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How to Repair a Loose Roof Shingle

The average roof replacement costs about $8,500 to $16,500. This amount can put a hole in a homeowner's wallet. You can avoid replacing your whole roof if you only take care of it one shingle at a time. In this article, we'll show you what you need to know about roof shingle replacement.

Take Precautions Before You Start

Before you start any sort of work on your roof, you need to ensure you take the proper safety precautions. If you're not a professional and want to do this yourself, you need to be extra careful. Bring with you the following things: appropriate gripping shoes, helmet, protective eyewear, and heavy-duty gloves. It might also help to bring with you a tool belt with all of the tools you will need to repair the shingle. It's important you don't work on your roof alone to prevent accidents. If you have access to one, it's a good idea to bring a roof jack. Start by getting a sturdy ladder tall enough to reach the roof. You will want to place the ladder as close to the damaged area as possible to avoid moving around on the roof. If you must move around the roof, make sure you take slow and steady steps to avoid slipping. Remember not to rush the work. Don't start on the repairs until you have all of the necessary tools and materials.

Inspect the Damage First

Once you're up on the roof, you need to locate the area with the damaged shingle. Even if you suspect is only one, make sure you take a look around to ensure the other ones are not damaged. Spot the shingle that needs repairing and take a look at the surrounding ones to make sure the corners aren't curling up. The other singles surrounding the area will act as a barrier for moisture. If you see signs the moisture has expanded, you might need to re-evaluate. Sometimes the shingles surrounding the damage might look cracked or split. There's no need to completely change these. You can repair cracked shingles if they still look sturdy and in good condition. The exception is old and brittle shingles, it's a better idea to replace those.

Loosen the Adhesive

The next step is to loosen the adhesive keeping the shingles in place in order to remove and replace them. When the job requires to remove all of the shingles from the roof, it usually requires the help of a hayfork. This is not the case when you only need to remove one or two shingles from the roof. There are few tool options you can use to remove the shingles from the roof such as crow-bar, pry bar, or the claw of the hammer. These tools will help get under the shingles and separating the adhesive. If you're trying to repair a shingle during the winter time, you might face fewer challenges. In the summer, the hot sun heats up the sealant and makes it more difficult to remove. The best way to remove shingles on a hot day is by trying to cool them down a bit. There are different ways to do so, such as replacing them first thing in the morning before the sun heats up the shingles. You can also wet the shingles to cool them down a bit to make them easier to work with.

Loosen Shingles and Look for Exposed Nails

In order to loosen and remove the damaged shingles, you will need to lift the tabs directly above. Once you loosen the adhesive enough, start looking for exposed nails. You will need to get a pry-bar to do this. You will need to work slowly to make sure you don't crack or bend the shingle around the nail. Grab the tab and lift about 45 to 60 degrees and begin to pull slowly. Note, you might have to remove the shingles around the damaged area too in order to replace them. Start loosening the shingles around until you move closer to the damaged one.

Gather the Materials Before You Replace the Shingle

You obviously need to bring new shingles when you're ready to repair the damaged ones. So make sure you make a list every material you need to replace the damaged shingle. Roofing nails: You can't use just any type of nail on the shingles. It's important to get roofing nails since they need to be heavy duty. These nails are between two and three inches long. You don't have to wonder where to put the nails since most shingles have pre-made holes. Shingle cement or adhesive: You will need to get adhesive or cement in order to fully secure the shingles. Some shingles already have adhesive strips on the back of them, so you might be covered. However, you should still get adhesive to reinforce the new shingles. Replacement Shingles: Of course, you will need to buy replacement shingles. Even if you have an exact count of how many shingles you need, make sure you get a few extra shingles.

Time to Install the New Shingle

After you clear the damaged shingles, you can begin installing the new ones. Put them in the same position as the old ones. If the shingles have an adhesive strip, make sure you peel the covering before installing it.

Seal It Well

Once you complete the installation, make sure you secure it well to ensure you won't have problems with the shingles in the future. Inspect the area around it well and look to make sure all four corners are fully sealed. If water gets under the newly installed shingles, it can cause water damage. Also, perform regular maintenance on the shingles to keep them

Repairing a Roof Shingle: The Bottom Line

Now that you know how to replace a roof shingle, you will be able to keep your roof in top shape. Make sure you gather the material, inspect the area, and replace the damaged shingles. Need help with your roofing needs? Let Broward Roofing help you. Contact us for more information.

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