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How To Replace And Repair Damaged Roof Shingles

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Damaged or broken roof shingles can reduce the life of your home's roof. They do this by allowing the elements to penetrate the roof, causing rot and sometimes even mould. It is imperative that you address any problem shingles immediately. Let's take a look at how to remove and replace or repair broken shingles on your roof.


You will need to assess the damage and purchase replacement shingles for your roof; it is better to err on the side of caution and get a few spare shingles. You will also need roofing cement, nails and a hammer. Always keep your personal safety to the forefront of your mind when working on a roof by investing in a harness.

Removing The Shingles

Although roof shingles can be made using slate or plastic (among other materials) most roof shingles have asphalt in them. For this reason, work on the roof in a cool temperature, or wet the shingles before you begin to work. Warm asphalt can be difficult to work with. Locate the faulty shingle, and using a pry bar, begin to separate the shingles from around the immediate perimeter of the faulty shingle. Work the shingles free from the adhesive using the pry bar. Once you have exposed the nail securing the damaged shingle into place, slide the pry bar underneath the shingle and gently elevate it until the nail comes out. Work towards the damaged shingle, and remove this one in the same manner.

Replace The Shingle

Position the new shingle so it is in the same location as the faulty shingle. If the new shingle has an adhesive strip, remove this first and slide into place. Most shingles have pre-cut nail holes; drive a nail into each of these. Once it is nailed down, slightly elevate the shingle so you can apply a small amount of roofing cement underneath it. Apply the cement, and press the new shingle down into place. Repeat this process for all of your broken shingles.

Repairing A Shingle

Sometimes, you will find that a shingle only has a crack in it, but is otherwise in a decent condition. The damage can happen if a tree or other item strikes the roof, usually during a storm. To repair this type of damage, apply a liberal strip of roofing cement along the crack, and hold it in place for around one minute. This allows the adhesive to seal properly.

Curled shingles or shingles that crumble as you try to work on them, will usually need to be replaced altogether, rather than repaired. If you are uncomfortable working at heights or have other concerns about your roof, contact a professional, such as Silverleaf Roofing & Restoration.