Using the right tools is key to getting any job done correctly. Contractors and installers who work with metal roofs know how important it is to have the right seamer or a quality screw gun. And architects and specifiers know how important it is to have a good architectural scale and the most current reference manuals.
If you work with metal roofing, MCA has another essential tool for your toolkit: the new Metal Roof Installation Manual. Now available at MetalConstruction.com in the Technical Resources section, this new manual offers 20 chapters of best practices, tips and training for installing metal roofs. The manual covers a full range of useful information about installing metal roofs, including:
Introductory information about roofing materials
Panel types, attributes and profiles
Roof deck substrates
Sealants and Fasteners
Download your copy of the MCA Metal Roof Installation Manual today, and keep the document handy as a reference as you come across questions with your metal roof project. It’ll soon become an essential tool in your toolbox.
When it comes to new commercial construction, it’s helpful for architects and engineers to have reliable resources at their disposal for questions related to planning, designing, and building. The Metal Construction Association’s Ask The Experts is an online discussion forum for exchanging technical information concerning the use of metal in commercial construction, including general material and metal installation questions.
This spring has been a big season for new commercial construction projects and MCA has seen some trends with forum questions and discussions related to the following topics:
• Choosing Metal for Commercial Construction: New commercial construction can take a lot of building research between owners, architects, and engineers. For questions related to ‘choosing metal’, this topic is great for viewing previous discussions on metal being the best solution for commercial construction, types of metal, and more.
• Metal Installation: Installing metal for commercial construction can be a complex task for all engineers and contractors involved. For questions related to ‘metal structure installation’, this topic is great for viewing previous discussions on metal wall and roof installation.
• Metal Construction Engineering: Commercial engineering is a major part of the construction process with technical and strategic planning. For questions related to ‘metal construction engineering’, this topic is great for viewing previous discussions on testing, metal application, and diaphragms.
• Metal Maintenance: Building commercial structures with any material leads building owners to speculate on life expectancy, maintenance, and upkeep. For questions related to ‘metal building maintenance’, this topic is great for viewing previous discussions on common maintenance issues and weather myths.
• Metal Wall Panels: A popular commercial construction addition is metal wall panels. For questions related to ‘metal wall panels’, this topic is great for viewing previous discussions on Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs), manufacturers, and alternative wall solutions.
Find helpful metal construction discussions and create new topics for our expert panel. For more information related to these popular topics this season, please visit the Ask The Experts forum today.
Timex states “Takes a licking and keeps on ticking.”
DeBeers claims “A diamond is forever.”
These are some of the most recognizable taglines, and they all have a few things in common. Each supports the essence of its’ respective brand. Each appeals to the emotions of its audience. And each differentiates its brand from its competitors.
Earlier this year, the Metal Construction Association underwent an exercise to develop its own tagline. In addition to considering the qualities listed above, we considered a few additional key criteria: the tagline had to be short, memorable, and actionable.
After a rigorous brainstorming exercise in which member volunteers and staff reflected on the core values of the association and its members, MCA is pleased with where we landed.
MCA member companies make a host of amazing metal products that are used on many beautiful, high-performing buildings. These products are some the best performing, most technically superior, and most aesthetically pleasing metal buildings available.
Most of all, however, MCA recognizes that what we do is about more than just the metal construction and outcomes that our member companies make and the services they provide. These metal buildings become part of our culture and landscape. Because of the many performance and aesthetic characteristics inherent in metal roofs and preformed walls, they create a legacy that can last for generations.
And MCA, as a trade association, has been working for the past 30 years with its member companies to build a legacy of excellence, collaboration and innovation.
Stay tuned for more news about the evolution of the MCA brand over the coming months.
As the spring brings severe weather across the country (we’re busy bailing out here in Chicagoland after more than 4 inches of rain the past few days), building performance is top of mind for many building owners. Our friends at the Metal Roofing Alliance (MRA) recently reminded us about the performance of metal roofs in hailstorms. According to MRA, metal roofs perform so well in hailstorms that some insurance companies even provide a reduced rate for buildings with metal roofs.
That said, there are still some misconceptions about how metal roofs perform in hailstorms, so we thought we would take this opportunity to debunk a couple of those myths.
Myth #1: Metal roofs are more prone to damage from hail than other roofing systems.
FALSE. According to a recent article in Metal Roofing Magazine, which cites two hail studies performed by The Roofing Industry Committee on Weather Issues Inc. (RICOWI), “Metal roofing stands up to the forces of nature as well as or better than any type of roofing material.”
Myth #2: Metal roofs are louder than other types of roofing in a hail storm.
Several members of the Metal Construction Association, which consists of manufacturers and suppliers of metal roof and wall components, have jumped on the blogging band wagon. By adding their input on products, projects, industry issues and current events to the blogosphere, these companies are providing a valuable resource to architects and building owners. We hope you’ll check out these members’ blogs for additional insights, and add them to your reading list:
If anyone understands long-term life cycles, it’s a cemetery owner. I know one in St. Louis, MO, who owns two large, old mausoleums that stand side by side. One mausoleum has steel and copper roof systems that have remained relatively maintenance- and repair-free—and beautiful—for as long as 80 years. The other mausoleum has a flat-roof addition, built in 1986, which has a conventional roofing system that has been plagued by leaks for decades.
After determining the life-cycle costing and return on investment on the two roofs, it’s not surprising that the owner decided to retrofit the flat-roof addition with a metal roof. He anticipates far fewer worries with a metal roof, given its ability to shed rainwater and its 40- to 60-year service life.
In addition to its longevity and durability, metal retrofit also offers long-term cost-savings in the form of appreciable value of the building, better insurance rates, and energy-efficiency. Adding insulation to a metal retrofit can provide R30 thermal resistance—one reason why you increasingly see them on military and municipal buildings, including schools. Many building owners choose to add renewable solar energy technologies to these roofs, such as photovoltaics or solar hot-water systems, which can reap huge tax benefits.
In a recent presentation at METALCON in Chicago, IL, Peter Pfeiffer, FAIA, principal, Barley & Pfeiffer Architects, Austin, TX, discussed some commonsense ideas for building and living green. Pfeiffer, a pioneer in green building who owns “the greenest house in America,” stressed the cost-effectiveness of conserving energy in simple ways, such as adjusting your sprinkler system, placing your electrical panel on an interior (instead of an exterior) wall, and having your roof act as a shading umbrella.
“Don’t underestimate the value of discussing the obvious,” said Pfeiffer. “R-value means little if the house leaks, windows are unshaded, or the roof is a dark color. This is obvious stuff.” He added that sensible green building is “smarter and better” because it results in “reduced consumption of stuff,” such as energy, water, and nonrenewable materials. This type of building also improves health and indoor air quality.
Pfeiffer stressed that producing your own power is expensive. “Shading windows is better than adding [high-maintenance] solar roof panels. Light-colored metal roofs with broad overhangs that shade windows save money and are easier to maintain.”
How do you accomplish green building? Pfeiffer stated,“Keep it simple and rely on smart, thoughtful, climate-sensitive design.” He said that gizmos and complex things break, and are expensive and time-consuming to fix. Instead, make practical changes to your house, such as using Energy Star dishwashers, low-flow showerheads, and less hot water (instead of buying a fancy water heater). Also, don’t use dark roofs in the South.
Pfeiffer is a proponent of cool metal roofing/ASV ventilation. Unlike conventional roofing insulation, ventilation makes the roof last longer because it doesn’t lock in moisture. A Galvalume metal roof with an airspace underneath keeps heat in the house, he said, and a metal roof costs more than shingles, but it provides long-term cost savings on energy and insurance.
Solar radiation is a “big, powerful thing—and it’s uncomfortable. You need overhangs. Retrofitting with window awnings cuts air conditioning loads by a third by reducing radiation.”
More often than not, architects and designers choose Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs) for a combination of reasons, not the least of which is aesthetics given that they come in a variety of styles, sizes, colors, finishes, and textures and can be installed both horizontally and vertically. Metl-Span’s Tuff Wall® IMPs, for example, provide a stucco-like appearance to the new corporate-headquarter addition to the Hitchiner Manufacturing facility, Milford, NH, a casting supplier to manufacturers in the aerospace gas turbine engine industry. But according to Dennis Mires, PA, of The Architects in Manchester, NH, IMPs also met insurance requirements, stayed within the owner’s budget, and provided a high-tech look for the company.
With that in mind, what are top reasons for choosing IMPs? Industry experts say that the metal panels:
are energy-efficient. IMPs have two metal skins, an interior and an exterior, which are bonded to a foam polyisocyanurate insulation core, making them highly energy efficient, said Brian Jaks of Green Span Profiles, Waller, TX, a manufacturer of IMPs. Initially used on cold-storage facilities, the panels have R values as high as 8 per inch, compared to 3.7–4.3 per inch for batt insulation, and range in thickness from 2–6 inches.
have thermal performance. According to Ken Buchinger of Metal Building Components, Inc., who recently spoke at METALCON, IMPs provide continuous insulation and consistent R values across walls, and have concealed fastener systems that prevent thermal bridging between the exterior and interior skins. He further noted that IMPs tend to hold their R value over time and do not have significant thermal drift.
allow for fast installation. IMPs’ one-piece construction makes for faster installation, Buchinger said. Faster installation helps lower construction costs and interim financing costs. Moreover, he said, the steel skins are resistant to abuse and, compared to conventional building envelope materials, are not as affected by adverse weather conditions such as high winds.
are suitable for green building. IMPs were used on the new LEED-gold-certified “Bartholomew Building” addition to William Allen High School in Allentown, PA, for their simplicity of design. “The [system] just goes together,” said Mitch Miller, associate and director of specifications of USA Architects, Easton, PA. “You’re installing the insulation and the finished panel at the same time.” Furthermore, the metal in a panel’s skin often has a high content of recycled steel or aluminum, and, when IMPs are removed from a wall, they can be recycled or re-used on another project, saving them from the landfill.
offer unsurpassed design flexibility. “People like the panel because it has a flat appearance,” Jaks said. “It doesn’t necessarily have corrugation and architects like that.” He added that IMPs are available in a variety of textures, including smooth, embossed, and heavy embossed. They also come in wide range of colors, and can be customized to match any color palette. IMPs’ design flexibility allows the ability to achieve almost any look and increase curb appeal.
are well suited for roof applications. More than 130,000 sq. ft. of IMPs was used to reroof the eight-building Haughton Middle School complex in Haughton, LA. According to Lauren Marchive, project architect with Newman Marchive Carlisle, Inc., Shreveport, LA, the local school board chose IMPs for their thermal performance and because the roof system was available in red, which matched the school’s original design. Even more vital was the speed and ease of installation, and that the roof could be installed during the school year on sections of buildings that were not in use.
Choosing between metal construction materials and systems can be complex—each project has a number of factors that need to be considered. But IMPs offer a host of benefits to make them an attractive choice for a wide variety of projects.
According to a new study released at Greenbuild 2012 by McGraw-Hill Construction, the top reasons for building green are client demand, market demand, lower operating costs and branding advantage. In 2008, the top reasons were doing the right thing and market transformation. This shift signifies that firms are seeing the value in building green, and that it can strengthen their bottom line. And building green is not just for new construction; renovation projects also reap the benefits, including near-term and long-term operating cost savings for building owners, as well as increased building values. (You can read the full article with additional details about McGraw-Hill Construction’s new study on the United States Green Building Council site.)
It was great to see so many MCA member companies exhibiting at Greenbuild 2012, and a reminder of the many green benefits in building with metal. Metal construction products have high recycled content and are recyclable, have fully developed distribution networks and are energy efficient. Their many benefits allow them to qualify for points in the United States Green Building Council’s LEED program. And their design flexibility allows architects and building owners to achieve design goals while building green.
Want to learn more about building green with metal? Register for our free webinar “Building Green with Metal Roofs and Walls” on January 17, 2013.