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Replacing a Shingle? Here are Common Mistakes to Avoid

roof with missing shingles

As a homeowner, taking care of your home’s roof should be a top priority. From regular roof inspections, Replacing a shingle to gutter maintenance, checking your roof’s condition is a great way to prepare for the future and avoid major disasters. It can also add years to your roof’s—and your home’s— lifespan.

That said, even the most responsible homeowner occasionally runs into a situation that requires a little extra attention. One common roofing hassle is the repair and replacement of wood roofing shingles. Storm damage in Kansas and Missouri can cause shingles to shift, crack, and ultimately fall off. The result is unsightly, not to mention hazardous to your roofing structure. You’ll want to get that damaged shingle repaired quickly. 

Luckily, replacing a shingle is a simple do-it-yourself project if you avoid a few common mistakes. Here are the DIY mistakes we see most often at Shamrock Roofing and Construction.

Destroying Neighboring Shingles

The first step in replacing a damaged shingle is to remove it from the roof. However, this process is easier said than done. Removing the shingle without damaging surrounding shingles requires patience and a series of delicate maneuvers. If you’re not careful, you may expose the underlayment, creating prime conditions for water intrusion, damage, and ultimately, the growth of mold or mildew.

Not Fully Removing the Shingle

As many KC roofing experts will attest, it can be tempting to leave the undamaged part of the shingle attached to the roof. Although damage usually occurs on only a portion of the shingle, failure to remove it entirely will create a crowding condition when it’s time to attach the replacement part. If a shingle gets damaged, the whole thing needs to come off before you try to put the new shingle on.

Failing to Seal Nail Holes

As the process unfolds, it’s necessary to remove nails that are no longer functional. Perhaps they were holding down the old shingle, and they no longer serve a purpose. Search these nails out and remove them. But once they’re gone, make sure you go back and fill the holes. Failure to seal these newly formed holes is a huge mistake. Unsealed nail holes create ripe conditions for water infiltration, which leads to wood rot. To avoid this pitfall, KC roofing experts suggest filling in the divots as you go using a roofing sealant in a fine-tipped tube. 

Omitting the Roof Adhesive

Wood roofing shingles require a strong adhesive to hold them down and hold layers together. When replacing just one or two shingles, many homeowners try to save a buck or two by omitting this step, assuming that the surrounding shingles will hold the new one in place. This incorrect assumption can be costly, especially when contending with weather conditions common in the Lee’s Summit area. If you don’t use new roof adhesive, you could find yourself doing the process all over again come the next spring storm. 

Not Sure of Your DIY Roofing Skills? Shamrock Roofing Can Help!

Replacing shingles may seem like a simple project, but as with many home improvement and maintenance projects, you can quickly get in over your head if you don’t know what you’re doing. If you’d rather not risk the do-it-yourself route, contact us at Shamrock Roofing and Construction. With over forty years in the business, our team is equipped to help with all your roofing needs—even if that means just replacing a shingle!