Standing Seam Copper Roofs

This is a covered porch on the rear of a house we completely re roofed a few years ago. The structure was built by Harry Braswell, Inc. and is designed to give the owner some covered outdoor space.

The main house roof is covered with GAF Timberline asphalt shingles in Charcoal with a few lower accent roofs in standing seam copper; keeping with the same scheme, copper became the obvious choice for the new porch.

IMG_0061 One very important note here; you’ll notice that the rosin paper and felt are secured with copper nails; I have seen many jobs where the underlayment was installed with steel nails, cap nails or even staples. Using anything but copper nails will lead to a failure; copper is soft, steel nails and staples will eventually wear through the copper panels as the panels expand and contract over the nail heads and staple crowns. If you are considering installing a metal roof ask your contractor how he installs his felt and paper, if he says staples or cap nails you should find another roofer.

The black paper is 30# asphalt felt, it provides temporary waterproofing if it happens to rain before the job is finished; the pink paper you see is Red Rosin Paper, its job is to isolate the copper panels from the asphalt felt. I could write pages about why copper needs to be kept away from felt paper but I’ll save that for another post.

IMG_0083 As the panels are laid out across the roof they are locked to each other and then are folded over the copper drip edge at the eave edge of the roof. This curved eave end detail you see here is virtually unknown on this side of the Atlantic. Although this detail is barely visible from the ground I think it adds a “hidden jewel” aspect to the job.

“Can you show me how to do it??” Sadly, no; the only two people I’m teaching this to are currently in Kindergarten and Pre-School, and they are going to have to wait at least 12 more years to learn it.

Back Camera After the eaves and seams are completed we installed new snow guards. These bronze guards clamp onto the standing seams and keep ice and snow from sliding off the roof in large sheets. There are many different designs for this purpose, guards can be casted to look like eagles, pineapples, fleur de lis, and clovers.

Back Camera And finally a copper gutter to carry the rainwater away.

If your house needs a hidden (or not so hidden) jewel you should call me, I’ll be happy to help.

Thanks for reading,


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