If you want to change your current asphalt roof to metal, you may want to know which type of metal roofing material works best for your home. Copper roofing is a great replacement for your current roof because of how it looks after the copper ages. Aged copper creates an antique look that adds ambiance and style to your home. Here's how copper roofing ages and some tips to maintaining the final look afterward.
Unique Aging Process
Copper isn't like steel or aluminum because it doesn't require paint or coloring to create the perfect look. Copper roofing material changes color over time. However, these color changes aren't necessarily bad. This type of metal changes color naturally as it ages. This aging process eventually leads to your copper roof's final color — blue-green patina. Patina is a common color of ancient cathedrals, Gothic buildings and other historic structures that used copper as a building material.
Your copper roof typically comes with reddish-orange or salmon-colored panels or shingles that gradually change under the weather conditions of each season. As the different seasons change, so does the salmon color of your copper roof. Rain and snow mixes with oxygen, which eventually tarnishes the metal to brown or bronze. Heat from the summer further oxidizes or tarnishes the copper until it develops a blue-green hue all over. These changes won't happen right away because copper doesn't corrode as fast as other metals, such as aluminum or steel. It may take a number of years before your copper roof transforms into to patina.
If you desire the patina look right away, you can create it by artificially adding special oxidizing chemicals to your copper roof. Oxidizing chemicals react to the air outside by corroding. In most cases, the copper turns to the popular blue-green patina color within three to four months after the chemical application. But it's probably best that you wait until the metal oxidizes naturally. You can discuss this with your roofing contractor during the replacement inspection.
Tips to Maintain a Copper Roof
If you decide to replace your current roof with a copper roof, there are some maintenance tips you need to know about. For example, you may wish to:
- Add a coating or sealant over the shingles to prevent any further color changes in the roof once the copper develops the patina color.
- Avoid walking on your copper roof to prevent dents and other imperfections in the material. Although it's strong, copper can dent from heavy footwear or traffic.
- Ask your roofing supplier to inspect your copper roof for any loose fasteners every year. These pieces can come loose over time as the metal expands and contracts during the summer and winter months.
The tips above may increase the life-span of your copper roof from 50 years to 100 years. Your roofing contractor can go over other tips you may need to maintain your new roof.
Replacing your current roof is a big decision. If you need additional information about copper roofing, make an appointment with your roofing contractor, like those at Cazeault Rooﬁng, today.