Nails and Shingles: The Basics

A top quality roofing project is about the basics being performed flawlessly.

Some things are so basic though it sounds rather silly to even talk about. In roofing, proper fastening falls into this category. But like so many other simple essentials it is amazing how many roofers just don't do it correctly. Now a small thing becomes a big thing. This voids your manufacturers warranty and is one of the easiest ways to ensure your roof will fail prematurely in some way.

So what exactly is the right way to fasten a shingle? 3 primary considerations are crucial. Each manufacturer will provide a strip running horizontally above the top exposed portion of the shingle. This area is reinforced in some way, either double plied or containing a fibered strip. The nails must go into this strip. Many roofers still casually nail high. This voids the warranty and decreases the hold strength tremendously.

The second item is properly driving nails. Nail guns are great but you must pay attention to the depth your gun is driving your nails. So many roofers will overdrive their nails, leaving you in the exact situation (or worse) as if you missed the nailing line altogether. Under-driven nails can pop up through the shingle above them and cause leaking. Your nails must be driven precisely flush. As the temperature changes and the shingles are softer or harder, or if the type of roof deck changes, you must modify your gun or it will not properly fasten the shingle to the roof. These are the kinds of basics that many roofers still ignore. This is why so many manufacturers warranties are voided.

The third and final consideration is that your nails do not land at the same point as the joint caused by the two shingles above it butting together. With consistent shingle spacing you can consistently space your nails in such a way this error is avoided.

Questions about your roof? Contact us today.

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