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Roofing & Gutters

Convert A Flat Roof to A Pitch Roof

By on May 14, 2014
Convert A Flat Roof to A Pitch Roof

There are so many great advantages to converting a flat roof to a pitched roof. For example, a pitched roof is less likely to become leaky. It is also a great way to update an older looking home, and a pitched roof holds up very well to wear. Savvy do-it-yourselfers with carpentry and framing experience can do this project at a fraction of the cost of a professional job. Materials for the conversion can be purchased from home supply stores or directly from roofing supply companies. It may help to get a few bids from local contractors too. Before beginning any roofing project, it’s important to take multiple measurements and calculate the roof size and span.

Calculations and measurements

Before any comparison shopping can be done, the roof span needs to be calculated. It’s critical to measure from top plate to top plate. Over-hanging roof material should also be measured and added to the total. The number should then be divided in half. If measurements were properly taken, this will tell the homeowner where the roof ridge will fall. It’s also important to determine what kind of roofing materials will be used. Tile, shingles, tin, slate, rubber composite and other materials are all going to be priced out at different levels, so it will be helpful to have measurements on hand when shopping.

Materials

In addition to traditional carpentry tools, do-it-yourselfers should also purchase roof trusses, bridging material, tar paper, roofing nails, plywood and any other project-specific items that will be necessary. Pre-manufactured roof trusses can be purchased and delivered to a project site fairly easily. It’s important to keep all of the roof calculations handy when shopping.

How to convert

It's always a good idea to check with local building codes before beginning a home-improvement project. This is a great way to get the rules and specifications for certain issues that may later arise. The first step in any roof conversion project is to remove the existing roofing material. It will then be necessary to tie in the new trusses to the existing wood. It’s important to keep tarps handy in the event of rain storms since a roof conversion can take days or weeks. Once they have removed the original roofing material, many people may find that they have a considerable amount of water-damaged wood to replace. A leaky roof can cause quite a bit of damage over time. This is a good time to remove any rotted or water-damaged wood. Once all of the new trusses have been installed, it’s time to re-sheath the roof. Don’t forget to put the tar paper down first. If it’s still in good shape, some people choose to re-sheath with the old roofing material. However, many people like to update the look of their house by choosing a completely new roofing material or style. Always use the recommended fasteners, and follow the building code guidelines.


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