Painting Corrugated Metal Panels in the Boston area and surrounding towns.

Posted on September 18, 2022

Corrugated steel is a widespread option for decks, roofs, and siding in commercial, agricultural, and sometimes homes in the Boston area.

Corrugated Metal or cladding resists rusting, making it mostly weather-proof. This means it’s resistant to rot and mold and won’t fall apart prematurely or get destroyed by insects.

Around Massachusetts, the primary uses of corrugated metal panels are:

  • roofing
  • siding
  • flooring
  • decking
  • fencing

Advantages to corrugated metal panels:

  • weather-proof
  • strong and durable
  • lightweight and practical for many projects
  • Metal is made stronger by corrugating it. This means the Metal is folded in a zig-zag pattern to create grooves and ridges. Steel is already solid and immune to breaking under tension, but corrugating the steel makes the tensile strength of the steel even more robust.

How do I know my corrugated Metal needs painting?

In general, corrugated metal panels and roofs need painting every ten years in the Boston area or when you notice the following:

  • Fading
  • Bubbling
  • Flaking
  • Cracking
  • Rusting
  • Staining

CertaPro Painters’ process for painting corrugated metal roof, siding, or decking:

First, we give the metal surface a thorough cleaning.

In this step, we’ll remove debris, rust, dirt, grease, and oil built up over the years. We often use a power washer, followed by a brush, to clean up stubborn areas.

At this stage, we’ll also tackle mold and mildew, which grows on Metal in especially in shaded areas.

Second, we prime the surface of the corrugated metal area.

Priming corrugated sheet metal ensures that the final project looks good for years. Priming is 100% necessary on any bare corrugated metal. If your metal panel was previously painted, priming is optional but still a good idea, as it will ensure a longer-lasting paint job and reduce future oxidation and rusting. In fact, primer manufacturers say that priming the metal surface first could extend the paint job’s life by 7-10 years.

You’ll see that the paint primer used on corrugated Metal dries very quickly, so you’ll be ready to start painting relatively quickly.

Painting Corrugated Metal:

Turquoise and light blue corrugated metal panel siding on commercial building
Our Boston Commercial Painting clients sometimes paint corrugated metal in their brand’s colors.

Because corrugated metal surfaces have lots of grooves, spraying the paint offers the best solution to reach all of the nooks and crannies of the surface.

Spraying the paint also ensures that the corrugated Metal is covered with a nice, even finish and no roller marks or brush strokes. You’ll also cover every inch of the Metal – even hard-to-see spots in the folds of the grooves.

Spraying the paint on corrugated Metal also saves time versus rolling the paint. If you’re hiring a professional painter for your commercial building, spraying the paint is less expensive than rolling it.

The paint colors you can choose from are endless. While you often see whites and grays, imagine your corrugated metal siding or roof in a paint color to match your brand’s logo.

Our color consultant often helps our commercial clients choose colors that are on-brand and will look perfect in the exterior lighting around the building.

Corrugating the metal adds surface area to the project.

Because of the folds in the Metal, there is more surface area than simply a flat metal panel. You’ll typically use more paint to cover the same square foot area. Depending on the depth of the grooves in the corrugation, you’ll need 1.5-2 times more paint than you would when painting a flat surface.

Recommended Paint for Corrugated Metal:

CertaPro Painters will evaluate the type of metal from which your corrugated panels are made and choose the right paint for the application. We generally choose an exterior-grade acrylic paint that can be sprayed onto the metal surface.

Because of the high surface temperature of the metal in the sunshine, choosing a fade-resistant paint with UV protection is often a consideration.

After I paint my corrugated metal panels, how do I maintain them?

Dirt and debris on your corrugated metal panels can scratch the painted surface. Simply inspect the panels for dirt and debris and rinse them off. Use water and a light soap mixture with a sponge and a hose to rinse it.

Avoid high-pressure washers, stiff brushes, and solvents that can scratch and damage the paint prematurely.

DIY instructions for corrugated metal:

If you have a small area like a shed roof that you want to try to tackle on your own, here are our instructions for DIY painting of corrugated metal:

  1. Start by cleaning the metal surface thoroughly. Use a pressure washer to remove any dirt, dust, or debris from the metal. Be sure to let the surface dry completely before beginning to paint.
  2. Use a metal-specific primer. Corrugated metal has a porous surface, so using a primer designed specifically for metal is important to help the paint adhere properly.
  3. Choose a high-quality exterior paint. Look for durable paint that can withstand elements like rain and sunlight.
  4. Use a paintbrush or roller with synthetic bristles. Natural bristles can absorb moisture and become stiff, making applying an even coat of paint difficult.
  5. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for drying time. Allowing the paint to dry fully is important to ensure that the paint adheres properly and remains durable over time.

Have corrugated metal panels that need painting in the Boston area?  Schedule a quote with CertaPro Painters.

Email Dave Rowell, our Director of Commercial Services, for a quote at [email protected] or call him at 781-422-1018. You can also request a quote through our online scheduler.


Written by: Paige NeJame – Franchise Owner

Meredith “Paige” NeJame is nationally known in the painting community and has written and published dozens of articles about painting and running a small business for publications such as The Washington Post, Forbes, Sherwin Williams’ blog, and Apartment Therapy.

License Info: Massachusetts 146872