How To Measure A Roof

Getting accurate roof measurements can be difficult but with this guide you’ll be well prepared to take measurements of any roof. Whether you’re a contractor looking to train a new employee or a homeowner looking to do some renovations, you’ll find this guide helpful for any roofing project. If you find this guide useful, you may also enjoy our siding estimation guide.

Step 1: How to Calculate Your Roof Square Footage

First, measure the length and width of each surface on the roof, then multiply these values to get the square footage of that surface. Make sure to document the number of chimneys, skylights or other obstructions and include dormers in your measurements. Add up the square footage for each surface to get the total square footage of your roof. For example:


Step 2: How to Determine Your Roof Pitch

The next step is to measure the pitch (also referred to as the slope) of the roof deck. You’ll need to figure out the vertical distance (also known as the rise) over a 12” horizontal segment (also known as the run). Record these values as Rise over Run, with the vertical measurement listed first and the horizontal second.

Step 3: Calculating Roof Squares

Once you’ve determined the square footage of the roof, you can calculate how much roofing is needed to cover it. “Squares” are the units for roof measurements. A “square” is an area which measures 100 square feet. To determine the number of squares on a particular roof, simply divide its total square feet by 100.


HOVER Roofing Calculator

Save Time and Reduce Risks. Climbing a roof and taking measurements by hand can be dangerous and time consuming. If you want to save time and reduce the risk of injury, we’d recommend you try the HOVER roofing calculator app. By taking just a few photos with your smartphone, you can get a fully scaled 3D model with accurate exterior measurements for the roof, siding and all openings. This helps contractors to quickly provide precise pricing estimations and visualize different materials and colors for homeowners. Try HOVER today – your first property is on us!

Roofing Materials

The purpose of calculating the precise measurements of a roof is to ensure that the appropriate amount of roofing materials are ordered. Here are some common materials and the variables you will need to consider with each:


Shingles are typically sold in bundles. Depending on the type and brand of shingle, it may take a different number of bundles to make a square. When cost comparing shingles, remember to base price on squares and not on bundles.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing is typically sold by the sheet or panel. To determine the number of sheets or panels necessary to cover the roof, divide the width of the roof by the sheet or panel coverage width.

Other Roofing Materials

The basic square footage and length calculations detailed above should help estimate overall cost for other materials. Additional roofing materials that should be accounted for include items such as leak barrier, deck protection, drip edge, rake edge, ridge vents, and hip and ridge caps.

Why use HOVER?

HOVER does more than just provide accurate measurements and drawings in the typical 2D format. It also lets contractors see and interact with measurements in 3D, allowing them to easily visualize specific dimensions. Plus, the 3D rendering allows you to design the project beforehand. HOVER can cut down on your time taking measurements on the jobsite and calculating quotes in the office. Roof measurements are then used to quote any roofing job and completely eliminate the need to re-measure.

Do The Job Right The First Time

For contractors, this means all members of your team (sales, production, installation, etc.) and the homeowner can be on the same page when it comes to the job. Resources can be allocated more efficiently and work can be completed on time and on budget.

How Does HOVER Work?

Our patented technology calculates square footage and linear measurements for the roof, siding, windows, trim and more. Just snap a few photos of the exterior of the house with the HOVER app and our patented technology will take it from there. Once the digital property is complete, you will receive detailed exterior measurements and an interactive 3D model to help homeowners design their projects. HOVER’s measurements are the basis for its accurate roofing calculator and will allow you to quote any job. Additionally, HOVER completely eliminates the need to re-measure for roofing projects.

Try out HOVER to Measure A Roof Today