Facts You Should Know about Roofing Nails

For many homeowners, nails are just nails. There’s not of technology that goes into most nails, as they have largely been unchanged for centuries. Nails represent a rudimentary type of fastener in most cases, and for the average homeowner, there’s not a lot of mystery involved in the humble nail. However, when it comes to roofing, nail selection isn’t as simple as you may think. In fact, the types of nails for shingles that you use can mean the difference between a solid roof that will last for decades and one that is destined for premature failure. Choosing the right roofing nails in Lawrenceville, GA, can be tricky if you don’t know what qualities are important.


Before you can determine which nails, you should use on your roof, you need a basic working knowledge of roofing nails in general. Some types of nails perform better with roofing shingles than others, so it’s important to put some thought and research into selecting the best roofing nail for your roof type. Keep reading below to learn everything you need to know about nails for roofing.


Nail Materials

Because there are more roofing materials on the market than ever before, there must be a diversity of nails to meet the needs of the various types of roofing. For example, a standard galvanized flat-head roofing nail may be appropriate for 3-tab asphalt shingle roofing. But for slate or tile roofing that may last a century, you need nails that can weather the elements that are made of stainless steel. You also must consider environmental factors when selecting the right roofing nails. Aluminum roofing nails are helpful in reducing the overall weight of your roof, but they can quickly corrode and fail if used near saltwater or other chemicals.


Nail Shapes

Again, the type of nail you require is determined by the type of roofing material you plan to use. Nail shape is an important selection criterion because certain nail shapes are adapted specifically for some roofing materials and are inappropriate for others. For example, screw shank nails are twisted nails with diamond-shaped tips that allow them to penetrate and hold in wood roofing. They are especially effective in areas that receive frequent severe weather as they can help a roof withstand high winds better than other types of nails. The ring-shank nail features a head that is larger than the standard nail head. They, too, feature enhanced wind resistance when used with asphalt shingles, but they’re not ideal for use with wood shingles because the point doesn’t penetrate as well. If cost is a concern and you’re simply installing a traditional 3-tab asphalt roof with no frills, smooth-shank nails will do the job and save you money in the process. The trade-off is that these simple nails, made from galvanized steel, aluminum, or stainless steel, don’t offer the strength of other types of roofing nails, however.


Nail Sizes

You may think that any size of the nail can be used to affix roofing. However, there are some specific standards applied to the length of roofing nails that can help ensure that they are long enough without being too long. Roofing nails can vary in shank length from one to six inches. As the length of the nail increases, so too does its shank diameter or gauge. The longer the nail, the bigger the gauge. The length of the nail needed depends on the roofing material used and the thickness of the wooden roof decking beneath it. For 3-tab asphalt shingles, fiberglass shingles, and architectural shingles applied over standard thickness decking, nails ranging from one to two inches are fine. Wood shingles, however, will require nails from three to six inches in length since wood shingles are much thicker than their asphalt or fiberglass counterparts. 



Before you head to your local provider of roofing supply in Lawrenceville, GA, make sure you understand the differences in nails and how to determine what kind is appropriate for your next roofing project. To learn more facts about roofing nails, contact Preferred Roofing at (678) 395-6880.