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How To Remove Shingles From A Roof

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Roof repair, worker with yellow gloves replacing red tiles or shingles on house with blue sky as background and copy space.

Due to the obvious hostile climate and water damage, your roof might deteriorate with time. Hence, living under a damaged roof can cause more problems because it will start experiencing water leaks. The only remedy to this problem is to replace the roof. Once you decide to replace your roof, you will first need to remove the current shingles. It is not a walk in the park, but the task is easier if you have the skillset and tools. If you have been wondering how to start removing your shingles, this guide is for you.

Signs That Show Your Shingles Need To Be Replaced

One of the most apparent signs that indicate you need new shingles is water damage. If you look up at your ceiling and see a yellow or brown spot, that’s a sign your roof is leaking. If you have trouble detecting the signs, hire a Roof Master & Construction professional for inspection because leaks are not caused by old and broken shingles only.

If your shingles are old, the edges will curl up, and others will dent due to the harsh weather they have gone through, like strong winds. That is a sign that you need new shingles because these are now weak to withstand winds and other elements.

The roof absorbs water, and with time, the shingles will start to rot. Others will have algae and moss build-up. That’s noticeable by a color change, and it reduces your home’s aesthetics. So replacing these shingles will be a good idea.


Preparing For Shingle Removal

Before you start removing the shingles, you need to ensure certain things are ready. For example, the new roof and installers should be ready for installation. Failure to install the new shingles immediately can lead to water damage. Here are more tips.


Decide When To Remove The Shingles

Setting a date for your shingle removal is essential because you need to keep your team informed. To avoid damaging your bare roof, you should also have your new shingles and the installer ready to replace the roof. Choose a day with chill weather.


Get An Installer To Replace The Roof

Failure to get an installer beforehand could frustrate you once you have removed the old roof and don’t know how to shield your house. Ensure you set the exact date of removal and replacement to avoid frustrations.


Get Help

You can get four to five people to help you with the removal because it is not easy to undertake alone. Ensure you prep your team for the challenging task, and teach them some safety measures. Please treat them with snacks afterward as an appreciation and ensure you keep first aid close by.


Get Bins To Dispose Of The Shingles

You don’t want to be climbing up and down a roof, so it is advisable to get a disposal plan. A bin that you can take to the top with you will work.


Put Your Shingle Removal Tools Together

Gathering everything together makes the work easier and faster. Therefore, put all the tools ready for the process and carry them with you on top of the roof. Wear your protective gear also, and ensure your team wears theirs for safety.


The Shingle Removal Process

There are three tips for shingle removal. First, once your tools and crew are ready, prepare the space for work. Remove any debris, cover the adjacent areas near the roof like flower beds and cover the air conditioner to prevent dust.

To complete the job easier and faster, divide the roof into sections. Start from the peak downwards and ensure you dispose of the shingles as you move. Do not be in a rush to finish; take it slowly.


Step 1: Start Tearing The Shingles

Place the shovel or fork under the current ridge caps to loosen them. Once the caps are relaxed, the shingles will loosen and start running downwards, leaving the nails behind.

Collect the shingles and discard them in the bin. Do not collect all of them at once because the container will be too heavy to carry. It will also be dangerous to take a whole bin of heavy shingles on a roof.


Step 2: Check The Flashing

Check if the flashing is damaged. Flashing directs water away from the roof. However, if the flashing is damaged, dispose of it. Do not destroy it because you can reuse the material for the new roof. Also, check the flashing around your chimney and plumbing vents if they are in good condition. If you are keeping it, bend it to remove the shingles underneath.


Step 3: Remove The Entire Shingles

Check for any remaining shingles from the peak of the roof and remove them. Place the tarp underneath the top to loosen the shingles and allow them to slide down. Collect the shingles in your bin.


Step 4: Remove Vent Flashing

Once all the shingles are off, it is time to remove the flashing. Start from the top downwards, so as to make the flashing loose. Ensure you also remove flashing around the vents.


Step 4: Clean The Roof

If you have removed everything, protruding nails and shingles are still lying on the roof. So gradually pull out any nails and sweep off any shingles left. Inspect the roof for sheathing damages. Also, ensure you note areas with rotting because they need to be replaced. For a cleaner roof, sweep with a push broom. Ensure you are still in your protective gear and shoes because shingle granules are slippery and can cause you to fall.


Step 5: Clean Up The Yard

How hard was the task? Congratulations on DIY shingle removal. To complete the process, you need to clean the areas around.

Dust off your gutters and ensure you don’t leave debris around. Next, remove the plywood on the air conditioner, but first, ensure the area around is clean. Finally, leave the hired contractors to install the new roof. It is now your time to relax and enjoy the snacks you bought your crew.


Final Words

Shingle removal is not an easy task, but with the right tools, it is manageable. However, if you are unsure as to how to go about it, or don’t have the right tools and skills, it is essential to seek professional help. That will also save your roof from damages.







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