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Can You Paint Roof Shingles?

Can You Paint Roof Shingles?

If you don’t like your wall color, you paint over it. If you don’t like your mailbox color, you paint over it. So if you don’t like your roof color, can you just…paint over it?

The simple answer is yes, you can. That doesn’t mean you should though. Read the pros and cons below before you paint your roof shingles.

Pros and Cons of Painted Roof Shingles

Paint can change the color of your roofing. Your bright red roof can be black or brown in a matter of hours. This is a fast and affordable way to dramatically transform your curb appeal, but it comes with some major drawbacks.

For starters, painting your roof shingles may void the manufacturer’s warranty. This is particularly concerning on new roofs because it may increase out-of-pocket repair expenses.

Beyond that, painting a roof may cover early signs of wear. In other words, you may hide damages that could be addressed now, leading to more expensive repairs in the future. If the shingles are not properly dried before painting, trapped moisture could create mold and mildew on your roofing.

Some shingle paints may reduce wear on your roofing by adding an extra layer of UV protection. This is great for homes with strong sun exposure because it creates an additional barrier on the roof. There are shingles on the market specially made for strong sun exposure, so it may be cheaper, in the long run, to invest in those materials.

Also, keep in mind that paint requires upkeep. Roof paint fades just like any other paint. If you have partial tree coverage on the roof, some shingles may fade faster than others. Add repeat paint applications to your long-term budget to compare costs now vs. later.

Not All Shingles Can Be Painted

Asphalt shingles can be painted, but not all shingles can. If you have high-end slate or Spanish title shingles, your paint options are limited to non-existent. Paint is also ineffective on older shingles that are on the verge of disintegrating. The paint isn’t going to delay your need for a new roof. It’s just going to mask existing problems.

Roof Painting vs. Roof Replacement

Roof replacement is a hefty expense, but in the long run, it pays off. You can get a new roof in a color you love and enjoy premium protection for decades. Check out: Is Getting a New Roof Worth It?

There are some occasions when roof painting makes the most sense. For example, if you have a roof in good condition that’s out of warranty, paint could change the color and still allow you to use the existing materials. If you only replaced one-half of your roof and the shingles do not match, paint could unify the shingles.

If you need to update your curb appeal but don’t want to buy a new roof, paintwork out for you. Just note that the painted shingles may show up on a home inspection, and that could deter your buyers.

How to Choose the Right Roof Color

There are tons of roofing colors on the market. This may feel overwhelming when it comes to selecting new shingles. If you want to avoid painting your roof in the future, make sure you choose the right color the first time. This roof design inspiration guide has lots of great examples of color combinations.

We typically recommend choosing a roof color that matches your trim or siding. If you’re using the roof color as a jumping point for exterior materials, you can choose anything you want! For the sake of longevity, it’s best to look in a neutral color pallet. Greys, browns, and shades of black will look great for years to come.

Look at roofing materials in person to get a feel for how they actually look. Photos may skew the colors, so it’s best to view materials in a showroom. McLean Roofing and Siding has a beautiful design studio packed with samples to choose from. We’re located at:

McLean Roofing and Siding
321 E Maple Rd
Troy, MI 48083

Stop by or give us a call at (248) 524-1111 for more information about roofing selection. We look forward to working with you!