In a recent storm a few shingles were damaged and need to be replaced, so I figured this might be a good question for the site.

What's the proper procedure for replacing single asphalt shingles?

2 Answers 2


Usually, if shingles start to blow off, then it is time to replace the whole roof. With that being said, here are the steps:

  1. Gather tools:

    • Hammer
    • New shingle(s)
    • Pry bar
    • Ladder
    • Roofing cement
    • Putty knife
  2. Remove the damaged shingles. There are usually 4 nails in each shingle, plus the four from the shingle above it that will be through it also. Remove the nails in the shingle and then pull it out, leaving the nails in the shingle above it. You can rock the shingle back and forth until it tears out around those nails.

  3. Remove or hammer in the nails that are left. Use roofing cement to cover the nails and any tears in the tar paper.

  4. Replace the shingle(s). If you are doing multiple shingles start at the bottom. Line them up with the shingle to the left and right. If the nails from the shingle above it will not let you push it in far enough, cut little slits for the nails. Put about four nails across each one just above where the color changes to black.

  5. Put roofing cement over the nails on the last shingle. The new shingles will cement themselves together on the first hot day, so don't worry about cementing any of those.

  • Shouldn't I loosen the nails in the shingle above, so I can get the damaged one out and the new one in (Step 2)? It's easier than ripping the shingle out, and then cutting slits in the new one.
    – Tester101
    Apr 29, 2011 at 14:09
  • Certainly. I just always try not to mess with the shingles that I want to leave, as much as possible. If you end up tearing that shingle then you will have another that needs replaced or at least needs some cement. You also don't want to break the seal that it has formed with the one above it, or you will need to put cement between those two. But, really both ways work just as well. Apr 29, 2011 at 14:33

Fairly simple process. Remove any and all damaged shingles so you are back to good firmly secured, making a block area to be replaced. Start at the bottom, using exact same size/color shingles. Put a few daps of blind roofing cement or roofing sealer (caulking tube type) along the old sealing tabs of the lowest existing shingles. (located just above the tab slots). Lay and nail the new shingles going up until you get to last course. You will have to lift and pull the nails on the top border of existing shingles so you can insert the top of the new shingle under it and get a few nails in them. Now add a few more daps of sealer, lay the tabs down over your new shingles and replace the nails holding up the tabs of the next tier. put a few daps of sealer and just lay the tabs back down. Along the sides, you may have to do a few under slides, but use the same procedure as you would at the top. Good Luck. BTW, shouldn't your homeowner's insurance be covering this fix, along with the interior damage?

  • Homeowner's covers damaged shingles? I did not know that. Will filling a clam make my rates go up? If so, isn't it cheaper to do the repairs myself rather than paying a higher insurance premium?
    – Tester101
    Apr 29, 2011 at 14:01
  • Last year, we had a hailstorm that damaged the shingles. Our insurance (State Farm) came out, and cut a check right there. Since it was deemed an "act of god", our rates did not go up. Apr 29, 2011 at 14:12

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