Popped Nails: A Roof Problem That Gets Overlooked Too Often
Most roofing problems are really obvious and hard to ignore. For example, people often notice when their roof is missing a bunch of shingles, or when their flashing has peeled off from around the chimney. However, there is one common roofing problem that's more subtle and therefore gets overlooked quite often: popped nails. Here's a closer look at popped nails, the issues they create, and what you should do about them.
What are Popped Nails?
Popped nails are basically roofing nails that have started to emerge from the roof surface. In other words, they are popping up. Keep in mind that your roofer is meant to cover the nails in one shingle with another shingle. So you won't see the raised nail heads themselves. What you will see is little bumps in the shingle which, upon further inspection, are caused by a lifted nail head under that shingle.
Why are Popped Nails a Concern?
There are two reasons why popped nails are an issue. First, as a nail pops up, it raises the shingle on top of it. This creates space and allows water to flow under that top, lifted shingle, which can lead to leaks. Second, the raised nail head itself creates an inviting space for leaks to develop. Water can seep in around the raised nail head. It won't be a lot of water, but it can be enough to cause the roof deck to start molding or rotting.
What Should You Do About Popped Nails?
If you suspect your roof has some popped nails, contact a roofing company. They will address the issue by first lifting the top layer of shingles to expose the shingle beneath. Then, they will usually remove the popped nail and put a new one in place a few inches away from the original hole. Next, they will plug the hole from the old nail with roofing cement or a sealant. Finally, they'll put the top shingles back in place, on top of the new nails.
You might wonder why the roofer does not just pound the popped nails back down. They avoid this because usually, the nail will just pop up again now that there is enough space around it for it to do so.
If you look up at your roof and see a bunch of little raised pops, you likely have popped nails. Don't ignore this problem. It should be addressed by a roof repair contractor as it can lead to more significant damage