I'm considering using nails as an alternative to "backer" screws. The manufacturer recommends "1 1/4" hot dipped galvanized roofing nails" for this application - hardibacker underlayment for bathroom tile job. I don't care about pros/cons of hardibacker, it's a moot point.

I cannot find 'hot dipped' nails anywhere it seems. All are "electroplate galvanized". It seems to me the electroplate types, due to their 'smoothness' won't hold as well as 'dipped'. But I am more concerned about the efficacy of electroplate galvanized to withstand the potential adverse effects of this environment. Is there much of a difference between hot dipped and electroplate galvanized or am I just being paranoid?

  • @AndrewMorton OP may not have meant a Google search but a "big box or hardware store in-person physical search" – manassehkatz-Moving 2 Codidact Mar 17 '19 at 17:43
  • If I had known none of the any brand of hardware stores within fifty miles of me does not stock them, I would have picked them 10 days ago. It seems everything is online and I can't wait for them. – Lane M Mar 17 '19 at 20:09

I doubt the person that wrote the instructions knew the differences between hot dipped and electrogalvanized and so was not expecting a significant difference. Zinc coatings provide limited protection for mild corrosion. For a small job any stainless would be a big improvement for little cost. However; hot dipped tends to be thicker but not as ductile because of brittle iron/zinc intermetallics. I worked in corrosion protection and do not recall either process being required for an application other than bolting where electro-galvanized was was preferred to keep threads profiles free of buildup .


Like most things: there’s good, better and best.

Hot dip is recommended by your manufacturer, but that’s for “normal” use in “normal” environments.

Where I live, the environment is extremely corrosive and we only use stainless steel.

Hot dip is better than electo-coated, but still not suitable for cedar, redwood and some pressure treatments.

Here’s an article that will explain it better https://www.oldhouseonline.com/.amp/repairs-and-how-to/dos-donts-outdoor-nail-use

BTW, it’s not mentioned in the article, but if you live in a “semi-corrosive” environment you might want to use stainless steel, because the galvanizing will come off when struck by your hammer.


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