About 80 percent of North America residential roofs are covered with asphalt roof shingles. These shingles have been around since the turn of the 20th century and owe their popularity to low cost, ease of installation, good performance, and adaptability to most roof designs.

Our DIY Asphalt Shingle Installation Projects Turned Into a Business

When the home-building business in my area was slow in the early 1980s, my crew and I installed and repaired a lot of asphalt roofs on the side. Soon we were introduced to pneumatic roof staplers and our production doubled. From the start, we decided to be fussy about the appearance of our roof installations. The slots in three-tab shingles had to be straight, as well as the horizontal course lines. After all, it doesn’t take much more time to do a nice job than it does to hack things up.

Layovers, strip-offs and re-roofs, and new homes: We did it all. We learned some of the details of a well-installed shingle job simply by reading the wrapper on a bundle of roof shingles. Every bundle has the installation instruction right there on it as well as warranty information. Most manufacturers’ instructions are similar if not identical. From time to time, I read the instructions on a new bundle just to see if anything has changed. The bundle wrapper is a good place to start, but of course id doesn’t have the room for detailed information about all the situations you will encounter when shingling a roof and, just as important, when preparing a roof to be shingled. From installing drip edge to capping ridges, you’ll find all the details you need on this website to install a roof that will fulfill its two important and distinct functions: To enhance the beauty of the home and to remain watertight for many years.

Skills Required for a DIY Asphalt Shingle Installation

The individual skills you need to install a roof are among the easiest in the building trades to acquire, and you don’t need a lot of specialized tools to get started. Creating a beautiful and waterproof roof does take diligence, however. Also, to be a good roofer you need to know more than just the right detail procedures. You need to understand how the roof works as a system. If you want to take your DIY asphalt installation to the professional level, as with any trade, you should know that it is quite possible to be a superb and diligent roofing contractor and lose money on every job. To make a good living, you need to know how to size up a job and create a strategy for attacking it efficiently. It’s not enough to know the procedures for how to do the racking pattern or the pyramid pattern or even shingle from the top down. The trick is to know when each approach is most efficient. Of course if you are a do-it-yourself kind of person and aren’t interested in becoming a commercial roofing contractor, your livelihood won’t depend on an efficient plan, but having one will help ensure that roofing your own house or garage doesn’t become a career.

My crew and I find it’s pretty rare for people to compliment us on our roof jobs. I guess most people just don’t give the roof much thought. Of course when water leaks into the house, mo matter what the source, you know who they call first. But that’s okay. When ewe step back for a final look before getting into our trucks, we know we’re looking at a job we can be proud of.