When it comes to roofing, there are now more choices than ever before for roofing supplies. Not only are there numerous types of roofing surfaces, including asphalt shingles, dimensional shingles, and metal roofing, there are also different types of fasteners used to affix them. These modern components come together to provide a formidable barrier against the elements when properly installed. Metal roofing offers some of the most desirable features of any roofing type, as it is resilient, durable, affordable, and easily installed. While metal roofing excels when compared with asphalt roofing shingles in Stockbridge, GA, there are times that even a metal roof can become compromised and leak.
Given the robust nature of a properly installed metal roof, it’s hard to believe that they could develop leaks. However, leaks can happen when installation protocols aren’t followed precisely, when damage occurs to the roofing surface, and when materials may be defective. In those circumstances, metal roofing can leak and create chaos for the homeowners who must deal with the aftermath. But what causes these leaks in metal roofing? Keep reading to find out more about the common causes of metal roof leaks.
When it comes to metal roofing, the details matter. Nowhere is that more evident than in the context of the fasteners used alongside metal roofing. Typically, professional roofers save nails for asphalt shingles, opting instead to employ specialty roofing screws designed for use with metal roofing. These screws are fitted with a gasket that can help keep moisture from penetrating the metal in even the most extreme conditions. However, the effectiveness of those fasteners depends on their installation. If a screw is driven too deeply, the gasket can be smashed and compromised. If the screw isn’t driven deeply enough, the gasket won’t seat, and water will leak in. If the screw is driven in at a canted angle, the gasket will only partially engage, leaving a space for water to seep in. Fastener choice and installation is a primary cause of metal roof leakage.
Flashings are a critical component of any dependable roof, and metal roofs are no different. Metal roofs often use stacked flashings in which a rubberized material is placed on the roof surface around pipes and vents. The material is also gathered up around the pipe or vent, creating a second barrier against water seepage. They work well for a time, but the roof is a rigorous environment with constant expansion and contraction caused by the heating and cooling of the roofing surface. That can put pressure on the flashings and compromise them over time. When stacked flashings fail, they allow water to dribble in unencumbered.
Understanding capillary draw and its effect on metal roofing involve an understanding of the capillary action of water. Capillary action is defined as the behavior of liquids and their ability to climb into tight spaces due to the qualities of adhesion and surface tension. Capillary action is a noted trait of water, and tight spaces are created when one piece of metal roofing overlaps another. Therefore, a capillary draw can occur in metal roofing when the capillary action of water causes it to be drawn into the tight space between two overlapping pieces of metal roofing. The water is drawn into the space until it penetrates the roofing surface, causing moisture to accumulate underneath and eventually manifest in the form of a leak.
Many roofing surfaces are protected with sealants, but those sealants typically don’t last as long as the metal roofing they protect. Many sealants are degraded by UV light over time, or the seals are damaged by the contraction and expansion of the roofing surface. When they fail, they must be reapplied, or the roof will eventually succumb to the elements.
While metal roofs will last much longer than those made of 3-tab asphalt shingles and roofing staples in Stockbridge, GA, they can be compromised by some of the factors mentioned above. To learn more about the reasons why metal roofs sometimes leak, contact Preferred Roofing at (678) 395-6880.