Fixing Damaged Roof Shingles
Step-by-step instructions for the three most-common asphalt-shingle repairs
1. Slip a flat pry bar under the damaged shingle and press down to pop out the roofing nails.
Maintaining a solid roof literally tops the list of crucial home repairs – it keeps you and your family warm and dry, along with everything in your home. Any damage or sign of wear requires immediate action to prevent water from seeping under the shingles and rotting the paneling underneath. Ignoring an issue, even what appears to be small, will accelerate the need for a roof replacement and can add hundreds of dollars to the cost of a new roof.
If your roof is over 20 years old and most of the shingles are damaged or badly worn, it’s time to replace it. But if your roof is basically solid and on a relatively shallow slope that you are comfortable working on, you can probably handle most of the repairs yourself. Here, we’ll walk you through the three most common: asphalt shingle replacement; glue a very curly tile; and repair of cracked tiles. Always do roof repairs on a hot, dry afternoon; shingles will be more flexible and less prone to cracking. And never climb on a roof that is wet, icy, or covered in morning dew.
2. Slide the new shingle up into place. Be sure to align with the shingles of either side.
If part of a shingle is missing, it will need to be replaced entirely. First, see if you have any leftover shingles from the last time the roof was worked (hopefully the builder or roofer who did the job left some behind). If not, you will need to purchase a package from a home center or lumberyard ($ 15 to $ 20 per square, 100 square feet, standard three-tab shingles). If you can’t find a perfect match, choose the closest one.
Replacing a damaged shingle requires a hammer, flat crowbar, pocket knife, and a handful of 11/4 in. roofing nails. Each tile is initially secured with four nails; However, when the next course of shingles from above is installed, its nails also go through the top edge of the shingles from the course below.
Begin removing the first row of nails by sliding the lever under the shingle immediately above the damaged one and gently lifting it to free it from the sealant strip. You will see the first row of nails below.
Slide the lever under the damaged shingle and pry up. Once the nail sticks out about 1/4 inch, remove the lever, push the shingle down, and pull the nail out. Repeat this procedure for the remaining three nails. Then, push the lever under the shingle directly above the damaged one and remove the second row of nails in the same way. After pulling out all eight nails, remove the damaged shingle.
If your existing shingles are brittle, you may not be able to remove the second row of nails without breaking a shingle. In that case, remove the damaged shingle and cut the V-notches in the replacement to fit around the four nails. Slide the new shingle into place and secure it with four nails.
3. Carefully lift the upper shingle and secure the new shingle with roofing nails.
Fix Curled Corners
As asphalt shingles age, their corners often begin to curve downward or upward. If you notice a shingle starting to curl, you can avoid the inevitable curling by gluing the curved section.
Use a caulking gun to apply some roofing sealant (about $ 4 per 10 oz tube) under the corner. Weigh it with a brick (right); Leave the weight in place for at least 24 hours until the sealant dries. That’s all about it.
Repair Cracked Shingles
If a shingle is just cracked or broken, you don’t need to replace it, just repair it. Start by applying a thick coat of roofing sealant under the crack. Press down on the shingle and apply a second bead of sealer to the top of the crack. Then spread the sealer with a putty knife.
The best part of this solution is that no one has to know that you did it. It’s easy to camouflage – check the gutter for a build-up of colored granules that have crawled across the roof from the tiles. Next, collect some in a small cup and sprinkle over the sealant to mask the repair.
A new roof is an expensive proposition. These simple repairs can keep your existing ceiling sounding for years.