Ensuring a solid grasp of the roof installation process is crucial, whether you’re contemplating a DIY project or seeking insight into professional contractor procedures. At Shumaker Roofing, we understand the significance of this knowledge. That’s why we offer an extensive guide, designed to equip you with essential information. Dive into our comprehensive resource covering everything from necessary tools and safety measures to diverse materials suited for different Maryland regions and roof types. With our step-by-step breakdown of the roof installation process, you’ll gain valuable insights, empowering you to make informed decisions about your roofing project, ensuring lasting quality and performance.

Safety Measures

When considering a new roof installation, safety should always be a top priority. With two-story homes reaching heights of up to 30 feet, and varying roof styles sometimes featuring steep pitches, navigating the surface can pose significant risks. At Shumaker Roofing, we prioritize safety above all else. We strongly advise wearing proper safety gear, including harnesses, when traversing your roof to minimize the chance of accidents or falls. By taking precautions and investing in safety measures, such as those recommended by our expert team, you can ensure a smooth and secure roofing experience for yourself and those involved in the project.

Adequate safety precautions are also necessary for the roofing materials and tools. When handling shingles, we advise donning safety gloves and goggles due to the coarse surfaces and potentially dangerous cut edges. Additionally, granules from shingles may land in your eyes.

Make sure you have safety harnesses for stepping on the roof, kneepads for working on your roof, gloves, and protective eyewear at the very least.

Essential Tools

Some of the tools needed for roof installation may already be in your garage. The following are the instruments required to build a new roof: 

    • Roofing caulk and a caulk gun: To seal exposed edges, use roofing caulk.
    • Gloves: Put on gloves when trimming and shingling the roof.
    • Hammer: To get rid of outdated flashing and shingles, use a hammer. To secure new shingles in place without a nail gun, you can also use a hammer.
    • Nail gun: Using a nail gun to install your new shingles and underlayment can greatly expedite the procedure. For your nail gun, you will also want an air compressor system.
    • Small pry bar or screwdriver: To pry up material that is trapped and difficult to release, use these instruments.
  • Tape measure: You can measure the sheets, possible cuts, and seam lines in peaks and valleys with the use of a tape measure. To indicate important lines, you can also use a chalk line.
  • Tin snips: Aluminum flashing can be cut with tin snips.
  • Utility knife: To cut your shingle sheets to the proper length, use a sharp utility knife or other cutting instrument.

 variety of roofing materials

Roofing Materials

In Maryland, selecting the right roofing material is crucial, considering factors like budget, climate, and aesthetic preferences. With numerous options available, it’s essential to make an informed decision. For those prioritizing affordability, asphalt shingle roofs offer a budget-friendly solution without compromising quality. Alternatively, if durability and resistance to elements like sun and wind are paramount, clay tile roofs stand out as an excellent choice, providing long-lasting protection and timeless elegance. Whatever your needs, whether in bustling Baltimore, scenic Annapolis, vibrant Columbia, historic Frederick, or charming Rockville, Shumaker Roofing is here to guide you toward the ideal roofing solution for your Maryland property.

When it comes to roofing materials, each option has its own set of advantages, disadvantages, and lifespan considerations.

Asphalt Shingles:


  • Cost-effective: Asphalt shingles are one of the most budget-friendly roofing options.
  • Easy installation: They are relatively easy to install, reducing labor costs.
  • Variety: Available in a wide range of colors and styles to match different architectural designs.


  • Lifespan: Generally have a shorter lifespan compared to other materials, typically lasting 15-30 years.
  • Maintenance: Prone to damage from weather conditions such as high winds and hail, requiring occasional repairs or replacements.

Metal Roofing: 


  • Durability: Metal roofs are highly durable and can withstand harsh weather conditions, including heavy rain, snow, and strong winds.
  • Longevity: With proper maintenance, metal roofs can last 40-70 years or more.
  • Energy efficiency: Reflective coatings help reduce energy costs by keeping homes cooler in hot climates.


  • Initial cost: Metal roofing tends to have a higher upfront cost compared to asphalt shingles.
  • Noise: Some people may find metal roofs noisy during heavy rain or hailstorms.

Concrete Tiles: 


  • Durability: Concrete tiles are resistant to fire, wind, and insect damage.
  • Longevity: With proper maintenance, concrete tile roofs can last 50 years or more.
  • Aesthetic appeal: Available in various colors and textures, providing versatility in design.


  • Weight: Concrete tiles are heavy, requiring a sturdy roof structure for support.
  • Installation complexity: Installation can be more labor-intensive and costly compared to other materials.

Slate Roofing:


  • Natural beauty: Slate roofs offer a unique and elegant appearance that enhances the curb appeal of any property.
  • Longevity: Slate roofs are incredibly durable and can last 50-100 years or more with proper care.
  • Low maintenance: Requires minimal maintenance and is resistant to mold, mildew, and fire.


  • Cost: Slate roofing is one of the most expensive roofing options due to the high-quality natural materials and labor-intensive installation.
  • Fragility: While durable, slate tiles can be brittle and may crack if walked on or subjected to impact.

Clay Tiles:


  • Longevity: Clay tiles are known for their exceptional longevity, with a lifespan of 50-100 years or more.
  • Fire resistance: Clay tiles are non-combustible, providing excellent fire protection for homes.
  • Energy efficiency: Their thermal mass properties help regulate indoor temperatures, reducing heating and cooling costs.


  • Weight: Similar to concrete tiles, clay tiles are heavy and require a strong roof structure.
  • Cost: Clay tile roofing is relatively expensive compared to other materials, both in terms of materials and installation.

steps involved in installing a roof

Steps for Installation

The roof installation process typically spans two days to a week, contingent upon the roof’s size and complexity. Firstly, inspection and preparation are conducted, assessing the structure’s integrity and ensuring a smooth foundation. Subsequently, old materials are removed, making way for new installations. Next, underlayment and waterproofing materials are applied to fortify the roof against weather elements. Then, shingles or roofing materials of choice are meticulously placed, securing durability and aesthetics. Finally, inspections ensure adherence to quality standards. Timely completion and attention to detail characterize a seamless installation, safeguarding your property for years to come.

1. Evaluate Your Roof

Inspecting your current roof is crucial to identify any water damage, worn-out flashing, or other issues. This step ensures you’re fully aware of the condition before proceeding. Additionally, measuring the roof’s dimensions accurately is essential to calculate the required materials. By determining the number of roof squares needed, you can avoid unnecessary costs and ensure adequate coverage. This meticulous process guarantees that your roofing project starts on the right foot, minimizing surprises and streamlining the ordering process. Thus, careful examination and precise measurements lay the groundwork for a successful and efficient roof renovation or repair, optimizing resources and results.

2. Get the Required Permits

Before embarking on a new roof installation, securing a local city-level permit is imperative. Your homeowners association (HOA) might enforce stringent regulations on permissible roofing materials and styles. Engaging a proficient roofing contractor is key; they navigate the permit acquisition process while guaranteeing adherence to local building codes. Compliance ensures not only legal obligations but also a quality assurance for your project. Thus, meticulous attention to these requirements safeguards against potential setbacks, ensuring a seamless and satisfactory roofing endeavor that aligns with both municipal guidelines and HOA stipulations, fostering peace of mind throughout the construction process.

3. Get the workplace ready

To get the job site ready, take these steps:

  • To prevent damage to landscaping plants, cover them.
  • To ensure they are prepared for the installation day, install safety harness systems.
  • Clear the driveway and the area around your house of any cars and trash cans.
  • On the site, store the new roofing supplies.

4. Take off old roofing materials

Before installing a new roof, ensure a thorough roof tear-off by removing old materials like flashing, shingles, and underlayment. This step guarantees a solid foundation for the new roof. While at it, inspect sheathing, roof decking, and areas around chimneys and vents for any damage. Replace damaged boards promptly to prevent future issues. A meticulous tear-off not only sets the stage for a successful installation but also allows for the detection and rectification of potential problems, ensuring the longevity and performance of the new roof.

5. Place In Underlayment

Underlayment serves as an additional protective barrier, like felt paper, placed between the wooden roof deck and the outer roofing material. It’s crucial for safeguarding against moisture infiltration and enhancing the roof’s longevity. Proper installation entails covering the entire roof surface with securely fastened underlayment, ensuring each piece overlaps to prevent potential leaks. This meticulous approach fortifies the roof’s resilience, shielding it from adverse weather conditions. By adhering to these installation practices, homeowners can optimize the structural integrity of their roofs, fostering a durable and dependable defense against the elements while maintaining focus on mitigating potential leakage risks.

6. Install New Roofing Material

Begin the installation process by placing the new materials at the bottom of the roof and progress upwards row by row. Ensure each row overlaps the fasteners of the one beneath it, preventing rain from penetrating through any gaps. This meticulous approach guarantees a watertight seal for optimal protection against the elements.

Secure each edge meticulously as you apply materials, ensuring they’re tightly sealed and firmly in position throughout the process.

7. Make final inspections and clean up

Once the roofing process is complete, meticulous inspection of every roof surface is crucial to detect any gaps, overlooked sections, or loose components. Dispose of surplus material and debris promptly to maintain cleanliness and safety. It’s prudent to retain a modest reserve of leftover materials for potential repairs down the line. Reinstalling gutters and drip edges ensures proper drainage and protects the roof’s integrity. Maintaining this meticulous approach guarantees a sturdy and durable roofing system, minimizing the risk of future issues and maximizing longevity without straying from the task at hand.

a professional roofing team at work on a suburban home

Professional Assistance

Installing a roof demands precision; errors can result in leaks, costly water damage, or pest invasions. For optimal results, engaging in a professional roofing service is prudent unless you possess extensive DIY expertise. If your roof shows signs of aging or substantial damage, seek a roofing company for an inspection promptly. This proactive step can mitigate potential hazards and ensure the longevity and integrity of your roof, safeguarding your property and peace of mind.

Roofing services offer comprehensive solutions for roof replacement, handling tasks from measurement to material procurement, old roof removal, repairs, and new material installation. They ensure a seamless process, sparing clients with logistical hassles. From assessment to execution, these professionals deliver efficient and reliable services, ensuring quality outcomes for homeowners.

Professional roofers carry liability insurance for protection and offer enduring warranties. Hiring them ensures convenience, heightened safety, and peace of mind. Their expertise minimizes risks, ensuring a well-executed roofing project. Long-term benefits include durability and reliability, making professional roofers indispensable for any roofing endeavor.

Our Recommendation

When selecting a new roof, consider factors like climate, weather patterns, and budget to ensure optimal choice. Assessing available roofing materials is crucial. While DIY installation may seem feasible for some, hiring a licensed contractor is often wiser. They possess the expertise to navigate the entire process efficiently, ensuring quality and compliance with safety standards. By collaborating with a professional, you mitigate risks and ensure a durable, well-installed roof that withstands the elements. Making informed decisions tailored to your specific circumstances yields long-term benefits, safeguarding your home and investment.


Understanding the intricacies of roof installation is paramount for both DIY enthusiasts and those opting for professional assistance. At Shumaker Roofing, we recognize the importance of this knowledge, offering a comprehensive guide to equip you for the task ahead. From essential safety measures and required tools to an exploration of diverse roofing materials suited for Maryland’s varied landscapes, our resources are tailored to empower informed decision-making. Whether you’re in bustling cities like Germantown or historic towns like Frederick, our step-by-step breakdown ensures you’re well-prepared for a successful roofing project. With attention to detail and adherence to safety standards, you can embark on your roofing journey with confidence, securing lasting quality and performance for your home.

FAQs about Roof Installation:

  1. What factors should I consider when choosing roofing materials for my home?

Consider climate, weather patterns, durability, cost, and aesthetic preferences.

  1. How do I determine if I need to replace my roof, and what signs should I look for?

Signs include missing or damaged shingles, leaks, water stains on the ceiling, mold growth, and the age of the roof (usually 20-25 years for asphalt shingles).

  1. What are the benefits of hiring a licensed contractor for roof installation versus doing it myself?

Hiring a licensed contractor ensures expertise, safety compliance, access to warranties, and efficient project management.

  1. Can you explain the step-by-step process involved in installing a new roof?

The process involves inspection, removal of old materials, repairing or replacing damaged decking, installation of underlayment, flashing, drip edges, and finally, installation of the chosen roofing material.

  1. How long does it typically take to install a new roof, and what factors can affect the timeline?

Installation duration varies based on factors such as roof size, design complexity, weather conditions, and contractor efficiency. It can range from a few days to a couple of weeks.