I spent most of today removing the asphalt shingles from our laundry room roof. The laundry room was an extension built by the previous owner, enclosing part of a second floor deck. The roof has a very low slope (10:1), yet whoever built it made the questionable choice of shingles, which aren’t recommended for roofs with slopes lower than 4:1, and even with waterproof underlay, should not be used on a slope lower than 6:1. After 25+ years, this led to the roof leaking. When I climbed up to patch it, my foot went through the shingles and the sheathing. Since then, it’s been tarped, which has kept most of the water out.
To remove the old shingles, I bought a tool that looks a bit like a shovel with slots in it for $10 at a garage sale. Starting at the top of the roof, you shove it under the shingles and lift. When done, I took this picture of what lay beneath. In addition to the use of shingles, the roofer had gone with standard tar paper, which should not be used on a low slope roof. Worse, they sheathed the roof with fiberboard, which is a cheap alternative to plywood, and used only a 1/2″ thickness, which is far too thin. As you can see, the fiberboard was pretty rotten. I’ve removed most of it and started resheathing the roof with 5/8″ plywood.
Next Post: Sheathing a Roof