Low-Gloss vs. Regular Gloss Metal Roofing Finishes: A Tested Comparison

How much of a difference is there between low-gloss and regular gloss metal roofing coatings? We put them to the test in three different types of lighting.

One of the appeals of metal roofing is its appearance. It attracts the attention of many homeowners and building owners with its sleek, modern design. To get the most out of a metal roofing design and to ensure it meets aesthetic standards, it’s important to understand specific intricacies, such as low-gloss and regular gloss metal roofing coatings.

At Sheffield Metals International (SMI), we’re committed to providing the correct information to our customers and those curious about various metal roofing topics so that they can make the right decisions for their projects. As a leading distributor of metal coils and sheets and a thought leader in the industry, we understand what customers need to know and what can help them complete their next project.

In this article, we’ll look at how much of a difference there is between low-gloss and regular gloss metal roofing coatings. Using three different types of lighting – artificial soft light, artificial hard light, and full sunlight, we tested how the level of gloss affects the glare and aesthetics of the panels. We’ve provided images below to show the results. By the time you’re done reading, you’ll have a better idea of how these glosses differ.

What Are Low-Gloss Metal Roofing Panels?

Low-gloss metal roofing refers to a type of finish on panels. Whereas high-gloss finishes are highly reflective, the main advantage of low-gloss finishes is their ability to reduce the glare from sunlight and mask the effects of oil canning, a common phenomenon on metal roofs that makes panels appear wavy or distorted.

Low-gloss panels have risen in popularity recently due to this added advantage and the modern appearance they provide. Still, there is some confusion around how different low-gloss finishes are when it comes to reducing glare.

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How Much of a Difference Is There Between Low-Gloss and Regular Gloss Metal Roofing Finishes?

To figure out just how different low-gloss finishes really are, we put them to the test. Pitting regular gloss panels and low-gloss panels directly next to each other, we used three different light sources to see how each finish looked. Below, you’ll find images of those three tests.

A low-gloss and regular gloss metal roofing panel under artificial light.
Figure 1: Left: Low-gloss   Right: Regular gloss 
A low-gloss and regular gloss metal roofing panel under artificial hard light.
Figure 2: Left: Low-gloss   Right: Regular gloss 
A low-gloss and regular gloss metal roofing panel under full sunlight.
Figure 3: Left: Regular gloss  Right: Low-gloss

As expected, the low-gloss panels did a much better job of reducing the glare from all light sources, creating a smoother, milder appearance compared to the regular gloss. Check out our video to see the live tests.

Is Low-Gloss or Regular Gloss Right for My Next Project?

For some, the differences between glosses might not matter much. Customers who aren’t concerned with reducing glare on their metal roof or masking oil canning may be satisfied choosing a regular gloss finish. But if aesthetics is one of their top priorities and they want that milder, smoother look, a low-gloss option could be right for them.

Keep in mind that different materials will be available for low-gloss and regular gloss products. You can refer to the Sheffield Metals colors page to see what options are available for low-gloss products. Sheffield recently released their new CoreLine color line, featuring five 24-gauge, textured low-gloss colors. For those desiring low-gloss, you can choose from CoreLine or our 26-gauge options. Remember that 26-gauge metal offers less strength than 24-gauge due to its thickness, so it will be important to balance aesthetics vs. performance.

Sheffield Metals CoreLine color selection.

Where Can You Find More Information on Metal Roofing Coatings?

Every metal roofing project is different. While getting the right information is one thing, applying that knowledge to your unique situation is essential. Reaching out to a trusted source in the industry is one of the best ways to ensure you’re doing things right.

Sheffield Metals International has spent two decades building up a reliable reputation in the metal roofing space. We’ve built countless relationships with contractors and have helped them achieve their goals. Our Technical and Architectural Teams are on hand to answer your questions and guide you through your next project. Feel free to reach out to speak with an expert.

Contact Sheffield Metals today!