The do it yourself resource for homeowners from home improvement professionals.

How to Measure a Roof From the Ground

You can make a reasonably accurate estimate of your roof’s square footage without climbing up a ladder. Learning how to measure a roof from the ground will save you time. It’s certainly safer too. The roof size estimate will help you plan the expense of replacing a roof. You can price the shingles and other materials and prepare a budget for the job. If you’re house shopping and see a property with a bad roof, this process provides a quick way to calculate future material costs. The information could help you understand the expected repair costs if you want to make an offer.

Techniques for How to Measure a Roof From the Ground

For rectangular roof sections:

  1. On standard gable roofs with rectangular sections, you can count the shingles and calculate the size. This works because 3-tab shingles are about 12 inches wide by 6 inches high.
  2. Working left to right, count how many shingles that you see in a row.
  3. The number of shingles represents the section’s width in feet.
  4. Write down the width number.
  5. Count the rows of shingles upward from the gutter to the peak.
  6. Divide the row number by 2 to arrive at the height of the section in feet.
  7. Write down the height number.
  8. Multiple width by height to calculate square footage for the section.
  9. Repeat the shingle count method for every section of roof.
  10. Add all square footages for each section to get the total square footage covered by shingles.

For triangular roof sections, like dormers:

  1. Count the shingles across the widest part of the triangular section.
  2. Write down that number for the width in feet.
  3. Count rows of shingles from the gutter or lowest point to the roof peak.
  4. Write down that number for the height in feet.
  5. Multiple width by height.
  6. The resulting figure will overestimate square footage but provide a close idea of how many shingles will be needed.

For hip roofs:

  1. Learning how to measure a roof from the ground requires a different approach for a hip roof.
  2. Get out your tape measure and measure the length and width of the house.
  3. Write down the dimensions.
  4. Multiple length by width.
  5. Multiple the resulting figure by 1.35.
  6. Use the result of that equation as the estimate for hip roof’s total square footage.

Tools & Materials

  • Pen and paper
  • Calculator
  • Tape measure

Professional Roof Replacement in the Delaware Valley

Much more goes into replacing your roof than buying the necessary amount of shingles. You may need new gutters or flashing around the chimney and vents. Roof decking may be deteriorating. A skilled roofer from PJ Fitzpatrick can climb on your roof and fully assess its condition. We have replaced countless roofs throughout the Delaware Valley since 1980. Contact us for a roofing estimate today.

Need help with this project?

We have trained professionals that can help. Contact us today. 1-877-246-4354

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