How Roofing Works: The Miami Dade County Roofing Process

Replacing the roof of a home is not for the faint-of-heart. It’s an extremely physical job that requires skill and the right tools for the job.

If you’ve ever been curious as to how the entire Miami Dade County roofing process takes place, learn about fundamental roofing steps in this blog…

A Step-By-Step Guide on the Roofing Process

Once you have obtained the right permit for your roofing project, contractors generally arrive at your home very early on the first day.

You can expect roofing materials to be delivered at least a day or two before the actual project begins.

The Florida Building Code and Hurricane Protection

The state of Florida and its roofing processes are governed by the Florida Building Code (FBC) and specific hurricane-resistant standards. In fact, Miami Dade County was the first in Florida to certify these standards.

Today, the FBC is used as a benchmark which is enacted across all requirements for hurricane-resistant buildings in the state and beyond.

As such, all roofing contractors within Florida and Miami Dade County are required to meet the Miami Dade hurricane code.

Here’s a basic breakdown on the Miami Dade roofing process:

Step 1: Out with the Old

If your home is undergoing a re-roofing process, the old roof shingles, nails and flashing are removed beforehand. We can’t take the chance of tearing holes in your new roof shingles.

But before this is done, tarps are draped over areas of your home to protect plants, landscaping, windows, and your exterior walls.

Roof Sheathing Required By the FBC

In conjunction with the Miami-Dade hurricane code and the FBC, roof sheathing must be properly replaced once shingles are removed.

Roofing contractors will fasten roof sheathing according to specific requirements required for High-Velocity Hurricane Zones. Naturally, this adds an extra layer of protection to your roof against extremely high winds.

Step 2: Installation of the Drip Edge

While metal drip edging isn’t usually required for home roofing, it does add a professional, finished look to your roof.

Drip edging also prevents shingles from curling over the roof edge and water from running down onto your fascia boards.

Before underlayment installation, contractors fasten drip edging to the eaves of the roof. This drip edging is nailed snug against the fascia boards of your home, held in place with long roofing nails.

Step 3: Roof Underlayment

The installation of a roof underlayment is important because it prevents ice, sleet, and rainwater from penetrating your roof underneath the shingles.

Also known as ice-and-water underlayment, this self-adhesive material sticks to your roof, seals around nails and keeps your home warm and dry.

A roll of underlayment is lined up with the roof drip edge, then slowly unrolled as evenly as possible across the roof.

If your roof is fairly low-pitched, contractors roll underlayment out in long sections at a time. If your roof is fairly steep, it’s rolled out no more than 10 feet at a time.

The underlayment is then fastened to the decking with roofing nails.

Step 4: Secondary Waterproofing Required by the FBC

All site-built family homes with sloped hipped or gable roofs are required to undergo mitigation retrofits i.e. secondary waterproofing.

Homes with asphalt shingles, wood shingles, and architectural metal roof panels all require this additional layer of waterproofing.

These roofing systems all fall under the same umbrella: a discontinuous roof assembly with unsealed, overlapping components. As such, secondary waterproofing in hurricane zones is super important.

During this process, all joints of a plywood deck are covered with self-adhering, polymer tape. This is followed by an approved base sheet over the tape and roof deck.

Otherwise, a base sheet is installed with nails and tin caps. This is then covered with a self-adhering polymer cap-sheet or a cap-sheet installed with hot asphalt.

Step 5: Valley Waterproofing

The valleys of your roof are vital for channeling water in the right direction into your gutter systems. Due to this, they require an extra level of protection.

Roof valleys are fitted with self-adhesive underlayment which is cut-to-size to perfectly layer and insulate each roof valley. The underlayment gets pushed down into each crease and crevice to ensure it fits as tightly as possible.

Valley underlayment is generally run past the drip edge of your roof eaves and any extra trim is cut away with a utility knife. Once the underlayment is smoothed out, it’s then nailed down on the outside edges.

Step 6: New Shingle Installation

Contrary to what many people may think, laying shingles is not as easy it looks, but despite this, it’s the simplest part of roofing a home.

Your roof shingles are lined up as follows: the bottom of the first row is aligned with the bottom edge of the starter row. The seams must be staggered.

Once this first row is complete, your roofing contractor will then work out the perfect amount of shingle reveal for the rest of the roof. This is usually in the range of 5-7 inches.

A roofing nail gun is used to attach the shingles to your roof with an adjustable guide to help your contractor keep the shingle rows as straight as possible.

Step 7: Cap the Roof Ridge

Once your shingles are installed, the next step is to cover the cap ridge and hip ridges of your roof.

A roofing contractor will install top ridge cap shingles so that they overlap hip ridge caps. They use longer nails to fasten ridge caps because of all the extra layers of shingles.

The top ridge cap of your roof is installed so that the prevailing winds in your region blow over the cap, rather than against them.

Step 8: Sealing Everything Up

Once the ridge capping is complete, it’s time to dust off any debris, dirt, and working material from the roof. The roof is then sealed, including all exposed nails on vents and stack flashing.

Sealed areas of a roof require regular maintenance and inspection every few years or so to avoid leakage and roof damage over time.

If you need help with any of this, call our team at Z Roofing.