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How To Get The Most Accurate Roof Measurement

Posted: October 12, 2019 at 8:25 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Starting a roofing project or putting a new one on the house takes time and effort. It is also a daunting task to approach for anyone not familiar with roofing. There are a variety of ways to get started, but some of the first things to do must be obtaining measurements of the roof and developing a plan for replacement. Having a plan will save time and money when it comes to figuring out your needs. All that is required is a ladder, a carpenter’s level, a tape measure, and geometry.

Rough Sketching the Roof

The first thing to do when starting a roofing project is to create a rough sketch of the roof. The sketch will act as a guide for the roof and will give you the accurate measurements for each section of it so you won’t get confused later. It will also allow you to buy any supplies and materials for the roof in the correct amounts.

The roof sketch should include everything that is currently on the roof and those dimensions. The main parts include the valley, rake, hip, and ridge. The extra parts are the chimneys, vents, solar panels, skylights, and any pipes. While sketching the roof, try to be as accurate as possible with the dimensions and proportions. You shouldn’t worry if they are not completely to scale.

The measurements should include any angles you will be working around, such as the angel of the roof to the rest of the house. All the angles horizontal, vertical, and diagonal should be on your sketch. Having the angles will help you figure out how many bundles of supplies you should be buying.

Measuring the Slope of the Roof

You can use an inclinometer to measure the slope of the roof. It will save a lot of time. The instrument is not too expensive, and it only uses gravity to pick up the measurement of the slope. Other names for this instrument are slope indicator, slope gauge, gradient meter, and tiltmeter.

The Inclinometer

A roof has a wide selection of shapes and angles. It is important to measure each roof slope even if it is from one of the extra items, such as skylights. Measuring each section will provide you with the included areas around your roof. Your roof can be broken into shapes and patterns to make your measurements cleaner and come out more even.

The shapes are basic geometry shapes, including triangles, squares, and rectangles. If you have the angles and measurements for each section it will make the roof calculations easier. Having all the measurements of the different slopes will help you when you calculate the entire area of each shape.

Taking Roof Measurements

A measuring wheel is a handy tool for lining up your roof. It makes the work run faster and smoother because one person can do it. You will not need the tape measure for this part if you have a measuring wheel. The devices are electronic, and it is important to test the device before using it.

If you do not want to buy a measuring wheel or are uncomfortable using one, you can use the tape measure. Taking roof measurements will take the measure of all parts of the roof, and it is not as precise as the measuring wheel. It also is more dangerous as it requires you to walk across your entire roof and measure every line and angle.

How to Calculate the Area

If you have taken all the measurements of your roof, it is time to calculate the area. You can do the following when figuring it all out:

  1. Make sure you have your roof broken into rectangle and triangle sections.
  2. If it seems too challenging, try to simplify it by breaking it into more pieces, so you have multiple triangles and rectangles.
  3. Multiple the widths by the length when determining the area of each rectangle on your diagram.
  4. The area of a triangle is calculated by using the area formula you learned in trigonometry the 1/2 bh or ½ the base of the triangle, times the height of it.
  5. Once you have all the areas calculated, triangles, and squares you add up all the products, and you have the area of your roof.

Satellite Roof Measuring

There are several apps you can download to help you get roof measurements. These are Satellite Roof measurements. They give you the ability to stay on the ground while getting your roof measured, which is good for preventing accidents. Using a satellite you can get high-resolution images of your home and roof.

Having high-resolution images of your roof will help you spot damages to it while remaining safely off the roof. The satellite roof measuring apps are a good, time-saving device that will give you the measurements across your house faster so you can get that new roof on before the rain or snow starts.

How Many Packs of Shingles to Buy

You have the area of your roof from the above calculations, and from there you will need to figure out the extent of the materials you will need and how and where to buy them. Estimating the number of shingles required begins with the linear feet of the eave of your house and divides it by the length of one of the shingles you are interested in adding to your roof.

It’s important to make sure you are using the type of shingles you will be using, not the shingles already on the house. The shape of the shingles will give you accurate calculations, and you won’t be short or over the number of bundles required. You also won’t end up with the wrong measurements because of and shape changes between the different shingles.

Things to Remember about Shingle Shapes

Shingles come in two different types. These types are the pre-cut shingles and the three-table shingles. If you are getting a metal roof, you will need to use the same measurements and consider the length of each sheet of metal. They will give you the same coverage, but there are only 33 linear feet of hip or ridge coverage if you are using the three-tab shingles. The pre-cut shingles cover more areas along with metal roofing slats.

Sold in bundles of up to four per square though three is common as well; purchasing shingles in the amount needed or less will ensure you do not end up with extra. You can always buy more if you do not have enough. The shingles should be stored in a dry area until use to prevent rot and damage. You can always return what you do not use if they are in resalable condition.

Most pre-bundled shingles come in bundles of up to 100 square feet, so you will need to divide the roof’s area by 100. From that division you will know how many shingles the roof requires and how many bundles you will need to buy.

Getting correct measurements and purchasing the right amount of supplies is the key to getting this right. There is no reason to rush into it all as you want to do it right. A roof is an expensive thing to buy, and you only need to buy enough for one.

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