2 Important Factors To Think About When Choosing Roofing Nails


When it comes to ensuring a long-lasting roof, few things are as important as the nails that hold it in place. Yet many home owners make the mistake of assuming that all roofing nails are the same--often to the detriment of their house. If the time is coming for you to put a new roof on your home, read on. This article will introduce two important factors to consider when choosing the roofing nails you'll use.

1. Length

The standard range for the length of almost all roofing nails is 1 to 1.5 inches. Within this seemingly narrow margin, however, is a world of difference. If the nails you end up choosing are even a little bit too short, chances are you will end up dealing with roof leaks and/or loose shingles down the line.

Professional roofers gauge appropriate nail length according to two factors: the variety of shingles being used and the sheathing thickness. But don't panic if you're not sure about these things. Even without this information it's perfectly possible to determine the right nail length.

Simply grab a flashlight and a ruler and head on up to your attic. There you should see the pointed ends of your roofing nails coming through the sheathing. All you need to do is measure the length of the shanks that are penetrating into your attic. The magic number here is 3/8 of an inch. Anything less than that means your nails are too short to ensure a reliable grip.

2. Shank Type

Where roofing nails are concerned, there are three primary types of shank: smooth, screw, and ring. The least expensive of the three are smooth shank nails. These, however, also offer the bare minimum of support. That is to say, while they'll be reliable in most situations, they will also present a higher risk of working loose during strong storms.

Screw shank nails offer a significant upgrade in terms of gripping power. As their name would suggest, these nails have a screw-like ridge along their shank. Once installed, this helps them hold nice and tight--especially on wood or pallet roofs. Screw shank nails also have special diamond point tips, which make them fast and easy to hammer into place.

Finally there are ring shank nails. Compared to other roofing nails, these have a particularly wide head diameter. This gives them a significant grip advantage when it comes to keeping shingles in place. And the series of low ridges along the shank help to secure them tightly to your sheathing. Because the tips of these nails aren't as sharp as other varieties, however, they are suitable almost exclusively for asphalt shingles.

To learn more, contact a roofing company

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I have a lot of trees that hang over the roof of my home. I had done a lot of reading that told me that those trees would shorten the lifespan of the roofing shingles, but I wasn't about to cut down the big trees that are a highlight of my property. Instead, I waited until the roofing needed to be replaced and I replaced it with a more durable option - metal roofing. Now, I know that the trees can stay where they are and that the roofing will remain in good condition as long as I do a little maintenance work every now and then. Find out what you need to do to sustain a metal roof under trees.

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