Alternatives to zinc roofs.

Alternatives to zinc roofs.

Postby mcadesigns » Tue Dec 09, 2008 4:47 pm

I've recently started building my own house in galway. At present ive completed the foundations, and hope to start the timber frame in feb. My biggest problem is deciding on what material to use on the 7 degree pitched roof, initially i was going to use zinc but the price i got was a bit of a scare to say the least, has anyone any suggestions on what alternatives are best suited in terms, of maintenance, longiviety,cost, and appearance. Is standing seam sarnafil a good alternative.
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Re: Alternatives to zinc roofs.

Postby kieran0426 » Wed Dec 10, 2008 12:24 pm

You could look at FALZONAL Pre Painted Allumnium as a alternative not sure on cost though
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Re: Alternatives to zinc roofs.

Postby BTH » Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:06 pm

Unless you can't really see the roof I wouldn't go for the membrane with "stuck-on" seams option. It invariably ends up looking pretty cheap and nasty no matter how well installed. It will always have ripples and basically look quite fake, plus I've seen quite a few examples where the "seams" fall off after a few years exposure to our wonderful climate... Not pretty.
I spent a stupid amount on a zinc roof and zinc gutters and downpipes a few years back. It was painful at the time and there's still a bit of finishing to do inside as a result, but looking back it's the best decision we made on the house - it just looks so classy and it's getting better with age. If you can possibly stretch to it you won't regret it.
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Re: Alternatives to zinc roofs.

Postby mcadesigns » Thu Dec 11, 2008 1:05 pm

BTH, thanks for the great advise, as an architectural techy, i don't want to make any mistakes on the house and i don't want to regret anything, i know if i go with anything other than zinc ill regret it, how do you find the noise element with the zinc when it rains.
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Re: Alternatives to zinc roofs.

Postby BTH » Thu Dec 11, 2008 1:59 pm

No problem, I only hope my great advice doesn't bankrupt you!! It really is a beautiful finish although you sort of have to follow through with the guttering and downpipes to avoid ruining the effect. I don't find the noise to be a problem but that's because we have a lot of rooflights which make even more noise when it rains! It's the kind of thing that you get used to and pesonally I love hearing the rain or hail batter off the the glass when you're nice and cozy inside. Also we packed the roof with insulation so basically no sound actually transmits from the metal roof directly into the house.
Because you have to allow air to circulate underneath the zinc you get some bizarre noises in high winds - whistles etc. but again its nothing that would keep me awake.

The one thing you need to watch is the exposure to high winds. If you are in an exposed area you should ask that whoever installs the roof nails it at closer intervals than is usual - basically puts more seams in. We actually doubled the number of seams because the house is right on the seashore and we were playing it very safe. I've heard of cases where a "normal" seam interval is used and the noise is terrible in high winds. Basically the suction can cause the zinc sheet to flex in and out resulting in loud cracking sounds a bit like the "thunder boards" that they use in theatres. With closer joints the flex is less and obviously there is less chance of sheets of zinc being ripped off in a storm!

One more suggestion is to look at copper as an alternative - whoever you are speaking to about the zinc should have info on it. There is a product called "TecuZINN" which is basically copper coated with zinc so it has the grey effect. Im not sure what the price is like but at times copper is much cheaper than zinc depending on the markets. "Terne Coated Steel" is yet another option but as far as I know steel products are wildly expensive at the moment. I hadn't heard of the "Falzonal" product but from what I see it'd be an excellent substitute for zinc if the price were any more reasonable. Again ask whoever you are dealing with for the zinc to price all the different material options as I'm sure they can source and install all of them.
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