What Does a Roofer Do?

Harrisburg Roofers known as roof mechanics or roofing contractors, specialize in repairing and replacing roofs. They often work as part of a team and need good customer service skills.

They are realists, meaning they tend to be independent, stable, persistent, and genuine. They like tasks that are tactile, physical, and athletic.


A roofer builds, inspects, repairs, and replaces roofs for residential or commercial structures. Typically, this person works as part of a roofing contractor team and reports to a supervisor or general manager. They must be able to read blueprints and diagrams to follow building instructions. A good Roofer will be able to identify the best materials to use for the project and provide customers with estimates on labor and material costs.

As a roofer, you will need to be able to install different types of roofing, including conventional, inverted built-up, and single-ply modified. You will also need to bind and insulate the roof and seal openings. Other responsibilities include damp and weather-proofing, installing slate, leadwork, guttering, and tiles, repairing chimneys and walls, and resurfacing roofs. During the repair process, you will need to be able to identify areas that are leaking or have rough spots and replace them.

A roofer’s job duties also include assessing the condition of a structure’s roof and making recommendations for upcoming repair or replacement projects. You will also need to be able to work safely at heights and use ladders correctly. Additionally, you will need to be able to operate power tools and hand tools.

Another important duty is the ability to communicate with clients and other members of the roofing crew. This will include the ability to answer any questions about the project and discuss any potential problems that may arise. You must listen carefully to the customer’s needs and understand their expectations.

A roofer must work full-time, but you can expect some overtime in busy seasons. Typically, this position requires an on-the-job training apprenticeship and the completion of a trade school program. Certification is optional but recommended as it will give you a leg up on other workers in the industry.

While a roofer is typically required to be at least 18 years old, most employers will prefer applicants with experience in construction and roofing. A high school diploma or GED certificate is also necessary to start this career, but you will receive most of your on-the-job training from an employer.

Depending on where you live, you may need to obtain a license before starting work as a roofer. You may also have to complete training programs or apprenticeships before you can start working. Unions, trade schools, and some construction companies offer these programs. They can take anywhere from 4 to 5 years to complete. They include on-the-job training and classroom instruction in tools and equipment, blueprint reading, safety procedures, and math skills.

You can get into this profession with only a high school diploma or GED certificate, but it is generally preferred that you have a background in construction or carpentry. It is helpful if you have a high level of physical fitness and the ability to follow detailed instructions. Good hand-eye coordination is also important since this job involves climbing over buildings. You must be able to read technical plans and specifications, and you should be able to work under pressure to meet deadlines.

The best way to learn the skills necessary for this occupation is through on-the-job training. Many roofers get their start as helpers for more experienced roofers. You’ll learn how to handle roofing materials and techniques in this role. You’ll also learn how to work at heights and use scaffolding. You can also find formal roofing apprentice programs from trade schools and some unions. These programs combine on-the-job training with classroom instruction and can last four or five years.

You can also pursue a vocational education to prepare for a roofer career. Trade schools offer courses in carpentry, plumbing, welding, and electrical work, focusing on preparing for the trades. You can also find online courses that provide information about roofing systems, tools and equipment, blueprint reading, and safety protocols. Some of these courses also offer certifications that can add to your resume and improve your job prospects.

Roofers work outside, so they are always exposed to the elements of the weather (hot or cold). They must climb ladders and scaffolding regularly to load and unload materials and equipment. The work is physically demanding and carries a risk of falling off the roof. They must wear personal protective equipment and are often on their feet for long periods. This job is a good fit for people who like to be outdoors, enjoy working with their hands, and are not afraid of heights. Roofers must also be prepared to work overtime when necessary. Certification is not required, but it is available and recommended. It is optional in all other provinces and territories.

Roofers are paid a salary based on their job type and experience. These professionals also get tips and bonuses. They can make up to $88,000 yearly or more depending on their skills, location, employer, and other factors. A roofer’s taxable income is reported in box 1 of their W-2.

The average salary for a roofer is $66,253 a year or $32 an hour. The number of jobs for roofers is expected to grow by 2 percent from 2019 to 2029, which is lower than the average rate for all occupations. This may be because areas with severe storms need roofers to repair damaged homes, and building construction has increased in some regions.

Roofers can also find work in the federal government. They are usually paid in the FWS-7 pay grade, earning up to $81,246 a year or more. They also receive overtime. They are often kept on during the off-season and must undergo training yearly to maintain their skills. This is a labor-intensive profession, and the work can sometimes be dangerous.

Proper roof ventilation is important for all types of roofing, but it’s particularly useful in keeping a home cool in the summer. A properly ventilated attic with adequate insulation should allow excess heat to escape, preventing it from heating the shingles and transferring into your living spaces.

Roofing contractors should also consider inland marine insurance to protect equipment and supplies transported between locations. This type of coverage will protect against theft, damage, and loss while the items are in transit. This is especially important for companies that need to ship high-value equipment regularly. Inland marine insurance is also good for roofing companies that lease or borrow equipment from others. This way, they can protect their investments from theft or natural disasters. Inland marine policies can be purchased separately or as part of a business owner’s policy. A business owner’s policy is a great option for small roofing companies because it bundles three essential coverage types into one. This is a great way to save money on the cost of individual policies.

As with any business, a roofing company needs good customer service. This can be proven by their customer testimonials and how they communicate with customers online. A company that takes the time to create a beautiful and user-friendly website shows they are committed to their customer’s experiences.

In addition, a roofer should have a strong social media presence with an active and engaging Facebook page and a well-written blog that provides helpful tips and insights to homeowners. This helps establish a rapport with prospective clients, essential in building trust and encouraging them to book services with your company.

Lastly, a roofing contractor should be licensed and insured and have a reputation for good work. They should also be willing to answer questions and concerns promptly. If a problem arises, a good roofing company will respond gracefully and try to rectify the situation.