Butyl tape is an essential tool for any metal roofer. It’s used to seal seams and other areas where metal panels come together. In this article, we’ll discuss the best butyl tape for metal roofing, as well as the tools you’ll need for taping and other advice to make your first taping project a success. We’ve also included information about why you should consider this as a DIY project, along with a primer on how to tape a metal roof.
|1||XFasten Black Butyl Seal Tape 1/8-Inch x 3/4-Inch||9.5|
|2||LLPT Butyl Seal Putty Tape White||9.0|
|3||Dicor BT-1834-1 1/8″ x 3/4″ x 30′ Butyl Seal Tape||8.5|
|4||TAPEM 1/8″ x 3/4″ Butyl Tape||8.3|
|5||Butyl Sealant Tape||7.8|
The Approach We Took for Testing
To test the adhesives, we scraped off a few chips of rust from the metal roofing, then applied a dab of each sealant to the sample and let it cure for 24 hours.
To test adhesion, we pried up each sample with a set of channel-lock pliers. The best butyl tapes formed a tight seal that peeled easily from the metal, with no damage to the metal or adhesive.
In addition to these tests, we also considered sealants that didn’t make the cut: Some were too runny (even when applied at maximum thickness) or didn’t cure properly under the conditions we tested.
For this guide, we recommend butyl sealants for metal roofs.
Pro tip: To get the most from your butyl tape, apply a strip of it between two panels of metal roofing, such as at a ridge cap joint or along an eaves trough. Then apply another strip of butyl along the same joint, covering the first strip. This method works best in cold weather when the tape is stiff and easy to work with.
To learn more about butyl tape and other types of sealants for metal roofs, check out this video from the Chicago-based metal-roofing company S&S Roofing Supply:
XFasten Black Butyl Seal Tape 1/8-Inch x 3/4-Inch
The XFasten Butyl Tape is the best option for anyone who needs to seal metal roofs, windows, or fiberglass. It’s easy to install and has the professional look and functionality of a tape that a roofing contractor would use.
It’s elastic, smooth, and corrosion-resistant, and it forms a water-tight seal that will help keep out moisture, vapor, corrosive chemicals, and other leakages. You can paint over the surface, making your installation area a seamless, neat, and professional-looking workspace.
It installs easily on tight corners and unusual curves, textured, uneven, and most jagged surfaces. The XFasten Butyl Tape has a long shelf life and is resistant to melting during transportation or storage, thanks to an operating temperature range of -30°F to 290°F.
It’s compatible with a wide range of surfaces, including rubber roofing, galvanized metal, frosted fiberglass, wood, textile, plastic, aluminum, and more. It also has sound-dampening and rattling-absorbing properties and is easy to clean up even years after installation.
This tape can be harder to find and more expensive than other options, but it’s consistently the best performer in our tests and the easiest to find in stores. The XFasten Butyl Tape has a long shelf life and is resistant to melting during transportation or storage, thanks to an operating temperature range of -30°F to 290°F.
This tape is effective across a wide range of surfaces, including rubber roofing, galvanized metal, frosted fiberglass, wood, textile, plastic, aluminum, and more. It also has sound-dampening and rattling-absorbing properties and is easy to clean up even years after installation.
This tape can be harder to find and more expensive than other options, but it’s consistently the best performer in our tests and the easiest to find in stores.
LLPT Butyl Seal Putty Tape White
We found that the best butyl tape for sealing windows and doors is the LLPT Butyl Tape WST233. It’s also great for general repair work, including patching and sealing a variety of different materials, such as fiberglass, wood, coated or uncoated metals, plastic, and rubber.
It’s also easier to use than other butyl tapes and provides a more reliable, airtight seal than most of the other tapes we tested. It’s easy to paint, and its large width makes it a good choice for irregularly shaped areas and tight corners. It’s also available in a wide variety of widths, so if you need to seal a large area, you can order a wider roll for a lower price per foot.
Dicor BT-1834-1 1/8″ x 3/4″ x 30′ Butyl Seal Tape
Dicor Butyl Tape BT-1834-1 is the best butyl tape we tested because it can be used to seal uniquely shaped joints. It’s also easier to apply than other butyl tape we tested because it comes on a continuous roll and so the installer doesn’t have to worry about gaps between pieces of tape.
Because the butyl tape is 1/8 inch thick, it was easier to seal gaps with less sealant than thinner tapes. And because the sealant is on a continuous roll, the installer can work quickly and be virtually assured that there are no skips or runs in the seal.
TAPEM 1/8″ x 3/4″ Butyl Tape
Butyl tape is the tried-and-true go-to product for sealing windows, roofs, and trim. It’s a must-have for any home-repair kit—it works well across a wide temperature range, it’s easy to remove, and it doesn’t leave a sticky mess around the edges.
We recommend the White Butyl Tape from TAPEM. It comes in a 30’ roll and has both a knife and a scraper attached to the end. The tape itself is a high-quality butyl rubber that’s great for all kinds of sealing projects.
Don’t worry about the tape being hard to remove—it’s meant to stay for years, with no mess and no damage to the surface underneath.
You can buy a package with a knife, or you can get one with a scraper to get the tape off that part of the surface. Either option will make the job easier, but the knife is the easier of the two to use.
Butyl Sealant Tape
For the thickest, most durable, waterproof sealant you can get, you have to use butyl tape. It’s typically used for metal roofing, but it can also be used for other applications, including sealing the gap between car doors, car bodies, car hoods, and truck beds.
Our pick, the SmartSeal 9mm Butyl Ribbon Sealant (also known as butyl tape), is 9mm (0.35 inch) thick and strong enough to be used in most automotive situations, including sealing the gaps around headlights and taillights.
The butyl tape is the most compressible of the sealants we tested, which makes it easier to install, and it’s also the most widely available. The 4-meter (13-foot) roll should be enough to re-seal the headlights on most vehicles.
Some Factors That Shouldn’t Be Overlooked
After researching dozens of top-selling metal roofing tape, I narrowed the list down using the following criteria:
The tape should stick well to a variety of metal and asphalt shingles. The adhesive should also be able to tolerate some weathering without failing.
We didn’t test tape for compatibility with specific brands of metal or asphalt shingles, but we did look for information about whether the tape is recommended for use with specific brands or types of shingles.
Based on that research, we decided to test tapes from companies that offer a wide range of products, including options that are specifically designed to work with specific types of metal and asphalt shingle roofs.
TPI stands for threads per inch. It measures how sticky the glue is in the tape. The stickier, the better! TPI is not an indication of quality—just how sticky the glue is in the tape.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can butyl tape be used in extreme weather conditions, such as extreme heat or cold?
Butyl tape is designed to be resistant to extreme weather conditions—including extreme heat or cold. It is typically made from a blend of synthetic rubber and other materials that provide flexibility and durability—allowing it to maintain its seal and performance in a wide range of temperatures.
Don’t forget to check the specific specifications of the butyl tape you are using to ensure that it is suitable for use in the temperature range you will be working in.
2. How long does butyl tape last in metal roofing applications?
The lifespan of butyl tape in metal roofing applications can vary depending on several factors,—such as the quality of the tape and the conditions it is exposed to.
In general, butyl tape can last for many years in metal roofing applications if it is properly installed and maintained. It may be necessary to periodically inspect the tape and replace it if it shows signs of wear or damage.
3. Is butyl tape water-resistant and able to prevent leaks in a metal roof?
Butyl tape is water-resistant, meaning that it is able to withstand exposure to water without losing its seal or adhesive properties. This makes it an effective tool for preventing leaks in a metal roof.
Note that no tape is completely waterproof, and it is still necessary to properly maintain and repair your metal roof to prevent leaks and other damage.
4. Can butyl tape be easily removed or replaced if needed in a metal roofing installation?
Butyl tape can be easily removed or replaced if needed in a metal roofing installation. In most cases, it can be peeled off by hand, or a tool such as a putty knife can be used to gently lift and remove the tape.
Once the old tape has been removed, the surface can be cleaned and prepped for the application of new butyl tape.
5. Are there any special considerations or precautions that I should be aware of when using butyl tape in metal roofing?
When using butyl tape in metal roofing, there are some special considerations and precautions to be aware of.
First, ensure that the surface is clean and dry before applying the tape. This will help the tape to adhere properly and provide a strong seal.
Also, use the appropriate amount of tape to provide a secure and effective seal without leaving gaps or overlaps that could cause leaks or other problems. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and use of the butyl tape.
Lastly, regularly inspect the tape and the metal roof to ensure that it is in good condition and that any repairs or maintenance are performed as needed.