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Life Experience

My new shed roof – replacing roofing felt with a single rubber sheet

My shed with its new roof. Next to it is the lean-to wood store with conventional felt covering

Leaking felt-covered shed roof

My shed roof had been leaking for years because there were small splits in the traditional roofing felt. In a small way wood had started to rot. I had been putting off the job of re-roofing because roofing felt is quite difficult to handle. It easily splits and requires the banging in of many dozens of clout headed nails.

Better than conventional roofing felt?

A friend recommended using a single sheet of rubber to cover the entire shed roof. He said it was easy to install and had a 20 year guarantee with a life expectation of 50 years. It won’t tear, rip or crack.

My shed is ten feet by ten feet (about 3.5 metres). Would it be too big to have the sheeting supplied in one piece? I found that the rubber sheet is cut to fit – with the addition of several inches to over hang and be fixed in place with edging strips.

I ordered the rubber sheet, lengths of black gloss plastic edging strips and a bucket of the special adhesive. The goods arrived in a couple of days.

Preparing the job.

The most time-consuming part of the work was removing the old felt and removing all the nails. This took about two hours of clambering about on the roof.

How we fixed the rubber sheeting. The technique for fixing the sheeting in place is simple. Once the wooden roof has been cleared of old nails and felt lay the sheet over the roof. Next, fold back half of the sheet to uncover half of the shed roof. As my roof was so big I could see that installation was a two man job and luckily I had the help of my son. We climbed onto the roof with a tray of adhesive and a paint roller each. We started in the middle and worked to the edge of the roof.

Then we slowly and carefully rolled back the sheeting onto the glued surface.

Next we rolled back the unglued half of the sheeting onto the finished half, repeated the rolling on of adhesive and carefully pulled back the sheeting over the glued surface. We used a soft broom to smooth out some slight wrinkles.

Finishing off the job

I then had to cut edging strips to length and nailed in place.

The rubber sheeting product The rubber sheeting is made by Firestone and supplied in the UK by Rubba-Seal  Their website has full instructions and an instructional video. I think the finished job looks good and has every possibility of lasting two or more decades. NOW THE SHED IS DRY!

There are several suppliers. The one I used was Rubba-Seal
but there are rubber roofing offers on Amazon.

I hope that my experience may help other shed owners and I would be interested to hear of your experiences.

Showing the edging strips nailed in place

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David Roberts

Writer, publisher, music promoter

Born in 1942, I now have time to enjoy life more widely and reflect on my experience, interests, and contemporary events.

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