Experts have been studying lightning for hundreds of years. And while we’ve learned a lot, we still can’t predict where it will strike. This makes lightning an unpredictable phenomenon, so there’s really no factual basis for the assumption that metal roofs can attract lightning.
In this article, JAM Roofing, a roofing contractor with expertise in various roof types, shares more information on metal roofs and lightning.
Is a Metal Roof Capable of Attracting Lightning?
Geography, topography and the movements of a storm are three factors that determine the exact location where lightning strikes. So having a metal roof doesn’t hold any significance when it comes to lightning.
It is also incorrect to compare metal roofs with lighting rods because the latter don’t function to attract lightning. In fact, lightning rods are designed to safely channel lightning to the ground and protect the structure in case it strikes the location of a building.
What Happens in the Event of a Lightning Strike?
The actual danger of a lightning strike to a human life or to a property depends on the materials of the entire building and not your roofing system. Lightning typically finds a path that has the least resistance to discharge. So if your home is made of conductive metal frames and a conductive metal roof — which have low resistance — there’s a possibility that lightning would strike your home. However, if your home is made of higher-resistance materials, it can survive a lightning strike with less damage.
Overall, though, the key to a lightning-proof home is having a well-designed lightning protection system. This basically consists of a metal lightning rod, which is positioned in a way that it becomes the tallest part of your home. Connected by metal wires to metal rods that are buried in the earth, the lightning rod provides an easy path for lightning to discharge to the earth and routes it around the outside of your home.
JAM Roofing is a trusted roofing company with more than 30 years of industry experience. We deliver exceptional craftsmanship and customer service. Call us at (541) 644-8111 or fill out our contact form to request a free quote. We offer our services to homeowners in Grants Pass and Medford, OR, and the nearby areas.