof, it’s essential to weigh your budget, the extent of roof damage, and your building’s specific requirements. We’ll guide you through four key metal roofing options, detailing the advantages and drawbacks of each to empower you with the knowledge needed to make a well-informed choice.

  • Coating

  • Remove and Replace

  • Install the Retrofit Metal Panel System Over the Current Metal

  • Install a Single-Ply Retrofit System on Top of the Current Metal

Gain clarity on the best metal roofing solutions tailored to your building’s needs by exploring the benefits and drawbacks of each option. This post delivers an in-depth look at various metal roofing strategies, highlighting the standout benefits of metal retrofitting for revitalizing aging roofs. Choose wisely with insights that align perfectly with your building’s specifications.

roof coating application

Roof Coatings: An Affordable Fix For Small Problems

Applying a protective coating is a budget-friendly strategy for enhancing aging metal roofs. These coatings add an extra layer of protection, fighting off weather damage and making your roof last longer. They effectively handle minor issues like rust and leaks, helping your metal roof stay strong for a longer time.

To make your metal roof last longer, start by thoroughly cleaning its surface. This prepares it for the next important step: applying a primer and a special coating. These coatings stick firmly to the metal, creating a strong, waterproof barrier that protects against rust and weather damage. There are many coating options available, from lightweight ones that resist corrosion to stronger, fabric-reinforced ones that seal seams and small holes. Each type helps extend the life and performance of your roof.

Benefits Of Painting

  • Cost-effective Choice: Coating solutions provide an affordable alternative for building owners aiming to tackle minor problems efficiently without significant financial strain.

  • Prevent rust and seal leaks effectively: Discover how coating systems boost your metal roof’s performance by stopping rust and sealing minor leaks.

  • Boost your roof’s reflectivity: Opt for coatings that enhance solar reflectance, cutting down on energy use and cooling expenses for your building.

  • Boost Your Roof’s Longevity: A simple coating application effectively prolongs the lifespan of metal roofs with minor issues, averting the immediate necessity for costly repairs or complete replacements.

Disadvantages Of Painting

  • When considering coating warranties, it’s important to recognize that they primarily protect the quality of the coating. Unfortunately, these warranties do not extend to cover any leaks that might develop over time.

  • Coating systems are not suited for significant leak issues like severe corrosion, extensive holes, or thermal damage. For more substantial problems, building owners should explore alternative roofing solutions.

  • Be cautious with multiple roof coatings: Over time, applying successive layers can decrease adhesion and increase the likelihood of coating failure.

For commercial and industrial building owners, coatings offer an economical fix for minor metal roof concerns. However, it’s crucial to understand their limitations; coatings might not tackle major issues or ensure lasting protection for aging metal roofs.

workers replacing old metal roof panels with new ones

Remove And Replace – The Complete Overhaul

When building owners face major problems with their metal roofs, like severe damage or loss of strength, it is essential to completely remove and replace the roof. This means taking off the old metal roof and putting on a new one, ensuring a fresh start and strong protection for your building.

Replacing a metal roof requires careful planning and work, taking into account building codes, insulation needs, and structural compatibility.

Advantages Of Replacing And Removing

  • Install a brand-new roofing system: This choice offers a fresh start, replacing worn-out roofing materials with durable, high-quality metal panels.

  • Extended service life: A new metal roof system ensures long-term building protection.

  • Resolving critical roof issues: Removing and replacing addresses severe problems like highly deteriorated roofs with compromised structural integrity.

Disadvantages Of Replacing And Removing

  • Often the priciest choice: Removing and replacing a metal roof comes with significant costs, ranking it among the highest-priced roofing alternatives.

  • Exposure to weather during roof replacement can disrupt daily operations.

  • Warranty coverage for new metal roofs often excludes leaks, focusing instead on the metal finish. While some weathertight warranties exist, they aren’t widely offered.

  • Challenging for active facilities: The extensive process of removal and replacement may disrupt operations in buildings with continuous activities or sensitive equipment.

  • The new metal roofing system typically lacks significant enhancements in insulation or reflectivity compared to the current roof.

The remove and replace choice is ideal for commercial and industrial building owners dealing with significant metal roof issues that less invasive solutions cannot resolve. Although costly and disruptive, it offers enduring protection and performance for your building’s metal roof.

metal panel retrofit on aging roof

Metal Panel Retrofit – Maintain The Metal Aesthetic

For property owners aiming to preserve a metal roof’s look while tackling major roofing issues, a metal panel retrofit system offers an optimal solution. It entails installing new panels atop the existing roof, boosting protection without full replacement.

Ensure the metal panel retrofit process includes a thorough evaluation of your roof’s structure, followed by precise design and installation of a compatible new metal panel system.

Advantages Of Metal Panel Retrofit

  • Maintains the look of metal roofs: Metal panel retrofit systems preserve the aesthetic charm of metal roofing, a key factor for many property owners.

  • Metal panel retrofits deliver durable protection, ensuring extended longevity and reliability, akin to a full roof replacement.

  • Metal panel retrofit systems expertly tackle critical roofing issues, like leaks and worn-out panels.

  • A metal panel retrofit offers a cost-effective alternative to full replacement, requiring less labor and expense, appealing to budget-conscious building owners.

  • The retrofit process avoids exposing the building to elements, ensuring protection during installation by not removing the existing metal roof.

Disadvantages of Metal Panel Retrofit

  • Metal panel retrofits remain a substantial investment, despite being cheaper than full replacement.

  • Challenges arise in installing on complex roofs: Roofs with many penetrations or intricate designs may pose difficulties for fitting a metal panel retrofit system.

  • Most metal panel retrofit warranties cover the metal finish, with limited availability of comprehensive weathertight warranties in the market.

  • While a metal panel retrofit system does not enhance insulation or reflectivity as much as the current roof

A metal panel retrofit is ideal for commercial and industrial building owners seeking to preserve their metal roof’s appearance while tackling significant roofing issues. Although it may cost more than other options, it provides a durable solution that retains your building’s aesthetic charm.

worker installing membrane retrofit on a metal roof

Membrane Retrofit – An All-around Solution

Looking for a reliable way to fix aging metal roofs? Try a single-ply membrane retrofit. This method adds insulation layers and a smooth, high-quality membrane over your existing metal roof. It effectively solves major roofing problems and offers extra benefits. A successful retrofit involves thoroughly inspecting your roof, choosing the right membrane, and ensuring accurate installation.

Advantages Of Retrofit Membrane

  • Membrane retrofit systems effectively fix major roofing problems like leaks, rust, and worn-out flashings.

  • Comprehensive warranty coverage: Membrane retrofits often cover roof leaks without cost limits, giving building owners peace of mind.

  • Improve your building’s energy efficiency by adding insulation with a membrane retrofit system.

  • Improve Roof Efficiency with Reflective Membranes: Choosing a white membrane can increase reflectivity, reducing energy use and cooling costs.

  • During the retrofit process, your building stays protected from the weather, reducing exposure to the elements.

  • Sealing roof openings effectively: Membrane retrofits keep buildings watertight.

Disadvantages Of Retrofit Membrane

  • Higher cost than coatings: Membrane retrofit is cheaper than full replacement but pricier than basic coating.

  • Some owners may find the aesthetic change significant; a membrane retrofit can alter the look of your metal roof.

A membrane retrofit is flexible and effective for fixing old metal roofs. Even though it costs more, the strong warranty, better insulation, and improved reflectivity make it a worthwhile investment.


Revitalizing aging metal roofs is crucial for commercial property owners to lower maintenance costs and ensure efficiency. Timely repairs are necessary to prevent structural issues that can compromise safety and functionality. Proactive roof management not only protects investments but also maintains safety standards, reducing the risk of unexpected emergencies. Customized maintenance strategies extend roof lifespan, preserve property value, and sustain operational effectiveness. Choose the best metal roofing solution for lasting protection and performance tailored to your building’s needs.


  • What are the signs that my metal roof needs revitalization?
    Look out for signs such as rust spots, loose fasteners, deteriorating sealants, and increased energy costs due to poor insulation or reflectivity. These indicate the need for proactive maintenance or potential restoration.
  • How can roof coatings benefit my aging metal roof?
    Roof coatings offer a cost-effective fix for minor problems like rust and leaks. They boost durability by adding a protective layer against weather damage, extending the roof’s life and lowering maintenance costs.
  • When is it necessary to remove and replace a metal roof instead of repairing it?
    Consider removing and replacing your roof for serious problems like heavy rust or structural damage. This thorough approach ensures long-term protection and effectively fixes the underlying issues.
  • What is a metal panel retrofit, and when is it suitable for my roof?
    A metal panel retrofit involves adding new panels over the existing roof to fix major issues without fully replacing it. This method keeps the metal roof’s look and provides strong protection, making it ideal for buildings with solid but old roofs.

  • What are the benefits of a membrane retrofit for aging metal roofs?
    A membrane retrofit adds insulation and a high-quality layer over the current metal roof. It fixes major problems like leaks and improves energy efficiency. This option is good for owners looking for long-term performance and full warranty coverage.