Need new roof: "Torchdown?" - Posted by Ronald * Starr(in No CA)

Posted by tom on October 02, 2003 at 08:50:44:

half lap roll roofing is code down to 1 in 12. i have successfuly put it on (myself) on 1/2 in 12. there are some things i would have done differently, write me if you want some details. i am on 12 years on mine and it is still ok.


Need new roof: “Torchdown?” - Posted by Ronald * Starr(in No CA)

Posted by Ronald * Starr(in No CA) on September 30, 2003 at 16:18:42:

I need to replace a roof on a house near Sacramento, CA. It has a shallow pitch with currently a ?tar and gravel? roof covering, also known as a built-up roof.

Some of the roofers say that they don?t do tar and gravel roofs anymore. They are talking about doing a ?torchdown? roof. Apparently the material is more expensive than for a tar and gravel, but the labor is greatly reduced. One roofer said it is a one-person job.

I need to conserve money. I was already planning to try to remove the old roof and re place rotten wood with a laborer, his helper, and hiring some other laborers locally. I wonder about the possibility of replacing the roof with a ?torchdown? system by having that laborer and his help do it and helping him myself. Anybody have any experience with this? I?m wondering if it is feasible to have a good job done by somebody who is not experienced with this material? I have had the laborer and his helper do some other roofing work for me with roll roofing and dimensional shingles. They seem to do pretty good work.

Sincerely, Ron Starr***

Re: Need new roof: “Torchdown?” - Posted by Jeff

Posted by Jeff on October 01, 2003 at 20:31:48:

if you have a min. pitch of 2/12 you can still use conventional 3 tabs of diminsional shingles you just need to half lap the underlayment. this is according to the manufacture GAF

good luck
Jeff NJ

Re: Need new roof: “Torchdown?” - Posted by tom

Posted by tom on October 01, 2003 at 12:11:44:


if you have enough pitch, and money was @ a premium, i would think about doing a roll roofing job (the half lap stuff). you might only get 10-12 years on it.

Commercial grade flat roof material is expensive, often a specialty product, and often tricky to apply. torchdown, EDPM sheeting, that is glued together and other commercial systems are very good, and last as long as 30-35 yrs (with warrenty). but they cost around $3/sq ft and up around here installed.


Re: Need new roof: “Torchdown?” - Posted by RichV(FL)

Posted by RichV(FL) on October 01, 2003 at 04:41:06:


I dont have a torchdown roof on any of my properties but I have heard a bit about them.

I had a roof replaced last year and roofers crew told me that a torchdown was a pretty good roof.

They said it can be kind of touchy when it comes to sealing properly. I recall something about if the torch burns to long the roof wont seal and you could run into problems.

They also told me about “handymen” nailing them down instead of using a torch and water getting into the home.

If its done right, you should get about 15 years on it.

Hope this helps,


Re: Need new roof: “Torchdown?” - Posted by art c

Posted by art c on September 30, 2003 at 18:10:16:

Please don’t do a torch down without real expertise.
It’s almost an art and needs to be followed up with other expensive equipment. This type of roof is probably the least " do it yourself " type.
Hasn’t anyone suggested an EPDM ? This is a rubber membrane , that with very careful instructions , can be accomplished by a semi skilled person. Special equip. & skills not mandantory