(518) 577-6819

How To Measure A Roof For Shingles (DIY Guide)

Ready to tackle a DIY project more challenging than baking bread? Today, we’re diving into the world of roofing and learning how to measure your roof for shingles like a pro. Whether you’re planning a roof replacement or a simple repair job, getting the measurements right is key to success. So, grab your tape measure and let’s get started on this roofing adventure!

Inside this blog:

  • The importance of taking accurate measurements
  • A 5-step process for measuring your roof correctly

Keep reading to learn more about how to measure your roof for shingles in true DIY fashion!

Why Proper Measurement Matters

Before we delve into the nitty-gritty of measuring your roof, let’s talk about why it’s so important. Getting accurate measurements ensures that you purchase the right amount of shingles, saving you time, money, and headaches down the road. Plus, it allows you to estimate costs more accurately and plan your project with confidence. So, let’s roll up our sleeves and dive into the world of roof measurement!

🛠️ Gathering Your Tools 🛠️


Before you begin measuring, make sure you have the right tools for the job. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Tape Measure: A reliable tape measure is your best friend when it comes to measuring distances across your roofing materials accurately.
  • Calculator: You’ll need to do some simple math to calculate the total square footage of your roof, so keep a calculator handy.
  • Pen and Paper: Don’t forget to jot down your measurements of your roof shingles and any other dimensions you’re taking as you go to keep track of everything.
  • Ladder: Safety first! Make sure you have a sturdy ladder to access your roof safely. And if you feel nervous at all don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional roofing contractor.

Step-by-Step Guide to Measuring Your Roof

Now that you’re armed with the right tools, let’s dive into the 5-step process of measuring your roof for shingles:

1. Determine Roof Pitch

Before you start measuring, you’ll need to determine the pitch of your roof. This will affect the amount of shingles you’ll need. Use a roof pitch calculator or a pitch gauge to find this out.

2. Measure Roof Length and Width

Using your tape measure, measure the length and width of each section of your roof. Break it down into manageable sections to make the process easier.

3. Calculate Roof Area

Once you have the measurements for each section, it’s time to calculate the total roof area. To do this, multiply the length by the width of each section, then add up the totals.

4. Factor in Overhangs

Don’t forget to account for overhangs and eaves when calculating your roof area. Measure the overhang distance and subtract it from your total area calculations.

5. Consider Waste Factor

It’s always a good idea to include a waste factor when ordering shingles. This accounts for cutting and trimming during installation. A waste factor of around 10% is common, but adjust based on your project’s specific needs.

Tips for Accurate Measurement

Measuring your roof may seem straightforward, but here are some tips to ensure accuracy:

Double-Check Measurements


In the world of DIY projects, there’s a golden rule: measure twice, cut once! This timeless advice rings especially true when it comes to roofing. Before you start ordering materials or climbing up on your roof, take the time to double-check your measurements. Trust us, it’s much easier to catch any mistakes now than to deal with costly errors later on.

  • Take your time: Rushing through measurements can lead to inaccuracies. Slow down, take a deep breath, and ensure each measurement is precise.
  • Use a sturdy measuring tape: Invest in a quality measuring tape that won’t stretch or warp, ensuring accurate measurements every time.

Use a Helper

Measuring a roof solo can be a daunting task, especially if you’re dealing with a large or complex roof structure. That’s where having a helper can make all the difference! Enlist the assistance of a friend or family member to lend a hand and make the process go much smoother.

  • Divide and conquer: Assign specific sections of the roof to each person to speed up the process.
  • Ensure safety: Having a helper can also enhance safety by providing support and assistance while navigating the roof.

Account for Slopes and Obstacles

Roofs come in all shapes and sizes, and they’re rarely perfectly flat. That’s why it’s essential to account for any slopes, chimneys, or other obstacles that may affect your measurements. Take note of these features and adjust your measurements accordingly to ensure accuracy.

  • Use a level: When measuring slopes, use a level to ensure your measurements are true and accurate.
  • Factor in overhangs: Don’t forget to include any roof overhangs or eaves in your measurements, as they will impact the amount of shingles needed.

Round Up Numbers

When it comes to ordering materials for your roofing project, it’s always better to err on the side of caution and round up your measurements. Trust us, you don’t want to be left short-handed in the middle of a roofing job! By rounding up your measurements, you can ensure you have enough shingles to cover your entire roof without any unexpected surprises.

  • Calculate extra: Aim to order at least 10% more shingles than your exact measurements to account for waste, mistakes, or unforeseen circumstances.
  • Consider future repairs: Having extra shingles on hand can also come in handy for future repairs or touch-ups down the line.

Ready to Roof Like a Pro

Armed with your trusty tape measure and newfound knowledge, you’re ready to tackle your roofing project with confidence. Whether you’re embarking on a full roof replacement or a minor repair job, proper measurement ensures a smooth and successful outcome. So, go ahead and take that first step towards a sturdy and stylish roof that will protect your home for years to come. 

Contact our team of expert contractors at Kornerstone Roofing today and we’ll answer any questions you have about your next roofing project. We guarantee you’ll get responsive communication and top tier results when you work with our roofers!

Share This Article:

Live Confidently Wherever You Go

Let's Connect
Share to...