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How to Put Shingles on a Roof

Installing shingles on your roof is an incredibly important task that protects your home from the elements. While it can be a rewarding DIY project, it requires careful preparation, the right tools, and a solid understanding of the process. Follow this step-by-step guide on how to put shingles on a roof to ensure your shingle installation is successful.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Remove Old Shingles: Use a roofing shovel or tear-off tool to remove the old shingles, starting at the peak and working your way down. Dispose of the debris properly.
  2. Inspect the Roof Deck: Check for any damage or rot on the roof deck. Replace any damaged sections to ensure a solid foundation for the new shingles.
  3. Install Drip Edge: Nail the drip edge along the eaves and rake edges of the roof to prevent water infiltration.
  4. Lay the Roofing Felt: Starting at the bottom edge of the roof, roll out the roofing felt horizontally, overlapping each row by at least 2 inches. Secure it with roofing nails.
  5. Install Ice and Water Shield: In regions prone to ice dams, apply an ice and water shield along the eaves and valleys for extra protection.
  6. Cut Starter Strips: Cut the tabs off several shingles to create starter strips. These strips provide a base layer that prevents water from infiltrating under the seams of the shingles.
  7. Place the Starter Strips: Align the starter strips along the eaves, with the adhesive strip facing up and the edge slightly overhanging the drip edge. Nail them in place.
  8. Begin the First Row: Start at the bottom corner of the roof. Place the first shingle flush with the starter strip and edge of the roof, nailing it with four roofing nails, positioned about 1 inch above the cutouts and 1 inch in from each edge.
  9. Continue Laying Shingles: Lay the next shingle, ensuring the tabs align and the edges butt together tightly. Continue this pattern across the roof.
  10. Offset the Shingles: For the second row, cut about 6 inches off the end of the first shingle to stagger the seams. Repeat the process of nailing and aligning shingles.
  11. Around Vents and Chimneys: Place metal flashing around any roof penetrations, such as vents and chimneys, to prevent leaks. Secure the flashing with roofing nails and roofing cement.
  12. In Valleys: Install valley flashing where two roof planes meet. Secure it with nails and roofing cement.
  13. Prepare Ridge Cap Shingles: Cut ridge cap shingles from standard shingles if necessary. These are typically made by cutting shingles into individual pieces.
  14. Install the Ridge Caps: Starting at one end of the ridge, place the ridge cap shingles over the ridge, ensuring they overlap. Nail each shingle in place with two nails, positioned about 6 inches from the edge.
  15. Check for Proper Installation: Inspect the roof to ensure all shingles are properly aligned, nailed securely, and that no nails are exposed.
  16. Clean Up: Remove any debris and tools from the roof and surrounding area.

Tools & Materials

  • Asphalt shingles
  • Roofing nails
  • Roofing felt or underlayment
  • Drip edge
  • Flashing
  • Chalk line
  • Hammer or roofing nail gun
  • Utility knife
  • Ladder
  • Measuring tape
  • Pry bar
  • Roofing shovel or tear-off tool (for removing old shingles)
  • Safety harness and gloves

Trust the Professional Roofers at PJ Fitzpatrick

It’s usually a good idea to have a professional roofer install shingles safely and properly so that the roof is long-lasting and leak-free. Top-notch roof repair and replacement services are available from PJ Fitzpatrick for homeowners who would rather have a roof that comes with warranty protection. Their skilled crew will make sure your roof is installed properly, giving you peace of mind and long-term home protection. Contact PJ Fitzpatrick today at 1-877-246-4354 for a quote on our roofing services. Don’t take chances with your roof – trust the experts at PJ Fitzpatrick for all your roofing needs.

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