How To Repair Shingles On A Roof

Shingles are a hard-wearing roofing material, but they can’t withstand even the most extreme weather. If you’ve had high winds or bad storms in your area, it’s likely some of your shingles are broken or missing. As such, you’ll want to repair your shingles, replacing the ones that have taken the brunt of the damage. Here are some helpful steps on how to repair shingles on a roof.

When To Replace Shingles

When should you replace the shingles on your roof? Ideally, you should replace them as soon as you see there’s damage. The shingles on your roof are there to protect your home from the elements, and if they’re broken or missing then your home is at risk. Fixing them quickly replaces that armor, and makes sure that no water can come in and cause damage.

This is why it’s important to be doing regular checks of your roof. You can do most of this from the ground. Simply look up, using binoculars if needed, and look to see if any of the shingles are in need of repair. You’ll also want to go into your attic and look around too. If you can see sunlight coming through anywhere, that’s a sign that you need to take care of the roof.

Should You Replace The Roof?

If you see that some shingles have gone missing, it’s easy to imagine that you just need to replace them, but you’ll want to consider if you need a full roof replacement too. If the roof is over 20 years old, or most of the shingles have suffered damage, then you’ll want to look into a replacement. This is a bigger cost up front, but it’ll save you a lot of money down the line.

Of course, if it’s just a few shingles that have suffered damage, then you’ll be able to replace them. Always keep the age of your roof in mind though. After a certain point, it may be better to have the whole thing replaced.

Replacing Your Shingles

Now that you’ve identified the problem, you’ll need to either repair or replace the shingles. Here’s how to do it safely and effectively. Remember, if you’re ever unsure or worried about replacing them, you can call an expert roofer to help you out with the job.

 1. Be safe: Firstly, take safety precautions as you look to get on the roof. Wear footwear that has high grip soles to keep your footing. If the weather is wet or icy, never get up onto the roof. Have someone on the ground to help you too, and spot you as you make repairs.

 2. Remove the old shingles: Firstly, you’ll need to remove those old shingles if they’re still there. Use a pry bar to remove the first row of nails in the broken shingle, and lift it up to get it free from the sealer strip. Then you’ll be able to pull the shingle up and pop out the nails. Pull out the nails by hand, and then pull that shingle out. Repeat this process for all the shingles that need to be removed.

 3. Get the right shingles for your roof: If you’re lucky, you should have had some boxes of shingles left behind by your roofer when they first installed the roof. If so, you can use these to replace the shingles on your roof. If not, you’ll need to buy shingles that are as close to a match for your roof as possible.

You’ll also want to ensure that you’re buying the right type of shingle. There are 3 tab shingles for example or structured shingles. If you’re unsure, take one of your existing shingles to a supplier, and they’ll be able to help you find a match.

 4. Install new shingles: Now you’re ready to install the new shingles. Start from the bottom and work your way up, replacing all the shingles in one section. Line up the bottom shingles against the eaves or the row below them, and nail each in place with 4 evenly spaced nails.

Then, start working your way up, overlapping the new shingles onto the ones below. You can use the pink or white line on the shingles to line them up properly.

 5. Fix curling shingles: There may be some shingles on your roof that are beginning to curl and aren’t actually broken. If you’re seeing some curling at the edges, you can address this without having to remove the entire shingle.

You’ll need some roofing sealant, a caulking gun, and a brick. Apply some sealant under the corner that’s beginning to curl, and then press the corner down. Use the brick to hold the corner down for at least 24 hours as the sealant dries. Once that time has passed, you can remove the brick and see that the shingle is lying flat again.

 6. Repair cracked shingles: Some cracked or broken shingles won’t actually need to be replaced, instead, you can repair them. You can do this by applying roof sealant under the crack in the shingle. Then, press the shingle down and apply more sealant over the top of the crack. Spread the sealant with a putty knife, to cover every part of it.

If you want to mask the repair, it’s very easy to do so. There’s likely going to be some roofing granules in your gutter, where they washed off the roof. Scoop some up, and spread them over the repaired crack. That way, no one can see the crack at all.

Wrapping Up How To Repair Shingles On A Roof

These are some of the basic ways of replacing and repairing shingles on your roof. Remember that if you’re not confident in doing so, it’s always best to call a professional who can help you out. They’ll be able to get it all done right the first time, so you won’t need to worry about the repairs.

You know the basics of shingle repair now, so if you have a few shingles that are broken you can get up on your roof and get them fixed. Remember, it’s important to do this as soon as possible, to ensure that your roof is fully protected and your home waterproof.