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Preparation Before Starting A Reroof or Shingle Of Your House

Updated on August 11, 2012

The most important tool is information

When planning a roof replacement, a lot of information shold be gathered in advance: roof pitch, type of decking, number of existing layers of roofing, the history of roof leaks, and the way leaks were resolved.

Be prepared at the start

Have all materials delivered a day or two early. This will ensure an early start if weather permits. Once material is delivered, double check amounts to ensure you will have enough to cover the job.

Know what the thickness of the roof sheathing, and have plenty of patch stock on hand for the inevitable repairs that you will come across while roofing.

Begin tracking the weather early. With all the new gadgets, and apps for your cell phone, ipad, iphone, droid, it is easy to start tracking the weather. By 7 am, you'll be able to make a fairly good decision, whether you should start the reroof job or not.

Different sites call for different strategies

Each house requires a different level of protection. Simple jobs might need no more than ground tarps. Houses with close neighbors might need plywood and tarps to protect walls for each house. Keep panels close to vertical, or they'll damage the house when heavy piles of shingles hit them. Also, it might be a good idea to let the neighbors know, what you are about to get started on, so they won't be surprised or frustrated with all the noise and traffic.

Plan for debris removal. A ground tarp landing zone, a dump truck parked in the driveway, or subcontracted waste removal are common ways to handle this.

Carry waste to the truck. If the driveway can accommodate a dump truck, carry shingles to it rather than pushing them off the roof onto a tarp. A crew member can switch between tearoff and cleanup.

Keep an extra large tarp on hand. Tip: Don't take the tarp out of the wrapper unless you really need to cover the roof; you'll never get the tarp back into the package.

Manage the workflow

Buy doughnuts and drinks for the crew. Roofers love doughnuts, and these carbs go a long way if rainclouds start moving in and you need everyone to work through lunch. Keep them happy

Only remove the old shingles that can be replaced in a day. If the weather is unsettled, break the job down into what can be reshingled before and after lunch.

Keep ahead of the tasks. As one task is completed, another is usually ready to begin. By thinking ahead and shifting personnel strategically, you can optimize workflow with less wasted time. If you're racing the weather, this mode can be a big time saver.

Cleanup is the last step

The large ground tarp will catch most of the debris, but it's a good idea to sweep the lawn with a rolling magnet to pick up loose nails.


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