Duration of installation is one of the most important aspect to consider when choosing a roofing style. While standards dictate median amounts of time it would take to complete a roofing project, the actual duration typically depends on a number of factors. Some factors include the roofing type, the contractor’s workmanship, and the size of the house/construction project among others. The duration also depends on whether the roofing project is an initial installation or a rebuild. How long would it take to install a roof? How long to reroof a house? Shingle a roof? Retile a roof? Rebuild a roof? Today we explore the general roofing process with a specific focus on the aforementioned questions.
The General Roofing Process
The roofing process varies depending on whether it is an initial installation or roof replacement. Replacement involves removal of the old roof before installing the new ones. This is done in stages to avoid exposing large areas to the elements. After removal of the old material, the installation process is like that of installing a new roof. If the project is located in an area that experiences icy weather, then installation of an ice barrier is the first step. Then the underlayment that endears to the sheathing is fastened for improved stability.
The next step is the installation of a drip edge, which is installed in two stages: for the part of the roof closer to the edges, we install the drip edge before the underlayment over the ice barrier, while for the roof sides it comes after. The drip edge is important to protect the roof and fascia boards below against built up water. The underlayment is put down after the first installation of the drip edge. The underlayment, made of either paper felt or synthetic materials, is rolled around the edges and over the framing. It is then secured by using cap nails every four inches around the edge, and eight inches at the center. The underlayment strips are given a six inch overlap, with the middle row straddling the peak to achieve symmetry.
After installation of the underlayment, the roofing process varies with the roofing material. Different approaches apply to asphalt shingles, clay tile and corrugated metal roofs. We discuss the process of installing asphalt shingles. For asphalt shingles, we first lay a row of starter shingles around the bottom edge of the roof. We nail these shingles firmly a few inches up the edge. The first full shingle is then laid at the bottom corner of the roof and locked into place using nails around the shingle edge. This process is repeated for subsequent shingles until the whole roof is covered.
How long it takes to install a Roof
Generally, roofing installations last between 2 and 5 days. This number could be higher or lower depending on the number of laborers, project size and material. Most house re-roofing projects take between 3 and 4 days to tear off and reroof. For an average-size house (1500 sq. ft.), a crew of 4 men could take a full day to shingle the roof. In perfect weather conditions, it would take a seasoned roofer 2 days to retile an average house. Roof rebuilding has no rigid timeframe as factors such as extent of wear, size and complexity vary for different projects. A typical roof rebuild could take anywhere between 3 and 14 days to complete.
This post serves as a rough guideline to the durations of various roofing projects.