A well shingled roof is a beautiful thing. The skill and craftsmanship, while not necessarily evident during the work, shines in the finished result. Many homeowners contemplate shingling their own roof when the time comes. If you think about what goes into this job, you will think twice.
The shingles on your roof perform a vital function. They are the first line of defense against wind, rain and snow. The sheathing that is attached to the rafters is nothing more than a foundation for the shingles. The shingles provide the hard face that protects your house from the elements. Over time, even the toughest shingles will deteriorate. Sometimes extreme weather will damage the shingles. Either way, shingling a roof is inevitable at some point.
Shingles come in a variety of colors and are usually sold by the bundle. A bundle contains three squares. A square of shingles covers ten square feet. An average sized home will take 180 squares or 60 bundles. Every bit has to be carried to the roof. Carrying squares of shingles up a ladder, especially if you have a multistory home, is not job for the faint of heart. Once on the roof you have to lay the shingles square and fasten them properly. On any decent sized roof a pneumatic nail gun is required to finish the job in any reasonable amount of time. Roofs are dangerous places. If you do not have properly installed roof jacks that professionals like Chouinard Bros use, then anything that starts sliding or rolling is going all the way to the ground. This includes tools and materials. The second or third time your nailer ends up in the grass you will appreciate what professionals can accomplish. Most importantly, this includes you. Falling off of a roof is one of the most common ways that homeowners are injured. From hanging Christmas lights to shingling a roof, height is not your friend.
Laying shingles square requires practice or properly snapped chalk lines. As a do it your selfer, you may experience in small projects. Shingling a roof is by no measure a small project. Properly measuring them to get the desired overhang takes experience and practice. Laying them over gables or dormers is a project that never goes right the first time. All of these are good reason to invest in the services of a professional company like Chouinard Bros. The professionals have the experience, tools and materials to do it right.