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What Do Roofers Do When It Rains During A Roofing Job?

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When the skies open up during a roofing job, it can lead to a flurry of questions and concerns. 

What happens next? How is the integrity of the work protected? Is it even possible to continue working? 

If you’ve ever found yourself grappling with such questions, you’re not alone. Understanding what roofers do when it rains during a roofing job can help alleviate some of these concerns and provide insight into this integral aspect of home maintenance.

During a roofing job, if rain begins to fall, roofers typically respond by covering the unfinished area of the roof with tarps. This prevents water from causing damage and allows them to resume work once the rain stops.

What do Roofers do when it Rains During a Roofing Job? – Brief Review

When an unexpected shower occurs during a roofing job, professionals spring into action to safeguard the roofing work already in progress. 

The most immediate action is the use of tarps or similar protective coverings. This shields the unfinished or exposed sections of the roof, preventing moisture absorption and subsequent structural damage. 

Roofers also stay aware of weather forecasts and adjust their schedules as necessary, though sometimes rainfall can still catch them by surprise. 

In these situations, they utilize advanced techniques, including the use of waterproof underlayment, to maintain the quality of their work. 

Essentially, roofers strive to balance safety, efficiency, and quality, even under the unpredictability of the weather.

What do Roofers do when it Rains During a Roofing Job?

In the case of rain during the roofing job, roofers use the following techniques.

1. Use of Tarps

The first line of defense roofers employ when a downpour interrupts a roofing job is tarps. 

These waterproof sheets are spread over the unfinished sections of the roof to prevent water from penetrating the exposed decking and causing damage.

Tarps are typically heavy-duty and designed to withstand harsh weather conditions. 

They are secured using weights or tied down to ensure they don’t blow away in strong winds. 

Using tarps is effective because it offers immediate protection, even in sudden, unanticipated showers.

2. The Role of Weather Forecasts

In the digital age, weather forecasts have become a crucial tool for roofers. Planning work around weather forecasts is a common practice as it allows them to schedule their tasks on days less likely to experience rain.

However, weather predictions are not always 100% accurate. Unexpected rainfall can occur, and roofers have contingency plans in place for such situations. 

Some may choose to work faster to complete the vulnerable areas of the roof before rain starts, while others may immediately implement their rain plan, such as covering the area with tarps.

3. Advanced Techniques

Beyond the basic use of tarps, there are advanced techniques roofers employ when caught in the rain. One such method is the use of waterproof underlayment.

Waterproof underlayment is a protective layer installed underneath the main roofing material. 

It serves as a secondary barrier against moisture, ensuring that even if rain penetrates the outer roofing layer, it won’t reach the roof deck. 

Its usage is particularly common in areas known for frequent rainfall or where building codes mandate it.

Can Roofers Do Roofing Work While It’s Raining?

The question of whether roofers can work in the rain depends on a multitude of factors. The intensity of the rain, the type of roof, safety considerations, and the specific stage of the roofing process all play a role.

Light rain may not stop work, especially if the roof is covered with waterproof underlayment. 

However, for heavy rain, it’s usually advisable to halt work due to safety concerns. Roofs can become slippery and dangerous, posing a risk to workers.

Is it Good to Do a Roofing Job During Raining?

Carrying out a roofing job during rainfall is generally discouraged due to the numerous risks involved. However, there are circumstances where it might be necessary. Let’s further explore these scenarios:

  • Avoidance of Greater Structural Damage: There may be situations where delaying a roofing job can result in more severe structural damage. For instance, if a storm has already damaged part of a roof, it might be crucial to perform immediate repairs, even if it’s raining, to prevent further damage.
  • Utilization of Professional Skills and Experience: In unavoidable circumstances, professional roofers bring their extensive skills and experience to the forefront. They employ best practices, use appropriate materials, and follow safety guidelines to mitigate risks and ensure the job is done as safely and effectively as possible, even in the rain.

Remember, the decision to roof during rain should be well-considered and should only be made by roofing professionals who understand the risks and have the expertise to handle the conditions safely and effectively.

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What are the Consequences of Doing Roofing During Raining?

Roofing during rain can cause some serious consequences, let’s delve into them.

Short-term Consequences

Executing roofing work in the midst of rain can generate immediate issues. Let’s delve deeper into some of these:

  • Moisture Absorption and Structural Damage: Unfinished or exposed roof decking can absorb moisture during a downpour. This can trigger structural damage like warping or rotting of the decking material, which compromises the integrity of the entire roofing system.
  • Growth of Mold and Mildew: A damp environment serves as a perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. Not only can this damage the building structure, but it also poses a potential health risk for the inhabitants, leading to respiratory issues and allergies.
  • Worker Safety: The Rain can turn a roofing job into a hazardous task. Roofs can become slippery, raising the risk of falls or other accidents. Safety should always be a priority, and any compromise on this front is a serious concern.
  • Difficulty in Handling Tools and Materials: The process of roofing involves precise work with a range of tools and materials. Rain can hinder the ease of handling these elements, potentially affecting the quality of the finished roof.

Long-term Consequences

Rain during roofing isn’t just about immediate problems; it can also have long-lasting impacts. Here are some of the potential long-term consequences:

  • Reduced Roof Lifespan: If a new roof is installed over a damp underlayer, it may result in a significantly shortened lifespan of the roof, requiring more frequent repairs or even early replacement.
  • Warranty Issues: Many roofing material warranties are contingent upon correct installation. Rain during installation could violate these terms, potentially leaving the homeowner without warranty coverage for future issues.
  • Persistent Moisture Issues: Moisture trapped during installation can cause continuous problems such as leakage and decay. These chronic issues can demand extensive and costly remediation in the future, leading to higher maintenance costs.


Roofing is a complex task that demands skill, experience, and the ability to adapt to various circumstances, including rain. 

Understanding what roofers do when it rains during a roofing job highlights the intricate nature of their work and the strategies they employ to ensure a successful outcome. 

While roofing in the rain is generally avoided, professional roofers are equipped to handle such challenges when they arise, working meticulously to prevent both immediate and long-term consequences. 

So, next time you spot roofers packing up at the first sign of a drizzle or covering a roof with a tarp, you’ll know they’re taking the necessary steps to protect your home and their work. 

In the hands of professionals, you can rest assured that your roof is in good care, rain or shine.


How do roofers protect an unfinished roof during rain?

Roofers typically protect an unfinished roof from rain by promptly covering it with tarps or similar waterproof materials. This prevents water from seeping into the exposed portions of the roof and causing potential damage.

Can a roofing job continue during a downpour?

The continuation of a roofing job during a downpour largely depends on the intensity of the rain. Heavy rain might necessitate a pause in work for safety and quality reasons, while light rain might allow for careful continuation with the use of certain techniques and materials.

Does roofing in the rain affect the longevity of the roof?

Yes, roofing in the rain can impact the longevity of the roof. If a roof is installed over a damp underlayer, it could lead to a shortened lifespan, more frequent repairs, and potential warranty issues.

How do roofers plan their work around unpredictable weather conditions?

Roofers often utilize weather forecasts to plan their work schedules. However, in cases of unpredictable weather, they use professional techniques such as waterproof underlayment and tarp coverings to protect the unfinished roof from potential rain damage.

For more insights on numerous roofing-related queries, our blog section on RMC Roofing & Construction is just a click away!

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