post21The picture here is a roof that desperately needs restoring. The greenish panel is actually the skylight!

We have had a great year in metal roof restoration!

Metal roofs are a great roofing system. In fact metal roof sales have been increasing for the last 10 years, but why are they having problems and leaking?

Well, to answer that, we need to look at what the differences are between metal roofing and other roofing systems.

The following factors play into how a metal roof is viewed and, inevitably dealt with, by the building owner. Generally speaking, metal roofing…


Is more expensive than most other roofing solutions.


  • Requires special tools and specifically trained trades people to install.
  • Has less available crews to install and service metal roofs compared to other roofing solutions.
  • Lasts significantly longer than other roofing products.


Is more expensive than most other roofing solutions.


If a metal roof is leaking and the owner has considered replacing the roof he/she may have been shocked at the replacement costs. If it’s a large building it might be completely unrealistic to pay for a new roof based on the building’s use or the owner’s budget. Compounding these factors could be the owner’s concern about the post21building’s future. Will it be sold, rezoned or demolished and replaced?

This may cause the building owner to delay replacement or search for alternatives or do basic repairs to extend the life. Thus many building’s metal roofing needs are delayed.


Requires special tools and specifically trained trades people to install.


Building owners may have had a more difficult time getting metal roof problems resolved by formally trained metal roof installers as those installers may be less available and their solution may come in at a price that the owner finds too expensive. Thus the metal roof repair may just get delayed.


Has less available crews to install and service metal roofs compared to other roofing solutions.


This one relates directly to the previous point. Many commercial building owners we’ve spoken to with metal roofs, resort to general roofers regarding the problems with their roofs. Some roofers without training in metal roofing, may use odd or unusual techniques to repair a metal roof and many of those techniques don’t last as long as promised.

This leaves the building owners back where they started. The problem still exists and they now have less money in their pockets.


Lasts significantly longer than other roofing products


The life span of metal roofing is estimated to be 40 to 60 years! This is fantastic! However this compounds the age-old syndrome of roofs. Roofs in general are ignored, plain and simple. They age so slowly that we hardly notice their decay. Also, over the age of a building, we get used to seeing it as is and so as long as it is not leaking then we can easily miss it. Don’t get us wrong. We have met a lot of building owners and managers who are acutely aware of their roof’s state and its constant need for remedial work and stay on top of it. However the fact that a roof may last 60 years adds to the illusion that it is “still OK for the next few years”.

So why is it that metal roofs are leaking and having problems?




Metal roof panels are connected to each other by screws with neoprene washers. When new, the system is perfectly watertight. However, over time, as the panels are heated and cooled daily and seasonally, they start to move and shift and slowly wear out the washers on the panels. This can cause leaking. In addition, the 

movement causes cracking and rusting. With more time the top coating wears out and rust occurs and spreads on the entire roofing panel making it look ugly and allow accelerated wear. This deterioration eventually destroys the whole roof beyond repair.

Admittedly, it takes a long time to completely rust out. But if you restore the metal roof before that, you can dramatically extend the life of the roof by 10, 15 or 20 years, possibly longer. Thus, you get quite possibly a 60 year span of roof life!

Some roofers actually offer to install a whole new roof over top of a leaky metal roof. They sell you sheets of plywood, (a boat load for big roofs), screw it down and then install a two ply torch on roof system! Wow, that is expensive! Plus, if the roof was a sloped metal roof, rain will wash off the UV protection sooner and cause the bitumen to be exposed to the sun and wear even faster.


Rather than installing another roof on top of your metal roof, it probably only needs maintenance and restoration. Let’s look at that option:


You could do some basic repairs to the roof:


  • Sealed all the loose or missing screws,
  • Sealed all the metal panel seams completely and permanently (like new).
  • Stop the rust from any further decay.
  • Coat the roof so it was be protected and looked new again and at a fraction of the cost of a new roof!


That is the best way to restore a metal roof.


CanSeal fluid applied membrane system does exactly that. It is sprayed to the roof and gives a new, restored and protected surface to the metal. Plus it has a 1000% stretch capability so can move and flex with the roof in all seasons and weather.

Here are the steps:


  • The roof is cleaned, usually by pressure washing.
  • Any necessary repairs are made, replacing screws, repairing skylights, vents and all the joints on the roof. This includes installing a reinforcement fabric or tape at all joints and seams and then coating those seams.
  • Next, all screws are covered that are not already done with the seam tape. And at this point you actually have a waterproof roof.
  • The last step is to give it a coat with CanSeal Fluid applied membrane.



This roof is being restored right now. See the seam tape sealing the main metal panel joints at the peak? This strengthens the new membrane at the joints and dramatically extends the life of the roof.


A big feature of this system is that the coating, as it’s sprayed, fully adheres to the metal roof stopping the rust in its tracks, while at the same time forming a consistent 2mm coating over the solid metal panel sheets. This protects the metal from rain, hail damage, wind and even some physical damage and because the panel seams are reinforced with tough polyester fabric, they can withstand many years of movement. Remember CanSeal coating is not like paint or some cosmetic layer. It is a tough UV resistant Rubber coating that flexes with the roof panels and dramatically extends the roof life.


Lets now look at the costs!


Well it’s usually 40 to 50% less costly than a new roofing system.

And 15 years later you can just clean and coat the roof again for still less than another roof. You could continue on making the roof last as long as you want.

Some roofs can be restored for under $2.00 a square foot! The average may be $2.30 a square foot.

Completely restored metal roof coated with CanSeal, new skylights for improved lighting and aluminized vents and ducting.


Contact us for more information on how you can extend the life of your roof. Free estimates can be arranged.


Contact us if you want to learn how to restore commercial roofs and save your customers 30 to 50% from regular roofing costs!

Keith Kinvig at or 604-209-3507 or

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Head Office Canada
Innovative Manufacturing Inc. 
861 Derwent Way,
Delta, BC, Canada
V3M 5R4

Contact Keith
Toll Free: 1-800-667-8246 
Phone: 604-522-2811 ext. 106
Fax: 604-522-5141


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