Roofers are the people who literally keep a roof over our heads. These workers install and repair the roofs of buildings to keep interiors dry and safe. Roofers take detailed measurements to calculate materials needed. They lay down layers of materials to create a lasting roof cover– starting with a vapor barrier, and the roofing material a client chooses, such as asphalt, traditional— or newer solar shingles, or long-lasting metal. Weatherproofing the seals around chimneys, vents, or other rooftop elements requires precision and spatial perception. Roofer helpers set ladders and scaffolds in place, and hoist or carry materials to roofs. They remove old roofing material, and assist roofers with roof installation and repairs. They also clean the work area and equipment. Roofing work is physically demanding. It involves heavy lifting, as well as climbing, bending, and kneeling, often in very hot weather. Roofers work outdoors in all types of weather, and need to be comfortable working high above the ground. Most roofers work full time— although only seasonally in colder climates— and may work overtime to complete jobs quickly, especially when rain is expected. Most roofers and helpers work in crews for roofing contractors. Roofers and helpers usually learn on the job, though some roofers learn their trade through an apprenticeship— typically a 3-year program of technical training and paid on the job training.
What they do:
Cover roofs of structures with shingles, slate, asphalt, aluminum, wood, or related materials. May spray roofs, sidings, and walls with material to bind, seal, insulate, or soundproof sections of structures.
On the job, you would:
Inspect problem roofs to determine the best repair procedures.
Remove snow, water, or debris from roofs prior to applying roofing materials.
Set up scaffolding to provide safe access to roofs.
Engineering and Technology
building and construction
Arts and Humanities
Safety and Government
public safety and security
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
Hand and Finger Use
hold or move items with your hands
keep your arm or hand steady
exercise for a long time without getting out of breath
Flexibility, Balance, and Coordination
keep your balance or stay upright
bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs
use your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
Concern for Others
You might use software like this on the job:
Computer aided design CAD software
AppliCad Roof Wizard
ASR Software TopView LE
Data base user interface and query software
Insight Direct ServiceCEO
Analytical or scientific software
Energy cost evaluation software
high school diploma/GED or no high school diploma/GED usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are less likely in the future.