Re-shingling a roof – PART 1

House shingles are not made to last forever, over time they will start breaking down, meaning they need to be replaced. Our roof was in the need of new shingles because they were about 25 years old. And we decided this was a project we could handle with some extra helping hands. This is the process of re-shingling a roof.

installing new shingles on roof

If you DO NOT plan on shingling your own roof it’s always a good idea to know the process. This way you know how a roof should be shingled and if the company that does the job did it correctly!


  1. The pitch of your roof will determine if you should do this project yourself. I would not feel comfortable with a pitch greater than a 6/12 but it can be done (our roof is a 6).
  2. Think SAFETY! You need to find out what you need to do to be safe on your roof.
  3. Please remove ALL old shingles, do NOT shingle over the top.


Let’s talk about the materials and tools you will probably need, these are the supplies we used.

Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience, click here to read my full disclosure policy


  • dumpster (for the shingles)
  • shingles (you want close to 10% extra just in case)
  • shingle ridge
  • starter shingle (sometimes your shingle can be this)
  • ice and water shield
  • roofing underlayment
  • chimney flashing
  • drip edge
  • vents (air and pipe)
  • 1-1/4″ nail coils
  • pipe flashing
  • plastic nails


  • roofing gun
  • shingle shovel
  • air compressor
  • hammer
  • square
  • razor knife
  • tin snips

Find the list of tools we use.

You will need to determine the amount of shingles you will need plus everything else for your roof. To determine this, measure your roof!


red brick home before adding porch

Before you start removing anything have somewhere to put those old shingles. We rented a dumpster plus used traps and a wheelbarrow.

Also, this one is IMPORTANT, check the weather. You will want a good chunk of time to remove and replace the roof without any rain.

TIP: If you have multiple layers of shingles, removing them will be the worst part and will take the longest. So plan on extra time.

removing old shingles

Our roof surprised us with three layers of shingles, we knew there was two. Removing the old shingles took us 2 full days (7 am to 9 pm) with 3 people. Two people were removing (we had two shovels) and one was filling the dumpster.

removing old shingles

I am going to say this again, this was the WORST part of reshingling. BUT if there was only one layer we would have been done in probably one day. So please remove the shingles for the next person! Plus it cost more for the dumpster, ours was almost 4.5 tons when everything was said and done (you pay by the tons).

SIDE NOTE: The dumpster I found cost us $220 for 30 days (we only needed 2 weeks) and this included the cost to dump.

Something we discovered also was that we did not have plywood for the roof base but wood slats. These would have been fine because there were no gaps between the wood but the knots worried us. So we decided to install 5/16″ plywood to give us a stable base. This added 1/2 day of work.

Like I said plan on extra time!! At this point, everything was removed from the roof plus we had the new plywood installed. But I have a question for you.


I had NO idea what this was for a roof until this project. A chimney cricket is used/built when you have a chimney on a downward slope of a roof. It is a small peaked roof that is installed on the backside of your chimney. Here is what one looks like.

add roof chimney cricket

It’s designed to divert water around your chimney instead of letting the water sit there. And if you don’t have one, you need one!

We actually did not have one on our roof and we have experienced first-hand water coming into our home because it was not diverted. The water would sit against the chimney then drip into our home. So we decided to build a chimney cricket and this is how easy it is!


The slope of a chimney cricket is normally the slope of your roof but it can be less. Here are the supplies you need to build a chimney cricket:

  • 2″x4″ boards
  • 5/16″ plywood
  • 2-3/8″ nails (or 3-1/2″)
  • circular saw
  • framing nailing gun or hammer
  • square
  1. Cut a piece of 2″x4″ board to give you the top of your ridge. Will look something like this once it’s installed. Notice one side of the 2″x4″ is a straight cut and the other is at an angle.roof cricket for chimney
  2. Center the board against the chimney and nail into place.
    • SIDE NOTE: This cricket is small so we only needed this board. If yours is larger you could need more 2″x4″ to brace the 2″x4″ ridge.
  3. Cut the plywood at a triangle to cover the top of the ridge you just added plus it goes to the end of the chimney. Looks like this after you have both pieces cut.roof cricket
  4. Nail the plywood into place and now it’s ready for the waterproof underlayment and shingles.


This next step is done in different ways but I am going to share the way that makes the most sense to me to help you prevent water from entering your home.

First is installing your new drip edge, it’s the long metal pieces. You will need your tin snips to cut the metal around corners and ridges.

TIP: You want to connect the drip edges together when they end but think of which way the water will run on a slope and place the piece going down the slope on top. This way the water keeps running down and does not get stuck or goes under.

Nail the drip edge into place using your roofing nails.

After the drip edge is all installed (on at least one side of the roof), its time to add the paper. The first row at the bottom of the roof edge should be the ice and water shield. This stuff has a sticky back and black in color.

Cut the ice and water shield to the size of your space (one end to the other).

TIP: You want the underlayment at the edge of the roof, so it will overlap the drip edge! This way water will run off the roof.

Install the ice and water shield by removing one plastic strip, the closest to the end of the roof, in about 3-4 foot sections and sticking it into place. Continue doing this until all the plastic is removed (2 strips) and the ice and water shield is in place.

Install more ice and water shield to the ends of your roof plus any valleys. For example, where our front porch roof hits the main roof it creates a valley.

adding waterproof paper on roof

Once the ice and water shield is in place, it’s time for the roofing underlayment. This underlayment is installed like the ice and water shield but because it’s not sticky you use the nails with plastic tops to secure to the roof.

The nice thing about the underlayment we used is that it had marks for everything, like where the underlayment should overlap and where to place the nails. To install, cut the paper to the space and remember to overlap each layer by at least 2″. Plus the nails should be at least 1-2 feet apart depending on your location (high winds you will want the nails closer together) and how soon you will be shingling. Once you cover a roof with the underlayment it can get rained on but don’t let it sit for weeks.

Let me give you our example: we were in a hurry to cover our roof with this underlayment late Saturday night. Because the weather randomly decided to change and we would be getting rain that night plus we would not be able to finish adding the shingles for a couple of days. But by having the underlayment on the roof, we would be safe for a couple of days (think of the underlayment like a tarp). We just made sure the underlayment would not flap anywhere.

And that brings us to adding shingles and vents to the roof. Because this tutorial is really long I have decided to break the post into two. You can find how to add shingles here.

Installing shingles – PART 2

new shingles on roof

Just so you know, we did decide to build a new porch gable so that is why our house looks so different. You can find that tutorial here.

front porch makeover by adding porch

I really hope that this tutorial helps you understand how to reshingle a roof but please remember to do your research and think safety!

SIDE NOTE: Speaking of safety, we did use a couple of scaffolding to roof our house. One was one that goes between ladders and another was a roof bracket.

how to re-shingle a roof

*Please note: we are not experts, just homeowners learning about remodeling and sharing our projects with you. The projects, suggestions, and tutorials on TwoFeetFirst are not error proof, they are simply what worked for us or did not work. Additional research and precautions are always recommended and TwoFeetFirst, LLC cannot be held responsible for your personal safety or the outcome of your project.*