How to Shingle a Slanted Roof

A slanted roof is possibly the easiest shingling project for the do-it-yourselfer.

Roof Deck

A slanted roof, such as a shed roof, does not have a peak or ridges and valleys that require specialized skills. Still, this type of shingling project will require the right tools, equipment and know-how.

Prepare the roof deck by removing old shingles, if necessary. New shingles can be placed over one layer of old shingles. If there are already two layers of shingles, or if the homeowner desires, the shingles should be removed.

Cover the roof with tar paper. This serves as an underlayment for the shingles and can protect the building if it rains during the shingling project. Tar paper is fastened to the roof decking with a staple gun.

Place the starter roll along the bottom edge of the roof overhanging the fascia trim boards by about a quarter of an inch. This overhang keeps water running off the roof from running directly along the trim boards. Starter roll is an asphalt material, about a foot wide, similar to the shingles.

Find the center of the bottom edge of the roof. If three-tab shingles are used, place one shingle on each side of the center point. Align the bottom edge of the shingle with the bottom of the starter roll and nail in place. Follow the roofing nail-placement instructions on the shingle package. Continue placing shingles along the starter roll until the edge of the roof is reached. The piece of shingle cut from one end of the roof may fit on the other end of the roof.

Cut the bottom portion off of interlocking shingles. Place the shingles as described earlier.

Center the first shingle of the second row over the seam between the two shingles at the center of the roof. For three tabbed shingles continue placing shingles for each row working up the roof. Each row will start with a shingle centered above the seam of the center point of the previous row.

Interlocking shingles have small tabs at the bottom that fit in the slots of the previous row. Continue placing the shingles up the roof.

Cut around any vents, chimneys or other obstacles on the roof. Use roofing tar to seal all openings around these features. Cut the final course of shingles so they overhang the fascia trim boards by about a quarter of an inch. Nail the top edge of the shingle to the roof decking.

Things You Will Need

  • Hammer
  • Utility knife
  • Staple gun
  • Nails or staples
  • Shingles
  • Tar paper
  • Starter roll
  • Ladders or scaffolds

Tip

  • Shingling is best done in moderate weather. If it is too cold, the shingles are stiff and difficult to work with. Too warm and they are easily scuffed by the workers on the roof.

About the Author

Keith Allen, a 1979 graduate of Valley City State College, has worked at a variety of jobs including computer operator, medical clinic manager, radio talk show host and potato sorter. For over five years he has worked as a newspaper reporter and historic researcher. His works have appeared in regional newspapers in North Dakota and in "North Dakota Horizons" and "Cowboys and Indians" magazines.