New call-to-action
Metal Roofing Contractors Blog

Helpful information for contractors, distributors, architects, and building professionals using metal products

Blog Home

Posted by McElroy Metal ● Mar 23, 2022 8:00 AM

Post Frame/Ag Panel Roofing Trends

Post-frame buildings have certainly dominated rural landscapes for decades. But much like the phones we used during that time have gone from a rotary dial landline style to portable bag phones, and now today's mobile cellphones, post-frame buildings have changed over the years.

Below, we share a few of the more exciting trends in the post-frame industry.


The term “barndo” comes from a combination of barn and condo. And the word “shouse” is formed by combining shed and house. This sector of the post-frame market exploded in recent years as property owners looked for economical options to combine their work and play spaces. To learn more about this construction approach and why it’s generating such a buzz, check this out.

Arrowhead Pass_Barndominium_Max-Rib_ Patrician Bronze_Interior Living Space

Cold-Formed Buildings

While they’ve been widely used in Australia for the past 40+ years, the concept of cold-formed buildings is relatively new to the United States. Unlike post-frame buildings which use a wooden structure, cold-formed buildings rely on a steel frame and offer unique advantages.

Shorter lead-time, quicker construction schedules, and reduced concrete footing requirements are just a few features that draw building owners to cold-formed buildings. 

Check this out to learn more.

Cold Formed Building Interior Frame

Solar Applications

Whether your concern is rising energy costs or decreasing your carbon footprint, products with solar hosting ability continue to gain market share. And metal roof panels serve as an outstanding host for solar systems. Owners can choose between crystalline or thin-film technologies and, depending on the metal panel style utilized, can adhere the solar system directly to the roof panels or use S-5! clamps.

The photo below showcases a net-zero post-frame home. Click here to learn more about this exciting project.

Borkholder1 Cropped

Offices & Porches 

Another trend in agricultural projects involves including offices and porches in the building design. Originally post-frame structures were simply meant to house equipment and shelter for livestock. But today’s savvy consumers tend toward more multi-functional facilities. 

Lower eave heights and even different panel profiles from the main building are often incorporated to help these spaces deliver function while incorporating an aesthetic interest.


Download Post Frame Buildings: What's Better, a National or Regional Metal Panel ManufacturerConditioned Spaces 

The ag buildings of 1950's rarely needed to consider ventilation. However, as building use has morphed, we’ve seen increased facilities with conditioned space. The addition of conditioned space requires builders and design professionals to consider ventilation requirements. 

Ridge and eave vents are common elements to address ventilation concerns. However, large buildings also often require a 2’ overhang instead of the once-standard 1’ overhang. Click here to learn more or work with a builder like FBI Buildings which uses design software to ensure adequate ventilation of their buildings. 


Light Transmission 

Another growing trend is the desire for light transmission into post-frame buildings. Historically, the only light filtering into the buildings came from fiberglass skylights inserted between the roof panels. 

While fiberglass products have improved vastly over what they once were, their tendency to become brittle and allow reduced light into the building as they age has encouraged builders and owners to search for other options.

As a result, wall applications at the eave (instead of the roof) have become a popular location for fiberglass panels. Some owners are skipping fiberglass products altogether and opting for large windows, which offer increased thermal performance and enhanced light transmission. Building owners can even open windows to allow additional airflow, in some cases.

Agricultural_Post Frame_Max-Rib_Light Stone Walls_Clay Roof and wainscot

McElroy Metal Products

While we’ve discussed overall trends so far, at McElroy Metal, we’ve also introduced a couple of specialty products to fill the needs of today’s post-frame building owners and contractors. 

We’ve made enhancements to the industry standard 9” on-center and ¾” high ag panel like our Max-Rib. The result is our patented product called MESA, which offers an nearly invisible lap.  You can learn more about it here.

We also offer a product called Moisture-Lok, which eliminates the need for contractors to inventory and install conventional vapor barrier materials. We apply an anti-condensation membrane to some of our panel profiles during the manufacturing process.

What other trends do you see in the post-frame industry? Whether you’re a contractor or building owner, we’d love to hear from you! Please contact us or comment below to share your insights.

Have you used McElroy Metal on a project? We'd love to see the finished results! Share your project photos and videos!

About McElroy Metal

Since 1963, McElroy Metal has served the construction industry with quality products and excellent customer service. The employee-owned components manufacturer is headquartered in Bossier City, La., and has 14 manufacturing facilities across the United States. Quality, service and performance have been the cornerstone of McElroy Metal’s business philosophy and have contributed to the success of the company through the years. As a preferred service provider, these values will continue to be at the forefront of McElroy Metal’s model along with a strong focus on the customer.

Topics: Post Frame, Agricultural

Comments on this article:

Scroll down to the bottom to submit a comment and join the conversation. Need help or have a question? Please contact us.

Download Post Frame Buildings: What's Better, a National or Regional Metal Panel Manufacturer
Recognize a McElroy Metal Employee We love our VIPs! GET STARTED