Metal Roofs and Lightning: The Truth Behind the Myth

Despite the popularity of metal as a roofing material for residential applications, it continues to be surrounded by misconceptions. Arguably the most notable is the notion that it attracts lightning. The belief that there’s a chance of lightning discharging to a structure stems from the fact that metal is a highly conductive material. 

Is there really truth to it? Local roofing company Wortham Bros Inc. sheds light on the matter below.

Can Lightning Strike a Metal Roof?

The answer is not necessarily. A metal roofing system doesn’t affect the chances of lightning striking your property. Science can explain the formation of this natural phenomenon, but there is no real certainty as to the exact location a bolt of lightning could strike. It depends on several factors, including the storm’s movement and the geography and topography of the land. Thus, lightning can hit whenever it is ready, whether there’s a metal roof nearby or not.

Another misconception surrounding metal roofing systems is that they act like lightning rods, which function to attract lightning. Lightning rods are placed atop tall buildings to protect these structures from thunderstorms. Once lightning strikes the rod, the generated power will be safely channeled to the ground, avoiding damage to the property as a result.

A Word on Lightning Protection Systems

If you’re concerned about lightning hitting your home, be sure that your roofing system is composed of high-resistance materials. Equipping it with a lightning protection system helps give your residential property an extra layer of defense against this natural phenomenon. It is composed of a metal rod, which becomes the tallest component of your home. At its base is a network of metal wires connected to rods buried underground.

Wortham Bros Inc. offers a variety of residential roofing services to help you protect your family for years to come. Count on us for your re-roofing and hail damage repair needs. Give us a call at (972) 960-3135 or fill out our contact form to request an estimate. We serve homeowners in McKinney, TX, and the surrounding communities.

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