IN DEPTH: Roofing Systems

roofing demand chart
Codes Encourage Upgrades

Building codes are encouraging higher grades of products, taking a cue from the Miami-Dade County standards, the country’s strictest. “Codes everywhere are getting more stringent,” GAF’s Avitabile says. “The ICC code historically wasn’t a major factor outside of the West, but now its standards are steadily spreading eastward slowly.”

“Building codes are definitely impacting the adoption of metal panels, especially as the Dade County code requirements expand up the East Coast,” Metal Sales’ Nolte says. “We wouldn’t be surprised if one day all of the East Coast has the Dade County standards of today.”

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Code changes are impacting every product. “Building codes influence which underlayments are required for a specific job,” says Tony Reis, sales and marketing director for MFM Building Products Corp. Each code indicates what mechanical properties the underlayment needs to have, and manufacturers have third parties test their products for approval. “These codes and approvals are designed to protect the contractor and, ultimately, the consumer.”

Codes also are expanding sales for radiant-barrier sheathing, says Mit Scott, OSB tactical product manager at Weyerhaeuser. “The desire within municipalities is for more energy efficiency, and codes are reflecting that. As a result, there’s a growing awareness of the benefits of radiant barriers.”

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