If your manufactured home’s roof is leaking, the chances are that you are worrying if you can walk on it to identify problems.
Besides roof repair, there are other reasons that may require you to set foot on your roof.
So, Can You Walk On A Manufactured Home Roof?
The truth is that you can walk on the roof of your manufactured home. However, if your roof has some issues like leaking, walking on it might cause more damage and expose you to risks of getting injured. Walking on your roof for whatever reasons can be extremely dangerous, especially if you are not used to walking on roofs. If you must walk on a manufactured home roof, make sure to walk on top of the rafters and not between them.
Walking on the roof of your manufactured home can be life-threatening, especially if you have little to no experience in roofing.
Are you looking for in-depth information about walking on a manufactured roof?
This is a definitive guide to help you further your knowledge whether to walk on a manufactured home roof or not. Let’s get started.
Four Reasons That May Require You To Climb Onto Your Roof
While climbing on top of your roof is not something obvious – there are some jobs that require you to do so.
The roof is one of the most important elements of your manufactured home or any home for that matter. Therefore, everyone is concerned about their roofs and wants to ensure they are always healthy.
When climbing heights, the last thing you would want is to risk your safety. However, you will have to get on top of your roof to do the following.
1. Identifying leak spots or other problems
Depending on the size of your home, you will need to walk on the roof to identify causes of leaks. Finding your roof’s problem will significantly vary depending on if you have a flat or pitched roof.
Manufactured homes entered the market in 1976, and their roofs are generally pitched.
Although peaked roofs are great in style and require little to no maintenance than their flat counterparts, it doesn’t mean they are immune to problems.
It is advisable you stay on the ladder when looking for problems because walking may worsen some roof problems.
This is not something common, but at times you may want to clean your roof.
If there are several trees around your home that may shed leaves on your roof, the chances are that you will clean your roof on regular intervals.
You should stay on ladders as much as possible because debris usually accumulates along the edges or in the gutters.
Manufactured homes usually feature pitched roofs engineered from tiles or asphalt shingle where the coating is strongly discouraged.
However, there are some exemptions.
Some pitched roofs in residential settings are made of metals and require to be coated with an elastomeric coating to prevent corrosion and extend their life.
Roof repair is indisputably the common reason why many people climb on top of their manufactured home roofs.
Because most roof repair jobs will require you to walk on top of your roof, it is imperative you stay on the rafters. Keeping your weight on top of rafters will minimize the risk of going through the roof.
If your manufactured home features a steeply pitched slope, it is good you hire an experienced roofer because it is riskier.
Nevertheless, walking on either roof can pose mild to life-threatening risks for people who are not used to walking on roofs.
How Much Weight Can A Manufactured Home Roof Hold?
A majority of manufactured homes feature asphalt shingles or wooden roofing.
For structural safety, roofs are usually designed to hold a combination of live loads and dead loads.
Normal shingled and wooden roofs are designed to withstand a dead load of up to 20 pounds per square foot. Roofs made of sturdy materials like slay tiles are rated to withstand up to 30 pounds per square foot.
As a general rule, you should never walk on your roof unless it is absolutely necessary. Besides the potential of falling off, stepping on your manufactured home roof risks damaging your roof.
For instance, you can dislodge or create gaps in asphalt shingles roofing if you walk on it. This can increase leaking chances. It can be safe walking on any roof if you weigh less than 200lbs, anything more than that, think twice.
Note that some roofing materials like concrete tiles are not designed to withstand the extra weight of live loads.
Four Signs That Your Manufactured Home Roof Might Not Withstand Your Weight
When it comes to walking on your roof, the first thing you want is to ensure you are safe, which includes taking into account all preventive measures.
You will need to be careful not to do anything that compromises the structural integrity. Therefore, it is good to beware of any signs that increase the potential of danger.
Here are some signs that your manufactured home roof might not hold you.
1. Sagging roof
A sagging roof not only indicates potential collapsing but is also a sure-tell of danger, especially walking on it.
Sometimes you may not identify a sagging roof until you get there.
If you spot springy or spongy sections while walking on your roof, it is a warning to get rid of that roof.
2. Severe leaking
Although you will need to climb onto your roof to repair leaks, it can be potentially dangerous if you’re seeing multiple leaks.
Several leak spots may indicate that your roof is seriously damaged and may not support substantial weight. This is a sign that you are expecting sagging soon.
3. Unusual sounds
When walking on your roof, you want to be attentive to any abnormal sounds.
Unusual creaking or any other sound coming from your roof could translate to a severe weakness point, which may be easy to identify with naked eyes.
If this happens, climb down and examine your manufactured home roof from another point, perhaps from the ladder.
4. If your roof has water damage
Weather can seriously hurt your roofing if it goes unchecked for a while.
Significant amounts of snow can significantly weaken your roof and even increase susceptibility to unwanted moisture, which results in pocket-unfriendly budgets.
If your roof has sustained heavy snow, walking on it is not advisable until you assess it appropriately.
What Can You Do To Make Your Roof Stronger? 3 Things….
If the roof of your manufactured home has seen it all and experienced significant damage, it is advisable you replace it to ensure structural integrity.
For those who cannot afford to replace, there are other preventive measures that you can employ to reinforce your roof and make it stronger.
Reinforcing your old roof can make it better to withstand more weight than it would normally do.
With that said, here are some ways you can strengthen your manufactured home roof before you can climb onto it.
1. Strengthen existing trusses
If you want to make your roof more robust and even durable, strengthening the trusses is one of the incredible ways to do it.
If you strengthen the existing trusses, you increase the overall stability; therefore, making your roof capable of withstanding substantial live load.
2. Attaching trusses to walls
You can use hurricane tie-downs to fasten your roof to the walls and make it much more sturdy.
With manufactured home roofs, it may be challenging to attach trusses to walls because of the challenge in accessing the roof’s interior structure.
3. Repairing damaged shingles
Since newest manufactured homes feature pitched roofing, asphalt shingles are becoming the standard roofing material because they are appealing and do an incredible job.
Despite being rated among the sturdy roofing material, they are prone to damage and chipping.
If you spot any damaged shingle, it is good to repair it immediately using construction adhesive.
This helps keep off unwanted moisture, and, most importantly, a durable roof that you can freely walk on when necessary.
Five Roof Walking Precautions
Even with the strongest roof, some risks come with walking on top of it.
About one-third of fall-related injuries in the construction industry result from falling from roofs.
Therefore, it is important to observe the following precautions when walking roofs.
1. Always check roof stability and look before walking
One thing you must keep in mind is that you can predict what is happening beneath the roofing membrane.
The roof can also be slippery due to recent rain, dew, or snow, which makes it very dangerous.
Although it sounds obvious, make sure to be on watch out.
2. Wear safety gear
This should be taken seriously, especially if you are climbing onto a steep roof.
A small sleep can turn into the worst because it is not easy to arrest unless you are a seasoned roofer.
A safety harness does wonder in keeping you on the roof even when you sleep.
3. Wear shoes that provide excellent traction
When walking on a manufactured home roof, and any proof for that matter, it is advisable you wear boots or shoes with tracked soles to enhance traction.
With better traction provided by these footwear, you will minimize the chances of falling off.
4. Never walk on accumulated debris
Debris lying on your roof might seem dry but with moisture trapped underneath.
To ensure you are safe, get rid of leaves and other debris as you walk. This maximizes traction.
5. Watch out for algae and moss
When walking on a roof, be careful with any greenery because they hold moisture, which can compromise traction.
If you spot any algae or moss, it is advisable not to walk on them.
Related: How Do You Quieten a Noisy Manufactured Home Roof?
With this guide, you will decide whether to walk on your manufactured home roof or avoid it.
Make sure to check the stability of your roof and your weight before climbing onto your roof.
If you must walk on top, make sure to observe the precautions.