What Kind Of Tarps Are Best For Roofs?

Every now and then, you have to give your home an extra bit of tender loving care in order to keep it up to snuff. Other times, a natural disaster can tear through your neighborhood and leave you in need of some intense reconstruction. Either way, it can be difficult to know what kind of roofing materials to use in order to get your house back to being waterproof, especially if you can’t get professional assistance. You can’t just ignore the leaks and cracks in your roof, either, or else you risk doing more damage to your roof that’ll cost you in the long run.

Roofing and Tarps: The Basics

The good news is that of all the materials you may need to fix your roof, tarps are some of the most versatile and diverse. Sure, your framing & plywood are critically important to your roof’s structural integrity, and there’s no way you’re getting your work done without a ladder, but picking the right kind of tarp for your project can ensure that your roof remains undamaged by sun, mold, or wind.

Before You Begin

When choosing the best tarp for your roof, you’ll want to consider a number of factors. What’s the tarp’s purpose going to be? What kind of damage are you look to repair? What kind of environment do you live in, and what kind of external influences should your tarp be able to cope with? Before you go out shopping, you’ll want to do a quick assessment of all of these factors or else risk damaging a tarp in the middle of your reconstructive process.

You’ll also want to ensure that, no matter what kind of tarp you get, the size is appropriate for your project. Measure the area of roof you’re looking to cover before you head online to Chicago Canvas to order your tarp.

Choosing a Tarp

Once you’ve taken into account your environment and need, you can go out and choose the right kind of tarp for the roofing project you have at hand. Each tarp is different and advertised as such, but consider some of the essential elements that you might want to have backing up the tarp’s support of your roof.


It’s easy to assume that all tarps are relatively lightweight and don’t carry much presence. This isn’t the case. Some tarps, like our Silver UVR Heavy Duty Poly Tarps, are specifically designed to be heavier than others. This tarp, for example, is 12 mils thick, whereas a standard tarp is typically only 5 mils thick. By allowing a tarp to have more weight to it, engineers make that tarp more appropriate for roofing projects in areas prone to faster wind gusts or more frequent storms. When a tarp is advertised as heavy duty, then, it’s far more appropriate for re-roofing than a lightweight alternative.

That’s not to say, of course, that lightweight tarps don’t have their place when it comes to roofing. If the damage done to your roof is a one-off, then a lighter tarp may be easier for you to work with and more sustainable, in the long run, than a heavier tarp. All you need to do is assess the weather around your home and determine for yourself whether you want the protective boost of a heavy duty tarp or if one of the lighter ones available will do.


It may seem obvious, but when you’re fixing a roof that’s been damaged by heavy storms, you’ll want to look for a tarp that’s waterproof. Not all tarps can keep rainwater out of your home. Lighter tarps meant for camping, for example, are great for ensuring that your pajamas don’t get muddy, but it’s unlikely that they’d be able to hold up to pummeling rain. Look for a poly tarp, which is meant to slick off pouring rain and keep water from reaching the wooden supports of your roof.


Water does more when it reaches your roofing structure than just dampen your roof. If the tarp you’ve used to secure your roof isn’t mildew-proof, then you’re at risk of starting an impressive mold culture inside your home. Not only is this structurally dangerous, but there’s a chance that you and your family could get sick when exposed to the kind of mold that a tarp was unable to prevent from growing. The heavy duty poly tarp, as mentioned earlier, is one of many mildew-resistant tarps. By installing a tarp like this, you’ll be taking extra steps towards ensuring the safety not only of your home but of the people who live inside of it.


Finally, consider the grommets sewn into your tarp of choice. Water, as has been touched on, is a massive risk to the structure of your roof, but it can put more than the roof’s wooden structure at risk. If the grommets included on your tarp of choice aren’t rust-resistant, then you may be setting yourself up for additional roof repair in the very near future. By taking care to install rust-resistant grommets, tarps like this one work double time to keep your roof as up to snuff as possible.

Choosing the best tarp to help you fix your roof after a natural disaster or damage doesn’t have to be difficult. You need to make a careful assessment of the place you live and the damage your roof may sustain in order to choose the tarp that’s right for you. When you start out by making a needs assessment, you’re saving yourself time and money while also ensuring that the work you do on your tarped roof lasts for as long as it needs to.

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