Author: Jean Merritt

The Basics of Roofing Installation

Roofing is the top layer of protection for your home. It defends against rain, snow, sunlight, and wind.


Before starting the roofing installation process, it’s important to take all of the necessary precautions. This includes covering delicate areas of your yard and having a dumpster delivered to dispose of the old materials. Also, wearing the proper safety equipment is vital. Visit to learn more.

The first step in any roofing job is to tear off the existing roof. This step can be messy and dangerous for a homeowner, so hiring a professional is usually the best option. The old shingles and underlayment need to be removed before the new materials are installed. In addition, it’s important to remove or pound flat any protruding nails in the underlayment, as they can tear holes in the new shingles. This is particularly important in areas that have been covered with self-stick ice-and-water underlayment.

During roofing installation, the vibrations from hammers and nail guns can cause pictures to fall from walls, so it’s wise to remove wall hangings before the project begins. You should also cover items in the attic to protect them from dust and debris. It’s a good idea to cover any furniture or valuables in the house with tarps, so they don’t get ruined by wood splinters and nails that might fall from the roof during the construction process.

It’s a good idea to organize your yard before the project starts, removing lawn ornaments, patio furniture and grills so they don’t get knocked over or hit by flying debris during the roof replacement. If you have any plants that are especially delicate or expensive, it’s a good idea to put them in a secure spot away from the work area and mark them with orange tape to let the roofers know to take extra care around them.

It’s also a good idea to keep children and pets inside during the roof replacement. Noise from hammers and nail guns can make them anxious, and it’s dangerous for them to play outside or wander near the workers. Consider making arrangements for them to stay with family or friends during the roofing process and scheduling activities for them that will keep them out of the way. Lastly, it’s a good idea to leave gates open so the roofing team can park vehicles and unload supplies without blocking your driveway or street. This will speed up the process and help avoid any delays or problems.


The roofing material you choose plays a significant role in your home’s durability, energy efficiency and overall longevity. High-quality materials provide superior protection from the elements and help regulate indoor temperatures, reducing strain on heating and cooling systems. Quality roofing materials also contribute to your home’s aesthetic and value.

Whether your roof is in need of repair or a complete replacement, it is essential to choose the right materials. The primary roofing material is shingles, which are available in many types. Asphalt shingles are the most common choice, offering a balance between performance and cost. Other options include clay, slate and metal shingles, which offer superior longevity but require more specialized experience for installation.

You will also need a variety of tools to perform the work, including a nail gun and high-quality nails. These supplies will help you quickly and effectively secure the shingles to your roof. A roofing knife is another necessary tool for cutting shingles and other roofing materials to size. It is also a good idea to have a pair of safety goggles handy, as roofing work can be hazardous.

Tarps are another useful item to have on hand. During a re-roofing project, they can be laid on the ground to protect landscaping and catch stray shingle pieces and nails. This makes clean-up much easier and your customers will appreciate it.

Other important roofing materials include ridge caps and drip edges, which add to the roof’s beauty and functionality by protecting vulnerable areas. Other accessories such as soffit vents and attic fans promote proper airflow and prevent moisture buildup in the attic.

On roofs with a steep pitch, you may need a set of roof brackets or toe boards for footing. This will prevent you from falling off the roof, which can be dangerous and interrupt your workflow.

You’ll also want a receptacle to dispose of old roofing materials. This can be a dumpster or the bed of your pickup truck, depending on the size of the job and your location. It is important to plan ahead for the disposal of old materials so that you don’t waste time or money running back and forth from the dump.


The installation process involves laying new shingles or other roofing materials. It’s a messy job, and your contractor should take precautions to protect your home and property. This includes covering anything that might get damaged by falling shingles, getting a dumpster to hold waste, and using wooden boards to shield items like your air conditioning unit or garden.

Roofers start by applying a starter strip, which is an adhesive-backed piece of underlayment. They then shingle the first row, with a shingle cutter and square to make sure they’re cutting each shingle properly. They will also install a drip edge, which prevents water from seeping under the shingles. Nails will be placed in a pattern that’s closer near the edges, and farther apart in the middle. The next row of shingles is laid over the starter strip, with tabs in the new row offset from the previous one by six inches. This helps the rows overlap and create a waterproof seal. Roofers will also apply caulk to any raw edges and use a nail gun on certain areas of the roof that are more leak-prone.

Some roofs require flashing to protect eaves, valleys, or ice and water sheathing. This is especially important in vulnerable spots like around chimneys, wood stove pipes, or vents. Your roofer will install these pieces as needed, and they may use roofing cement to seal them. They’ll also add ridge and hip vents for improved attic ventilation, which cuts energy costs by regulating the temperature in your home.

Final Inspection

Developing a comprehensive final inspection checklist is a crucial aspect of any construction project. These checklists act as an audit tool to ensure stringent compliance with industry regulations and standards, mitigating potential safety and quality risks. They also serve as a communication tool between teams and stakeholders, eliminating misunderstandings that could otherwise hinder a project’s completion.

The first step in creating a final inspection checklist is to familiarize yourself with your project’s unique specifications. Take the time to understand every regulation and standard that your project must comply with, from safety measures to quality guidelines. This will help you shape a checklist that is specifically tailored to your project, ensuring full compliance and minimizing the risk of non-compliance penalties.

Next, you’ll need to schedule a pre-final inspection with your local building department. Make sure to call well in advance, as many departments are only able to conduct inspections within certain windows of time depending on their workload. Also, if you plan on having the owner or an owner representative present during your inspection, it’s best to let them know in advance so they can be prepared with documentation and understand what the inspector will be looking for.

During the pre-inspection, the inspector will walk the roof and validate the nailing pattern. They’ll also look at the flashing in respective areas and ensure that the roof is complete to minimum code requirements. If they find any issues, they’ll note them and provide a written report with a list of items that need to be corrected.

Once the pre-final inspection is completed, you can schedule the final inspection. During the final inspection, the inspector will walk the entire roof, validating the nailing pattern and looking at the flashing in all relevant areas. They’ll also examine the underlayment and ensure that it is installed according to local code requirements. Finally, the inspector will verify that any required signage is in place and visible.

A final inspection is a crucial process in determining whether a building meets all required building codes and can be declared safe for occupancy. Taking the time to prepare for this inspection and ensure that you have all necessary documentation will help your project stay on schedule and on budget.