How To Take Off Roof Shingles

Spare your wallet by learning how to take off roof shingles. Removing roof shingles is a tedious and very laborious task, but in today's economy it will save you a lot of money. There are specific safety steps you need to make to safely remove roof shingles. Always protect yourself from a fall hazard by harnessing yourself up on the roof. Ladder safety is paramount to even get started and finish the job of removing roof shingles safely. Please follow the safe ladder use stickers applied to all ladders.

To remove roof shingles, you will need:

  • Ladder tall enough to safely get on the roof
  • Claw hammer
  • Roofing hammer
  • Wide blade scraper
  • Medium pry bar
  • Pole scraper
  • Dumpster or trash cans for the scraps
  • A large magnet
  1. Shingles are placed on a roof starting from the bottom, working up to the peak. Therefore removing in reverse just makes sense. Depending on the length of time the shingles have been on the roof, use the wide blade scraper or pole scraper and begin scraping from a few rows from the peak.  Once loosened, begin pulling the shingles by hand.
  2. The roofing nails will be your biggest challenge to completely removing the roof shingles. You can use the claw or roofing hammer to pull the nails. The medium pry bar works great when the claw is hammered up under a nail to fully pull it. If you simply have one tough nail and it refuses to be pulled, hammer flush with the wood.
  3. While removing the roof shingles you will also want to remove the tar paper beneath. Be very careful to do as little damage to the wood as possible if you are not replacing the wood too. Scraping and pulling nails will completely clear the roof of all roofing materials and ready it for the installation of new materials.
  4. Most of the roof shingles and other debris will have either fallen off the roof or are stacked up around the roof. Toss the lot into the dumpster or trash cans for hauling away. There will no doubt be nails that have fallen off and lost in the yard around the house. Use the large magnet to pick up all the nails you can't find, for proper disposal.
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