Technical Resources

MCA conducts many technical studies and research projects in partnership with member and industry partners. These studies include bulletins, white papers, manuals and reports that ensure that metal is at the forefront of innovation, and proactive with codes and standards.


Metal Roofs

  • Comparison of Retrofit Systems Over Existing Metal Roofs

    From MBMA, A MCA Partner Association

     

    This white paper, written by Brian Gardiner of BMG Enterprises, LLC, compares two commonly used methods of retrofitting exiting metal roofs, single-ply systems and metal panels, and illustrates important design considerations that apply. The design consideration include the existing support structure, secondary framing deflection, the existing metal roof properties, drainage, roof fastening, drag load, and fire rating. The paper also contains a brief review of the building code requirement.

     

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  • Roof Coatings: A Viable Option? - Published 07/2017

    This must-read article from Florida Roofing Magazine will enlighten on the benefits of Roof Coatings.

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  • Metal Roof Installation Manual - Published 09/2016

    This manual addresses the installation of metal roofing material and related accessories and includes information pertaining to both new construction reroofing and retrofit projects.

     

    Download Chapters Individually:

    Chapter 1 - Introduction

    Chapter 2 - Metal Roofing: A Family of Products / History of Metal Roofing

    Chapter 3 - Introduction to Metal Roofing Materials

    Chapter 4 - Panel Types

    Chapter 5 - Panel Attributes/Profiles

    Chapter 6 - Roof Deck Substructures

    Chapter 7 - Panel Connections

    Chapter 8 - Common Panel Accessories

    Chapter 9 - Safety Issues

    Chapter 10 - Roofing Design

    Chapter 11 - Delivery, Receipt, Storage & Handling of Materials

    Chapter 12 - Tools & Field Operations

    Chapter 13 - Sealants

    Chapter 14 - Fasteners

    Chapter 15 - Seam Joining

    Chapter 16 - Panel Installation

    Chapter 17 - Maintenance

    Chapter 18 - Codes/Standards & Specifications

    Chapter 19 - Installer Checklists

    Chapter 20 - Re-roofing

     

    Take The Exam Online >

  • Ventilating Attic Fires: Press-Formed Metal Panel Roofs/Fire Service General Procedures Guide - Published 2013

    General procedures for identifying a modular panel metal roof, accessing or ventilating a stone-coated metal roof, and ventilating attic fires.

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  • Static and Dynamic Analysis of Metal Roof Systems - Published 2013

    Static and dynamic analyses of metal roof systems using Finite Element Method indicate that Finite Element Analysis is an appropriate tool for the product development of metal roof structures.

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  • Roof Covering Repair Requirements and the International Codes - Published 2013

    It is common for an existing building to be serviceable in every way; however, some roof repairs may be required. On many occasions, MCA has been asked what types of roof repair materials are required and what code supporting language exists. MCA investigated this issue and found direction offered within the Existing Building Code.

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  • Lightning and Metal Roofing - Published 2013

    When a metal roof is employed on a project, it seems to heighten people’s awareness of lightning and some question whether or not the use of metallic roofing increases the risk of lightning strike. Metal roofing does not in any way increase this risk.

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  • Service Life Assessment of Low-Slope Unpainted 55% Al-Zn Alloy Coated Steel Standing Seam Metal Roof Systems - Published 2013

    This report documents and summarizes the work conducted to determine with reasonable certainty the roof service life that can be expected of a “like-in-kind”, low-slope 55% Al-Zn alloy-coated steel Standing Seam Roof (SSR) system when installed today in a like environment using best practices. It incorporates the results of multiple field inspections, independent laboratory analyses of metallic corrosion of roof panels, components and sealants, and includes assessment of all integral ancillary components that impact the end of roof service life.

    Download Executive Summary >    Download Full Report >

  • Metal Roofing from (A) Aluminum to (Z) Zinc - Published 01/2014

    This seven-part series written by Rob Haddock, president of the Metal Roof Advisory Group, Ltd., offers essential, detailed information on metal roofing including the history and material types, appropriate coatings and paint systems, induced finishes, profiles and profiling equipment, metal panel attachment, and the mounting of rooftop equipment. 

    Download Chapter 1 PDF: History and Materials >

    Download Chapter 2 PDF: Metallic Coatings for Carbon Steel >

    Download Chapter 3 PDF: Paint Finishes for Metal >

    Download Chapter 4 PDF: Induced Finishes for Metal >

    Download Chapter 5 PDF: Profiles and Profiling Equipment >

    Download Chapter 6 PDF: Attachment of Metal Panels >

    Download Chapter 7 PDF: Rooftop Equipment Mounting and Penetrations for Low-Slope Standing-Seam Metal Roofs >

  • Metal Roof Design for Cold Climates - Published 05/2014

    Metal roofs have long been considered a product of choice for snow areas because of their superior response and tolerance to many of the characteristics of these environments. This technical bulletin will provide the designer with the information required to make a prudent and informed decision through awareness of some general design parameters and snowmelt phenomena.

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  • Roof Seaming Best Practices Guide - Published 08/2015

    The purpose of this guide is to familiarize personnel with the general knowledge, basic operation, safety, and maintenance procedures followed by standard troubleshooting suggestions for standard roof seaming processes. This is a general guide to be used in conjunction with the material installation guide and the project's erection drawings.

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  • Dissimilar Metal Corrosion in Roofing Installations - Published 06/2016

    This Technical Bulletin provides guidance when working with different metals used in roofing installations. Most metals used for construction projects are chosen for their strength, corrosion resistance and longevity. However, some metals do not perform well when placed in contact with specific other metals or exposed to certain chemical compounds. Users should be aware of compatibility issues and situations that may affect the performance of the installed roof.

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  • Spray Polyurethane Foam Insulation on Interior Surfaces of Metal Panels - Published 07/2016

    This Technical Bulletin is intended to serve as a guide for the application of spray polyurethane foam insulation (SPF) used in metal panel assemblies. Single skin metal walls and roofs are durable and sustainable components of a building envelope system, however the cladding offers no inherent insulation value to the building. To improve the energy efficiency of buildings, insulation, air barriers and vapor retarders are commonly used.

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  • Selection and Installation of Curbs on Hydrostatic Low-Slope Coated Steel and Aluminum Roofing - Published 07/2017

    This document describes best practices for the selection and installation of curbs used specifically on low slope (less than 2:12), coated-steel or aluminum roof systems. Steep slope or architectural roofing is not addressed in this document. Different design considerations for curbs are required for steep slope roofing and for materials other than coated steel or aluminum.

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  • Standing Seam Roof Clips Best Practices Guide - Published 09/2017

    Most standing seam panel installations require the use of specific fastening techniques to allow for thermal expansion and contraction while also safeguarding against attachment fatigue. This document focuses on clip-attached style standing seam roof systems, and addresses specific details and concerns for proper selection and use of the connection that anchors the roof panel to the roof panel support element.

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Metal Walls

  • Understanding Rain Screen Wall Systems - Published 11/2014

    This white paper is published to clarify to the architectural and design community the key principles and background information employed in Drained / Back Ventilated or Pressure Equalized Rain Screen wall systems. It is also available as a resource to the General Contractor, Code Official or Owner communities to explain how the design properties of these two systems accomplish water infiltration management and prevention.

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  • Visual Appearance Parameters for Single-Skin Panel Systems - Published 10/2016

    While the building and fire codes are primarily concerned with structural and fire performance of single-skin architectural metal wall panels, there are often other performance indicators used within the construction industry to define an acceptable application. Single-skin architectural metal wall panels are most often defined as those metal sheets and coils that are natural metals (copper, zinc, etc.), stainless steel, or coated-metals that have a surface layer added (painted, dipped, plated, etc.) to a metal substrate. Visual appearance is often defined in architectural specifications that are based on code requirements, architectural requirements, and appearance goals that are beyond the scope of the code. This document states the unified position of the Metal Construction Association and its members with regards to visual acceptance parameters.

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  • Preformed Metal Panel Installation Guide - Published 07/2017

    The truth is that there are any number of combinations for installation and fabrication tolerances for preformed metal used in roofing and wall construction. The basic rule of thumb is:  “Everything should look straight when viewed from a distance of 25'. Particular products or applications might require more stringent tolerances to assure performance.”

     

    This document will discuss procedures that have been used by a number of MCA members for many years. This information is primarily derived from the Preformed Metal Wall Specification Guidelines that was developed in the 1990’s to address a series of topics important to the preformed metal wall industry.

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Metal Composite Material (MCM) Systems

  • Does Your MCM Actually Meet the Performance Requirements of the Code? - Published 08/2017

    Metal Composite Material (MCM) suppliers, fabricators, and installers must provide assurances that both the MCM and MCM assemblies will meet the requirements defined in the applicable building code. Typically, these requirements are defined in the code through reference to established testing in the areas of structural, fire, energy, and environmental (air and water penetration) performance. The primary question is how can a designer be assured that the MCM supplied to the project meet these performance requirements?

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  • Use of MCM Wall Cladding with Foam Plastic Insulation in Combustible Wall Assemblies - Published 08/2016

    With increased demands in energy conservation, designers are often looking for ways to include additional insulation on the exterior side of the wall assembly, behind the cladding, to meet the requirements of the code. Installation of this “continuous insulation” generally occurs in the free air cavity between the weather barrier and the exterior cladding material.

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  • 4mm MCM Master Specification - Published 03/2016

    The new 4mm MCA MCM Master Specification specifically defines performance criteria for the MCM panels, the installation systems, and the system fabricators in a single document while defining performance criteria for the MCM systems based on the latest IBC and AAMA performance standards.  The Specification also provides specific installation criteria giving direction to the installer and assurances to the designer regarding the quality of the installation.

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  • 6mm MCM Master Specification - Published 03/2016

    The new 6mm MCA MCM Master Specification specifically defines performance criteria for the MCM panels, the installation systems, and the system fabricators in a single document while defining performance criteria for the MCM systems based on the latest IBC and AAMA performance standards.  The Specification also provides specific installation criteria giving direction to the installer and assurances to the designer regarding the quality of the installation.

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  • Visual Acceptance Parameters for Metal Composite Material (MCM) Panels and Panel Systems - Published 01/2013

    Though building and fire codes primarily address structural and fire performance of MCM cladding materials, other performance indicators often are used in the construction industry to define an acceptable application. This document defines the unified position of the Metal Construction Association (MCA) and its members with regards to visual acceptance parameters.

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  • Choosing Between Fire Retardant and Standard Core Metal Composite Material - Published 01/2014

    Metal composite material manufacturers typically provide two types of core products: standard and fire retardant. The Metal Construction Association’s MCM Fabricator Council has developed this paper to clarify the allowable uses for standard and fire retardant MCM in accordance with the 2006-2012 editions of the International Building Code.

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  • Metal Composite Materials - Fire Performance Testing in the United States and Canada - Published 06/2016

    Recent global fire events have heightened the awareness regarding the use of metal composite material (MCM). Safeguards in place in North America help to ensure these types of fire incidents do not take place. By adhering to the performance criteria defined in the International Building Code (IBC) in the United States, the National Building Code (NBC), and the Provincial Building Codes in Canada and working with the experienced MCM Manufacturers and Certified Fabricators, MCM can be used safely and effectively on a variety of construction types. 

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  • MCM and MCM Systems for Building Cladding in North America - Published 06/2016

    The use of metal composite material (MCM) as an exterior cladding on high rise buildings is common throughout the world. There are many positive aspects of MCM, however recently, a number of dramatic fires reported around the globe have heightened concern regarding the use of MCM for exterior applications. The intent of this white paper is to provide information about MCM and MCM systems and the controlling factors in North America to ensure these types of fire incidents do not take place. 

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  • The MCM Team - Published 10/2016

    Metal Composite Material (MCM) cladding systems are an attractive and popular way for architects to present their latest masterpiece. Clean, colorful and tough enough to protect everything inside, from everything outside, MCM is the “cladding of choice” for many of the world’s most beautiful buildings. It is not surprising then, that it takes a team of specialists to produce a high quality finished product.

    Download the PDF >

Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs)

  • Selection Guideline for Insulated Metal Panels - Published 10/2017

    Since the 1960s, contractors and designers of commercial, industrial and refrigerated buildings have relied on Insulated Metal Panels (IMP) for their aesthetics, excellent thermal efficiency, ease of installation and overall structural integrity. IMPs in their most general form are rigid insulation sandwiched between two facings of coated metal...
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  • Controlling Air and Rainwater Using Insulated Metal Panel Enclosure Systems - Published 07/2015

    Insulated metal panels (IMPs) are one of only a few types of building products that can provide an entire building enclosure in one prefabricated product. However, despite their use for several decades in North America, there remains confusion about how IMPs manage rain water penetration, control air leakage, and act as continuous insulation.

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  • Insulated Metal Panels and NFPA 285 - Published 11/2013

    IMP panels are required to be tested in accordance with NFPA 285 and specific IMPs have been tested and meet the conditions of acceptance of NFPA 285. Since every variation of a wall system cannot be tested,if the “basic” IMP panel system meets NFPA 285, minor variations in items can be allowed without retesting or an analysis.

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  • Environmental Product Declaration for Insulated Metal Panels

    Environmental Product Declarations provide LCA-based information and details about the products’ environmental aspects and assist purchasers and users in making informed comparisons between products. This industry Insulated Metal Panel EPD contains valuable information about product definition, building physics, the basic material and its origin, product manufacture and processing, in-use conditions, life cycle assessment results, and testing results and verifications.

    Download Executive Summary >   Download Full Report >

  • IMP Structural Loading - Published 10/2016

    Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs) perform very well at resisting transversely applied loading. This type of loading is applied normal to the face of the panel and includes wind loading, as well as live/dead/snow loading – for roof panels. Being separated by an insulating core, IMPs also resist thermal loading that can be induced when the face and liner sheet are at different temperatures.

    Download the PDF >

Retrofit

  • Comparison of Retrofit Systems Over Existing Metal Roofs

    From MBMA, A MCA Partner Association

     

    This white paper, written by Brian Gardiner of BMG Enterprises, LLC, compares two commonly used methods of retrofitting exiting metal roofs, single-ply systems and metal panels, and illustrates important design considerations that apply. The design consideration include the existing support structure, secondary framing deflection, the existing metal roof properties, drainage, roof fastening, drag load, and fire rating. The paper also contains a brief review of the building code requirement.

     

    Download PDF >

  • White Paper - Benefits of Retrofit Roofing - Published 08/2016

    The purpose of this white paper is to introduce the various applications for retrofitting roofs with new metal roofing and light-gauge steel framing systems. 

    Download PDF > 

     

  • White Paper - Retrofit Stimulus - Published 08/2016

    An Illustrated Method to Stimulate the Economy, Achieve Energy Savings and Sustain the Environment While Modernizing Public School Facilities in the United States.

    Download PDF >

     

Sustainability

  • Life Cycle Assessment Report - Published 04/2012

    The Life Cycle Assessment report calculates the average environmental impact of the processes and the building envelope products manufactured by MCA member companies. The report is ideal for architects, designers, MCA member companies and the buildings and construction community at large to use for environmental benchmarking and decision-making.

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  • Product Category Rule - Published 09/2012

    This Product Category Rule (PCR) document, produced by UL Environment, Marietta, GA,  addresses three products - Insulated Metal Panels, Metal Composite Panels and Metal Cladding: Roof and Wall Panels. It is considered the foundation for creation of Environmental Product Declarations for each of the three product groups.

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  • Environmental Product Declarations

    Click To Review All EPDs >

  • Recycled Content of Metal Roofing and Siding Panels - Published 2013

    Metal roof and wall panels are made with the highest recycled content from the most recyclable materials on earth, making them a great choice not only for today, but also for future generations to use.

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  • Educational Resources

     

    Building Green with Metal Roofs and Walls

    Understand how metal roofs and walls offer many green benefits and contribute to LEED points. Learn how metal can:

    • reduce energy consumption
    • improve air quality and thermal comfort
    • help comply with energy codes
    • reduce environmental impacts
    • contribute to LEED points

     

     

    Metal Roofing: The Perfect Platform for Solar Technologies

    Learn how metal roofs provide a durable integrated system for photovoltaic installations on existing and new roofs. Become familiar with:

    • the basics of metal roofing
    • the basics of photovoltaics
    • the synergy of solar and metal roofing
    • why metal roofs are the most cost-compelling choice for solar
    • retrofitting opportunities.

     

Other

  • Oil Canning in Metal Roof and Metal Wall Systems - Published 2013

    Many uncontrollable factors contribute to oil-canning and no panel manufacturer, fabricator, or installer can assure the total prevention of oil canning on any given project. With careful attention to the production, material selection, panel design, and installation practice, the tendency for oil canning can be minimized.

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  • Fastener Compatibility with Profiled Metal Roof and Wall Panels - Published 06/2015

    Profiled metal roof or wall panels rely upon mechanical fasteners to secure the components to a structure. It is very important to select the correct type of fastener for metal construction in order to ensure a strong and weather-tight attachment. This Technical Bulletin serves as a guide for the selection of exposed fasteners used with metal roof and wall panels.

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  • Proper Tools for Fastening Metal Panels - Published 12/2013

    This technical bulletin is intended to be a guide to proper fastening of metal panels to wood or metal frame buildings. The selection of the proper tools for the fastening of metal roofing panels is critical for ease of installation, proper watertight sealing of the building, and the integrity of the connection.

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  • A Primer on Diaphragm Design Manual Order Form

    This MCA manual provides the supporting theory, load tables, relevant problems, and illustrations regarding connection details for roof or wall diaphragm assemblies. The scope of the work includes a variety of material connections: elevated side flat fastening, top flat fastening, bottom flat fastening, fastening to wood, aluminum and steel as well as structural members and fastening of exposed cladding. This manual provides an extremely valuable design tool to professionals in the metal construction industry. This edition is for sale through the association at a cost of $68 for members and $118 for nonmembers with shipping and handling included. Please fax or mail the order form below.

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  • Metal Roof and Wall Panel Components in Contact with Preservative-Treated Lumber - Published 06/2014

    The use of copper-containing preservative-treated lumber in direct contact with certain metal products could lead to accelerated corrosion and affect the long-term integrity and performance of a metal roof or wall system. The most effective way to avoid corrosion is to ensure that the treated lumber used is either manufactured using the newer metal-free preservatives, micronized copper treatment or that there is a separation between the metal roof or wall panel and the preservative treated wood with some type of barrier material.

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  • Coating Performance - Not as Simple as it would Appear - Published 10/2016

    When ordering a coating (finish) for the building panels, you would think that the biggest choice would be color. Not true. There are many differences between panel coatings. Characteristics like color and gloss are easily spotted. Others like film thickness, adhesion, and resistance to change are more difficult to identify. It can take a coatings expert to know all of the in’s and out’s of coating performance. Fortunately, there are a number of very good publications available to the public that discuss performance and what to expect from several of the popular levels of panel finish.

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  • Portable Rollformer Best Practices Manual - Published 2012

    The purpose of this manual is to familiarize personnel with the general knowledge, basic operation, safety, and maintenance procedures followed by standard trouble shooting suggestions for standard portable roll-forming processes. It is merely a general guideline. If questions arise about your specific portable roll-forming equipment and solutions cannot be found in this manual, contact the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) of your roll former.

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  • Application Guidelines for Field-Applied Touch-up Paint Systems on Metal Panels - Published 10/2017

    The information provided is intended to serve as a guide for the application of field applied air-dry paint systems used in small areas where the factory applied paint systems may be scratched or marred during the construction phase of a project. MCA does not condone or endorse the use of field applied air-dry paint systems and ultimate acceptance of such field work is at the discretion of others. Air-dry (touch-up) paint systems are essential tools to be utilized when completing building construction.
    Download PDF >

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