All You Need to Know about Building a Flat Roof Shed

Is it finally the time to refresh your shed roof? Or are you just planning to build a flat shed roof from scratch? When planning or upgrading your shed, the roof is one of the most important factors to take into account. A shed roof has two functions; to direct rainfall to a specific spot and complement the aesthetic look of your shed.

Just like a regular house roof, a shed roof also has several types. So, before we dive into a flat roof shed, you might want to know other types of shed roof too. Then you’ll know what is the difference between one another.

  • Apex roofs
    Apex roof is the kind of roof that looks like triangle, it has two slopes that meet in the middle of the roof. There’s more headroom in the middle, but less towards the sides.
  • Pent roofs
    It slightly looks like a flat roof from far, but this roof slopes in one direction. There’s more headroom, but rain flows down to one spot.
  • Flat Roof
    The last one is the flat roof. Just like the name of it, this roof has the flat-looking. This type of roof will make your shed look narrow. But if you plan to have smaller and more practical shed, this roof is perfect for you.

If you have a storage shed, a flat roof shed is the most common type of roof that people use. This roof style is the easiest form of shed roof to build and to take care of. Plus you will only need to re-doing your roof every 10-20 years if you maintain it regularly and appropriately.

The most important thing to know about a flat roof is that it’s not flat. A flat roof has a pitch of 10 degrees or lower. Flat roofs are always built on a slight incline. This slight incline prevent water to puddle on the roof. Because if the roof is total flat, the water build up on the roof and will destroy your shed. When building a flat roof shed, Keep in mind the flat roof require more frequent maintenance than the other types of roof shed. It’s to prevent the puddle from leaking.

How to Build a Flat Shed Roof

building a flat roof shed pciture
building a flat roof shed pciture. Source

What you need to build a flat shed roof are underlayment, asphalt rolls, roofing cement, nails, roof paint, and knife. Follow these steps to build a flat shed roof:

  • Place the first layer over the shed roof. This layer is called the layer of underlayment. It is the protective sheet that provides an extra barrier against the weather. Start placing the layer on the top of your roof. Remember to give an extra 2 inches on the end of the roof and also on the edges of your flat shed roof.
  • The asphalt rolls which we use as the roofing material need to be cut to an appropriate length. Make sure that the rolls are cut longer than required.
  • Put the asphalt roll on the top of the first underlayment. Don’t forget to give 2-3 inches extra asphalt roll from all sides. This extra inches will provide a form of drainage for rainwater, which is essential to avoid a build of water on the roof.
  • Tack the rolls into place. When the entire flat roof has been covered, use nails to secure the asphalt into place.To secure the edges of the asphalt, you can apply roof cement as an extra layer.
  • Last but not least, paint the entire roof. This way your shed roof will fully protect from the harshest of weather conditions.

To get more details about how to build a flat shed roof step by step, you can check out free flat roof shed plans from How to specialist.

Flat Shed Roof Maintenance

Just like what we say before, a flat shed roof requires more periodic maintenance. It is more vulnerable to leaking than a pitched roof. You have to check on the flat roof, at least twice a year. Or if any bad weather like storm, or heavy rain comes you can also check your roof condition. Regular maintenance will optimize the lifespan of your flat shed roof.

flat shed roof condition after maintenance
flat shed roof condition after maintenance. Source

Also, you have to check if there any gaps on the flat roof. If you found one, you have to quickly fix it with roof cement.

Take a look at the top of your roof, is there any puddle on there? You have to be careful if there is because build-up water can get and heavy and ruin your shed. Here are a few tips to prevent water from leaking.

  • Clean the upper surface of the roof from dust or dirt before applying roofing cement. You can use a broom to clean it. Because if it’s not clean your roofing cement will not stick to the roof surface.
  • If your shed roof crack or peel, don’t ever try to coat it. Just replace the crack roof with the new one. To remove the damaged area use a utility knife. Cut it to a square shape with straight and clean edges.
  • To apply roofing cement to new replacement pieces adhere to the surrounding edges of the new roof. Use a putty knife to lift the edges of the older roofing around the new piece. Then, apply and spread the cement to the raised edges. Make sure you spread it evenly.
  • After that put the replacement piece, press it until it fits. Make sure the upper piece of the roof is larger than the tile pieces underneath it. Secure it all, seal all holes and edges with roofing nails.

Flat Roof Shed Design

A flat roof built just like other regular shed roofs. The difference is the supporting walls on the shed is on the same height. Even though the flat roof looks flat, but it has a slight pitch. A shed with a flat roof is already simple for what they are. But here are some flat roof shed design ideas to spice up your shed!

wooden shed with flat roof
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You can paint the roof with the same color as the shed. It will look so clean and simple!

ideas paint flat shed roof
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You can also paint the roof to give it more statements. That way people can see the separation between the body of the shed and the roof.

flat shed roof combined with urban garden
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If you love gardening that much you can grow the grass on the roof too! Look how stunning it looks when the sun is shining on the green grass. Just make sure that there isn’t any build-up of water on it since it is covered with grass.

What to Store on a Flat Roof Storage Shed

 motorcycle store in shed
motorcycle store in shed. Source

A flat roof storage shed may look tiny, but there are a lot of things that you can fit there. Here are six ideas to maximize your outdoor space with a flat roof storage shed.

  • Storage Shed
    You can use it to store outdoor tools or furniture like barbecue and lawn care tools. You can store patio cushions and garden games when the winter comes.
  • Bike Shed
    You can free up space inside your garage by storing your bikes, trikes, and scooters.
  • Potting shed
    It’s ideal for any horticulture enthusiast. These garden buildings are a cross between a shed and a greenhouse. They typically have fixed windows on one side to provide plants with natural light.
  • Heavy duty shed
    These sheds are designed to offer greater security for your power tools and garden equipment.

How to Shingle a Flat Roof Shed

After a few years of use, you have to shingle your flat roof. Because if you don’t, you may suffer from leaks and other unpleasant problems. Now, we’ll help to learn how to shingle a flat roof shed. With these tips, you will install shingles in no time, and they will resist the weather effects.

maintain shed by installing shingle
maintain shed by installing shingle. Source

To shingle the roof you’ll need a ladder, a hammer, nails, and a knife before you start.

  • First, strip the old roofing materials. Use the knife to remove the old roofing material. Remove it carefully, so it won’t damage the structure.
  • Then, apply the roofing paper and use the nails to fix it. It’s essential to ensure that the material covers the entire roof and that it’s well fixed.
  • Next, layer the roof shingles. You have to start at the bottom and work your way up.
  • Last steps, you need to cap the top by using adhesive on the last row of the tiles to fixate them. It will ensure that the whole structure is held together.

The Best Place to Put Your Flat Roof Shed

put your shed in the corner of home
put your shed in the corner of home. Source
  • Pick a flat spot. If it’s on a slope, everything you store inside will fall to the back and tip it over.
  • Place it in the dry spot. If the area is prone to flooding, your shed is likely to flood too.
  • You can place it near the trees because it is great for shade. But be careful, falling branches could cause damage to the roof.
  • The good thing about having a shed, it’s reversible. So when you decide to place it, consider which side to place your door and window.
  • It’s better to put it close to the driveway. if you want to get a mower to your front garden, or bikes on the road.

The Pros and Cons of having Flat Roof Shed

Pros

  • The flat roof style is easy and less expensive to build. Flat roof costs less than other types of roof because we don’t need many materials to build it. It will last longer too, as long as you maintain it well.
  • If you plan to put solar partners on your shed, a flat roof is the way to go. Solar panels on flat roofs can be installed at the perfect angle to maximize your electricity production. Just make sure it is oriented westward.
  • It’s easy to build, even for beginners. Just like what we explain above, even beginners can build a flat roof shed too.
flat roof is a great choice to build simple shed
flat roof is a great choice to build simple shed. Source

Cons

  • If you use the shed as a music studio, it can be difficult to insulate. You will need alternate ventilation for it.
  • This type of roof doesn’t work well in the winter or during the rainy season. Because water can puddle and seep through the roof.
  • Flat roof will require regular maintenance then other types of roof. Because it has no slope and water therefore has more of a tendency to pool. The flat shed roof is more vulnerable to leaking.

The Conclusion

Here are three factors to consider about the shed roofing system. It’s waterproof, so that it keeps the contents of the shed dry. It’s economic — in its lifetime cost. The appearance is pleasing to the eye.

Overall a shed with a flat roof is ideal for your modern backyard. Since the shed roof has just one flat surface, it’s a very simple design that makes it easy to build. It’s much faster to build than many other roof styles. You just have to follow the step by step instructions and you can complete the shed in one week if you build it from scratch. But if you just renovate the shed roof, it will take around 8-16 hours. Then you will have a very clean, simple, and minimalist look when it’s done.

If you decide to build it, make sure to invest in the best materials you could afford. Make sure to take accurate measurements, before adjusting the size the components that you’ll use. Since this type of roof most likely requires more frequent maintenance to prevent leaking, you can build the slant closer to a 10 degree pitch. It will help the maintenance cycle be less common.

We hope this will help you better to know all about a flat roof shed. If you decide to build one, best of luck!

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