Metal panels fastened together create a metal roof. Two types of metal roofs are the corrugated metal roof and the standing seam roof.

Corrugated metal roofing features ribbed panels. The metal panels overlap by one or two ridges during the installation. The installers fasten the panels onto the roof deck or frame and caulk the seams to make the roof waterproof. Corrugated metal roofs require routine maintenance because the fasteners are exposed and should be inspected and tightened every ten years or so to prevent leaks. Corrugated metal roofing, invented in the early 1800’s, is an old “tried and true” method.

Standing seam roofing became popular in the mid-1900’s. This roofing, built from 12” to 19” wide panels, has ridges that run the length of the roof. These ridges, bent as high as ó to 1 ó inches, are the seams between the panels. Because the seams rise above the surface of the roof, water runs between the ridges and is not as likely to work its way through the seams, making the roof more waterproof. The panels are attached to the roof deck by clips or screws, and these fasteners are concealed by the next panel, forming a smooth continuous ridge from top to bottom. These hidden fasteners do not require maintenance as the exposed ones do. This roof is also made from thicker material, increasing the cost but also the quality of your roof.

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What Are the Advantages of a Metal Roofing System?

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Commercial Metal roofs are durable and can last up to thirty years or more. If installed correctly, they require very little maintenance. Because metal roofs are lightweight and flexible, they can be curved or bent to fit the shape of a unique building. They can also be installed on simple, cost-effective structures. Metal roofs are empowered with fire resistance that can reduce the insurance cost of your building. Mildew, rot, termites, and other pests cannot eat away at a metal roof. Neither will it crack, warp, or split in the changing weather. Coated with cool colors, they reflect sunlight to keep those inside the building comfortable. With its quick and easy install, a metal roof system is a reliable and economical choice for your commercial roofing need.

Metal Roof Materials

Steel is the most common metal roofing substance found on a commercial construction site. An alloy made of iron and other elements, steel is affordable and readily available in greater amounts than the other metal roofing materials. Among the hardest metals, it can be used in most weather environments including areas that experience hail, high winds, and deep snow. Steel is heavier and sturdier than aluminum. It is an exciting green solution because most of the steel used today comes from recycled material. Although it is the least expensive metal, steel can be painted to mimic the natural beauty of copper, zinc, and other costlier roofing systems.

Galvanized steel, the most common form of steel roofing material, uses a layer of zinc to protect the inner layer of steel from corrosion. Galvalume steel uses a coating made of aluminum and zinc. Aluminum has qualities that provide better surface protection in certain environments but is more vulnerable to scratches or cut edges.

Aluminum is extremely lightweight and will not rust. It is recommended for coastal climates because it has excellent resistance to salt corrosion. Aluminum is not as rigid as steel; therefore, the surface is more prone to dents, but because it is a softer metal than some, neither will it crack under the weight of large hailstones. Not a naturally beautiful color, aluminum is usually painted to enhance its appearance. The price of aluminum typically falls somewhere between the cost of steel and copper. Because of the cost, it is often used in thinner sheets than steel. A pure aluminum roof is more expensive than other metals that use an aluminum coating.

Copper, used for centuries around the world, has a naturally beautiful appearance that will not rust. Copper can last over 200 years in ideal environments. One hundred percent recyclable, copper is another green solution. It is also a soft metal that makes it easy to work with and puts it among the quietest types of metal roofing. Because it is a soft metal, hail may dent it more quickly, but the roof will not puncture as a harder metal might. The worst con of a copper roof is the cost. It is expensive. It also expands and contracts with swings in temperature, but this can be controlled with a proper panel or shingle.

Zinc is an amazing metal that can use its patina to heal its scratches over time. This metal stays strong for over 100 years. Like copper, zinc is a soft metal that can easily be formed and manipulated. Because the melting point is lower than steel or copper, zinc uses less energy when being processed. It is also 100% recyclable, making it a useful green material. Most do not like the chalky residue that forms on the surface of zinc in wet climates, although this can be cleaned and controlled to a certain extent. In price, zinc is comparable to copper – very expensive.

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