Technical Resources

MCA conducts many technical studies and research projects in partnership with member and industry partners. These studies include bulletins, white papers, manuals and reports that ensure that metal is at the forefront of innovation, and proactive with codes and standards.

Metal Roofs

  • Spray Polyurethane Foam Insulation on Interior Surfaces of Metal Panels - Published 07/2016

    This Technical Bulletin is intended to serve as a guide for the application of spray polyurethane foam insulation (SPF) used in metal panel assemblies. Single skin metal walls and roofs are durable and sustainable components of a building envelope system, however the cladding offers no inherent insulation value to the building. To improve the energy efficiency of buildings, insulation, air barriers and vapor retarders are commonly used.

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  • Dissimilar Metal Corrosion in Roofing Installations - Published 06/2016

    This Technical Bulletin provides guidance when working with different metals used in roofing installations. Most metals used for construction projects are chosen for their strength, corrosion resistance and longevity. However, some metals do not perform well when placed in contact with specific other metals or exposed to certain chemical compounds. Users should be aware of compatibility issues and situations that may affect the performance of the installed roof.

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  • Roof Seaming Best Practices Guide - Published 08/2015

    The purpose of this guide is to familiarize personnel with the general knowledge, basic operation, safety, and maintenance procedures followed by standard troubleshooting suggestions for standard roof seaming processes. This is a general guide to be used in conjunction with the material installation guide and the project's erection drawings.

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  • Metal Roof Design for Cold Climates - Published 05/2014

    Metal roofs have long been considered a product of choice for snow areas because of their superior response and tolerance to many of the characteristics of these environments. This technical bulletin will provide the designer with the information required to make a prudent and informed decision through awareness of some general design parameters and snowmelt phenomena.

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  • Metal Roofing from (A) Aluminum to (Z) Zinc - Published 01/2014

    This seven-part series written by Rob Haddock, president of the Metal Roof Advisory Group, Ltd., offers essential, detailed information on metal roofing including the history and material types, appropriate coatings and paint systems, induced finishes, profiles and profiling equipment, metal panel attachment, and the mounting of rooftop equipment. 

    Download Chapter 1 PDF: History and Materials >

    Download Chapter 2 PDF: Metallic Coatings for Carbon Steel >

    Download Chapter 3 PDF: Paint Finishes for Metal >

    Download Chapter 4 PDF: Induced Finishes for Metal >

    Download Chapter 5 PDF: Profiles and Profiling Equipment >

    Download Chapter 6 PDF: Attachment of Metal Panels >

    Download Chapter 7 PDF: Rooftop Equipment Mounting and Penetrations for Low-Slope Standing-Seam Metal Roofs >

  • Ventilating Attic Fires: Press-Formed Metal Panel Roofs/Fire Service General Procedures Guide - Published 2013

    General procedures for identifying a modular panel metal roof, accessing or ventilating a stone-coated metal roof, and ventilating attic fires.

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  • Lightning and Metal Roofing - Published 2013

    When a metal roof is employed on a project, it seems to heighten people’s awareness of lightning and some question whether or not the use of metallic roofing increases the risk of lightning strike. Metal roofing does not in any way increase this risk.

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  • Roof Covering Repair Requirements and the International Codes - Published 2013

    It is common for an existing building to be serviceable in every way; however, some roof repairs may be required. On many occasions, MCA has been asked what types of roof repair materials are required and what code supporting language exists. MCA investigated this issue and found direction offered within the Existing Building Code.

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  • Service Life Assessment of Low-Slope Unpainted 55% Al-Zn Alloy Coated Steel Standing Seam Metal Roof Systems - Published 2013

    This report documents and summarizes the work conducted to determine with reasonable certainty the roof service life that can be expected of a “like-in-kind”, low-slope 55% Al-Zn alloy-coated steel Standing Seam Roof (SSR) system when installed today in a like environment using best practices. It incorporates the results of multiple field inspections, independent laboratory analyses of metallic corrosion of roof panels, components and sealants, and includes assessment of all integral ancillary components that impact the end of roof service life.

    Download Executive Summary >    Download Full Report >

  • Static and Dynamic Analysis of Metal Roof Systems - Published 2013

    Static and dynamic analyses of metal roof systems using Finite Element Method indicate that Finite Element Analysis is an appropriate tool for the product development of metal roof structures.

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  • Metal Roof Installation Manual

    This manual addresses the installation of metal roofing material and related accessories and includes information pertaining to both new construction reroofing and retrofit projects.

    Order Free Manual >

Metal Walls

  • Use of MCM Wall Cladding with Foam Plastic Insulation in Combustible Wall Assemblies - Published 08/2016

    With increased demands in energy conservation, designers are often looking for ways to include additional insulation on the exterior side of the wall assembly, behind the cladding, to meet the requirements of the code. Installation of this “continuous insulation” generally occurs in the free air cavity between the weather barrier and the exterior cladding material.

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  • MCM and MCM Systems for Building Cladding in North America - Published 06/2016

    The use of metal composite material (MCM) as an exterior cladding on high rise buildings is common throughout the world. There are many positive aspects of MCM, however recently, a number of dramatic fires reported around the globe have heightened concern regarding the use of MCM for exterior applications. The intent of this white paper is to provide information about MCM and MCM systems and the controlling factors in North America to ensure these types of fire incidents do not take place. 

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  • Metal Composite Materials - Fire Performance Testing in the United States and Canada - Published 06/2016

    Recent global fire events have heightened the awareness regarding the use of metal composite material (MCM). Safeguards in place in North America help to ensure these types of fire incidents do not take place. By adhering to the performance criteria defined in the International Building Code (IBC) in the United States, the National Building Code (NBC), and the Provincial Building Codes in Canada and working with the experienced MCM Manufacturers and Certified Fabricators, MCM can be used safely and effectively on a variety of construction types. 

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  • 4mm MCM Master Specification - Published 03/2016

    The new 4mm MCA MCM Master Specification specifically defines performance criteria for the MCM panels, the installation systems, and the system fabricators in a single document while defining performance criteria for the MCM systems based on the latest IBC and AAMA performance standards.  The Specification also provides specific installation criteria giving direction to the installer and assurances to the designer regarding the quality of the installation.

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  • 6mm/8mm MCM Master Specification - Published 03/2016

    The new 6mm/8mm MCA MCM Master Specification specifically defines performance criteria for the MCM panels, the installation systems, and the system fabricators in a single document while defining performance criteria for the MCM systems based on the latest IBC and AAMA performance standards.  The Specification also provides specific installation criteria giving direction to the installer and assurances to the designer regarding the quality of the installation.

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  • Understanding Rain Screen Wall Systems - Published 11/2014

    This white paper is published to clarify to the architectural and design community the key principles and background information employed in Drained / Back Ventilated or Pressure Equalized Rain Screen wall systems. It is also available as a resource to the General Contractor, Code Official or Owner communities to explain how the design properties of these two systems accomplish water infiltration management and prevention.

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  • Choosing Between Fire Retardant and Standard Core Metal Composite Material - Published 01/2014

    Metal composite material manufacturers typically provide two types of core products: standard and fire retardant. The Metal Construction Association’s MCM Fabricator Council has developed this paper to clarify the allowable uses for standard and fire retardant MCM in accordance with the 2006-2012 editions of the International Building Code.

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  • Visual Acceptance Parameters for Metal Composite Material (MCM) Panels and Panel Systems - Published 01/2013

    Though building and fire codes primarily address structural and fire performance of MCM cladding materials, other performance indicators often are used in the construction industry to define an acceptable application. This document defines the unified position of the Metal Construction Association (MCA) and its members with regards to visual acceptance parameters.

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Insulated Metal Panels

  • Controlling Air and Rainwater Using Insulated Metal Panel Enclosure Systems - Published 07/2015

    Insulated metal panels (IMPs) are one of only a few types of building products that can provide an entire building enclosure in one prefabricated product. However, despite their use for several decades in North America, there remains confusion about how IMPs manage rain water penetration, control air leakage, and act as continuous insulation.

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  • Insulated Metal Panels and NFPA 285 - Published 11/2013

    IMP panels are required to be tested in accordance with NFPA 285 and specific IMPs have been tested and meet the conditions of acceptance of NFPA 285. Since every variation of a wall system cannot be tested,if the “basic” IMP panel system meets NFPA 285, minor variations in items can be allowed without retesting or an analysis.

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  • Selection Guide for Insulated Metal Panels - Published 2013

    Insulated metal panels offer benefits for the entire building team. When you consider insulated metal panel products, use the information presented herein as a start to properly promote, specify and detail a project. Additional information is available from the specific manufacturers. Contact the MCA for a list of member manufacturers.

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  • Environmental Product Declaration for Insulated Metal Panels

    Environmental Product Declarations provide LCA-based information and details about the products’ environmental aspects and assist purchasers and users in making informed comparisons between products. This industry Insulated Metal Panel EPD contains valuable information about product definition, building physics, the basic material and its origin, product manufacture and processing, in-use conditions, life cycle assessment results, and testing results and verifications.

    Download Executive Summary >   Download Full Report >


  • Fastener Compatibility with Profiled Metal Roof and Wall Panels - Published 06/2015

    Profiled metal roof or wall panels rely upon mechanical fasteners to secure the components to a structure. It is very important to select the correct type of fastener for metal construction in order to ensure a strong and weather-tight attachment. This Technical Bulletin serves as a guide for the selection of exposed fasteners used with metal roof and wall panels.

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  • Metal Roof and Wall Panel Components in Contact with Preservative-Treated Lumber - Published 06/2014

    The use of copper-containing preservative-treated lumber in direct contact with certain metal products could lead to accelerated corrosion and affect the long-term integrity and performance of a metal roof or wall system. The most effective way to avoid corrosion is to ensure that the treated lumber used is either manufactured using the newer metal-free preservatives, micronized copper treatment or that there is a separation between the metal roof or wall panel and the preservative treated wood with some type of barrier material.

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  • Proper Tools for Fastening Metal Panels - Published 12/2013

    This technical bulletin is intended to be a guide to proper fastening of metal panels to wood or metal frame buildings. The selection of the proper tools for the fastening of metal roofing panels is critical for ease of installation, proper watertight sealing of the building, and the integrity of the connection.

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  • Oil Canning in Metal Roof and Metal Wall Systems - Published 2013

    Many uncontrollable factors contribute to oil-canning and no panel manufacturer, fabricator, or installer can assure the total prevention of oil canning on any given project. With careful attention to the production, material selection, panel design, and installation practice, the tendency for oil canning can be minimized.

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  • Recycled Content of Metal Roofing and Siding Panels - Published 2013

    Metal roof and wall panels are made with the highest recycled content from the most recyclable materials on earth, making them a great choice not only for today, but also for future generations to use.

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  • Roll Former Operators Manual - Published 2013

    The purpose of this manual is to familiarize personnel with the general knowledge, basic operation, safety, and maintenance procedures followed by standard trouble shooting suggestions for standard roll forming processes.

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  • Product Category Rule - Published 09/2012

    This Product Category Rule (PCR) document, produced by UL Environment, Marietta, GA,  addresses three products - Insulated Metal Panels, Metal Composite Panels and Metal Cladding: Roof and Wall Panels. It is considered the foundation for creation of Environmental Product Declarations for each of the three product groups.

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  • Life Cycle Assessment Report - Published 04/2012

    The Life Cycle Assessment report calculates the average environmental impact of the processes and the building envelope products manufactured by MCA member companies. The report is ideal for architects, designers, MCA member companies and the buildings and construction community at large to use for environmental benchmarking and decision-making.

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  • A Primer on Diaphragm Design Manual Order Form

    This MCA manual provides the supporting theory, load tables, relevant problems, and illustrations regarding connection details for roof or wall diaphragm assemblies. The scope of the work includes a variety of material connections: elevated side flat fastening, top flat fastening, bottom flat fastening, fastening to wood, aluminum and steel as well as structural members and fastening of exposed cladding. This manual provides an extremely valuable design tool to professionals in the metal construction industry. This edition is for sale through the association at a cost of $68 for members and $118 for nonmembers with shipping and handling included. Please fax or mail the order form below.

    Download PDF >

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Build Legacies: Metal