Corrosion Prevention Strategies for Commercial Buildings

properly maintained steel roof

Owners and managers of commercial buildings will be well aware of the importance of good maintenance. Steel roofs and steel cladded walls play a key role in protecting the building interior and its contents. Failure of the building envelope can be costly in more ways than one.

Where to begin?

Regular inspections will help you catch problems early. Something as seemingly innocent as a build up of leaves is often the beginning of something more serious. Organic matter, when left to fester in gutters and roof spaces, accelerates corrosion. Prolonged exposure to moisture is detrimental to all steel cladding coatings.

roof inspection work middlewich
Roof inspection work at a UK industrial estate.

What should you do when you see rust?

Firstly don’t panic! Slight oxidation staining of cladding and steel roof sheets is normal. This can be more prevalent below roof fixings and where roof and cladding sheets overlap. However, the discovery of more extensive corrosion will require closer inspection.

examples metal roof rust
Examples of rust on steel roofs, left to right, sheet overlap corrosion at the cut edge, ridge cap corrosion and previously treated bolt head suffering from delamination.


If you’re unsure, ask a trained professional to carry out an inspection for you. A surveyor will be equipped with the knowledge to assess the severity of any corrosion issues. The affected area might simply require cleaning. However, serious issues such as pitting corrosion are more difficult to spot to the untrained eye.


Pressure washer cleaning will usually remove the stains. Cleaning around fixings, roof lights, sheet laps, ridge caps and gutters will often suffice in removing stains and moss. Ensuring gutters are clean and unblocked on a regular basis will help to keep your roof safe from corrosion. All too often we see blocked guttering as the root cause of many major roofing problems. So keep your roof, cladding and gutters clean, it will save you time and money in the long run.

power washing steel roof flaking paint
Pressure washing removes organic material and rust staining.

Protective coatings

Surfaces susceptible to decay need protection. Applying protective coatings, such as paints or epoxy coatings, is the best way extend the lifespan of your building envelope. Protective coatings will also enhance the aesthetics of your premises. Roof and cladding coatings are available in a wide range of colours and can easily compliment your branding.

roof corrosion treat steel corrugated sheets
The paint spray application is just one of the many tasks in the roof coating process.


It’s easy to see why corrosion can be harmful and costly to your business. Water ingress can damage critical machinery, manufacturing equipment and electrical systems. Even more severe structural damage can be disastrous.

Its sadly more common than you might think. By neglecting to implement sufficient preventative measures your business could be critically impacted. Production delays or financial losses from unexpected repairs are completely avoidable with good building maintenance.

Time to hire are contractor

Dealing with roof and cladding refurbishments can be overwhelming. Making decisions on remedial works, coordinating workers, assessing progress and sourcing materials can be a minefield. Making wrong decisions can result in major and expensive problems.

We strongly recommend hiring a contractor such as ourselves, especially for medium to large projects that require expertise and knowledge. A contractor will ultimately save you time and money. Time that you will never get back!

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