Roofing Felt: Uses And Installation Of Roofing Felt

admin | May 29, 2021 | | No Comments

Often called by many names but still the same functions, this simple material can save your building from danger! It can be called roofing tar paper, underlayment, roll roofing, etc. Some people diminish its importance because of its appearance, but little did they know how important it is. So, how important is roofing felt? Why must you install a roof felt? And how can you install a roof felt?

What Is Roofing Felt?

Roofing felt is an underlayment placed between the roof deck and the roof shingles. This means it will be laid on the roof deck before the fixing of the roof shingles. It is made of two things, namely:  a base and a protective asphalt coating.

The base can be:

  • Natural: Made with wood cellulose
  • Synthetic: Made with fiberglass or polyester

Protective asphalt coating can be made from different elements. A good example is a bitumen that repels water and allows the product to breathe simultaneously.

Why Should You Use Roofing Felt?

The research discovered that fixing roofing felt between your roof decking and your roof shingles make your roof last longer. Some uses of roofing felt paper includes,

It Resists Water

Rain and snow can keep water in between and under your roof shingles. That can cause moisture damage, roof leak, etc. Roofing felt makes the water flow away from the roof. It doesn't support the staying of water on the roof. It is anti-water on the roof.

Weather Protection

Shingles protect your roof from weather conditions. But the protection might not be enough. Harsh weather conditions can break your shingles which makes it vulnerable to rain and snow attacks.

When you have a roof felt, it protect your roof from rain and snow. It also prevents molds and mildews, which makes your roof last longer and attractive.

Class A Fire Rating

It is a class A fire rating because it fights against severe or light fire exposure. Whether it's coming from another building or not, roof felt, when combined with roof shingles, make excellent fire resistance.

Protects Your Roof Deck

Roofing felt is a good material. Sometimes it takes time before your roofers will roof your house. Roof felt can stand in the gap at that time. It will protect your roof deck from being affected by any external elements before you fix your shingles. And even when fixing it.

It Makes The Surface Smooth

Roof felt is just perfect for roof shingles. It makes the roof surface smooth for roof shingles to lay appropriately. It gives it a steady look and provides a smooth background for your shingles to lay flat.

It Stops Wood Resin Stains

When you have a roof felt, It prevents the wood resin from gumming or staining your roof shingles.

How To Install Roof Felt On Your Roof

Installing roofing felt is quite simple if you follow these steps. But before then, let's look at the likely materials you will need:

  • Tack Gun
  • 12" to 16" gauge galvanized roofing nails
  • Measuring tape
  • Roofing felt
  • Hooked utility knife blades (used by roofers for cutting)
  • Putty knife or scraper (to scrape)
  • Brush
  • Sandpaper
  • Claw hammer (to remove nails)
  • Towel
  • Waterproof paint of primer
  • Tack

Step By Step Guide To Roof Felt Installation

  • Calculate Your Roof

The first step is to carry out proper roof calculations. Calculate the area of your roof using length and breadth/width and multiply them. Let's assume your length 60 inches (5 Square feet) and your width is 120 inches (10 Square feet). Then the area will be 7,200 inches (50 Square feet).

N.B: Add 2 inches to each measurement before you derive the area. This will help have surplus felt for your roof. This will also prevent or cover up for the wrong measurement. You can use the roofing calculator to make it simpler for you.

  • Buy Surplus Felt To Cover Your Roof Area

When buying, use square feet. And it is advisable to buy an extra one foot because some feet can get torn while stretching them.

  • Use the hook blade knife to cut the felt to proper preferable sizes.
  • Use a putty knife or scraper to remove the old felt from the roof decking
  • Use brush and sandpaper to remove any debris from the roof decking
  • Use a claw hammer to punch out nails
  • Use a towel to dry the roof decking
  • Remove and replace damaged materials
  • To enhance felt attachment, put primer or waterproof paint
  • Place one of the felt you cut earlier on the roof decking and roll it to the other side. Note that it should be horizontal, not vertical
  • Put the nails in the tack gun and tack it on the first end.
  • Pull the felt on the other end and tack it too. Be careful so as not to tear or damage it.
  • Roll a new roll on the next place and repeat the same process. They can overlap each other or very close to each other.
  • Continue rolling the felt till you get to the rooftop. And repeat the process. Roll, straighten, and tack, same for the other end.
  • You should cover all the nails with mastic. So it will last for a long time. It will hold and protect the nails, while the nails will hold and protect the roof felt.


You might have heard some people saying you don't need a roof felt if you already have roof shingles. That's ignorance on display. Roof felt, and roof shingles should be used together. They best complement each other.

Installing a roofing felt is not quite as tricky as it sounds. But if you're afraid you can't get the job properly done, I'd advise you to leave the job entirely to a professional local roofing contractor near you. To get the best value roofing service in NYC, visit GoldenBerg Roofing, 1274 5th Ave New York, NY 10029 (212) 457-1324

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