IL (847) 278-2272
WI (414) 662-9550
house roof cleaned and shingled

How To Shingle A Roof: Step-By-Step Guide

Are you vexed with a leaky roof? We know how overwhelming it can be to shingle a roof yourself. We’ve crafted this step-by-step guide that teaches you to install asphalt shingles flawlessly. Let’s transform the hurdle of roofing into an empowering DIY project!

Preparing the Roof for Shingle Installation

Before starting the shingle installation process, you must prepare the roof correctly. This involves clearing debris, removing old roofing materials, and installing flashing to protect against leaks.

Clearing debris

house owner cleaning the autumn leaves

Clearing debris from the roof is the top priority. This involves the removal of items such as large twigs, branches, and plant debris. It’s not just about cleanliness – it also ensures a smooth surface for shingle installation.

A clean roof surface promotes proper shingle adhesion and helps prevent any obstacles that could damage the new layer of shingles. This step undoubtedly contributes to your newly installed roof’s long-term durability.

Removing old roofing materials

Old roofing materials must be stripped away before proceeding. Tear-off reroof tasks involve carefully lifting off old shingles without causing any damage to the house’s structural integrity.

Removing all debris, nails, and leftover bits of material from your roof is crucial so that new materials can adhere adequately, ensuring a secure installation. A clean sweep also decreases the likelihood of future leaks or damages.

Plywood panels are used alongside windows and siding for protection during this process. The removal phase might entail loud noises and falling debris, but achieving a brand-new roof is necessary.

Installing flashing

Begin the flashing installation by identifying all vulnerable areas of the roof. These include intersections and corners where different roofs meet and around skylights or chimneys on exterior walls.

Measure each area that needs protection and cut appropriate lengths of flashing material to fit perfectly. You attach this metal barrier underneath shingles with roofing nails or adhesive, creating a watertight seal.

Most homeowners overlook the importance of step flashing installed parallelly with laying shingles, especially at points where the roof meets a vertical surface. Doing so ensures optimal protection from water damage and extends its lifespan significantly.

Step-by-Step Shingle Installation Process

placing the shingles on the roof step by step

To begin, carefully plan the layout. Start by installing asphalt shingles at the bottom edge of the roof and work your way up in horizontal rows.

Secure each shingle with roofing nails, overlapping them for proper water drainage. Once all the regular shingles are installed, finish the starter shingles off with ridge shingles at the peak of your roof for a professional look.

Planning shingle layout

When planning the asphalt shingle roof installation layout, take your time. Start by measuring the roof accurately to determine how many shingles you’ll need.

Some manufacturers will provide specific guidelines for certain patterns. It’s also essential to plan for water flow, ensuring there are no areas where ice and water itself can leak.

If you need help determining which layout is best, consult a professional roofing contractor who can offer expert advice. Remember, careful planning will help ensure a successful shingle installation.

Installing asphalt shingles

Installing asphalt shingles is a crucial step in the roof replacement process. Removing existing shingles and clearing the roof of debris is essential. Once that’s done, the roof deck must be inspected.

Next, lay down eave protection and underlayment before installing starter strips for a solid foundation. Aligning each piece carefully, cut the asphalt shingles into overlapping sections that extend five inches on each side of the top course and drip edge of the roof.

Finally, secure them with roofing nails to create a durable, weather-resistant barrier for your home. You can achieve a long-lasting new roof following these steps.

Installing ridge shingles

Installing ridge shingles is an essential step in the roof shingle installation process. These shingles are placed at the roof’s highest point and are the finishing touches to installing shingles. They are typically installed after the field shingles have been put in place.

Ridge shingles cover the roof’s peak and protect against potential leaks. To install them, you must cut and fit each ridge shingle along the ridge line.

This ensures your architectural shingles have a secure, tight seal that helps keep your home protected from water damage. Ensure to take care when installing ridge shingles to ensure they are correctly aligned and secured for long-lasting performance.

Tips for Extending the Lifespan of Roof Shingles

man repairing the damaged shingles

Proper maintenance is crucial for extending the lifespan of your roof shingles. Regularly inspect and clean your roof, remove debris, and address issues promptly. Hiring a professional roofing contractor can also help ensure your new shingles’ are installed correctly.

Proper maintenance

Regular maintenance is critical; cleaning your gutters regularly can prevent debris buildup that can damage the shingles.

Trimming trees near your roof is also essential to prevent branches from falling and causing potential harm. Another factor in maintaining the integrity of your roof shingles is ensuring proper attic ventilation, which helps regulate temperature and prevents moisture buildup.

Insulating your home correctly can protect your roof shingles from extreme temperature changes. By taking these steps, you can ensure that your first installed roof shingles remain in good condition for years.

Hiring a professional

Hiring a professional roofer is one of the best ways to extend the lifespan of your roof shingles. These experts have the experience to correctly install shingles on your roof, ensuring it lasts for years.

They can also help you choose suitable materials, ensuring they are long-lasting. By hiring a professional, you can have peace of mind knowing that your whole roofing cement is being taken care of by someone who understands all the necessary precautions. Don’t hesitate to enlist help for a stress-free experience.


Shingling a roof may seem daunting, but it can be done successfully. By following our guide, you can learn how to install asphalt shingles and extend the lifespan of your roof.

Remember to take necessary precautions for safety and attention to detail throughout. With proper planning and careful execution, you’ll have a solid, durable roof that will protect your home for years.

Embrace the opportunity of shingle installation with Shake Guys and discover how this achievable project can lead to long-term savings and benefits for your roof.

Schedule a Free Inspection & Consultation