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Metal Roofs – Safer When Lightning Strikes?

It may seem counter intuitive, but in our experience, metal roofs do not carry an increased risk of lightning strikes.  Over the years, Kelly Roofing has worked with many homeowners and roofing types. Metal roofing is quickly becoming one of the most popular options for homes and businesses because of its longevity and crisp appearance.

How Do I Protect My Home?

In 2013, Ken Kelly, president of Kelly Roofing, was interviewed by the Naples Daily News in a front page article addressing the ways that roofing and construction companies in Collier County are helping building owners strike back and protect their homes and businesses against lightning strikes.

Installing a lightning rod will greatly increase the danger connected with lightning strikes.

Interestingly, we have noticed that roof damage caused by lightning strike is more likely to occur to a tile roof than to a metal roof.

Excerpt from “Striking Back: Lighting hits buildings, starts fires in Collier, so what can a property owner do?”
by Tracy X. Miguel
Naples Daily News, September 15, 2013

On average each year Collier County gets 9 – 11 cloud-to-ground lightning strikes within each area of roughly a half-square-mile, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration […] During the summer, Naples-based Kelly Roofing receives two to three calls a month because of damage to a roof caused by a lightning strike, company officials said. Ken Kelly, president of Kelly Roofing, said most of the time it’s a tile roof.

Metal roofs now are cropping up around Southwest Florida, which some might believe would be more dangerous in attracting lightning. Yet roofing companies say than metal roofs actually could help reduce the risks.

“We’ve seen an increase of people going with a metal roof, Kelly said, adding, “unbeknownst that it has an additional benefit of lightning strike protection.”

Kelly said a metal roof can cost substantially less than a tile roof and is the most energy-saving roof system. Metal roofs are about 15 percent more expensive than shingle, yet 15 percent less expensive than tile.

Before the hurricane-heavy years of 2004 and 20005, 48 percent of the roofs had asphalt shingles. Today, that business is only 8 percent. “It has been replaced with metal,” he said.

For the complete article visit the Naples Daily News website.

Why Metal Roofs Don’t Attract Lighting

As the Metal Roofing Alliance points out, while metal conducts electricity, lightning is not specifically drawn to metal roofs. Generally, lightning is drawn towards the highest object in the strike area – a tree, a tower, etc.

During a lightning storm, a metal roof dissipates electrical energy through the structure. And, since metal is neither combustible nor flammable, the fire risk is decreased during lightning strikes.

To discover more about metal roof options in the Naples area, contact a Kelly Roofing professional today!

Design a New Metal Roof




Originally published: Nov. 14, 2013
Information updated: June 23, 2015