Are Black Metal Roofs Too Hot?

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Black metal roofs can be resistant to high temperatures.
Black metal roofs can be resistant to high temperatures. (Image: Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Black is a color that attracts heat, be it through a black T-shirt in the height of summer or black metal roof over a shed. Although black lacks the degree of reflective qualities provided by lighter tones, it can still serve as a viable color for your metal roof installation.

Thermal Mass

Metal roofs do not have substantial thermal mass. They don't collect and absorb radiant heat to a significant degree, as do some forms of roofing material. Metal roofing dissipates heat and swiftly cools down as soon as the sun is hidden by clouds or a cool wind passes over its surface. Black metal roofs are often used to fall in line with a property’s aesthetic appearance. Fortunately, a stylish black metal roof needn’t come at the sacrifice of unmanageable heating levels.

Color Differences

Lighter-colored metal roofs tend to be more reflective and, therefore, more resistant to radiation than are darker colors. These characteristics can be especially useful for keeping temperatures down in attics during the summer. However, according to Todd Miller of Classic Metal Roofing Systems, roofing manufacturers can utilize specially formulated coatings on metal roofs that contain reflective pigments regardless of the color of the metal itself. Even darker colors, such as black, may have substantial reflective power and not generate excess heat.

Heat-restricting Designs

Some manufacturers, especially those who make shake or shingle metal roof panels, design colored metal roofs that are shaped to create an air space between the roof deck and metal panels once installed. These air spaces restrict the transfer of heat from the sun to the metal and help keep temperatures at comfortable levels during the summer.

Ventilation

Ventilation also reduces the temperature of black metal roofing. Metal roof panels can be installed alongside gridded battens. Battens are thin strips of material usually made from plastic or metal that fit between the metal panels and the roof itself. This design creates an effective space for ventilation between the roof deck and the metal roof panels.

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