The 3 Best Metal Roof Coatings Reviewed in a Comparison Guide

Posted on May 28, 2023

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The 3 Best Metal Roof Coatings Reviewed in a Comparison Guide

Metal roofs are known for their durability, energy efficiency, and weather resistance. One crucial aspect of maintaining your metal roof is applying a high-quality roof coating. This protective layer not only safeguards your roof from water damage, corrosion, and UV radiation but also enhances its overall efficiency.

As a metal roofing specialist at OConnor Contracting, I’m here to help homeowners make the right choice. In this guide, I’ll compare the best types of metal roof coatings, recommend the top products, and share application tips.

So let’s find out which coating is best for your metal roof.

What to Look for in a Metal Roof Coating

Before diving into the top three coatings and products, it’s vital to learn the properties an effective coating should possess. The more high quality features, the better protection it will provide.

Corrosion Resistance

If you have a steel roof, it is prone to rust over time if it is not electroplated with aluminum, zinc, or any other rust-free metal. So for steel roofs, you should go for the best coating for rusty metal roofs, which will help prevent corrosion.


Metal roofs with exposed fasteners or thin panels need a coating that provides superior waterproofing to avoid leaks and water damage. But also note that metal roof waterproof coatings aren’t an alternative to repairing a leaky metal roof. Repairing comes first, followed by the waterproofing layer to prevent future damage.

Heat and UV Resistance

For hot climates, you need a cool coating for your metal roof to prevent fading, oil canning, and roof overheating. Higher solar reflectivity reduces heat absorption and lowers cooling costs, so compare the solar reflectance index (SRI) of the coating to maximize energy efficiency and minimize roof damage. I recommend the Kool Seal metal roof coating as it is suitable for most types of metal roofs.


A flexible material can expand and contract with your metal roof as temperatures fluctuate. This is essential to prevent cracks, gaps, and other issues that can lead to water seepage or damage.


A strong adhesive bond between the coating and the metal surface is vital for long-lasting protection and high performance. Any type of product you choose should stick to your metal roof for years.

Now I’ll compare the three best types of coatings used by contractors to protect residential and commercial metal roofs.

3 Best Types of Coatings for Metal Roofs

Rubberized and elastomeric materials (silicone and acrylic) form the best type of coating for various roofing materials. Below I explain their capabilities and provide product recommendations.

#1 Silicone Coatings

Silicone roof coatings are highly resistant to water, weather, and UV radiation, making them an excellent choice for metal roofs exposed to harsh environments. These coatings offer superior durability, easy application, and are low maintenance, but they come at a higher price point compared to other options.


  • Exceptional weather and water resistance
  • Excellent UV protection
  • Easy to apply and maintain
  • Long-lasting performance


  • Higher cost
  • Can attract dirt and dust
  • Maybe less aesthetically pleasing than other coatings

Best for: Property owners seeking a high-performance, long-lasting solution that can withstand extreme weather conditions. For snowy areas, you can match a silicone coating with sturdy snow guards.


Henry Tropi-Cool® 100% Silicone White Roof Coating

This metal roof coating has excellent heat and UV resistance and shows high performance in extreme weather conditions. With Dirt Pick-Up Resistance (DPUR) Technology, it doesn’t require frequent cleaning. Henry Tropi-Cool® 100% Silicone White Roof Coating has a special moisture-cure technology that creates a strong bond, preventing standing water and creating a superior seal.

ArmorGarage Metal Roof Coating

It is specially formulated to prevent roof leaks and comes with a 12-year leak-free guarantee. ArmorGarage Metal Roof Coating is a self-plasticizing epoxy and rubber-fortified acrylic coating, which is different from other generic brands and is a much better acrylic and silicone coating.

#2 Rubber Coatings

Rubber roof coatings designed specifically for metal roofs provide a protective layer that safeguards the roof and enhances its performance. These coatings offer exceptional waterproofing and weather resistance, effectively extending the lifespan of the metal roof.


  • Exceptional protection from moisture, leaks and water damage
  • Reduces roof heat up
  • Improves energy efficiency
  • Cost-effective


  • Initial cost may be higher
  • May need to choose a coating from a renowned brand

Best for: Building owners with metal roofs who want to invest in a long-lasting roof and cost-effective protection against water and heat.


Inland Rubber Roof Coating

Inland Coatings offers reliable products that adhere well to most surfaces. Inland RC-2016 Rubber Roof Coating delivers exceptional waterproofing and UV resistance. It is a one-component product that adheres strongly to properly prepared surfaces. It remains stable under thermal conditions and withstands extreme weather without cracking or peeling. The RC-2016 coating also effectively controls corrosion and rust bleed-through, even with long-term use.

#3 Acrylic Coatings

Acrylic metal roof coatings are water-based, polymer-modified products that offer excellent flexibility, UV resistance, and durability. They are ideal for use in mild to moderate climates and are known for their ease of application and relatively low cost.


  • Budget-friendly
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Good UV resistance
  • Flexible


  • Only leading brands may offer excellent protection from extreme weather conditions
  • Most products may require multiple coats for optimal performance

Best for: Homeowners looking for a cost-effective, eco-friendly coating with good overall performance.


Gardener® Metal Roof Acrylic Coating

It is made of a tough, white elastomeric material that is formulated for exceptional bonding strength to metal roof surfaces. Gardener® Metal Roof Acrylic Coating also contains rust inhibitors for long-term protection. The coating expands and contracts with the roof’s movement to resist cracking and peeling. The bright white finish keeps metal roofs cooler by an average of 50 degrees compared to uncoated metal. The coating also provides a protective barrier that reflects, seals, and protects from the elements.

Color-Gard+™ Architectural Roof Coating System by American WeatherStar

It combines an innovative High-Gloss Acrylic 215 with the superior properties of High-Tensile Acrylic 211. The Color-Gard+™ Architectural Roof Coating System offers a beautiful, high-build finish for commercial metal roofs and provides excellent reflectivity, color retention, and is resistant to weather, abrasion and dirt.

Take a look at this comparison chart for a quick overview of each type of coating.

Comparison Chart of Metal Roof Coatings

Coating TypeDurabilityWaterproofingHeat & UV ResistanceFlexibilityAdhesionApplication Cost

But before making a purchase, consider these additional factors:

Consider This Before Selecting a Coating

First, understand that different coatings are designed to work with specific types of metal roofs. Consider the material of your roof, such as steel, aluminum, or copper, and choose a coating that is compatible with it. Additionally, assess the condition of your roof and address any repairs or maintenance needed before applying the coating.

Check the warranty offered by the product’s manufacturer. A reliable warranty can provide you with confidence in the product’s quality and performance. Additionally, consult your metal roofing contractor for guidance and assistance about the products.

Remember that proper application plays a huge role in maintaining the effectiveness and longevity of roof coatings. It’s a complex job that requires licensed and experienced professionals. But as a property owner, you should know the prerequisites for a successful application.

Roof Coating Application Tips

Metal Roof Coatings

Let’s understand the use of proper application techniques, following manufacturer’s instructions, ensuring ideal weather conditions, and more.

Prepare the Surface

Before coating a metal roof, it’s vital to ensure that the roof’s surface is clean, dry, and free of rust. If the roof has any signs of damage or corrosion, it should be repaired first.

Apply During Favorable Weather Conditions

Applicators should avoid applying metal roof coatings during extreme temperatures, high humidity, or rain, as these conditions can affect the coating’s adhesion and performance.

Follow the Manufacturer’s Instructions

Each roof coating may have specific application requirements. It’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines regarding the number of coats, drying time, and other aspects of the application process.

The drying time for the coatings can vary depending on their type, the application method, and the environmental conditions. Generally, most coatings will dry within 24 hours, but some may take longer.

Use Proper Technique

It’s important to use an appropriate application technique and tools to apply roof coatings. Here are some common techniques:

  • Brush-on: Coating applied using a brush for precise control and targeted coverage.
  • Roll-on: Coating rolled onto the roof surface with a paint roller for efficient and even application.
  • Spray-on: Coating applied using a spray gun or sprayer for large-scale projects or hard-to-reach areas.

Spray-on metal roof coatings may sound like an easy job, but they also require a professional application like any other roof coating.

Ensure Adequate Ventilation

Proper ventilation is crucial during the application process, especially when working with solvent-based coatings that emit strong odors. So make sure to choose a reliable metal roof coating contractor that can fulfill your eco-friendly requirements.

If you are looking for the correct type of metal roof coating in Buffalo or anywhere else in Western New York, our experts at OConnor Contracting will be happy to guide you.

Free Consultation and Estimate for New York Property Owners

At OConnor Contracting, we’re here to help all property owners in New York by providing complimentary consultation and estimates. We are your local metal roofing company that focuses on providing exceptional care and service to all its customers. Our dedicated professionals are here to listen to your needs, answer any questions, and provide trustworthy guidance tailored to your specific requirements. Call us at (716)-600-7663 for a free consultation and estimate on our metal roofing services in Buffalo and all of Western New York.

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