Tag Archives: Commercial Metal Roofing

There’s a Loud Banging Noise on My Roof: Now What?

The wintertime has varying effects on all of us. Not only is the weather much more frigid, but it also gets darker outside far earlier in the day and stays darker long into the morning. This can have something of a jarring effect on those of us who do not particularly care for this time of year.

Another thing that you might encounter is that you suddenly hear loud banging noises on your metal roof. This can be pretty alarming to hear for the first time or two, but it is not a cause for panic. The noise might make you think that there is some kind of lurking intruder or that a tree has fallen on your roof, this is actually the effect that low temperatures can have on the roofing materials.

The banging you hear is the shrinking of the material that is occurring due to the shrinking of the material and it isn’t always a serious structural issue at hand. It does, however, require a bit more information to fully grasp.

Why does the roof make noise?

Let’s take a step back for a moment. Before you can truly understand what is happening with your roof, the concept of thermal expansion and contraction is something that you should have a handle on. The materials used to construct your building are all differently affected by the temperature of the environment that they inhabit.

During the winter, when temperatures have declined sharply, these changes can become much more noticeable. Colder temperatures can shrink any exposed materials. These materials are bound to one another as well as any interior materials by fasteners (this can include things like nails and screws).

Different materials will contract and expand at different rates; this can mean that all of the materials that encompass your roof are contracting and expanding at different rates as a response to the sudden shifts in temperature. This is what can cause these banging noises and is nothing to necessarily be alarmed about.

Metal roofing

Inside conditions vs outside conditions

Though the exterior of your roof is constantly exposed to the shifting temperatures of winter, the inside of your house is generally kept warm and is not exposed to shifting temperatures. The heat that is inside of your house is constantly moving upward toward the cold outer portion of the roof.

What this means is that the roof itself is shrinking due to the cold while the rest of the house is not. This can cause a buildup of pressure and distortion as well. When that pressure builds up, the joints and other areas where connections are made end up moving slightly; this creates those banging noises that might startle you during those cold nights.

It is important to not be alarmed. If you live in a colder region where there are typically large drops in temperature between daytime and nighttime during the winter, this is something that cannot be avoided and is not something to worry about.

What you might not have realized is that the same expansion and contraction is taking place is a far quieter fashion when water pipes are cooled or heated with each use. This contraction and expansion also take place with window and door frames even in the summer when the temperature cools from daytime to nighttime.

Another fact that you might not have even considered is that builders are well aware of the effects of thermal expansion and contraction and take that into consideration when they are building. For this reason, they try to choose compatible materials that are adjacent to each other and then tightly securing those connections in order to resist any excessive movement.

It is worth noting that you should probably make a point of clearing off your roof if several inches or more of snow have piled up. This snow provides additional weight to the roof and runs a greater risk of providing water damage to any areas that it stays in.

Insulation won’t make a difference

While there are certainly some instances where adding more insulation to your roof can help to quell those banging sounds that are being made as the roof and other components shift and contract, it ultimately cannot stop that expansion and contraction. This is because the roof is exposed to the elements and outside temperatures.

Adding any more attic ventilation could help to minimize the contraction and expansion through reducing the attic’s daytime temperature, but it likely will not end the banging entirely. Adding a little bit more of insulation to the attic could help to muffle those sounds if you truly are bothered or concerned by the metal banging of your roof during the winter.

As stated, it generally speaking is not a matter of concern if you hear your metal roof banging during the winter months. This is something that has been taken into consideration by the builders and is typically not a sign of something more serious like structural damage.

If the banging becomes more frequent or louder in nature, it might be worth calling in a contractor to perform an inspection. It might feel like overkill, but it is better to be safe than sorry. This way, the contractor can inspect your roof for the overall condition and ensure that what you are hearing has nothing to do with structural damage or any potential issues with the roof itself.

Your metal roof acts as any other material would in the colder months. That constant expanding and contracting that the materials do under the changing temperatures are nothing more than a cause for annoyance at best.

Though you may wish for the banging to go away, it is part of having a metal roof in colder regions of the country. There is not much to be done to alleviate this issue and it is something that you generally just have to take with the colder months of the year.

So, don’t freak out the next time your roof starts to bang. It’s just doing what nature makes it do.

How to Choose Your Commercial Metal Roofing (in 3 Steps)

What if you never had to replace your company rooftop again? That’s a question that brings thousands of businesses running to commercial metal roofing, despite its numerous other benefits. Few will argue the impressive durability of metal systems, but many struggle to find the system tailored to their needs.

That’s what we’ll try to fix today!

An Installation Project for Commercial Metal Roofing

Few Alternative Roofing Systems Offer the Impressive Lifespan of Commercial Metal Roofing, Among Other Benefits.

Here is a 3 step guide to simplify the process of choosing your perfect metal roof! We’ll cover the qualification process, material choice, and styling decisions. Don’t let indecision separate your business from powerful energy savings and weather protection. Let’s dive right in!

Step #1: Confirming the Right Fit

First, it takes some time to consider whether or not metal is truly the right fit for your commercial building. Commercial metal roofing has many alluring benefits without too many obvious downsides. Still, why not consider all of your options and confirm your choice?

Price Point / Life Span Comparison

While metal roofing clearly isn’t the costliest solution on the market, it does carry a higher price point (with good reason). This tough material offers 40 to 50+ years of use; a lifespan single ply systems just can’t match. The closest contender is green roofing, which typically carries a much higher price point.

Energy-Efficiency

How does commercial metal roofing compare with other cool roofing systems? While it’s certainly a more expensive entry among energy-efficient rooftops, metal maintains its reflective surface very well over the years.

Commercial Metal Roofing With Hail Bouncing Off

Depending on the environmental conditions of your city/state (and your choice of material), your metal system may require a protective coating to prevent rusting and fading. That’s a pretty low price to pay for a substantial reduction in rooftop heat gain, however.

Durability & Storm Resistance

Few commercial roofing solutions top metal in terms of durability. Whether you select aluminum or steel for your paneling (more on that later), expect outstanding protection against severe wind and hail trauma. Cheaper paneling may dent if struck with sufficient force, but your typical system can handle the threat. Proper flashing and installation will protect your building against the threat of leaks!

Maintenance Requirements

Some metal systems require panel retightening every ten years, plus a new coating to prevent rust. Apart from those items, little maintenance is needed for your commercial metal roofing. You don’t have to worry about the naturally weakening seams affecting many flat systems or the gardening requirements of extensive green roofing.

Summary of Commercial Metal Roofing

Tough protection against storm damage, enticing energy benefits, low maintenance requirements, and a fantastic lifespan. All these benefits come at a moderate price range, but it’s up to your team to determine whether or not a commercial metal roofing solution is what your business needs. For now, let’s move along with the selection process!

Step #2: Choose Your Metal Material

Most commercial metal roofing projects utilize aluminum or steel as the primary material. Both offer impressive resistance against the elements, meaning your employees can feel safe under sunny skies or heavy winds. That said, there are some key differences between steel paneling and aluminum.

A Very Large Steel Commercial Metal Roofing System

Steel Paneling is Particularly Popular for Large Commercial Projects, Making it a Logical Choice for Rooftop Protection.

Steel: An Industrial Classic

Few materials permeate so much of our American infrastructure as modern steel. That makes it a natural choice for protecting our rooftops, especially with its moderate price range. It rarely shows signs of aging either, maintaining that attractive sheen throughout its long lifetime. Most commercial contractors utilize galvanized or galvalume steel, providing substantial resistance against rusting.

Aluminum: A Rust-Proof Solution

While a somewhat softer metal than steel, aluminum still offers hardy protection against storms. You may notice small dings after a hail storm, however. The metal is extremely reflective, making it a wonderful choice in environments with long periods of intense sunlight. Because aluminum is naturally rustproof, you don’t have to worry about long-term corrosion.

Aluminum systems generally cost more than steel, requiring protective coatings to preserve their sheen. Despite these drawbacks, the metal’s impressive energy efficiency and corrosion resistance make it a highly sought-after material in coastal cities and arid states.

Summing Up Metal Selection

Steel offers slightly higher durability against impact trauma and a lower price per square foot. Aluminum provides slightly better energy efficiency and rust immunity. Your budget and local weather environment will likely be the determining factors in the material selection process.

A Standing Seam Commercial Metal Roofing System

Standing Seam Paneling Produces an Extremely Tough Barrier Against Water Seepage and Other Infiltration.

Step #3: Select Your Style

For this phase, we’ll focus on commercial systems involving metal panels. While metal shingle roofing and stone-coated steel are certainly popular solutions in the residential market, they aren’t as common among commercial buildings. Most metal systems fall into one of two categories: corrugated and standing seam.

Again, both solutions provide outstanding protection against the elements! But a few key differences cause them to rest thousands of dollars apart in the price range.

Corrugated Metal Roofing: An Affordable Choice

Corrugated panels come in all shapes and sizes and make up the majority of commercial metal roofing systems. Roofing contractors rate panels by the gauge (or thickness), with lower numbers representing thicker panels. For sufficient protection against hail and other concerns, contractors generally recommend 26 gauge or thicker. While there are many types of shapes to choose from, commercial businesses often go with R or U panels. You’ll want to discuss shaping options with your contractor.

Corrugated roofing sits at the bottom of the metal pricing scale, offering an affordable entry point for thousands of businesses. Maintenance will depend on what type of metal you use, but corrugated panels require fastener retightening every ten years.

Standing Seam Roofs: Top of the Line

Standing seams come in two flavors: snap lock and mechanical lock. No matter which type you choose; however, the overlapping seams prevent moisture from seeping in between the panels. These roofs are incredibly durable, requiring little to no maintenance over their long lifetime. Because their fasteners are hidden beneath the panels themselves, they don’t require retightening either.

Stronger durability and waterproofing do lead to a much higher price point, potentially double the cost of corrugated panels. You’ll need to determine for your company whether the additional years of use are worth the higher price point for your standing seam commercial metal roofing.

Summarizing Your Metal Style Choice

What’s more important to your business at this juncture: better pricing or maximum durability? It’s entirely possible to purchase a thick corrugated panel system that offers the same level of impact resistance as a standing seam, perhaps at a medium price point. Of course, a longer lifespan and minimal maintenance program could make standing seam the preferred choice.

Commercial Metal Roofing With Corrugated Panels

Corrugated Metal Roofing Offers a Very Affordable Choice for Businesses.

Discuss your commercial roofing priorities with your contractor, and see which option best suits your price.