How to Install Rolled Roofing

How to Install Rolled Roofing

Simple Steps To Apply Rolled Roofing

Rolled roofing is one of the least expensive ways to protect the wood roof of a shed, garage, barn, or outbuilding where looks are less important than utility. Rolled roofing is also called mineral surfaced rolled roofing. The roll roofing material contains asphalt that is the basic protection component.

Getting Started

Using rolled roofing requires planning like every project. You need to know the area that you will be covering. Every roll of roll roofing is three feet by 100 feet. You also need to measure the eaves of the structure so you know how much flashing you will need. You will need a hammer or nail gun, roofing nails made for roll roofing, asphalt roofing cement, and a putty knife to apply roofing cement. Roll roofing starts around $35 per roll.


Roll roofing should be used on roofs that have an incline (pitch) of two inches of vertical drop per 12 feet of horizontal surface.

Put the flashing on the eaves and roof first. The flashing prevents water running off the roof under the boards and causing the boards or decking to rot.

Start on the long side of an angled roof. If the roof is flat, you still start on the longer side because it makes your work easier.

Pop a chalk line 34 inches from the edge of the roof. This is the line where the roll will be placed. Marking a line makes sure the roofing roll lies out flat and you do not have any lumps in the roll roofing.

Apply six inches of asphalt cement along all four edges where the first roll will be placed. Leave at least two or three inches of overhang for the roll roofing on each edge. Roll the first roll out from one end to the other and make sure there are no wrinkles. You can use a metal roller or a paint roller to do this quickly.

Be sure the edges of the roll adhere to the asphalt cement and the roof decking. Nail the roof roll every nine to 12 inches with one inch nails along the edges and at least one row of nails every three feet across the roll.

Pop a new chalk line 34 inches from the edge of the first roll. Allow two or three inches of overlap for the second roll. Apply the cement and do the same things you did for the second roll.

When you get to the peak of the roof, you want the roofing roll to lap over the peak from both sides. Secure the overlap with asphalt cement.

Finishing Up

Use the same procedure to do the sides of the roof. You want some overlap for the roof roll on the side to cover the long edges you have already put in place.

Nail down all the top (peak) edges at nine to twelve inches and cover the nails with roofing cement.

Cut nine to twelve inch strips for the roof peak and all edges that are on the roof. Apply roof roll cement to both edges of the strips and cover all the edges of the roof. Nail the peak and edges every nine to twelve inches and cover the nails with cement.

Trim off the excess peak strips and edge strips. Trim the overhang on the ends of the sides of the roof just a few inches over the edge of the flashing.

A rolled roof should last between six to ten years depending on the climate, weather, and area of the country you live in. The job is easier if two people work on it.
Posted on Nov 26, 2013


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