How to Install a Tin Roof on an Outbuilding

Installing a tin roof on an outbuilding is a cost-effective solution for an eco-friendly and attractive roof. Tin sheets are sold at most home improvement stores and are easily cut to size with tin snips. Tin roofing material is fire resistant and durable, making it a wise choice for the roof of your outbuilding.

Tin roof
  1. Remove any shingles or other roofing material on your outbuilding, down to the plywood of the roof. Make sure there are no protruding nails, screws or anything that will tear or wrinkle the roofing felt.

  2. Measure the length of your outbuilding's roof from the gable to the edge or to the gutters. Cut a length of roofing felt to fit and lay it on the edge of the roof, beginning on the left side. Felt works as a sound barrier and helps keep insects from getting through the roof. Attach the roofing felt to the roof with roofing nails and a nail gun or staples and a staple gun. Overlap each successive section of roofing felt until the roof is covered.

  3. Mark a chalk line on top of the felt, indicating the width of each tin sheet plus a 1-inch overlap. This will help you keep the sheets of tin straight as you install them on the roof.

  4. Cut sheets of tin in lengths that fit your roof from the gable to the gutter as in Step 2. Position your tin sheets on the roof of your outbuilding using the chalk line as a guide. Attach the tin through the felt and into the roof with roofing nails and a hammer or nail gun. Place one nail every 6 inches down the length of the roof and at the gable and the gutter ends. Cover the roof with tin sheets.

  5. Add roofing cement to the seams of your tin to further protect your roof from moisture, animals and insects.


  • Wear gloves when handling tin.

About the Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.