Metal Roofing Weathertight Warranty: Uses, Exclusions, And Cost
Imagine walking into your commercial building to discover a giant puddle on the floor and drips of water coming from the ceiling. This is a clear sign of a leak, one of the many headaches that the property owner never wants to have.
If the damage is severe, a leak ultimately results in spending money- whether it be on repairs or even replacing certain parts of the roofing system. This unforeseen expense can result in even more headaches.
Luckily, there are weathertight warranties that are designed to protect you from the expenses of a situation just like the one described above.
At Western States Metal Roofing, we understand the importance of this extra peace of mind. That’s why we not only manufacture metal roofing and siding panels, but we also offer weathertight warranties for architectural, industrial, and commercial buildings.
In this article, we go over what you need to know about a weathertight warranty and why it's a good investment to get one.
What Is A Metal Roof Weathertight Warranty?
A weathertight warranty is a guarantee that the installed metal roof will remain weathertight and not have any leaking or water damage issues for as long as the warranty is valid. If water damage does occur to your roof and is within the guidelines and timeframe of the warranty, the roof will be repaired at no extra cost to you.
This extra insurance policy on your roof is made by both the installer and roofing manufacturer. While we are specifically discussing metal roofing in this article, keep in mind that weathertight warranties can also be obtained for metal siding.
While metal panels may state they come with a limited warranty which covers the paint finish, note that this warranty does not cover weathertightness. A weathertight warranty does not come standard with any metal product and must be purchased separately.
Weathertight warranties are only available for commercial projects. They aren’t available for residential metal roofing installations.
Why Should I Get A Weathertight Warranty For My Metal Roof?
While a metal roof is a weathertight system in itself, there is still a small chance of leaking occurring especially if the roof is exposed to large amounts of rain or snow, or if the system is installed incorrectly.
By having a weathertight warranty, you are being guaranteed that you are protected from inconvenient and costly leaks.
How Much Does A Weathertight Warranty Cost?
The cost of a weather-tight warranty depends upon the type of warranty, length, and coverage amounts. As you might imagine, warranties that cover your roof for longer periods of time and for greater dollar amounts will cost more. Weathertight warranties are priced by the square foot and there will be a minimum charge.
Here is what you can expect to pay for a weathertight warranty
- $.25 to $.75 per square foot.
- Minimum warranty charge of $4,000 to 8,000
What Does A Weathertight Warranty Cover?
Weathertight warranties generally cover:
- Flashing zones
- Roofing leaks for a specified amount of time
- Seams, but only if installed correctly
However, every warranty is different as the guidelines are set by the different manufacturers. Also, there are different warranties available depending on the type of coverage you are looking for.
Limited vs. No Dollar Limit Weathertight Warranties
There are two types of weathertight warranties. The one that is best for you depends on how much coverage you are looking for and for how long.
Limited Weathertight Warranty
A limited weathertight warranty covers repairs until the dollar amount that was paid for the metal roof materials and installation is reached.
If a roof costs $20,000 for both the materials and the installation, then the warranty will cover repairs up to $20,000 through the specified length of the warranty. These warranty lengths can be as little as 5 years all the way up to 35 years.
No Dollar Limit Weathertight Warranties
No dollar limit weathertight warranties are not capped at any dollar amount. Approved repairs will be made regardless of the amount, as long as it is within the allotted time frame of the warranty. This type of warranty generally ranges from 10-35 years in length.
Weathertight Warranty Exclusions
Keep in mind that even if you do everything to keep your warranty valid, there are circumstances where damage still may not be covered. For example, Acts of God, such as a hurricane, are not covered under weathertight warranties.
The exclusions will differ depending upon the manufacturer. We recommend that you read a copy of the warranty prior to purchasing it to see what’s not covered in your watertight warranty. Most weathertight warranties will have pages full of exclusions, but here are some of the more common ones.
10 Common Weathertight Warranty Exclusions
- Damage that’s caused my salt-laden environments or spray from freshwater or saltwater.
- Damage that’s caused by corrosive chemicals or dis-similar metals.
- Damage from foot traffic on the roof that occurs after the installation.
- Damage from “Acts of God”.
- Damage caused due to maintenance not being performed.
- Damage caused by repairs from anyone other than the original contractor and metal roofing manufacturer.
- Damage caused by alterations or changes to the building.
- Damage caused due to a poorly designed building.
- Damage that’s caused by animals, birds, or insects.
- Damage that’s caused due to standing water.
How Do I Avoid Voiding My Weathertight Warranty?
Remember that every warranty is different and the guidelines are set by the manufacturer. Be sure to ask your manufacturer what their specific guidelines for their warranty are.
Below are general guidelines that you will see on nearly all warranties.
- Report a leak in a timely fashion.
- Do not make repairs without prior authorization.
- No permanent fixtures should be added to the roof.
- Perform routine maintenance as required.
Report A Leak In A Timely Fashion
The longer a leak goes without being taken care of, the worse it gets. This is why reporting a leak as soon as you notice it is so important. Warranties will specify an amount of time, such as 30 days, that you have to notify them that you have a leak.
Do Not Make Repairs Without Prior Authorization
If you spot a leak, your first instinct might be to attempt to fix it yourself to avoid further damage. However, this will void your warranty. Instead, call in your leak to have a professional repair the issue for you.
No Permanent Fixtures Should Be Added Directly Into The Roof
If a permanent fixture, such as a satellite dish, is installed directly into your roof, it’s installation will interfere with the weathertightness of your roof. It’s easy to understand how drilling into the roof makes additional entry points for water to enter. Any leak damage that occurs from these additions will not be covered under warranty.
Accessories such as brackets should be used with standing seam panels to add any additions onto the roof safely without having to drill into the roof itself. Doing it this way also protects your warranty.
Perform Routine Maintenance As Required
Just because your roof has a warranty does not mean you can be reckless with its care. Regular maintenance care still needs to be performed.
Maintenance on a metal roof is relatively simple. It’s important to keep the roof clear of debris. This avoids build-up that will stop water flow.
Who Is A Weathertight Warranty For?
A weathertight warranty is for the property owner as it is designed to protect their investment. However, the contractor doing the installation is the person who needs to actually apply for the warranty. The warranty cannot be applied for by the property owner directly.
After seeing the long list of exclusions above, you might be wondering if a weathertight warranty is worth it.
How Do I Apply For A Weathertight Warranty?
This is another instance where each manufacturer is different. While every manufacturer will have their own individual procedure, they will have similar requirements of what needs to be submitted.
In addition to an application, a weathertight warranty will require you to submit information about your roof including:
- Set of Installation Details
- Roof plans
Choosing A Weathertight Warranty
When choosing your weathertight warranty, pay close attention to:
- Length of terms of warranty
- What is covered
- What is not covered under warranty
- Circumstances that will void warranty
- Warranty exclusions (acts of God etc.)
Weathertight warranties are used predominantly on standing seam panels. Discover the different types of standing seam panels by reading:
Looking for information on other types of warranties for metal roofing? Check out: