Recommendations for Successful Metal Roof Installations

sheet metal roofing

Effective sheet metal roofing systems require the proper attachment methods and provisions for expansion.

The aesthetic worth of metal roofing is growing its recognition using the architectural community. Using sheet metal keeps growing in schools, shopping plazas, places of worship and municipal structures. Additionally to appearance, a standing-seam metal roof system – when correctly applied – can offer lengthy-term waterproofing protection. Effective metal roofing systems require proper attachment methods, provisions for expansion and contraction, and expedient elimination of water (ice and snow) in the roof surface.

Metal roof systems are comprised of metal sections – that are typically fabricated from 22- or 24-gage gal metal or aluminum – and batten-fill insulation. The metal sections are moored towards the structural components with nails or clips. Roof clips are guaranteed to pre-smacked holes within the supporting structure. This really is beneficial since it assures proper alignment from the sections and enables for movement from the sections without leading to harm to the rooftop system.

For effective installation, the sections ought to be the maximum length to reduce the amount of finish laps. The panel finish laps should overlap the adjoining panel by no less than 6 inches and really should be adjoined plus a reinforcing plate, top panel strap and also the proper manufacturer-approved sealant. The sections are usually not guaranteed towards the structure at these points, to be able to permit panel movement. The seams are interlocked and really should provide lodging for movement either in direction throughout expansion and contraction.

The batten fill insulation is used in the bottom or inside from the sections and it is attached straight to the sections. Some producers offer composite sections that sandwich insulation between two factory-fabricated sections.


Metal roofing systems work as watersheds as well as their success is credited to proper slope. The metal by itself doesn’t posses sufficient waterproofing protection. When used in low-slope conditions, weather proofing capacity is restricted. The chronic issues with low-slope metal systems are produced with inadequate run-from moisture by means of rain, snow or ice. Water that ponds on scalping strategies rapidly find its distance to openings at seams, fastener points and penetrations. The performance abilities of metal roof systems rise in steep-slope programs.

A high slope enables for that fast run from the moisture. For me, accurate slope for metal roof systems is more than 2 1/2:12. However, system producers permit application on slopes of just oneOr4:12 or even more. In most cases, when the waterproofing capacity of metal were sufficient in low-slope programs why would the apply roof covers over metal decks?


On low-slope programs, you will find three primary concerns: roof load, management of standing water, and waterproofing at seams, penetrations and nails. Waterproofing at seams increases in systems in which the metal sections are adjoined with double folds instead of metal seams with simply lapped seams. The lapped seams depend on sealant to supply weather proofing, which becomes difficult in high movement areas. Using these systems, the sections are overlapped at least one full corrugation and therefore are adjoined with manufacturer-approved nails installed at needed spacing times.

In double-fold systems, along side it-panel connection is finished having a seaming machine that area forms a standing lock seam. The sections are adjoined in the seams having a 180-degree single-seam lock or 360-degree double-seam lock. Sealant is factory-applied in the seams.

Common Conditions

A few of the common problems that I’ve noticed in numerous research of unsuccessful metal systems include buckling from the sections, excessive corrosion and rust from the sections, and also the backing from nails. All factors create openings within the system.

Buckling of sections could be triggered by improper span application, or excessive water, snow or ice build-in a minimal area. The buckling from the sections comes with an adverse impact on seams, creating openings. Additionally, it adds to backing from nails in the region.

Most metal producers coat each side from the sections by having an alloy material to safeguard against corrosion and rust. However, more often than not – specifically in low-slope construction – weathering from the sections happens inside a five- to 10-year period. Rust ought to be addressed in the early stages and could be fixed by wire brushing off all surface or scaling rust. Rust in advanced stages produces corrosion, which reduces mil thickness and adds to openings within the metal. All metal openings, splits, and holes should be engrossed in metal plates or proper waterproofing materials. Films does apply over metal surfaces to increase their service existence and supply additional ultra-purple protection.

Openings within the system are produced whatsoever points where nails back from the metal sections. You will find numerous causes of these occurrences including using improper nails. All metal system producers require specific nails to be used using their systems. Improper nails, for example roofing nails or nails without weather tight washing machines, typically don’t function correctly. This problem is especially prevalent in systems with uncovered nails instead of systems with hidden nails.

As with every roof systems, probably the most difficult areas are in the penetrations. In metal systems, water ponding at penetrations is really a supply of concern. The ponding water not just adds to come to light rust additionally, it produces potential leak locations at in the past vulnerable locations. Probably the most vulnerable reason for ponding happens in the topside of the lower-slope transmission. Water collects in the transmission (impediment) and stays within the metal ribs. To get rid of this issue, crickets ought to be built in the penetrations to produce a free flow water from the transmission and lower the slope towards the existing gutter system. Another effective option would be to create the transmission on mechanical supports to permit the disposable flow of moisture underneath. The supports should be modified to support the slope.

Understanding and Training

Most importantly, the important thing element to success using these systems may be the contractor’s understanding from the proper installation needs and the level of experience in area programs. The majority of the metal roof system failures we have looked into through the years involve workmanship errors and improper design. Companies must be aware that although scalping strategies come under the division of roofing, they aren’t suited to all roofing companies. The applying abilities needed are occasionally ideal for sheet metal employees. However, this division inside a roofing contractor can be considered a major profit center, particularly as competition for conventional systems increases. The best way forward would be to continue but be careful in this region. One incorrectly completed seam or incorrect detail can do impossible harm to a structure.

These kinds of procedures need a heavy purchase of time for you to correctly train your labor force. Metal roof system producers could be valuable allies within this training. It’s within their welfare to coach deck hands in proper application methods to be able to minimize warranty claims. It’s also to their benefit to determine trained companies his or her agents within the roofing marketplace. Companies ought to be hesitant of producers that will not provide in-depth learning their systems application methods. It might be a sign they don’t have the technical dedication to support their systems.