Installing a metal roof can be challenging as it requires focus, diligence — and most importantly knowledge. The first thing to do is to ensure that all the washers, screws, or fasteners are tightly affixed. If you notice a loose screw, that means you may have to perform some repairs first. Residents opt for metal roofing — and for the right reasons. It is durable, offers excellent longevity, and is remarkably sustainable during hurricanes or natural disasters.
But that’s not it. Metal roofs are a favorite choice in commercial projects as well. Why? Because it requires minimal maintenance, conditionally affordable repair & replacement options, and is available in various alloys.
Why should you choose Metal Roofing?
If you’ve been in the market for a new roof, you’d know that many roofing types and materials are available. Each offers different benefits and drawbacks. When it comes to the roofing material, you don’t want to take any chances. You may find shingles more durable (and popular) than metal for their modest maintenance ratings. However, there’s a difference. Metal roofs are as good of a UV, or solar radiation reflector as any shingle or any other material. This off-reflection can save you money that you may spend on the air conditioning in the summer months.
Plus, a professionally installed & coated steel roof will save you from numerous repair headaches for a long time. No doubt, metal roofing can be a little expensive but worth the purchase. Durability, lifespan, and low-maintenance — shingle roof does not stand a chance against this UV-resistant roof type.
The key to a long-lasting metal roof lies within the Installation
Metal is one of the most incredibly durable roofing materials out there. But if you or the roofers have inadequate roofing knowledge, the longevity can go sideways. To achieve maximum longevity out of the metal roofs, ensure it is installed properly — the way it should be. The root cause of most all problems that corrugated metal roofing undergoes comes from untight, loose or deteriorated screws and fasteners. The numbers of screws, rake edges, seams, and fasteners vary with the type of design your metal roof has. Some metal roofs have metal-to-wood screws, metal-to-metal screws, sealing tape, and lap screws.
Knowing all kinds of screws will help you understand how many thousands of screws you will need, or your roof has. And once you do that, know that each of the penetrations or screws can open doors for moisture.
Metal Roof Leak: Under-tightening or Over-tightening
Attaching and tightening a screw on the metal roof seems like an easy DIY job—but it’s not. The homeowner just assumes they can fasten screws just because it is simple. But an untight or over tightened screw can ruin your metal roof. The assumption of I-can-do-that is only good if you have acquired prior knowledge and training for it. Otherwise, you may end up harming the roof. In North Carolina, one of the most common issues that metal roof owners face is moisture seepage, which goes into the roof-to-home from over tightened, under-tight screws or from them not being driven in correctly.
Most of the time it is the overtightening that causes all the roof troubles. The homeowner or roofers simply assume that the screw should sink as far down on the roof as possible.
Ask yourself. Most of us would assume that the tighter the fasteners are, the more secure the surface will be? Yes. We all have been there!
The only problem with this over tightening screw is that it puts so much stress on the screw that it loses its grip — and then the moisture will get its way.
The stress on the washer causes it to even break within days. Thus, over tightening screws can lead to roof leakage.
You’ve got to stay in the middle, not too tight and not under tight. In case of under tightness, you will know, because the washer will not have a proper seal with the surface — leaving a small gap opened. This small gap then results in leaks. A good indication to know if the washer is tight or not, spin it. If the washer still spins, then it means that the seal is not set.
An expert roofer or contractor will always ensure that all the washers are tightened to their capabilities. That is why they use a screw gun that is designed and set at a spinning speed that befits metal roofing fasteners.
Focusing on the right angels
Another issue that homeowners face is when they, in a hurry, fasten the screws without being careful about the sinking angle. This is particularly important because if the screw is not straight and tightened at 90 degrees, it will have a small gap (also known as under tight) which eventually becomes a door for moisture intrusion.
Since there are hundreds and thousands of screws to fasten, these angle errors recur very commonly. If you or the roofer is not careful about it, it will tilt and thus will break. Imagine if most of the screws are not carefully tightened. Even the thought of it is too risky to think!
Pre-Drill: Yay or Nay?
This can be a tricky question to answer as pre-drilling has both pros and cons — depending on the installation approach you choose. Mostly, the screws used for metal roofing are self-drilling screws. So, does that mean there is no need for pre-drilling? The answer is No. You will still be needing that in case you are attaching the metal to a wooden surface. But pre-drilling is no piece of cake. You need expertise and experience because drilling requires precision.
Even the slightest difference in mm can ruin the roof with moisture. Pre-drilling saves you from the screws fastened in at an angle. Pre-drilling is also helpful in case the metal roof requires self-tapping screws. The final verdict, well it depends upon the type and design of the metal roof you have. Pre-drill or no pre-drill either way you will need to consider the fastening surface to the screws that will be attached.
Where do I put the screws? Flats or Ribs?
If you’re about to install corrugated metal paneling, finding the answer to this question may save you from hassle.
Putting screws in the right place on metal roofing has become a debate. Many roofing experts believe that screws should be attached to the flat beside the rib. Because the flats properly provide gasket compression whereas screws in the ribs don’t. Due to these improper screws-in-the-ribs, the sealing does not properly fit – thus leaving a gap for moisture. But that’s not it, there’s one more problem that ribs present — screw pulling. The screw pulls out in windy weather which presents a higher risk than mere moisture.
However, enthusiastic roofers think it’s the other way around. The water flow is drawn to flats more than ribs. This flow makes the screw a potential victim of leakage. Thus, screws should be put in the ribs rather than flats.
So, the answer to that question is uncertain. Professional roofers suggest that it is pivotal to understand the specifications of the corrugated metal roof.
Ribs or flats, in any case, you should always consider and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Doing contrary to the manufacturer’s recommendation will put your roof (and your wallet) in danger. The standard protocol that most of the roofers in the US abide by is the screws go in the flats. The solid wood surface is screwed against the metal, ensuring the seal sits properly leaving no voids behind.
Choosing the correct fasteners for the metal roof
At this point, you’re wondering if that’s too much information to consider. Well, installing a metal roof does require expertise. However, there is a way to avoid doing all the fuss — purchase a standing seam metal roof and have it professionally installed. That way you will get rid of the screw issues.
As you may have noticed, most issues in metal roofing installation revolve around the screws and fasteners. Why? Because that’s where all the problems begin. Therefore, it is wise to choose a roof with no exposed fasteners. Now, getting back to why you can use a standing seam metal roof:
No Exposed Fasteners: Standing seam metal roofing comes with no exposed fasteners, eliminating the opportunity for moisture or any liquid to get in. Before you wonder what-is-used-in-lieu-of-the-screws-then, know that clips are used to hold the S.S metal roof tight. Once it is tight, only then the metal roof is mounted properly.
Weather-centric: Standing seam metal roofs can incredibly survive extreme weather, specially in high windy weather, gusts, and hurricanes. Now, that’s an unbeatable feature right there!
Expansion & Contraction: Standing seam metal roofs are manufactured to be a standout during extreme weather conditions. Regardless of the type, every roof has to experience expansion and contraction. Standing seam roofs are engineered to befit such situations. The roof comes with interlocks that protect the roof water. It means that the water will not stay in one place, but float down to the soffit and fascia.
Excellent Longevity: If there’s one thing that homeowners ask every time that is how long will it last? Metal roofs are made with exquisite alloys that allow the roof to be in healthy shape for at least 20-25 years. Standing seam metal roofs are known to even last 2-3 times more than that. In simple terms, metal roofs’ have remarkable longevity that lasts for several decades.
Standing Seam Metal Roof vs. Corrugated Metal Roofing
Standing seam metal roofing is a great option for homeowners who want to be able to change the color and style of their roofs. This type of metal roof does not require any additional tools or tools to install, making it more convenient for anyone to install on their own.
What’s the difference between a Standing seam metal roof and a Corrugated metal roof?
The main difference between standing seam metal roofing and corrugated metal roofing is that standing seam roofs don’t have any flanges or channels running along the top of the roof. Instead, they are made up of straight lines that run parallel to each other. The lines are usually put together with screws or nails and then covered with a layer of asphalt shingle material. This allows for more flexibility, which makes it easier to install this type of roofing material than traditional corrugated metal roofs.
- Corrugated Metal roofs are more affordable than Standing Seam Metal roofs.
- Standing seam roof panels have no exposed fasteners.
- Corrugated roofs have less stress and wrinkling.
- Fewer leakage issues in Standing Seam.
- Standing Seam metal roofs are best for low slopes.
- Corrugated metal roofs are not so weather-centric due to exposed fasteners.
- Standing Seam metal roofs are expensive.
- Corrugated roofs require more maintenance and labor cost.
- Installation of Standing Seam metal is expensive.
- Our verdict? Both types of metal roofing have benefits and drawbacks. However, it completely depends on you—your choice. If you think you can afford Standing seam metal and installation costs, then go for it. If you have a limited budget and are okay with the maintenance costs, then go for Corrugated metal roofs.
**BONUS TIP** Selecting the right professionals for installation
Anyone with a toolbox and a little information gathered from the internet can put nails and tighten screws on the roof. But we call them amateurs, not professionals. For homeowners’ satisfaction, Statewide Roofing Experts provide excellent metal roofing installation services at the lowest affordable rates. Whether it is a corrugated roof or standing seam, our roofers know the drills. We have the best, mindful, craftsmanship who pay more attention to details than jumping to finish off the work in a hurry.
So, pick up that phone and call Statewide Roofing Experts today and get a free quote and an inspection. Worried about the quality? Let us show you how it’s done!