DIY Roofing for Home Roofers

“Why did the roofer go to the doctor?

ANSWER: Because he had a bad case of shingles!

Roofers love roofing jokes.  I hope that last one wasn’t over your head.  Truth is most of us became roofers because we wanted to be looked up to. Ok, enough of the cheesy roofing jokes.

We take a lot of things really serious, and taking on replacing your own roof should be one of them. But, if you are the adventurous type, not afraid of heights, strong, healthy, and physically fit…  then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to roof your own home.

DIY Roofing

First of all, gather as much information as you can about DIY Roofing. There is a wealth of information on the internet to help you successfully replace your roof. Get on your roof and walk around to make sure you are not afraid to take on your roofing task. You’ll know immediately if you are comfortable being on your roof. If you are not comfortable on your roof then you should call a professional roofing contractor who can handle both roofing and gutters.

If you determine you are capable to tackle your re-roof then proceed with a well thought through plan. Have the material delivered. And here’s a word to the wise… have the new material lifted onto the roof after the old roof is removed. Carrying bundles of shingles up a ladder on your shoulder is murder. Make sure you have all the tools with you on the roof that you will need to do the job. Having to go up and down the ladder to get what you need will prematurely exhaust you.

Be sure you choose the correct underlayment material for the quality of job you are desiring. There are numerous types of shingles to choose from. There are composition shingles, clay tile, wooden shake, metal, slate, and others. Be sure you are choosing the right roofing material for you home. Some of these materials are very complex to install and a qualified professional roofer should be enlisted.

Areas of great concern in replacing your own roof are places where water may have opportunity to enter the structure. Such as around the chimney. The chimney should have metal flashing cut and installed to sure absolutely no water can penetrate it. On brick chimneys the metal flashing should be installed into the brick itself by using a masonry saw to cut into the brick.

Another area of concern is the roof valleys. Ice and water underlayment should be installed in the valleys to insure there will be no leaking. Valley metal may also be installed. Both should run the entire length of the valley.

The roof ventilation is also another area of concern for leaks. Make sure all low profile, turtle type, turbines, and ridge vent is installed correctly. Making sure to you pay attention to these areas will insure you enjoy your newly installed roof for years to come.

You can do this. Being diligent regarding your responsibility and being vigilant to watch every detail will make you proud that you were successful of doing this job yourself.

Radiant Barrier Roof Sheathing

Radiant Barrier Roofing Decking

Stay cool, dude! Ok, so you might be able to “stay cool dude” in certain parts of the country where the temperature doesn’t reach a hundred degrees plus in the summers, but if you don’t, the sun can make even a home with air conditioning unbearable sometimes. You know you can only take off so many articles of clothing before you’re…well, you know.

Attic Insulation

There are a couple of things you can do to help remedy the problem of an overheated home in the summertime. One is to add more insulation in your attic. You should insulate to a recommended level to R-38 or about 10-14 inches of insulation. The other is Radiant Barrier Sheathing. Both insulation and radiant barrier are excellent methods of keeping your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. When insulation and radiant barrier sheathing are used in conjunction with one another you can experience a significant reduction in your heating and cooling costs.

What is Radiant Barrier Sheathing? Most homeowners are knowledgeable of, and aware of, the benefits of adequate insulation in their attics, but as for Radiant Barrier… maybe not so much. Radiant barrier is a sheathing panel of OSB with foil laminated to one side of it to reflect the heat. When shingles heat up from the sun blazing down on them the heat is transferred inside to the attic space through conduction.  These foil laminated panels reflect the heat rather than absorbing it. That’s important, especially when you’re roofing in San Antonio Texas.

Attic Heat Build Up

Attic heat can be reduced from up to 30 degrees using radiant barrier sheathing. Radiant barrier sheathing works best in extreme summer heat, the hotter the better. The best time to replace radiant barrier is during the spring or fall. If you plan to replace your radiant barrier in the summer, it is best to work in the early mornings and evenings when the attic is cool.

A great time to install radiant barrier decking is after a hailstorm when the shingles will have to be removed from the decking anyway. Replacing the radiant barrier at this time saves steps and expense.

Types of Roofing Radiant Barrier

There are other types of radiant barrier that can be installed or applied, but foil laminated panels are the most popular. One type is radiant barrier that comes on a roll and is cut and placed between the shingles and the roof decking. Another type is lightweight panels of radiant barrier cut and stapled to the underside of the decking inside the attic. And still another is rolled on like paint inside the attic roof.

You can find out all the information you need on radiant barrier sheathing by contacting your local roofing contractor. Radiant barrier sheathing should be installed by professional qualified roofing experts. If you would like to DIY, using these other types of radiant barrier that can be installed or applied inside the attic, your endeavor should be well thought through as to not waste your money.

So, taking it from the top… yes, you can “stay cool dude.”

The Purpose of Drip Edge

The Purpose of Drip Edge

We never think of a drip as a good thing. It’s not a good thing when a faucet drips, or an oil pan drips, or when people are dripping with sweat. Yuk! Well dripping in the roofing business isn’t a good thing either. When it comes to roofing… water is the enemy. We don’t want water to drip from the ceilings in your house because the roof did not do its job adequately.

So as an added layer of protection we install metal edging around the perimeter of your house called drip edge. Drip edge directs the water away from the structure and lets it drip from the metal edging. And that’s a good thing.

Let’s talk about drip edge and its purpose. Drip edge is a metal flashing that is located along the edges of your roof line. It is important because it diverts the water away from your roof. Drip edge is common on most roofs but often underappreciated. Oftentimes, drip edge is excluded from roofing construction in order to save money.

Excluding drip edge from your roofing project may be a means of saving money up front, but in the long run can be a very expensive choice. Installing or replacing drip edge is always recommended. Most shingle manufacturers always include drip edge in their recommended installation process.

Drip edge is designed to protect the edges of your roof from water damage. It also protects against rotting and erosion. Unless you are specifically looking for your drip edge, when you look up at your roof you probably won’t even notice it.

The drip edge can be installed on top of or beneath the underlayment, and along the length of the fascia board.  It should extend along the entire length of the fascia board. The drip edge should be run straight and not cut short. Allowing the drip edge to buckle or be cut short will permit moister to enter along the edges of the roof line.

Without drip edge the integrity of the roof can be compromised. It can be damaging to your shingles, your underlayment, and to your roof’s decking. The most important area for drip edge is on the eves of your roof.  Your shingles should hang over between a half an inch and three-quarters of an inch beyond the drip edge. Allowing overhang longer than this can permit wind damage and also bending and cracking of the shingle.

It comes in ten foot lengths and in several different colors. It can also be painted to match whatever color the trim is on your home or the shingles on your roof. Drip edge is easy to cut with metal sheers and there is generally little waste. Drip edge can be purchased at any home improvement store or roofing supply center.

It is always good to check with your contractor to see if the drip edge is included in the installation of the roof on your new home or re-roof. Some contractors do not include it in their roofing estimate.