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Metal Roofing Gauges
Metal roof is what I want, but I am somewhat confused with the bids I got and have no one to ask so I turn to you. How does one compare apples to apples when the materials are so different: I have a bid for through fastened 29 gauge panels and 24 gauge standing seam roofing. Which gauge is better? I presumed standing seam to be much more expensive than the through fastened panels, but these bids differ by only $300. Is standing seam much superior to through fastened panels or can through fastened panels be just as good? The warranties seem equal. Oh, and another thing: are gutters always installed with/part of metal roofing? It is a big investment, so I would like to be able to make a more educated decision hoping I get my money's worth. I would appreciate any advice you can give me.
Hi Jane, Thanks for your questions! These are all great questions. You are a wise consumer, I can tell.

I cannot address the price issue directly as it would be against the Metal Roofing Alliance's antitrust guidelines. However, I will help you as much as I can.

29 gauge metal is approx .013" thick. 24 gauge is approximately .024" thick. You can probably pretty easily make your own call as to which metal you feel will ultimately be the most durable and lasting.

Granted, though, it goes beyond just the thickness of the metal. You also wnat a good paint finish. Kynar / Hylar paint finishes are generally respected as the top of the line. (There are other types of very good finishes also being used on shingle-style products but not on vertical seam products.)

Also, the base metal is either galvalume or galvanized. Both materials are steel. Galvalume has a predominately aluminum coating on the steel and galvanized has a predominately zinc coating on the steel. If it is galvanized, Metal Construction Association standards say it should be a minimum G90 grade of galvanized. If it is galvalume, it should be minimum AZ50 (assuming it is painted on top of that).

I would really suggest specifying a product manufactured by an MRA member as we all agree to produce products meeting certain quality guidelines.

As far as standing seam versus through-fastened -- the primary difference would be that, with through-fastened, the fasteners are exposed to the weather. They typically are a screw with a neoprene washer for protection against water infiltration but they are exposed nonetheless. Also, most (but not all) standing seam system install using fastening clips which also are helpful in terms of allowing the metal roofing panels to expand and contract with temperature changes without fastener fatigue or wallowing out the fastener holes.

Above and beyond materials, make sure that you are using an experienced and qualified installer. Look at past jobs they have done, talk to past customers. Inqiure with the roofing manufacturer about the installer.

Good luck. Feel free to contact us again if we can be of further help!
Thank you so much! You were extremely helpful.
My metal roof is about 60 years old (5V type). If I replace with new 29 guage, am I replacing with thinner metal than I have now? How long does the
paint generally last on ordinary galvaume painted with
the least expensive paint?
Galvanized or Galvalume? Why not Aluminum?
Aluminum is a fine option as well. The original email asked for a comparison of various gauges. Because steel is referred to in gauge and aluminum in decimal format, I addressed only the two types of steel in my response. Thanks for the reminder!
29 gauge is approximately .013" thick. I do not know what the thickness of your old roof metal might be. Sorry. I also do not know what the base metal might have been in comparison to today's steel with galvanized or galvalume coatings.

Paint performance is based largely on weather exposure and will vary based upon the roof location. The hugh UV at southern climates and upper altitudes dishes out some tough stuff for paint finishes.

Paint ages in a variety of ways. It will always have some fade and chalk. Typically, less expensive paint formulations are more prone to these things. Paint adhesion is another issue which can be related to paint system quality but also to proper paint application.

A lower grade paint finish could last from 5 to 20 years depending upon its exact formulation (including color), its exposure to UV, and how "picky" the owner wants to be about aesthetics as it ages.

Most manufacturers will be glad to discuss the attributes and weathering characteristics of their paint finishes.
Thanks you for the post.
Hi guys, Im a newbie. Nice to join this forum.


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