How to do Roof Tear Off and Properly Install Underlayments

May 7th, 2019 BY First American Roofing

Learning how to do roof tear off is an excellent way to save money during a full roof replacement.

To have the best roof replacement, you want to make sure your roof teardown and underlayment is done properly. Not only will this save you money in the long run, but also many headaches in the future!

Today, we’re diving into how to teardown your roof and how to properly install your roof underlayment.

Let’s start off by talking about what to do with existing shingles. After that we’ll go into detail on handling the drip edge of your roof and how the underlayment is a key part of properly installing the edge of your roofing system.

What to do With Existing Shingles

A question we get all the time is, “Can you just go over the existing shingles?”

If you look around hard enough, you might find a contractor who will do just that. However, here at First American, we will not go over existing shingles. If you don’t take the time to go through a total teardown, you may miss some weaknesses in the roof that can be a real headache down the road.

Because of this, you always want to tear down to the wood — this includes the underlayments.

Watching the video, you’ll see that had we not done a total teardown on the roof, we would have missed a portion of the roof where the wood was rotting from what appears to be a leak in the roof.

While skipping some steps in the teardown would have allowed us to finish the roof faster, the fact is that had we gone that route, this homeowner would have likely experienced some problems next time a series of storms rolled through the neighborhood.

So, the takeaway here is to make sure your roofer is tearing down everything off the roof — from the shingles to the tar paper — to ensure the quality of the overall roof.

roof tear off during full roof replacement

Don’t Neglect the Drip Edge

Continuing to watch the video, you’ll notice a section of the drip edge where the underlayment is on top of the drip edge. This is bad mainly for one reason — it allows easier access for rainwater to get through and get under your roof.

As was the case for this roof, the previous roofer had made this mistake. So, not only should you make sure that you replace your drip edge, but when the roofer is installing the new one, ensure that they are placing the edge on top of the underlayment.

Otherwise — if you don’t replace the drop edge — you cannot cap off the underlayment properly.

roof tear off and underlayment installation during roof replacement

Use a Roofer That Values Quality

Replacing the drip edge and capping off the underlayment, tearing off the shingles, and going through a total tear down to inspect for damage are just a few of the many small details that make up a roofing installation. Considering your roof is a key component to the overall integrity and safety of your home, you cannot afford to cut corners during the process!

Here at First American Roofing and Siding, we are more than just a roofer that is looking to turn a profit. We want to ensure that the new roof we install on your home is one that will last. If you’re in need of a new roof, then contact First American Roofing and Siding today. You’ll experience the exceptional customer service and service quality that has made us the premier roofer in the La Crosse area.

We’re looking forward to hearing from you!