How to Paint a Rusty Metal Roof

How to Paint a Rusty Metal Roof – Step-by-Step Guide

Last Updated on February 5, 2023 by Tokyo

Removing or painting the rusted metal roof is difficult, specifically in areas with high trees. No matter how many ways to shine a rusty roof you have applied, once it gets rusted, it becomes old. So, painting a rust metal roof is essential to get a new look at your home.

How to Paint a Rusty Metal Roof
How to Paint a Rusty Metal Roof

Knowing how to paint a rusty metal roof is essential for a perfect and long-term shiny appearance. Specific metal roof painters are now available in the market to make your job easy and comfortable.

Can I Paint a Rusted Metal Roof- A Detailed Answer

Yes, you can paint a rusted metal roof. However, it’s not only about the painting. Some more steps are essential, including removing the rust, preparing the surface, and selecting the paint. Preparing the surface and removing the rust are more important facts that one should consider. Most people ask if they can directly paint a rusted metal roof. The answer is no.

Direct paint can affect the quality of the roof, and you can face long-term disadvantages in this way. We highly recommend taking a complete guide from a professional and then starting the procedure. It would help if you also kept in mind that once you try to paint the rusted metal roof, the ways to protect the painted ceiling from getting rusty.

Don’t worry; here, we provided complete information on how you can paint a rust metal roof and how to make it safe once the painting is completed.

Steps to Paint a Rusty Metal Roof

It’s essential to have completed safety precautions before you start painting rusting metal. Take gloves, clothes, and the necessary equipment with you. It’s critical to get successful results.

Step 1: Removing the Rust from Metal Roof

It’s essential to remove the rust particles to avoid shining issues later. Most people don’t follow this step and face critical problems. There are multiple ways to remove rust from the metal roof.

  • Firstly, you should try to remove it with the help of a scrub or any other brush, which will remove big flocks of rust. Later, apply a sweeper or an old cloth to clean the roof correctly.
  • The second important method is using a chemical to pour on the rust metal surface. It will help to dissolve and lose down the rusty particles on the roof metal surface. There are multiple chemicals available on the market, and we recommend using Trisodium Phosphate with warm water. Mix this chemical with water and pour it onto the surface after some minutes; rub it with a floor cleaning brush or a scrub and rinse the surface with warm water.
  • The third way is to use a pressure washer. A pressure washer is a device that removes the rust particles from the metal surface with the help of high pressure, which it applies when you turn on the machine.
Remove rust from metal roof
Remove rust from metal roof

Applying these methods helps to weaken the rust from the metal, and hence you can rinse the surface with warm water to remove unwanted particles besides rust. Removing rust also helps to remove other dust and metal particles making the surface ready for painting and shining.

Step 2: Removing the Old Paint Layer

All of you know that the corrosion has affected the old paint coating. So, removing the old layer is essential to prevent the metal surface from being affected by the corrosion effects later.

Multiple ways help to remove the old layer of paint. Using a zinc and acid combination is perfect. However, most professionals recommend using white vinegar. The reason is that it does not have adverse effects on the surface and human health. Using acid is not safe as compared to white vinegar.

Just apply some white vinegar on a piece of rag and then rub the surface. It does not require hard scrubbing or pressure; using slight force to scratch the surface is enough to remove the old coating.

Step 3: Apply Primer

Applying primer is essential for the rust tin roof. Most people don’t consider it necessary to apply a primer. Pouring a primer on the surface means we are making it ready to repaint. Moreover, after applying the primer to the surface, it becomes easy to paint it based on its nature. Although it’s easy to use a primer, several factors must be followed and considered.

  • Firstly, you need to select the correct type of primer. Multiple kinds of primers are available in the market. Palatine’s zinc-rich primer is also suitable for quick and quality results.
  • You can apply primer on the metal surface using two methods. The first method is to apply using a spray or roller. The second method is to use a paintbrush. A sprayer or roller is easy and requires little effort.

Applying primer is accessible, but making the surface even after the primer is applied is not easy enough. One should keep in mind to evenly spread the primer on the rusty metal surface to avoid long-term issues they can face later.

Applying primer on Metal roof

Apply the primer to the surface and see if the metal roof is even and plain. If it’s not, you can apply a second coat of the primer after the first one is dried thoroughly.

Once you apply the first layer of primer, you must wait 24 to 48 hours for long-term and quality results. The duration is the same as using a paint layer after the primer. After 24 to 48 hours, when the primer dries, you can apply the paint layer without worrying about the quality.

Step 4: Applying Paint

Paint application is the most critical step in this process. It is similar to applying the primer on a rust metal roof surface. The selection of the paint is more important than its application. Buy a resistive weather paint that helps protect the surface against rust and corrosion in the future.

Don’t apply the paint right after the primer; wait for the primer to dry completely. You can wait for 24 to 48 hours after the primer application.

Method:
  1. Apply the paint just like you applied primer in the previous step.
  2. Take a roller or paint sprayer and thoroughly put it on the roof.
  3. Make sure that the color is applied evenly.
  4. Allow the paint to dry for 24 to 48 hours, and use the second coat if necessary.
Considerations:

Many factors are necessary to consider before applying rust removal paint. Always see the weather conditions outside and then start the application process. If there are humidity or rant weather conditions, you should wait until the weather is arid and there is less humidity in the air. You can check the weather news or forecast for it.

Always try to use exterior paint for rusty metal roofs, no matter if these are located inside the place. The reason is that exterior paint is more resistant to environmental conditions and humidity. Moreover, it stays on the surface for a long time.

Step 5: Take A Final Look At the Painted Surface

We hope you can now get a shiny surface like the new one on the rust-affected metal roof. Primer application and the paints are enough to make it looks good. Still, we recommend taking a closer look once the paint coat is dried and seeing if there are uneven surfaces.

It’s possible that some parts of the paint are darker and some are lighter because of the uneven coat. In this case, we recommend applying a second coat of paint to get a final glossy finish. A second coat makes the surface durable as well.

How to Paint a Rust Metal Roof Video!

How to Paint a Rust Metal Roof

Painting the Rust Metal Roof stop the Rusting Process- Is it True?

Yes, painting the rusty metal surface helps avoid the future rusting process. However, this is possible only when you follow all the steps and tips we gave above. You can also take some additional recommendations from the professionals. Paint and primer should be high quality to make the surface corrosion free.

Still, if you face some issues after you have well painted the surface, the final step is to change your rusty metal roof with a new one. Also, take steps to make the new roof surface to avoid corrosion and rust. It’s possible that your area is located where there are high chances of catching rust and corrosion. So, we highly recommend checking your surrounding environment.

Best Primers for Rust Metal Roof

Selection of the best primer for the rust metal surface is too critical. Not everyone is able enough to conduct complete research and start the process immediately. So, here are some top-rated primers that our professionals recommend:

1) Rust-Oleum 7769502 Rusty Metal Primer

It is one of the well-reputed and high-quality primers. It not only helps to make the surface glossy but also helps to prevent it from rust and corrosion-like processes. Its primary function is to make the metal surface shiny and protective against harsh environmental conditions.

This Rust-Oleum protects the rust metal roof from the sun, UV rays, and other chemicals released from industries and vehicles. Hence, this primer is best for use in places with high industries and chemicals.

As the name represents, it is made explicitly for rust metal roofs because of the rust-proof formula. It’s affordable to buy and easy to apply on the surface. Its high adhesion ability to the metal surface is another ideal feature that urges us to use and mention this product at the top of the list.

2) XIONLAB Rust Converter & Metal Primer

As the name represents, it works as a rust converter and a primer. To use this primer, you don’t need to wash or sand the surface to remove rust. Alone it can remove rust and works as a primer to prepare it for paint coat.

Just pour the primer with the help of a sprayer and allow it to work with the surface. It will break down the rust particles and then glow the surface. After some time of pouring this primer, rub the surface with a brush or sponge and rinse it with warm water. After its application, you will get a new and clear rust-free metal roof surface.

 Note: Its drying time is a bit higher than other primers, which is not negatively impacted. It’s good to wait hours to dry the primer instead of getting a rusty surface after the paint. The drying time is 24 to 48 hours, depending on the weather and temperature. 

3) Corroseal Water-Based Rust Converter

As the name shows, it’s a water-based primer and works well in a humid environment. This is another primer that works well to break the rust particles and also as a primer.

The application process is similar to the XIONLAB Rust Converter & Metal Primer. It’s easy to use due to the high adhesive forces for the metal surface. However, it’s expensive compared to other primers, and the drying time is also fast. So, this primer can do wonders if you are in a hurry and want quick painting results on the metal surface.

Best Paints for Rust Metal Roofs

Here are some best paints for rusty metal roofs. These are based on similar features, including low prices, rust-proof facts, and durability.

1) RUST-OLEUM 215965 Enamel Paint

The product is manufactured in the US and is used all around the world because of the fabulous features it offers. Available in a large can, it can cover a large surface area.

Its corrosion and rust-resistant features make it famous and considerable to buy for heavy industries metal roofs. Its color is regal red which gives a high shine and protects the surface from rays and chemicals.

Available in liquid form, it’s affordable to buy and has high durability value. It not only makes the surface look beautiful but also makes it rust-proof.

2) HENRY HE587372 Roof Coating

It is another ideal paint for rust metal roofs. Available in a 5-gallon bucket, it helps to cover a large surface area and is perfect for heavy projects.

It’s easy to use and is resistant to rust and heat. Rainy conditions don’t negatively impact the painted surface due to its high durability, power, and waterproof features. We recommend using this paint if you want a shiny surface free of rusty conditions.

You may also like to read: How to Fix Spray Paint Mistakes – Detailed Guide 2022

Frequently Asked Questions

All of it depends upon the roof quality, surface area, primer type, and paint type. Removing the rust and preparing the surface could take 1-hour maximum. Applying primer and primer takes 1- 2 hours. Drying time for both the primer and paint takes 2-3 days for one layer and five days for the two layers as you have to wait for completing drying of the first layer to apply the second layer. Hence the whole process may take 8 to 10 days maximum.

No painting over the rust directly is not a good idea, and we never recommend doing so. Painting over the rust means you welcome the long-term shiny surface issues. You must remove the rust and prepare the surface before painting.

Painting over the rust directly damages your roof permanently. And there are no other ways to recover it but to replace the metal roof with a new one.

Yes, you can paint over the rust converter. A rust converter works as both the rust remover and the primer. So, there is no worry about painting directly over a rust converter.

Wrapping Up- How to Paint a Rusty Metal Roof

Hence, painting the rusty metal roof is now easy and time-saving due to the availability of 2-in-1 primers and highly resistive paints. These products not only help to remove rust and make the surface glossy but also protect it from corrosion and chemicals. Just spend some hours to make the painting process as we mentioned above, and see the results. It does not cost much.

Still, if you face rusty metal roof issues after painting the surface, you should call a professional or replace your metal roof surface with new ones.

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