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close this bookAppropriate Building Materials: a Catalogue of Potential Solutions (SKAT; 1988; 430 pages)
View the documentPreface
Open this folder and view contentsIntroduction
Open this folder and view contentsFundamental information on building materials
Open this folder and view contentsFundamental information on building elements
Open this folder and view contentsFundamental information on protective measures
Open this folder and view contentsExamples of foundation materials
Open this folder and view contentsExamples of floor materials
Open this folder and view contentsExamples of wall materials
close this folderExamples of roof materials
View the documentEarth reel roofs
View the documentSoil brick roof
View the documentClay tile roofs
View the documentGypsum-sisal conoid
View the documentPrecast concrete channel roof
View the documentFerrocement roofs
View the documentCorrugated fibre concrete roofing sheets
View the documentFibre and micro concrete tiles
View the documentDurable thatch with stiff-stem grasses
View the documentBamboo roof structure
View the documentPole timber roof structures
View the documentBamboo and wood shingles
View the documentCorrugated metal sheet roofiing
Open this folder and view contentsExamples of building systems
Open this folder and view contentsAnnexes

Corrugated metal sheet roofiing


Special properties

Light roofs, quick assembly

Economical aspects

Medium costs


Low to medium

Skills required

Average construction skills

Equipment required

Carpentry tools

Resistance to earthquake

Very good

Resistance to hurricane


Resistance to rain

Good, but extremely loud

Resistance to insects

Very good

Climatic suitability

Warm humid climates

Stage of experience

Widely used in almost all countries


• The metal sheets are either galvanized iron or aluminium, whereby gi is susceptible to rapid corrosion if the zinc coating is not sufficiently thick (a common problem with cheaper varieties). Aluminium is lighter, more durable and reflects heat more efficiently, but is more expensive and produced with an extremely high energy input.

• The corrugations make the thin sheets stiff enough to span between two purlins without sagging. Thus large areas can be roofed with a minimum of supporting construction, making the roof light (good in earthquake zones) and cheaper (less timber or steel framework).

• Thin gauge sheets are often too weak to walk on, can be dented, punctured or torn off by strong winds.

• Major problems of metal sheet roofing are the immense heat transmission to the interior (less severe with aluminium) during sunshine, and water condensation on the underside when the roof cools down at night; unbearable noise caused by heavy rains; havoc caused by whirling sheets that are ripped off in tropical windstorms; poor fire resistance.

• Many of these problems can be alleviated with good design, material qualities and workmanship.

Further information: Bibl. 00.55, 23.17, 25.06.

Construction of Corrugated Metal Sheet Roofing

• Such roofing should tee avoided in areas of intense solar radiation and rapid temperature changes, to avoid hot indoor climate and condensation problems.

• In most cases it is advisable to construct a suspended ceiling (of a light reflective material), providing a ventilated air space which removes the accumulated heat before it can reach the interior.

• The air space also reduces the noise problem during rains. In addition, shorter distances between purling, as well as felt or rubber washers at the suspension points, rigid bolt connections and thicker gauged sheets help to reduce sound transmission.

• Similarly, thicker sheets, rigidly fixed hook bolts with large metal washers (underlaid with felt or rubber to avoid bimetallic corrosion) and avoidance of overhangs, are measures to prevent damage by strong winds.

• A fire-resistant suspended ceiling and other common-sense fire precautions can eliminate the fire risk completely.

Overlaps of roofing sheets must take into consideration the main direction of wind; Rafters should be firmly held by a fastening strap or reinforcing bar, which is embedded in the concrete or masonry. (Bibl. 25.06); A ridge ventilator can help to improve indoor climate and also reduce internal pressure and thus decrease the total roof uplift. (Bibl. 25.06)

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