When it comes to roofing, tools are a big part of the trade. The roofing industry is highly competitive but can also be highly rewarding for the contractors who do work the right way. It’s not an easy path, but the satisfaction of a job well done can be huge.
Here are some of the essential tools that a commercial roofing contractor will need when going into business in the roofing industry. Some of these seem bigger than others – but all of them will help you perform professional work and keep your customers happy!
Roofing Nail Gun
Using a hammer and nails is not going to get the job done if you are going to be starting out as a roofing contractor, you’ll definitely need this first and foremost.
Roofing nailers are powered by air compressors and can hold over 100 nails and fire up to 100 nails in a minute. This power allows a roofing contractor to move much quicker – which for all intents and purposes makes this an essential tool.
Of course, if you have a roofing nail gun or a roofing nailer, you’ll need an air compressor to get any use out of it. That will obviously make an air compressor another crucial piece of equipment to become a roofing contractor.
You should do some research into the air compressor that will fit with the strength and durability that you need as a professional. However, at the end of the day, this equipment shouldn’t set you back any outrageous cost.
Moisture Detection Tools
Two of the most important parts of being a roofing contractor are knowing what you are working with and being able to guarantee your customer a quality product.
Moisture detection tools can help you do both. These are great tools to use before a roofing project to help your client spot any weak spots in their current roofing structure. There may be problematic portions that your client didn’t know about.
On top of that, you can also use these tools to show the difference before and after a project which is one of the easiest ways to gain trust in your customer.
There are obviously other signs that moisture exists than using this tool, however, this is a buffed up way to show a customer where the water truly is with a handy tool.
It stands to reason that to install a new roof on a client’s home, you’ll need to remove the old roof. There are a ton of different brands that sell roofing shovels with various styles that can help you take down the old product efficiently!
Some people think that this is one of the most fun parts of roofing, which is 100% true. However, don’t let that fun attitude get in the way of trying to move quickly, safely, and most importantly in a way that the customer will get the most benefit.
If you are looking and shopping around for a roofing shovel, you may also want to look under the description of ‘shingle remover’. Most of these tools mostly do the same things however you may want to shop around a bit to try and mix and match for some tools that will give you the best coverage for larger and smaller roofs and roofing structures that are made of different materials.
Another great tool that all roofers should have are known as ‘tin strips’. These are tools that can be used to cut metal roofing and again come in a handful of varieties. While you may not think that you’re going to be dealing with metal very often, it would come in handy to keep these in your roofing contractor toolbag for a successful job each and every time.
If you a residential roofer only, you’ll probably never use a roofing torch, so this advice may not be for you. However, if you plan on working commercial roofs, you will definitely have a need for a roofing torch.
This is an open flame propane torch that can be used to prepare the coating on a commercial roof. This is not a tool to be taken lightly, so make sure you have experience with this sort of thing before proceeding to operate.
You won’t be much of a roofing contractor if you can’t get up on to the roof. Since you can’t exactly head to your customer’s garage and ask for their ladder, you’ll probably want to have a few different ladders that you can use regularly depending on the situation.
You’ll probably want to use a combination of aluminum and fiberglass ladders and potentially include a smaller, more maneuverable ladder as well.
Fiberglass ladders are made to be heavy-duty and long-lasting equipment. They can handle more weight than aluminum ladders and hold up better in weather as well.
If you are planning on working around any kind of electric current or power lines, fiberglass ladders also have the benefit of being resistant to electricity.
This may seem to say that you only need a fiberglass ladder, but that also would not be true. Having an aluminum ladder offers a ton of benefits as well. Most aluminum ladders will hold over 200 pounds if not more, and they gain an advantage by being lighter and easier to use and move around. While they may not be safe to use in situations with electrical currents, they are certainly much more cost-effective than their fiberglass counterparts.
Whether you are going to be working as a solo contractor or opening a business where you will have employees working on roofing projects with you, you need to make sure that every worker has proper fall protection. It’s both immoral and illegal to go against proper safety protocols, so in general you should plan on purchasing a fall protection package for anyone that works for you, including yourself.
These packages aren’t as expensive as you’d think for how important they are, and typically can be purchased for in the $100+ range.
Of course, not all tools have to be massive to be appropriate for use as a roofing contractor. There are a lot of situations including on the roof and off the roof where having a utility knife will come in handy. Again, it really just speaks to having tools that are diversified and being prepared for anything. Whether you’re opening up packages from the manufacturer or making a small cut up on the roof, having some solid utility knifes that you like to use can be a big plus.
This is probably a relatively basic idea, however, if you are going to be putting down a lot of caulk as a part of your roofing projects, you’ll need a caulking gun to get that sealant down effectively.
What To Look For When Buying Tools
When you are buying the essential tools for your roofing contractor business, you want to find brands that are trustworthy and can help you do something you can’t before buying the tool.
Always look for new and unique ways that tools can be used safely to maximize the effectiveness of your ‘toolbox’ and you will be well prepared for any job that comes your way!