When it comes to re-roofing, the pros have an extensive list of supplies and tools they need to make their job easier and install the roof in the most efficient way possible. We’ve compiled a roofing material list used by professional roofers to remove, replace, and repair the roofs they work on. We will specifically focus on the best roofing supplies and materials you need to complete an asphalt shingle roofing project. This list can also be helpful to any skillful DIY homeowners out there looking to manage their own roofing work at home.
Required Roofing Materials and Supplies
Professional roofers are good at what they do, but the quality and amount of tools they utilize can enhance their work. What good is a roofer without his tools anyway?
There are some absolute must-haves for a roofer to do his job, but many nice-to-haves make their job even easier. We’ll include everything in that list, so you can purchase the right tools within your budget to at least get the job done as effectively as possible.
Of course, the main thing you want to have is your shingles. And good ones at that. Secured Roofing uses the superb Certainteed Integrity Roofing System that combines asphalt shingles with several different elements to support a strong, durable, leakproof roof for years to come.
No, we’re not talking about boots you wear on your feet, even though some roof boots with excellent grip are essential. Instead, we’re talking about roof boots, or pipe vent boot, which are covers that go over the roof vents to seal them off from water and debris. Your kitchen or vent will have a pipe vent that goes up and out of the roof, circulating the air within your plumbing system. A boot is an extra measure that helps keep your plumbing safe and secure and looks more aesthetically pleasing when you get a boot that matches your shingles.
Chalk Line Tool
A chalk line is kind of like a giant roll of floss, and when laid out flat, marks a chalk line from any two points. When you’re up on the roof installing shingles, skylights, or other roof elements, straight lines are essential. And sometimes, trying to draw a straight line by hand or with a straight edge is not going to work. This chalk line tool makes sure you can mark as long of a line you need with ease. In addition, it can help ensure you install your shingles in a straight line by giving you a guide that isn’t just eyeballing it.
If you’re doing a roof tear-down or replacement, getting out those old nails from the prior shingles can be a huge pain. Some people like to cut corners and rip off the shingles by hand because it is super fast, but doing so can leave those nails and bits of shingles behind. A crowbar will ensure you can pry up every last nail and shingle with ease and not leave any rough surfaces or nails behind. Unfortunately, that’s when leaks happen.
All of your hard work installing a new roof will mean nothing if it can’t effectively shed water and ice and prevent leaks. A drip edge is a small piece of metal that easily installs on the roof’s edge near the gutters and is essential to the roof working correctly. The drip edge aids water and ice run-off and prevents any leaks from getting under the bottom edge of your roof.
To piggyback off of drip edge and materials essential to waterproofing your roof: flashing is a key component to your entire roofing system. Wherever your roof meets a wall, skylight, boot, vent, chimney, or another accessory that creates a seam, you must install flashing.
Flashing is an added layer of protection against leaks and seals that seam by creating a filler between the wall and your roof or whichever seam you’re flashing. It ensures water flows down those seams without finding its way under shingles or into those susceptible seams that lead into your home.
Hammer or Nail Gun
To install the shingles, you’re going to need a way to drive the nails through the nail zone on the shingles. A hammer can technically work, and you should definitely have one on hand for numerous things, but ideally, you will want to have a nail gun. The nail gun can significantly speed things up, and thus why it’s a choice for professional roofers who need to get roof replacement done quickly.
A safe, secure roofing ladder is something you’ll need to get up onto your roof. A key thing to note is that a roofing ladder should always extend at least 3 feet past the roof’s edge for safety. Using a ladder that is too small or cannot lean up against the roof is a recipe for disaster. Mounting or dismounting a ladder that is too short can cause it to fall, and you’ll be left stranded, or worse, fall and get injured.
Nails will be used to secure the waterproof underlayment, the rows of shingles, and other roofing components such as flashing. Flat-head, galvanized steel nails are ideal for asphalt shingles because they help prevent rust and corrosion and will be sturdy enough to hold your shingles through their intended lifespan of 15+ years.
Unfortunately, you can sometimes come across wood underneath your old roof that has rotted or needs some reinforcement. Therefore, plywood will come in handy to do a quick fix so you can continue on with your re-roof. For extensive damage, always call the professionals because more considerable signs of mold or rotten wood can mean a much more complex roofing project.
Wherever you’ve installed flashing at a seam or roofing element, you’ll want to seal with roofing sealant or caulk, or both. Again, waterproofing your roof in those critical areas is key to preventing any water leaks in the future.
If you are ever doing a re-roofing project and the weather turns on you, you’re going to want to tarp that working area as soon as possible. Same for any roofing jobs that won’t be complete within the date. Tarps can also be used to catch falling debris and protect landscaping or other areas of your home you want safe from falling nails or shingles.
Between the shingles and the roof itself is the underlayment. The underlayment is usually felt sheets or tar paper that is laid down as the weather-proofed base for the first barrier against rain and other elements. This will be laid flat and nailed down to your roof using nails.
A utility knife with a hook blade is going to be one of your go-to tools while you’re roofing. The hook blade quickly grabs and cuts through underlayment, shingles, tape; you name it. It will definitely be right by your side during your entire roofing project and will make a clean, seamless cut through anything you need to cut to size (within reason).
You have to install vents on your roof to allow for proper ventilation from your attic and airflow to circulate and manage your home’s temperature. A poorly ventilated attic will greatly affect your HVAC systems, and it will hold too much heat in the summer, making your A/C work way harder. Plus, it helps keep out moisture and smell and will prevent mold or mildew growth in your attic and the upper floor of your home. Note: these will be installed before laying down flashing and shingles.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, some tools are super nice to have to make your roof even better and the installation process even easier.
Ladder hooks help secure your ladder to the roof. They sit right on the gutter to both protect the gutter (with pads and an added layer to prevent dents) and keeps your ladder still as you mount or dismount from the roof.
Ladder Leveling Tool
There is a multi-use leveling tool that every roofer, amateur or professional, should have on every job site. This tool (purchasable on Amazon) does it all, honestly. It can help level a ladder that needs to go up another floor on the roof. It can act as a kneeling platform or seat when working up on the roof. It can also hook onto a ladder and hold all of your small tools for easy access when you’re working.
A roof chute can be a huge help for roof tear-downs for taller homes and tossing the debris down to the lower level. Often if the roof is super tall, tossing shingles and debris down to the dumpster below means they catch air and float away from where they need to go, messing up the customer’s yard. But a roof chute literally makes a chute or slide that goes all the way up to the roof’s edge, where debris can be guided down into the dumpster or truck to carry it away.
Ladders work great to get up and down onto the roof, but most professionals use scaffolding because it can be a static platform and workspace to make it that much easier. Scaffolding does take time to set up, so it might not be 100% ideal for quick one-day repairs or replacements. In the long run, scaffolding can make hauling supplies and working on the roof and flashing much easier, particularly for larger teams.
A scraper shovel makes removing the old roof so much easier. It can pry up multiple rows of shingles at once and remove a lot of the hard manual labor of ripping them up by hand and with your crowbar. However, it’s not impossible to de-roof shingles without one.
The Best Brands for Roofing Supplies
Not only do you want to make sure you have all of these tools and supplies, but you want them from quality brands. You don’t want to skimp on things like your ladder, nail gun, and safety equipment. Spending a little more money to get a better brand will be much more worth your investment and give you a set of tools you can use for many years. Some of the best brands for roofing supplies include Gorilla, Stanley, Roughneck, AJC, Equipter, and Certainteed.
Using a Professional Roofing Contractor
It’s one thing to own all of the tools and roofing materials used by the pros, and quite another to have their expertise and attention to detail. The professionals are always going to be your best bet when it comes to replacing your roof, because they have the years of expertise and the team to do it in no time at all. For a solid, trustworthy team of experts to work on your roof, contact Secured Roofing & Restoration today.