How to Install Metal Roofing

How to Install Metal Roofing

worker installing metal roofing

Metal roofing is increasingly the number one choice for a lot of homeowners. Durable, weatherproof and easy to install, it’s a practical selection that can easily compete with traditional shingles. In these times when we are all thinking of ways to be more eco-friendly, it can also help with energy efficiency – lowering power bills and saving your wallet and the planet. And whether you choose professional installation or a DIY job, you can achieve the right finish with a little time and patience, and the correct tools. So, if you’re looking to install metal roofing how do you get started?

Plan Ahead

The number one useful thing when you’re looking for how to install a metal roof is to understand all the different options that you have available. You can choose from a wide range of finishes for different projects – from tin, which is affordable and highly durable, through to zinc which is corrosion resistant for areas with extreme weather or galvanized steel which is costly but will last a lifetime. Consider the project and the needs that you have, and look through the qualities of different types of metal roofing before making your final selection.

Measure Up Right

They say ‘cut once, measure twice’ and that is never more appropriate than when you are looking to install metal roofing. You will need to:

  • Use the right tools to get an accurate roof measurement length and width
  • Get a carpenter’s level up to the rafters in the attic to calculate the rise of the roof
  • Calculate the total square footage required by multiplying the area by the slope
  • Add 10 percent extra onto your order of roofing supplies to account for wastage
  • Make sure your roofing screws match the material and color of the metal you have chosen for the roof. 

Prepare The Area

Up on the roof, start by first removing the old shingles, underlay, vents and flashing to give you a clear run for the installation. Take the opportunity to look over the sheathing underneath to make sure it’s intact or tackle any repairs needed. Then you’re ready to roll out your insulation layer – the type you need to use should be checked with the manufacturer of your metal roofing panels

Begin Your Installation

When all the materials are in place, you’re ready to begin your installation.

  • Start off by adding in the edging, or metal flashing on the eaves of your roof.
  • Where there are bends, install your corner pieces
  • Flashing should also be installed to overhang your guttering by about half an each either side
  • Then you can begin to lay your metal roofing panels – lay them overlapping and square to the roof line
  • Place your first screw about seven inches from the bottom of and then at around 18 inch spaces along each vertical run
  • Secure your screws and then add some silicone sealant along the underside of the short edge of each panel
  • Continue adding and sealing a panel a time until your roof is completely covered
  • If you have angles to accommodate, you’ll need to use a circular saw to cut your panels to fit

Now you’re all set to go – but if the project is more complex than you initially thought, using a professional to install your metal roofing is the safest route. 

How to Install Metal Siding

construction workers installing metal siding

Metal siding can help any building seem professionally maintained, while also staying protected from the elements. Additionally, it’s easy-to-clean, uniform aesthetic can help any building increase its curb appeal and overall appearance.

For this reason, learning how to install said siding can help you unlock the benefit of this most superior of materials. Our installation guide will aid you to this end:

Preparation

The old craftsman’s proverb is to measure twice, cut once, and that principle applies here. Measure the entirety of the space you hope to cover with metal siding. Additionally, a smooth, installation-friendly environment will need to be confirmed before you can go ahead with further steps. 

This means stripping rotten or incorrectly placed wood. Sanding or clearing debris, curling paint, and other embossed protrusions is crucial. The surface area should be smooth, uniform, and clean. You must leave the underside in the condition you hope for it to be preserved in.

Underlayment

Metal siding requires an underlayment to protect against weather conditions and form a tight seal. Breathable, synthetic material is preferable. This can allow moisture to escape without allowing it in, which will help preserve the undersurface. This can be attached using a staple gun. The lining should be tight, paying attention to the most vulnerable areas, such as opening nears windows. Be sure to leave enough room for overlap, 2-3 inches will often suffice.

Siding Installation

The sealing strip should be placed at the bottom first and foremost, and should accommodate the sheet metal that will be placed here. The sheet metal sliding should be lined in parallel, perfectly uniform. You can use a level to make sure it is placed correctly on both sides. Hammering nails every eight inches in a common approach, or in the pre-cut holes provided by the siding panel, but never too tightly. Additionally, leave corner room (3-5 inches of space) to further accommodate the corner caps.

Corner Caps

Corner caps help keep the structural application stable. Use the rims to brace under the sheets of metal siding, and hammer in the nails to connect. Ensure they are firm, secure, and uniformly installed. Remember, corner caps are there to secure the siding, not to cause an aesthetic issue, so using a rubber mallet or other tools less likely to cause dents can prevent you from harming its appearance before you finish the job.

Aestheticism

The benefit of siding is that it can easily be painted, spray painted or further used to hang signs and logos from, depending on your domestic or commercial needs. Be sure not to tamper with the security and installation of said metal siding despite your ambitions.

Metal Roofs: Corrugated Metal vs Standing Seam

corrugated metal roofing panel

Metal roofing is by no means a new phenomenon. The concept has been around for centuries and corrugated metal itself played an integral role in the development of the US frontier, the California gold rush and settling on the Great Plains – and metal roofing is just as effective today as it’s ever been! If you’re considering metal roofing, it’s a good idea to know the ins and outs of different options to determine what’s best for you. Let’s start by considering corrugated metal vs standing seam!

Corrugated Metal Roofing

Corrugated metal was developed by Henry Robinson Palmer in the early nineteenth century. His aim was to create a form of stiffened metal that allowed a great span of material across a lighter framework. This would make fast construction of shelters faster and easier, as there wouldn’t be heavy materials to move around and support structures wouldn’t have to be so steadfast to maintain the weight of their roofs. Corrugated metal is self supporting due to the series of waves or folds that are molded into its sheets.

Standing Seam Metal Roofing

Standing seam roofing is an alternative to corrugated metal roofing. The standing seam is created through a technique which sees edges of each sheet folded upwards and each sheet laid over the next. The resultant raised ridge provides a space for fasteners to lie beneath. This can give a more clean and better looking end result.

Corrugated Roofing vs Standing Seam Roofing

Now we’ve outlined the differences between these two types of metal roofing, it’s time to do a comparison! Here are a few areas where they can differ.

Installation

It’s definitely easier to have corrugated metal roofing applied to your home. They can often be affixed to existing asphalt roofing due to their extremely lightweight nature. Standing seam roofing, on the other hand, can be a more complex and costly task. The metal and technique used for standing seam roofing can see the metal expand and contract with changes in temperature, which can scratch or damage existing roofing beneath. Compare installation costs before settling on one or the other.

Strength and Longevity

Once fitted, both corrugated roofing and standard seam roofing can withstand extremely high wind speeds. Both can also withstand rain, hail and snow too. On top of this, they won’t set alight easily if you live in an area that is prone to wildfires.

Maintenance

Different metals will fare differently over the years – whether the roof you choose is corrugated or standing seam. Galvanized steel roofing can be expected to fare well for fifty plus years. If you opt for aluminium or copper-zinc, you could be looking at over one hundred years. One area you may have to look into down the line, however, is recoating. This can help to keep your roof looking new as time passes by.

At the end of the day, there isn’t an outright answer for whether corrugated metal or standing seam roofing is better. The answer will depend largely on you, your home and your individual preferences. Both make great options!

Can I Install Solar Panels on a Metal Roof?

solar panels atop a metal roofing structure

While solar energy is becoming more cost-effective and an exciting sustainable, alternative energy option as the years go by, we can’t blame the general public for being hesitant or wishing to ensure they can support them before jumping wholeheartedly into this new domestic or commercial investment.

One of the most common questions we receive is ‘can I install solar panels on a metal roof?’ After all, metal roofing is a great means in which to cover homes, newer, modern constructions, business premises, and that’s just to name a few. Metal roofing is light, durable and can withstand great pressure from the elements, as well as remaining cost-effective with little maintenance needed.

But how can solar panels, known for their delicacy, fair when installed as part of a metal roofing structure? The last thing you need is to suffer instability or damage as the months go by.

Luckily, solar roof panels are more than suitable for metal roof installation, and more than that, they provide a stable, uniform and often strengthened connective environment for permanent installation. 

In the advice below, we hope to answer all of your further questions:

How?

  • Solar panel metal roof installation is often guided by straddle blocks and mounting clamps. This creates a secure, parallel environment for well-placed solar panel adjustment. 
  • Solar panels, and their absorption of sunlight, can prevent the metal roof from becoming as hot as it might have, allowing you to ensure an even longer lifespan of your roofing installation. This is a nice side-benefit. It can also decrease your air-conditioning-associated costs during the heat of the summer.
  • Metal roofs also allow for two different styles of solar roof panel installation. IPV panels are the most popular in North America, but PV panels, with their higher efficiency per-square-inch and require less upkeep and energy than silicon solar cells. 

Why Install?

Contrary to how it seems, we would certainly recommend that metal roofing becomes your first choice for solar panel installation. There are many reasons why this is the case. 

  • Solar panels carry with them an expected life duration of up to 30 years. Metal roofing can be expected to coincide with or outlast this timeframe, meaning that roof maintenance, added construction and weather issues are unlikely to affect the placement or stability of your solar panels. For those with traditional roofing construction, this is not always a guarantee. In fact, some choose to install metal roofing as a precursor to solar panel installation for this reason.
  • Environmentally conscious building programs such as ENERGY STAR and LEED allow you to accumulate points for the use of building solar panels on your property. These initiatives can render businesses more energy-efficient, which can translate well to how businesses tackle their impact on the environment. You can be sure this is a welcome promotional point for many.

Where Should I Install?

Thankfully, a singular form of metal roofing is not the only requirement for success with this installation. There are many adjustments we can make in order to form-fit your solar panels to your metal roof. They are as follows:

  1. Straddle blocks are a reliable method to utilize when your metal roofing is not perfectly uniform, or has extra space considerations to make use of. This is the only option that requires drilling, using straddle mounts that line up parallel to the installation grommets of the solar panel. They can ensure a stable, uniform placement of your solar panels and thus help any metal roof compatible with their installation.
  2. Metal tile rooftops can be easily installed with replacement metal tile solutions. The mounts are similar to roof tiles in that they carry the same consistent shape, but are applied as a replacement, thus ensuring the natural protection of your roofing arrangement. This, allied with guiding metal rods, allow for your solar panels to be easily placed. This method also preserves the natural condition of your roofing, and so they are a popular choice.
  3. Standing seams are one of the most popular forms of metal roofing structure, and so solar panels have been form-fitted to make use of this fact. Installing panels using clamps, the solar panels may use of the seams on the rooftop to secure a solid fit and accelerate installation without sacrificing reliability or stability.

Why Us?

RPS Metal Roofing & Siding Inc holds a fantastic reputation for all of your roofing and siding needs. We have been serving the local community since 2001, and offer free estimates, competitive turnaround times, and stock the highest quality metal to be found anywhere in the industry. 
We would warmly recommend emailing us at sales@rpsmetalroofing.com or telephone (386) 467-9277 for all of your roofing needs. We look forward to speaking with you.

What are the Main Disadvantages of Shingle Roofing?

shingle roof damage

Fixing or replacing your roof is one of the most significant investments you will make as a homeowner. Therefore it is crucial to understand all of the options available to you. While asphalt shingles are one of the most common materials currently used in residential roofing, that doesn’t mean that this is the best and only option.

There are many reasons why a shingle roof can put you at a disadvantage, including: 

  • Asphalt shingle roofing, in particular, absorbs heat from the sun and transfers it into the home. In contrast, on colder nights, it transfers heat away from your home, leaving your interior much cooler.
  • Asphalt shingle is a heavier material compared to others such as metal. 
  • The durability of a shingle roof isn’t as long compared to other roofing materials. They are easily outlasted by slate, metal, and tile and last an average of 15 to 30 years. 
  • Shingle roofing is much more susceptible to heat damage.
  • If you live in a particularly wet area, you are likely to encounter mildew problems. This is caused by excess moisture, which can cause the shingles to rot quickly and cause other damage.
  • Shingle roofs are also more susceptible to algae and mold. 
  • Strong winds can easily tear or uplift shingles off, making them susceptible to damage from high winds. Tree branches and other debris blowing in the wind can also cause substantial damage a lot easier in comparison to different types of roofing.

Are you facing one or a number of these issues? Call for a local roof inspection as soon as possible. Now might also be the perfect time to think about a roof replacement. If you need a new roof to keep your house safe and sound, metal roofing is the ideal alternative option to consider. 

Sleek and sophisticated in appearance, metal roofs come in a wide range of colors and styles to perfectly match the look of your home and neighborhood and are available as tiles, panels or shingles. 

While other roofs quickly wear and tear with age, unlike asphalt shingle roofing, it’s metal alternative gives you the benefit of proven performance expectation of at least 50+ years, giving you more for your money. They are also fire-resistant and energy-efficient, reflecting solar heat to keep your home cooler and more comfortable in the summer, lowering your energy bills while weighing less to preserve the structural integrity of your property. 

Unlike asphalt shingles, metal roofs require less overall maintenance and are tough. The natural properties of metal, and interlocking panels, provide maximum natural resistance to the many numbers of forces that can lead to roof damage such as high wind and rain.

With great options existing for nearly every budget, metal roofs offer a plethora of benefits to allow homeowners to upgrade with high-quality products of long-lasting value that are also recyclable and friendly to the environment.

Re-roofing your home is a big project, so it’s important to select the right manufacturer and contractor for the job. Here at RPS Metal Roofing, we offer top quality metal roofs in various sizes and colors, alongside state-of-the-art-equipment, and are here for all of your metal roofing needs, for the best roofing possible.  

When is the Best Time to Install a Metal Roof?

illustration of four seasons

Installing a roof takes some time. Planning ahead and considering seasonal weather is therefore crucial, as damp and rainy conditions can set your installation back and cause various problems, which isn’t ideal when you are running a business or simply want a roof over your head at home.

How long does a metal roof installation take?

Your contractor should be able to give you a rough time frame for the installation and an expected completion date prior to starting. To replace a roof on a house, it takes an average time of three to four days; however, this is just a rough estimate and doesn’t consider your home’s specific circumstances. Factors which can affect roof installations include the size of your roof as well as the pitch, and of course the weather. 

What is the best time of the year for a metal roof installation in Florida? 

Living in Florida gives you the added benefit of great weather throughout most of the year, especially compared to other states in the country. This opens you up to more options time-wise throughout the year to install your metal roof. 

Winter or Spring are the two most optimal seasons to replace your roof in Florida, due to the fewest storms and hurricanes. This means that you are guaranteed to have fewer delays and setbacks due to weather. If at all possible, look to install your metal roof during the winter months. This season tends to be the least busy time for workers in comparison to spring, and the cooler weather allows for a smoother, quicker installation. Try not to book a roof installation during the summer and fall months unless absolutely necessary as this is storm and hurricane season. Without having a proper roof over your head, this could cause you to place your home or business in unnecessary danger and lead to long delays. 

The summer also brings with it intense heat and sunshine, which in theory sounds like the perfect time to install a metal roof, however, the high temperatures could potentially soften the material and result in damage during the installation. 

Either way, it is essential not to wait until the last minute and arrange a date as soon as possible to ensure that your contractors can fit you into their schedule. By planning ahead, you can also often get better deals financially, and you won’t have to deal with any of the last-minute stress and hassles that last-minute chaos inevitably brings. Keep the weather in mind when scheduling your roof project to reduce any unnecessary risks and to also protect your new room from any damage. After all, you are spending your hard-earned money, so it would be a shame for it to get damaged straight away when it could have quite easily been avoidable.

Can I Paint My Metal Roof to Change its Color?

Whether you’ve recently bought a property with a metal roof or wish to change the color of your existing roof for the sake of aesthetic and energy efficiency, painting the metal roof naturally stands out as the most logical solution for the sake of your time, finances, and commitment to living an Eco-friendly life. 

The short answer is: yes, you can paint a metal roof. However, if you wish to change the color of an existing metal roof, it’s imperative that you do it in the right manner. Here’s all you need to know.

When Can a Metal Roof be Repainted?

All types of metal roofing are suitable for repainting, but it should be noted that newly installed metal roofs should not be changed for at least six months as they need time to weather.

Before painting a metal roof, though, you must also prepare it for the process ahead by removing mildew, dirt, and any loose paint that may be left over from the original paint job. A jet power wash is the best way to achieve this, and can complete the task in a matter of minutes. 

When you want to change the color of an existing metal roof for the first time, using a diluted vinegar solution to remove any old paint oils and residue is a wise move too.

How to Repaint a Metal Roof

After preparing the metal roof through a powerwash treatment, you need to ensure that the right processes are used to paint the roof. First and foremost, the right type of paint should be selected.

Acrylic latex paint works well for bare metal roofs or painting over old paint coats. The combination of oil-based alkyd paint and a galvanized metal primer can work well too, ensuring that the paint is locked in and adhered in the right manner. With so many brands on the market, it’s important to look for a paint that offers the attributes you require. Water resistance, fire resistance, insect repellent capabilities, and UV reflection are all properties you may seek.

Application is a relatively simple task. You can use a sprayer to reach high or steeped metal roofs. Alternatively, rollers and paint brushes that are designed specifically for corrugated metal are equally capable of providing the quick coverage you crave. Only a few coats are needed, although you can usually judge this for yourself.

If all else fails, or you’re worried about safety (you should wear a harness and non-slip shoes), you can always hire a professional to repaint metal roof solutions on your behalf.

Maintenance Tips

The fact that metal roofs require minimal maintenance is a very attractive feature, and is another reason for staying loyal to this material. Nevertheless, a little work can help extend the life of your roof by several years.

Cleaning the roof once every six months with a gentle detergent should suffice. It removes debris and dirt before it has a chance to penetrate the paint or make the metal start to rust. It also provides an opportunity to identify and treat bald spots or any other early signs of damage.

You may still wish to repaint the roof once every few years to maintain the fresh look, but you’ll no longer need to worry about replacing the roof. Perfect.

Recommended Tools to Install a Metal Roof

If you are choosing to install a metal roof yourself, you must be sure that you have the correct tools and equipment in order to do this effectively. You may have purchased a do-it-yourself system, so you will appreciate that this will be installed directly onto your old roof. You must also ensure the key elements of safety when undertaking any task such as this but by using some of the best tools on the market, you can reduce your time and effort to allow you to erect your metal roof easily.

While some tools may be pricier than others, you will want to make the investment for your safety and comfort. 

Let’s start with the joining tools that you will need to use when you are installing your roof. These tools are going to be the main element of the job. Knowing what tools you need will allow you to be prepared and put together a plan of action before proceeding with the task at hand. It also allows you to learn how to use the tools and practice beforehand. These are the recommended tools that will allow you to safely and effectively install your metal roof

Fastener Drivers

These are most likely going to be needed in a job as big as this. Using a professional fastener driver will make life much easier when it comes to installation. Using a cordless impact driver will make life much easier as it will be lighter and more easier to maintain and handle. One particular favorite is the DW257 because of it’s easy adaption for metal roofing. With this modified driver, you do not need to connect it to any power supply and it is much more manageable. 

There are many cordless fastener drivers, which will also add to the safety of usage. You will find that the DEWALT cordless driver will be comforting to hold and light in the hand as the exact weight is just 3.5 lbs. It has a powerful and controlled use which makes it great for longevity and focus. 

Electric Swivel Head Metal Shears

These are mostly going to be used to cut your panels to size and trim any edges to ensure you have a snug fit to your metal roof. The recommended metal shears are the DEWALT DW890 which are very powerful little tools. Incredibly versatile, they cut through metal like butter and provide accuracy. You will be able to change speed and adjust the type of cutting feature depending on the type of metal you are using; the size and density. The DW890 is ideal for stainless steel of 20-Gauge and thinner but works well for any type of metal. You can add attachments for different types of jobs, including a drill attacher, which can come in handy. 

Nibblers 

This little tool will cut sheet metal with very minimal distortion and uses a blade that moves in a linear fashion, and will remove any small bits of metal, which may be helpful for trimming edges of your metal roof. They can directly attach onto your drill and can save time and effort. 

Blade Cutters

If you want a smooth rounded edge to your metal roof, then you are going to need a blade cutter that offers exactly this. It is best to use a blade cutter and not a handheld grinder as these can create abrasion at the edges. For the best outcome for your metal roof, you should look at a carbide metal cutting blade for a 7 ¼” circular saw as this will allow precision cuts and trims. The blades are made of hardened and tempered tungsten carbide. 

Metal Snips 

These are an essential for trimming and flashing purposes. You will find that there are snips for both right hand and left hand cuts and most good metal snips will be chrome plated rust protected forged blades for increased lifetime so you will be able to reuse them for multiple projects. They do not have to be expensive and can often be found at the hardware stores. 

Conclusion

Once you have the correct and reliable tools at your disposal, you will find that installing your metal roof will be much easier and simpler. Using the best tools will ensure that you don’t run into any unwanted issues and you can use them with ease and safety. Metal roofs are durable and weather resistant and with the rest of the necessary parts, including safety equipment and necessary nails, washers and tape, you can create the perfect long lasting metal roof. 

Metal Roof Ventilation: Gable Vents Versus Ridge Vents

trio of gable vents against a brick wall

Metal roofs, especially those lighter in color, can have a significant positive impact on your home’s energy efficiency and air conditioning costs in warmer climates. However, in order to maximize the cooling benefits of a quality metal roof, proper attention must be paid to the installation process, specifically ventilation. 

When ventilation is not properly taken into consideration, heat and moisture can build up in excess within your home’s attic – this can potentially cause damage to your insulation and also reduce, or fully negate, any benefit to climate control that may have been possible with the conversion to a metal roofing system. 

Two of the more common types of vents are Gable and Ridge. Each has its pros and cons, and it could be valuable to combine the two. While we always suggest first consulting a professional on any metal roof installation, here are some of the ways Ridge vents differ from Gable vents, and what you might want to take into consideration when deciding on which to go with. 

Gable Vents

A Gable roof looks like an “upside down V” and comes to a point at the top. The way these roofs slope away from the home make them beneficial for shedding water, ice, snow and other buildup of debris from collecting in one specific area – causing a higher probability in damage over time. 

Gable vents are located in front of Gable roofs and can be accompanied by fans to assist with the distribution of airflow between the roof and the attic. However, some Gable vents are purely decorative. 

Ridge Vents

Unlike Gable vents, Ridge vents are always installed with a purpose. In fact, they are located at the top of Gable roofs, typically hidden under the roof overhang with the intention of providing airflow ventilation while adding an extra layer of protection against the entry of rain. 

Should You Install Gable and Ridge Vents?

Since Gable vents can be used decoratively, they can be used in conjunction with Ridge vents. However, the benefit of Ridge vents becomes somewhat useless when coupled with a Gable vent that is not sealed off – since the benefit of a Ridge vent over Gable is the added protection against water entry. 

Choosing and Installing a Vent Type

Before committing to a style or installation of vent system for your metal roof, it is recommended to first consult with a licensed professional. In addition to offering free estimates, the team at RPS is on standby for any question you may have about the process.

How Metal Roofs Can Protect Your Home During High Wind and Hurricanes

One of the very best ways you can protect your home in strong winds and hurricanes is to install a metal roof. Metal roofs have been proven to withstand up to 140 miles per hour gusts of wind, and they can hold up against heavy rain, snow, and hailstorms. It’s for this reason that locations that are prone to heavy wind and hurricanes are having metal roofs installed. The demand is rising because of the evidence that is stacking up, showing that metal roofs are among the best protection against hail storms, embers from wildfires, and hurricane wind.

Other materials? They don’t hold up so well. Slate shingles have a Class A rating, but they don’t withstand fire and wind in the same way as metal roofs. Materials like asphalt deteriorate from the moment that it is installed, which will mean paying for re-roofing every decade or more.

Why Metal Roofs Withstand High Winds Best

It doesn’t matter where you live; metal roofing is an excellent decision to make for your house. They have an ability to resist the uplift from wind and water at the same time. This is because of three critical factors:

  • Design. Metal roofs come with two systems: hydrostatic or hydrokinetic. Hydrostatic is for low-sloping roofs, and they protect against any water due to the pressure. Hydrokinetic is for steep-sloping roofs, and they facilitate water shedding.
  • Installation. A significant factor of metal roofs working well is in their installation. You need to protect your house from wind, and with the correct installation, you get the uplift resistance that you need. It’s why the industry requires all installers to follow the installation instructions to the letter.
  • Properties. Steel is the best metal roof for hurricanes because it has the best strength to weight ratio of any other roofing material. It’s why it will work exceptionally well under the pressure of a storm. The metal itself doesn’t degrade, and when it’s exposed to the elements, you still get the benefits of longevity. Steel sheets and tiles can be coated correctly with zinc or even aluminum to prevent rust.

Those who live in areas where severe storms are frequent will benefit from metal roofing, but they’ll also be the best option no matter where you are. The resistance to the weather, water, and wind, as well as fire, is enough of a reason to get a metal roof installed onto your home.