How To Build A Pitched Roof

If you are building a garage or shed you may want to learn how to build a pitched roof. To build a pitched roof you need to understand the dynamics of the roof. A pitch roof has a peak and eaves that need to be accounted for in figuring out the length of trusses you will need. There is free downloadable roofing software online that will help figure out the specifics. Building a pitched roof is not recommended for a novice do-it-yourselfer.

To build a pitched roof, you will need:

  • Tape measure
  • Miter saw
  • Lumber
  • Plywood
  • Tar paper
  • Shingles
  • Starter strip
  • Roofing nails
  • Braces
  • Circular saw
  • Level


  1. The dimensions. Measure the dimensions of the structure you need to build a pitched roof for. Download the free roofing software and use these dimensions to figure out the amount of lumber and what kind of lumber you will need. If you can not download the free software someone at the home improvement store should be able to help you figure out what you will need.
  2. Purchasing your supplies. Once you know exactly what and how much you will need it is time to purchase your supplies to build a pitched roof. There are not many choices for these supplies so it should be pretty stream line. The only choice that really need to be made is on the shingles. Shingles for a pitch roof come in different styles and colors. Choose the ones that best blend in with the structure you are shingling or to match the ones on existing structures.
  3. The building. When you are ready to begin building the pitched roof your first step is to install the ridge board. The ridge board is the board that it located at the top of the roof that the rafters will attach to. Use temporary end posts to hold the ridge board into place. Cut each rafter and attach it to the ridge board. Once all the rafters are in place install the plywood to the rafters. The tar paper gets installed on top of the plywood. Overlap the ends to make a more secure and water proof seal. Install the starter strip at the bottom of the roof along the eaves. Begin installing the shingles working left to right and then up. Shingles need to be staggered so that the ends and notches do not line up with the shingle below. Continue to the top of the roof and repeat of the other side. Make sure the shingles from each side overlap the peak. Then install the roof peak shingles.
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