Estimating a Roof? Then do some LAPS.

running-shoe-rooferBack in high school P.E. class, being made to run laps was not a good thing. In P.E., we often did laps as a punishment. On other days, we had to run laps simply because the PE teacher was tired and not feeling like dealing with a bunch of high schoolers.

But in roofing, doing laps is a good thing.

When you measure and estimate a roof, of course, you’ll figure out how many squares you’re dealing with. But not all squares on the roof are the same. So do some LAPS

LAYERS. How many layers does the existing roof have? Almost every re-roof starts with tear-off. So how many layers are you dealing with here?

ACCESS. What access issues does your crew need to be aware of? Are you going to need to hand carry? Is the driveway steep and narrow?steep-steep-roof

PITCH. Are your guys going to be dealing with a nice, easy gentle slope roof? Or are they going to be hanging off something 11:12 that will require rock-climbing skills?

SHEATHING. Are you going to need to sheath parts of the roof? Better bring the right amount of plywood to do the job.

LAPS are pretty easy to figure out. And if you get your LAPS right, you’ve made a lot of progress towards getting a handle on the project.

LAPS provides you with a good overview of what’s going to need to happen. Of course, you’re still going to need to look at the details: are there skylights to contend with, what kind of flashings and vents will you need, etc.

While you’re doing your LAPS, you should probably check out what type of roof you’re going to be dealing with (comp., tile, shake, etc.). And of course, unlike in high school, you’ll want to measure LAPS in . . . squares.

LAPS is easy to remember — and it’s an important first step towards a successful project. So lace up your shoes and get out there.

Thanks to Mark Zimmermann for the running shoe shot and to Wonderlane for the impressively steep roof.

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