I had new roof decking installed the installers missed the rafters under the eaves, in many places. So I have these like 3" nails sticking down visibly under the eaves. In the attached photo looking up at the eave, fascia on the left, house on the right, I'm pretty sure these exposed nails were meant for the framing member/rafter: framing nail shiners under eaves

What can I do to improve the appearance here?

Some of my ideas are:

  1. Hit them flat? (would hinder pulling them out later but the plywood is likely to stay on for awhile)
  2. Clip them? Would that encourage the nails to lift out? I'm in Southern California so not too much weather expansion to worry about.
  3. Grind down and bondo? (I read this somewhere, would make them flush).

I'd like to just clean it up so I can paint it.

  • Have you contacted the installer? I would ask them to come back and fix this. If you haven't paid them yet, that would put you in a better position in this. Sep 4 '20 at 17:41
  • sigh problem is I want this DONE. I don't want them back any more. I know this is sheathing, the shingles are finished. Since it's at the bottom, would required relaying of a huge amount of shingle and underlayment, right? Do I really want them re-doing all that as a "side job" now that the crew has moved on? It's literally all over the house, looking for a DIY fix/workaround. Sep 4 '20 at 17:45
  • first we need it identify the problem, is it extra nails, or missing nails (nails that miss)? are the the boards also nailed to the rafters?
    – Jasen
    Sep 5 '20 at 1:31
  • @Jasen, really good point. I don't know and might never know because the roof is done. It's possible that they were feeling for the rafter and eventually found it after a few misses, and just never thought to pull the missed nails. If I could find that out, I would feel better about it. I do see two nails laterally, as if they guy was fishing for the rafter. OTOH there are 3 misses in a row. I hope he didn't miss the framing on that whole run. Any tips or tricks to detect this? Sheathing and shingles are down already. Sep 16 '20 at 16:10
  • Some closure for me here: inspector came and demanded the nails be cut to clear permit. He said it's a quality of work issue. The city called the roofer back before I even had a chance, dude came and grinded them all off. Oct 15 '20 at 17:09

Use an end nipper to cut them flush:

enter image description here

Brand name on image included deliberately as this is an endorsement because quality products give better performance.

  • I just wouldn't do this. Some of these nails are just going through plywood. Start cutting them and you might have some issues with them holding. The person who did this didn't follow proper procedures.... I am guessing they probably did the minimum fastening too. I warn that this could make an aesthetics issue a physical issue.
    – DMoore
    Sep 4 '20 at 20:14
  • there's already issues with them holding. cutting them will not have a large effect on their strength. and if there is also a nail that goes to the rafter theses nails are basically doing nothing.
    – Jasen
    Sep 5 '20 at 1:21
  • Right, these missed the rafter, so while they are at least holding to something (OSB), they aren't really doing what they were intended so compromising their holding isn't really a concern. They did nail to code (every 6 inches) as observed on deck, they just missed some/alot. Sep 16 '20 at 16:03
  • This is my preferred solution because it doesn't shoot nails into the grass where my kids play like grinding. However, the roofer came back and just grinded them. My plan was the use the nippers to notch them really close to the wood then bend/break them off for more control. Oct 15 '20 at 17:10

Well honestly you can't do much with them. I wouldn't take a grinder or anything like that too them as during the cutting process you are surely loosening the nails and you risk them potentially failing or popping on the other side. Even bending these into the board more, that is a risk I wouldn't take as the reward (still doesn't look perfect) outweighs the risk.

Really you have two choices here:

  1. Paint the nails and they will only be noticeable if you are standing under trying to look at them.
  2. Install a soffit.
  • 1
    I like boxing them in , less places for wasps and mud swallows to build nests.
    – Ed Beal
    Sep 4 '20 at 19:44
  • just painting them is actually a good suggestion. Probably best to try that first, see how it looks, then move on to more drastic measures if unsatisfactory. Sep 16 '20 at 16:06
  • Roofer came back and grinded them off, inspector demanded the be removed for permit, so I couldn't leave them. Oct 15 '20 at 17:09

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