Waterproof, Windproof and Weatherproof: The Perfect Roof for Your Climate

Waterproof, Windproof and Weatherproof: The Perfect Roof for Your Climate

Maintaining An Exposed-Fastener Metal Roof

by Edgar Cruz

Metal roofs are ideal for locations where extreme weather is expected. Metal will slough snow before you have to worry about a build-up of snow collapsing your roof, they will withstand hail, and they will stand up to gale-force winds. Still, even highly durable metal roofing has a weak spot. If you install an exposed-fastener metal roof, then the fasteners that hold your roof in place can fail long before your roof itself does. 

The Anatomy of a Metal Roof Fastener

Metal roofs use screws to secure the roof to the decking since the screws will stand up better to abuse than nails. Each screw is self-tapping, made from the same material as the roof, and painted to match the color of the roof. To prevent water from leaking through the hole made by the screw, each screw should be fitted with a metal umbrella washer and a rubber gasket. 

Maintenance Begins with Proper Installation

Even though the screws used on a metal roof are designed to prevent leaks, human error can still undermine the design of the screw. When you place each screw, you should drive the screw until the edges of the rubber gasket are just visible around the edges of the metal washer. If you don't drive the screw far enough, then the gasket won't make a good seal and leaks are possible. But if you drive the screw so far that the edges of the gasket begin to rise above the edges of the washer, the stress on the gasket can cause premature cracking and leaking. If you don't install your own roof, you should still inspect the screws to make sure that they are installed properly. It's tedious, but it can decrease your maintenance load down the road. 

Repairing Damaged Gaskets

Even when properly installed, the rubber gaskets on a metal roof will typically last 15-20 years. To prevent leaks, you should inspect the screws in your roof for signs of damage to the washers. Any screws that have faded or cracked, or gaskets that are brittle should be replaced with new ones. 

While a galvanized steel roof can last for up to sixty years and copper roofs can last far longer, any fasteners that fail can cause leaks well before your roof shows signs of damage. Thus, to keep your roof and your home in good condition, homeowners should start to inspect fasteners at least fifteen years after the roof was installed and replace damaged fasteners as necessary. Talk with roofing professionals, like Save On Roofing, for more information on how to maintain your metal roof.


About Me

Waterproof, Windproof and Weatherproof: The Perfect Roof for Your Climate

Hi, welcome to my blog. My name is Wendy, and after traveling through many parts of the world as I worked on a degree in anthropology with a minor in architecture, I learned a lot. I saw how people took different approaches to the same issue (putting a roof on their home), but more importantly, I noticed how those approaches were dictated by the climate and culture in the area. Unfortunately, I think a lot of people in North America build roofs that are traditional rather than roofs that are the right fit for the climate. If you are interested in exploring the latter idea, I'm here to help. These posts look at the best way to get a roof that protects you from the elements. Explore, enjoy and send your friends over to my blog. Thanks!