How to DIY Your Roof
Re-roofing or renovating your roof yourself allows you to save money. But you still need to be sufficiently handy, not be afraid of heights and respect the safety rules.
Re-roofing yourself: be well prepared
Who can re-roof their roof by themselves?
Re-roofing is a rather technical task requiring actual know-how, whether for an installation or a renovation. Therefore, it is better to be a seasoned handyman and, in any case, to take the advice of a professional roofer if you know one. It is also advisable to watch videos beforehand and ask specific questions on the forums of work sites.
How to equip yourself to renovate your roof?
Every year, many people die after falling from a roof. That’s why it’s a good idea to be well equipped. It would help to equip yourself with a:
- safety harness: this is the basic equipment to prevent falls;
- pair of good shoes: comfortable, well-closed and with non-slippery soles;
- helmet, which you should fasten under the chin and which could prove invaluable in case of a fall;
- pair of gloves, handy to avoid injuries to fingers such as hammer blows.
Do-it-yourself roofing: key points to consider
Comply with local regulations
Suppose the roof renovation modifies the initial aspect of the roof. In that case, it is necessary to find out about the local rules and file a preliminary declaration of work at the town hall. It is then imperative to wait for the authorization before starting the job.
The law frames the declaration of works to renovate a roof. Here are the modifications concerned:
- installation of a roof window;
- repairing the roof;
- installation of a chimney;
- installation of solar panels;
- installation of a roof antenna;
- change of the roof structure;
- installation of a dormer;
- maintenance or repair of the roof.
Of course, changing the tiles’ colour or shape is a transformation that requires a prior declaration.
Please note: as soon as the work has the effect of modifying the external aspect of a building, a declaration must be made at the town hall even if the work is not visible from the street. For example, installing roof windows in an apartment located on the top floor of a condominium building must be declared to the city hall.
Choose a suitable period
If you are not a roofer by trade, it is better to put all the chances of success on your side. Choosing the right time is essential to avoid being exposed to bad weather. Therefore, it would help if you avoid cold, wet and windy periods that can compromise the safety of people and the quality of the work.
Re-roofing by yourself
The steps of re-roofing
Here are the major steps you’ll need to go through if you’re doing your re-roofing.
When re-roofing, you must remove everything, including the existing flashings (mortar or plaster flashing that lines the edges of a roof gable).
To achieve a flat roof, you should run a string line between the two rafters (i.e. from one side of the roof to the other) and between the top and bottom of the roof. This allows the rafters to be realigned perfectly or changed, as the case may be.
The film is then laid under the roof.
Then, proceed to the relating: install the counter-battens (or counter-battens), then the battens (or battens). The installation of the battens is done according to the type of roofing by observing the spacing corresponding to the covering of the tiles or slates. Each type of roofing requires a different pitch.
Then comes the stage of the cover itself.
After that, it is necessary to finish the edges, the ridge and the valleys, which require flashings (masonry devices to ensure water tightness between two elements of different construction) or mortar jointing.
Finally, install the gutters.
What guarantee in case of problems?
It is essential to know that the work you do yourself is not guaranteed in case of faulty workmanship. The subsequent damage – water damage, for example, related to a poor installation of the tiles – will not be covered by insurance…