Roofing tips and trade secrets from the best in the roofing industry. Articles from professional roofers and adjusters detailing roof repair and maintenance

Roof Repair 101 – Replacing Your Damaged Asphalt Shingles in 5 Simple Steps

Introduction to Shingle Repair

Homeowners – is your existing roof leaking? You do not need to contact your insurance company and a new roof replacement may not be necessary, but it might be time to replace the shingles. But don’t worry, replacing a single shingle is actually easier than it sounds! This guide will help you understand the basics of shingle repair and provide step-by-step instructions to complete the job safely.>

Common Signs that Your Roof is Leaking

It can be difficult to detect a roof leak within your home.

Some of the most common signs of a leaking roof include: water spots on ceilings and walls, water stains on the rafters, water stains on the decking or flooring of the attic, mold or mildew growth, and shingles that look damaged or missing.

Check the attic first for signs of leaks. When inspecting the interior, rain will aid in locating any protruding water.

If you notice any one of these signs, it’s important to inspect the roofing system, or employ the roofing services of a local roofing company and have it repaired as soon as possible to prevent further damage. When inspecting the exterior, it’s best to inspect your roof on a dry day when it isn’t raining or snowing outside. Replacing asphalt shingles in the wrong area will not stop the current leak and possibly cause additional roof leaks if the roof repair is performed incorrectly.

Do I need a New Roof?

True professional roofers should be able to determine the source of the leak and offer reasonable roof repair solutions. A brand new roof may be necessary if the roof’s age prohibits proper roof repairs or if there is wide-spread storm damage present and insurance will cover a full roof replacement.

Consult a trusted roofing company to explore your roof repair and roof replacement options. Start with a local Google search like, “top roofing contractors in Charlotte NC”. Read the customer reviews and pick from the list of roofing professionals.

Charlotte’s Best Roofing offers free licensed inspections to residents of the Greater Charlotte NC area. Book Your Free Roof Inspection Online.

Roofing Tools & Roofing Material Required for Shingle Replacement

Before starting your roofing project, make sure you have all the necessary tools and materials ready. This includes a ladder tall enough to reach the damaged area, anti-slip footwear that will grip the asphalt shingles, a putty knife or pry bar, 7/8″ roofing nails, a box cutter, a hammer, new matching asphalt shingles, and roofing cement.

How to Secure Your Ladder

Step 1: Find a flat level area and stand your ladder up against the house with a 75 degree angle between the roofing system and the ground. Do not let the top of the ladder rest on a gutter, window sash, windowpane, or anything that can break or move.

For two story houses, extend your ladder while it is laying down and place the feet against the house. Then proceed to walk it up to position.

Step 2: Secure both the base and top of a ladder to prevent movement. Securing a ladder at the foot does not prevent a side slip at the top.

Step 3: Make sure you have inspected your ladder for any damage prior to using it and that all steps are secured in place before ascending.

Removing Damaged Shingles and Roof Installation

Once you are on the roof, you want to locate the roof leak based on location of the interior stains. Use your feet to feel around for soft wood. It may help to outline the soft area with sidewalk chalk as a guide.

  1. Using your putty knife or pry bar, start by removing the nails from the shingle above and below where you will be making your repair. Discard these nails safely and use new ones for installation later on. When all of the nails are removed from the surrounding shingles, the damaged shingles should slide out with little effort. If there is resistance, use your tool to feel for additional nails.
  2. Once you’ve removed all the surrounding nails, use a hammer (or box cutter) to carefully remove the damaged shingle.
  3. Now that the broken shingles are removed, you’re ready to install your new replacement. Take your new asphalt shingle and line it up with the surrounding shingles as close as possible. Make sure you have a good fit before nailing down your replacement. Hammer 4-6 roofing nails within the hit line, located on the upper portion of the asphalt shingle, marked by a color line.
  4. Finally, use roofing cement to seal around any exposed nail heads for optimal protection against future water damage or leaks.
  5. Clean up all roofing material and tools. Safely dismount the roof and lower the ladder

If you are having trouble locating the leak or are concerned about your safety while performing the roof repair, contact a professional roofing contractor in your area. Roofing companies have the necessary tools for this roofing project and years of experience to warranty against future leaks.

Check the Roof Leak Repair

When finished, make sure to inspect the repair job from the attic during a heavy rain so that you can be certain the roof leak has been successfully fixed. Replacing an asphalt shingle may seem intimidating at first, but with a little patience and some basic tools, anyone can do it it.

If the leak continues, considering hiring a local roofing contractor to assess the leak. For example, if you a resident of the greater Charlotte NC area, you can Google, “charlotte roofing contractor”, and find a qualified roofing company.


Properly replacing a shingle is essential for successful roof repair but is easy if you follow these steps. Do your research on what shingle style and color you have now on your existing roof. Remember, to replace a shingle, you must:

  • Locate the roof leak in your house
  • Secure a ladder to the roofing system
  • Remove the old and damaged shingles and nails
  • Install the new replacement shingle with fresh nails
  • Seal around any exposed nail heads
  • Inspect the repaired area during heavy rain to ensure it is fixed correctly. This job can easily be done by anyone with basic tools and patience.

However if you are having trouble locating the leak or concerned about your safety while performing the roof repair, we strongly recommend searching professional roofing contractors in your area who have years of experience performing roofing services and the necessary tools for roof installation.

About Charlotte’s Best Roofing

Founded in Charlotte, NC in 2018 by a licensed insurance adjuster, Charlotte’s Best specializes in roof repair, roof replacement, and insurance claim management. Looking for roofing services? Charlotte’s Best Roofing has a team of experienced roofing contractors and licensed adjusters to assist with all of your roofing needs. Book Your Free Roof Inspection Online.

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