Re-roofing a home as a homeowner is a very daunting task. It is not easy. Still want to do it? However, before you begin the hard work, first you need to get the materials and tools necessary to finish the job right. In this article, I’ll explain what tools you will need to make it easy on yourself. I’ll also tell you how to calculate your materials list so you have what you need to get a quick and dry re-roof.
First, you need to decide what type of re-roof you want or need. If you shingles aren’t too worn out, you can opt for a roof-over. This is simply adding new shingles over the old ones. It is the easiest and least expensive of all re-roof jobs. You simply snap chalk lines over the existing shingles and attach the new shingles with 1 ½ inch nails. So how do you tell if your shingles are too old for a re-roof? Are your shingles over 10 years old? Do you have broken shingles or missing shingles? Can you see any black spots on any shingles? If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, then you need a re-roof.
A re-roof job is very labor intensive and requires the homeowner to have a perfect window of opportunity between rains. If you can’t do it fast enough, your house could get wet inside. You don’t want that! Schedule your time wisely and always check the weather forecast. Use a trailer for trash. A trailer works best because you can move it around the house to catch debris. If you don’t have a vehicle able to tow a trailer or because of access problems in your yard, you can rent a dumpster.
While a dumpster may charge a lot of money, it is still worth it if you want to solve the yard issue at the earliest and he can do the job much better than a Roofer as he looks at the problem right from its roots.
You need a few tools to make it easier on you when removing shingles. Remove the caps with a hammer and pry par, or a pair of gloved hands. A flat shovel with a serrated front edge is a great tool is and a must. It pries up the nails easily from whole rows shingles and allows you to peel of big chunks. This makes the mess easier to manage. Use the shovel and start from the top working your way to the bottom. Shovel the shingles right into a trailer or dumpster. Try not to put too many on the ground. You can also buy a large magnet from your local home improvement center. It makes finding loose nails very easy without a lot of bending over.
Once your roof is stripped down to plywood, you need to quickly cover it. Make sure no loose or raised nails are exposed. You need to buy a few materials first. Felt paper or tarpaper is its nonprofessional name but organic felt is its real name. There are several different types. 15# felt is the cheapest; it’s ok if you quickly cover it before the sun gets to it for long. It tears easier so you will also use more nails to hold it down. #30 is needed for low-pitched roofs or extra protection. It cost more but it works better than #15. Whatever felt you get, just remember you need nails to hold it down. Simplex nails or button-tabs are what you need. Get one ½-inch nails for people with fat fingers or ¾-inch nails for skinny hands. It may sound weird, but trust me, when you hold the nail between your fingers and hit your finger once, you’ll be convinced to buy bigger nails. Roll the felt out from the bottom of the roof to the top, nailing each row of felt on the bottom line and middle line.
Now that the roof is dried in, you can order the shingles. A roofing supply company has what you need. Before you order your supplies, you need to know what size your roof is. For a basic roof, you need to measure the length along the bottom edge of the roof and the gable end up. You’re measuring the length and width of a rectangle and multiplying them together to get square footage. Don’t forget to multiply that by two for both sides of the roof. Divide that answer by 32 and that’s how many bundles of shingles you’ll need to order. http://www.calculateforfree.com/roof.html calculates it free and can help you calculate hip roofs. Do not forget when you order shingles to provide for waste and cuts, so you’ll need extra. Don’t forget caps and starter strips. Besides shingles, you’ll also need a few more things. A large bucket of tar for the starter and around flashing or vents. You’ll also need caps for vents or other roof protrusions, nails for a nail gun or hand drive nails.
You need a few tools to finish the job quicker and easier. Several hook blades in your utility knife are a must have for cutting shingles accurately and quickly. A nail gun and compressor is the way to go for large jobs. You also need hammer for any loose nails or misfires of the gun. A trowel is needed to spread the tar around and it doesn’t hurt to have mineral spirits on hand to remove the tar if it gets on your hands.