How to Repair a Roof Leak on a Shingle Roof

roof-repair-shingles​A leaky roof is an issue that could cause additional problems in your home if it is not corrected properly. Although, in some cases, a roof leak may develop during the time that the roof needs replaced, there are many cases in which those leaks may occur long before an entire tear off is necessary. In fact, many roof leaks can be repaired with just a little effort, as they tend to be a localized problem.

The first step that is necessary when doing any type of roof repair is to identify the area where the problem exists. In some cases, it will be easy to identify, such as if there is a shingle missing or if one has become visibly damaged. Another common culprit for roof leaks is any penetration, such as chimneys, roof vents or plumbing. At times, the source of the leak may not be easily identified. If water is getting under the shingles, it can travel for a considerable distance before it finds an area where it can enter into the home. If you are having a difficulty identifying the source of the leak, it is best for you to contact a professional contractor.

When it is easy to identify the issue that is leading to the active leak, it may also be easy to fix. Make sure that you gather all of the equipment and supplies that are necessary to do the job, so that it can be done without delay. You should also prepare for the possibility that further damage may be found, once you remove the shingles to replace them. If the plywood under the shingles has become damaged, it may be necessary for you to call a contractor to handle the problem.

One of the issues that could be causing the problem is if a shingle has curled. In warmer weather, you can often reattach the curled corner or edge using some asphalt roof cement. If the weather is colder, you may need to heat the shingle with a propane torch before you begin working with it. Trying to straighten out a cold shingle could result in it breaking and needing to be replaced.


If the shingles have become damaged and need replaced, they will need to be removed. Lift the edges of any shingles that are above the damaged shingle, so that you can access the nails which attach it to the roof. Remove the nails with a pry bar, after which you can slide the old shingle out from underneath the upper row.

Before sliding the new shingle into place, use a utility knife to slightly round the upper corners. This will make it easier for you to get it into position. From that point, you will slide the new shingle into place and align the lower edge with the adjacent shingles. Lift the edges of any shingles that are overlapping it and attach the new shingle with 6d roofing nails.

Although it can be a relatively easy job to replace roof shingles and to fix an active leak, you should always be prepared for the unexpected. Start early enough in the day that you can handle the job before the sun goes down or have a qualified, trusted contractor like Lowcountry Roofing on speed dial..

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