How to Install Roof Shingles


How to install roof shinglesProperly maintaining your roof will increase the energy efficiency of your home and improve its overall appearance.  

One way to ensure the longevity of your roof is by replacing the roof shingles. Roof work is best handled by professionals, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t steps you can take to ensure the best results. It’s always a good idea to understand the process. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to install shingles on a roof.  

Prepare the Ground Area  

Before the roof shingles are installed, there are a few things you should do to prepare.  

  1. Mow the lawn so that it’s easier to spot debris that falls from the roof. You don’t want to leave any debris after the work is done. 

  1. Clear away outside objects. Store all outside furniture, cars, bikes and toys away from the house to avoid damage. 

  1. Take pictures of the driveway before the technician comes to install the shingles and bring the cleanup equipment. Photos can be used as proof of what the yard looked like before the technicians arrived.  

  1. Choose an area for the technician to place the equipment.  

  1. Make sure you have proper ventilation in the home so there isn’t too much hot air getting trapped inside while the work is done.  

  1. Measure the existing shingles by measuring the length of the ridges and hips. Divide by 35 to determine how many bundles or regular or hip-and-ridge shingles are needed. 

Measure the Roof  

Now it’s time to measure the roof. To calculate the total number of bundles necessary, proceed with the following steps.  

  1. Measure the width and length of every part of the roof. 

  1. Multiply the width and length to determine the area. 

  1. Combine the total of all the areas together. 

  1. Divide the total by 100 for the correct number of squares. 

  1. Multiply the final number by 3 to find the total bundles needed. 

  1. Add an additional 10 to 20 percent for overage and waste.  

Gather Safety Equipment  

Roofing is dangerous and no corners should be cut when it comes to safety. Make sure that the team working on the roof has safety equipment on hand and ready. Safety items should include:  

  1. Hard hat. 

  1. Harness. 

  1. Work gloves.  

  1. Long pants.  

  1. Safety goggles. 

  1. Tool belt.  

Prepare the Roof  

Next you will need to prepare the roof. Be sure to do the following: 

  1. Lay tarps on the ground for fallen debris.  

  1. Remove current shingles with a roofing fork or shovel.  

  1. Use a hammer to pry up the nails. 

  1. Get rid of existing metal flashing. 

  1. Clean off the roof deck to get rid of any remaining nails or debris.  

Apply Roof Deck Protection  

Roof deck protection is a protective layer under the shingles that blocks excessive moisture outside the home. To install roof deck protection, do the following:  

  1. Lay deck protection from the bottom to the top over the decking. Use chalk to outline where to lay it.  

  1. Use cap nails to secure protection to the roof. Overlap each row at about 3 to 4 inches. If you live in an area with extreme weather, consider using a leak proof barrier. 

  1. Install new metal flashing and starter shingles at the edges of the roof. 

  1. Fasten the metal flashing in place with a hammer and roofing nails. Make sure to install the metal flashing around a chimney and other valleys where two roof planes meet. This will give the areas added protection since they are prone to leaks.  

Install Roof Shingles  

Now that the roof and surrounding area are properly protected, it’s time to install the roof shingles.  

  1. Lay the courses by working your way up and across. Use the proper nailing technique so that the nails always hold the top edge of the course underneath it. 

  1. Take turns lining a full shingle up against the next and nailing them each into place.  

  1. Cut the last shingle on each row to size, repeating all the way to the ridge. Once you’ve reached the ridge, bend the shingle over the ridge so that each side is equal and nail it in place with a single nail on each side. 

  1. Continue the above steps until you reach the far edge of the ridge.  

  1. Cut the final ridge shingle to the length you need and make sure no part of the roof is exposed.  

CertainTeed Roofing Company  

We hope you benefit from this guide on how to install roofing shingles. As mentioned above, doing any type of roofing is dangerous and requires skill.

There are many steps involved in preparing and installing roof shingles, which is why it’s so important to rely on professionals to do the work. Let us help you. Contact us today and we will answer any questions you may have.  

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