We are a full-service roofing contractor located in beautiful Bellingham, WA. We install, maintain, and repair roofs throughout northwestern Washington, including Whatcom, Skagit, and Island Counties.
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Serving Whatcom, Skagit & Island Counties



roof slope

Roof Slope: Why Does It Matter?

Metal roofs are becoming a more popular choice for many homeowners and commercial building owners. Reasons for this are their durability, low maintenance requirements, and energy efficiency. One important factor to consider when installing a metal roof is the roof slope. Which refers to the angle of the roof surface in relation to the horizontal plane. The slope of a roof can impact the performance and longevity of a metal roof. It is important to choose the right slope for your needs.

It is important to consult with a qualified roofing contractor to determine the accurate slope measurement. A roofing contractor will consider factors such as climate, weather patterns, and the design of your roof. This is in order to calculate the required slope for proper water drainage and long-lasting performance.

The Info About Roof Slopes

Types of roof slopes

There are two main types of roof slopes: low slope and steep slope. A low slope roof has a pitch of less than 3:12, which means that for every 12 inches of horizontal distance, the roof rises less than three inches vertically. Steep slope roofs have a pitch of 3:12 or greater. This means that for every 12 inches of horizontal distance, the roof rises three inches or more vertically.

Why does roof slope matter?

The roof slope of a metal roof is important because it affects how water drains off the roof. This is especially important here in the Pacific Northwest where we see a lot of rainy days. It’s vital to prevent water from pooling and causing leaks and other damage. We want water to flow off the roof quickly. A steep slope allows water to run off immediately, while a low slope can pool water if special considerations are not made to ensure proper water drainage. A good option for low slope roofs are mechanically seamed metal roofs.

While steep slope roofs drain water more quickly and efficiently, they may require additional safety precautions during installation and maintenance and additional materials to prevent snow and ice buildup.

What is the minimum slope for metal roofing?

The minimum slope for metal roofing depends on the type of metal roofing system being used. For most metal roofing systems, the minimum slope is 1/4 inch per foot to allow for proper water drainage and to prevent pooling on the roof, which means that for every 12 inches of horizontal distance, the roof should rise at least three inches vertically.

However, the minimum slope for a standing seam metal roof is lower with slopes of 2:12 or even 1:12. When a mechanically seamed metal roof is installed, special precautions must be taken to ensure proper water drainage, such as using a waterproof underlayment or installing a cricket or saddle to divert water away from the low slope area.

How to choose between a steep slope or low slope roof

When choosing a metal roof slope, it is important to consider low slope metal roofing details such as climate and weather patterns. In areas with heavy rain or snowfall, a steep slope roof may be preferable to ensure proper water drainage and prevent snow and ice buildup. In areas with high winds or hurricanes, a low slope roof may be the best choice, as a steep slope can create additional uplift forces on the roof. As we know, we can experience both heavy rain and high winds in the Pacific Northwest, so it is best to speak with a local roofing expert to choose the best roof for your needs.

Another factor to consider is the aesthetic of your home or building. Steep slope roofs can create a dramatic look that adds visual interest to a home’s exterior, while low slope roofs have a more modern and minimalist look. Ultimately, the choice of slope may come down to your personal preferences and the architectural style of your home or building.

In addition to other factors such as the type of metal and coating, the slope of a metal roof is an important factor to consider when choosing a metal roof for your home or building. It is important to work with a qualified roofing contractor to ensure proper installation and long-lasting performance.

If you have any questions about a new metal roof, our roofing experts are ready to help! We will assess your needs and discuss your metal roof options so you can get the most beautiful and functional roof for your home or building. We have put together some tips for what to look for in a roof installation bid and we hope you find them useful.

Trust Skyline Roofing & Construction for your roofing needs

At Skyline Roofing & Construction our roofing professionals always strive to add value. Contact us today if you are looking for an experienced, licensed roofing contractor to install, repair, or replace your roof. Skyline Roofing is located in Bellingham, WA and we presently serve Whatcom, Skagit, and Island Counties.

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