Help with roll roofing


I’ve got some questions about roll roofing.

Back in 1990 contractors installed roll roofing over three rooms, and in the past year it began to significantly fail. This past August I removed it all, and put down (stapled - big mistake!) No. 15 felt paper in anticipation of roll roofing. I thought felt paper could withstand the elements for at least a week, but as soon as rain hit it it warped and buckled beyond recognition, and all the staples tore through. Even after drying it was still uselessly deformed. Since I knew I had to tear it off and start again, one thing led to another, then some financial problems, and before I knew it autumn was upon me and I still hadn’t gotten it done.

Why am I posting this? Because now that I’m starting fresh, and with enough money to complete the task properly, I’d like some suggestions on what to use.

Here are some pictures of the roof from August:

The large sloped roof in photos 1 and 2 is the garage. I’m not quite sure how to do the valley, since the garage roof is already on. What you can’t see in that picture is an 18" wide piece of flashing that was nailed on in 1990. I slid the felt paper under the shingles as best I could, but from then on I don’t know what to do. Every book I read offers conflicting advice as to the best way to do a valley with roll roofing.

I’d appreciate it if someone could answer these questions:

  1. Should I use that rubbery “ice and water shield” stuff along the eves and rakes? On the valley too?

  2. Is there a specific brand or type of underlayment that works best? I read somewhere that the thicker felt might create problems by causing condensation.

  3. How much overhang of felt should I leave off the eve? When I put the roll roofing down, how much should that overhang?

  4. When laying down the felt, how much overlap should there be?

  5. When laying down the roofing (double-coverage) how frequently should I nail, and how far from the top edge of the roll?

  6. I’ve read that the starter strip should be cemented on - wouldn’t it be better to use the “self-adhesive” ice and water shield instead?

  7. In my mind, once the first course is down, I’d nail the uncoated portion. Then I’d prepare a second course that would overlap that uncoated portion. Does the overlap need to be cemented? I assumed so, but I was told only vertical seams needed to be cemented. Which way is correct?

  8. I know each course has to cover the uncoated portion of the course below it (at least 19"), but how much should I overlap? 19.5"? 20"?

Thanks for any advice!


How did you dry this in, waiting for a reply?

  1. Where are you located? If not the exact city, @ least the region of your state. This will give us an idea of what your weather concerns are going to be like.

  2. No matter what we tell you about process & products, it is my opinion that you really REALLY need to stop trying to work this out on your own & hire a professional roofer.

  3. The staples you used would have held if you had used tin tabs under the staples (the tin circle prevents the staple from staying & the felt from pulling through).

  4. All felt wrinkles when exposed, even overnight exposure with minimal humidity.

  5. Your valley is really a bit too difficult for even ME to explain in text & I would suggest that I’m one of the more wordy folks who post here. I’m also handy with a sketch or two… however there are a lot of websites with proper explanation photos as well.

Using a system like flintlastic or liberty would be a better option. They have warranties for residental applications and are 3 ply systems that will last up to 15 years. Roll roofing is really not what i would use for your home. I think it is yesterdays way of doing things.

As far as that valley to be honest you will more than likely have problems there since you will have to go up the sloped roof about 2 or 3 feet to be safe, therefore you will have to remove the shingles that are there to a point and replace them with new shingles.

To be honest i think hiring someone who knows what they are doing is a good idea, this is not a DIY project.I think you are over your head here. Please do not take that wrong i just think you will be better off taking some money and having someone else do the work and not criagslist either. You will pay more for flintlastic but it will outlast roll roofing and there wont be any tar or caulk showning giving less chance to leak. It is peal and stick materials with a base, mid and cap sheet.

Thats just my 2 cents good luck with your project

Since you tore this roof off in August,you have had plenty of time to do your homework on installing this roof.If you must do this job yourself,I suggest you go to a roofing supply ,not Lowe’s,but a roofing supply and ask them to choose the materials you need for this job so you get all the right products.Then ask them for some instructions to install their product.They should have someone in the office that can help with this info,after all,what are salesmen for.

Don’t ask for roll roofing,you may get what you ask for.Ask for a modified or better type of roofing system,you will be glad you did.

The application is not that difficult,but no one can tell you how to install a product unless they know what product you have.So,the first step is to choose a roof system at your local roofing supply and get the right materials for the job.

get u some peal n stick thatll keep all the bumps down from different wood thickness and give u time to find out what u want… regions do matter in south just pel n stick would b okas far as your valley thererun what ever your gonna use to cover “that mess” one thing for all roofers and peeps alike “”“WATER RUNS DOWN HILL”""


alls im going to say is…

That’s what I was trying to say.

Can i take your order:…

1 pack of matches .25

1 gallon of gas 3.09

1 case of beer 15.99 + deposit

Calling a pro before you make a bigger mess priceless…

ditto lildevil.