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What Is The Minimum Pitch For A Metal Roof?

September 13, 2023 // 5-minutes read

A metal roof is the Superman πŸ¦Έβ™‚ of the roofing world. Depending on the material, most metal roof options can last for aΒ whopping 70 years. Wow! 🀯

However, you have to install your metal roofing right. If you don’t, it’ll be more like the average Metropolis citizen of roof options rather than Superman. And given that metal roof options can get hella pricey πŸ’°πŸ’°πŸ’°, Joe Smith of 101 Metropolis Dr. ain’t gonna cut it.

The article below will teach you one of the most important things to know about metal roof installation. These are the minimum pitch for metal roof requirements. Read on and you’ll learn the following:

  • What is a minimum roof pitch 🏠
  • Why a minimum pitch is necessary πŸ“
  • Why a minimum pitch exists β›‘
  • What is the minimum pitch for metal roof requirements πŸ“ƒ

What Is a Minimum Roof Pitch?

house roof view with corrugated metal

You’ve probably seen those houses 🏠 that children draw, right? No matter how good or bad of an artist that child is (let’s be honest, most of them are bad), they can still figure out the basic shapes. A square πŸŸ₯ forms the main rooms of the house and a triangle πŸ”Ί serves as the roof.

Picture one of these houses in your mind. See the two sides of the triangle pointed at the sky? You can measure either of those to get a roof’s pitch or slope.

Pitch: More Specifically

To put it in nerdier πŸ€“ terms, the pitch is a ratio or rise to run. That is, it’s a measurement of how much a surface falls or rises over a given distance. A 3:12 slope, for instance, slopes downward by 3 feet for every foot (12 inches) of horizontal distance.

So say that the top of Picasso Jr’s πŸ‘¨πŸŽ¨ house square is 2 feet long. At a 3:12 slope, each side of the roof triangle would be 3 feet long.

Minimum Roof Pitch

Unlike Picasso Jr., roofers cannot create roofs with any type of slope. They have to install roofs with a certain minimum pitch in mind. If the roof isn’t tall enough, the metal roof will function like Joe Smith from Metropolis.

Why Is a Minimum Pitch Necessary?

Roofs are not pools 🏊 . Instead of carrying gallons of water, your roof needs to push water away fast as a picky child will push away their veggies πŸ₯¦.

How Pitch Does This

A roof pitch helps guide the water down. It does this by using the force of gravity. If rainwater lands on a slope, it will flow in the direction of that slope.

Thus, when it rains or snow melts, the resulting water will flow down the roof and into the roof’s gutters. The water will then flow down the drainpipe and away from the house.

Why This Is Necessary

If water stays on top of a roof, it’s going to cause some killer roof damage. Here’s what can happen if rainwater stays on your roof:

  • Mold growth πŸ„
  • Plant growth 🌱
  • Roof collapse πŸ‘‡
  • Leaks πŸ’§
  • Rust and holes πŸ•³

Unless you want these things to happen, you need to follow the minimum pitch for metal roof guidelines.

Why a Minimum Metal Roof Pitch Exists

Even if you’re weird and want your roof to become a pool for some reason, you probably can’t do this. Building codes πŸ— force roofers to comply with minimum metal roof pitch rules. If you don’t follow these, you may face:

  • Fines πŸ’Έ
  • Jail time πŸ‘©βš–
  • Roofers lose licenses πŸͺͺ
  • Total roof demolition πŸ’₯

Yeah, you might think that governing bodies can be total buzzkills. However, building codes only exist so that people can stay safe β›‘. You may want a pool, but you can end up with a whole metal roof collapsing on you.

And nobody wants to deal with the pain and hospital bills of becoming a pancake πŸ₯ž.

Recommended Minimum Roof Pitch

However, not all minimum roof pitches are building code minimum roof pitches. Some are recommended by the manufacturer. You know, the company that makes πŸ›  the metal roofing (what, you thought it grew on trees?).

Metal roofing will often come with manufacturer installation instructions. On this, the manufacturer will recommend a minimum roof pitch. If you don’t follow this recommended pitch, you could void the manufacturer’s warranty.

The Minimum Pitch For Metal Roof Requirements

red brick house with black metal roof

Now that you know why the minimum pitch for metal roof requirements are necessary, you need to learn what they are.

Keep in mind, that exact building codes can vary from state to state. You should check your local building codes to make sure you’re following those rules above all. Who knows, you may be able to live your pool roof dreams (probably not, though).

Still, most of the building code and manufacturer-recommended minimum pitches shouldΒ look like the following:

Rule #1

Is the seam metal roofing material:

  • Lapped 🏊
  • Non-Soldered πŸ”₯
  • Used with no applied lap sealant 🀐

If so, the minimum pitch must be 3 units vertical in 12 units horizontal (3:12). This also represents a 25% slope.

Rule #2

Is the seam metal roofing material:

  • Lapped 🏊
  • Non-Soldered πŸ”₯
  • Used with an applied lap sealant 🀐

If so, the minimum pitch must be one-half unit vertical in 12 units horizontal (0.5:12). This is also a 4% slope.

Rule #3

For standing seam metal roofs, the minimum pitch is lower than the other two types. You only need a minimum slope of 0.25:12 or one-quarter unit vertical in 12 units horizontal. Written another way, this is a 2% slope.

We’ll Build Your Metal Roof

Now you can see why minimum pitch for metal roof requirements are necessary and how they can help you. If you want a Superman πŸ¦Έβ™‚ metal roof and not a Joe Smith roof, make sure your roofers follow the requirements.

If you ask us at Buckworth Roofing to build your metal roof, we will follow these requirements. We’re not called the trusted Pensacola metro area roofing contractor for nothing.Β Contact us todayΒ and get your roofing project started ASAP.

Quicker Service. Bigger Discounts. Fewer Hassles. Buckworth.

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