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Question DetailsAsked on 6/17/2014

peel and stick underlinement and asphalt shingle, a leak now under our porch from nail hole ,new roof what to do?

new roof not even finished yet, peel and stick underlined with asphalt demential . a nail hole that was not tared from a tarp being on roof is now leaking over the porch..i see the hole and leak. roofer says no worries when all shingles are finished no leak with be there ?
i thought it should be fixed now but he pulled an attitude with me thank u for an answer.

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4 Answers

Voted Best Answer

I assume you had a tarp on the roof after the rip off and before the roof was finished. Depending on the size of the roof it may have been neccessary to put a nail or two to keep the tarp on and if winds was expected there may be some part way down the roof. They will probable slide a piece of sheet metal flashing between the layers of roofing and possibly add some tar under it as well. It is common and if it is done correctly there should be no problem and unless they get sloppy with that tar you will probably never see it. I believe yo mean dimentional shingles and if this si the case it adds to the chance of it not being seen.


Answered 5 years ago by ContractorDon


LAZY ROOFERS - drive me crazy when they do this. SO easy to just take some bitumastic caulk and seal the hole in the underlayment - or stick on a piece of peel and stick ice and water shield to cover the holes if underlayment type that it will stick to properly. Failure to do this is just a sign of a contractor who does not have any pride in doing the job right.

Technically, the shingles will prevent any leak because they willcover the hole - but if you do get a leak somewhere upslope in the future, then the underlayment is there to run that water all the way down the roof (under the shinles) to exit the edge or the roof at the fascia/gutters - and any holes in the underlayment mean a leak in your roof and possible sheathing rot from the trapped water.

Intact underlayment is REQUIRED by code- if it is damaged, by nail holes or workers walking or it or whatever, must be repaired properly before shingling. ALL the nail holes should be patched - many of the underlayment manufacturers even make special tape for patching tears or holes - bitumastic caulk is the right thing to use for roofing felt.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD


OK - as frequently is the case (and this is good, because it ensures different ways of viewing the problem are covered), Don and I saw the question quite differently. I was assuming the tarp covered the roof after the underlayment was down but not the shingles, he assumed nail holes went through the new shingles.

He therefore figures flashing and bitumastic caulk between the two layers of shingles to prevent the top shingle hole leak from penetrating the second shingle layer. Common practice but does nothing about the hole in the underlayment, in that case. I would take and bitumastic caulk the hole at the bottom layer of shingles, with tip cut really flat so it can sneak in under the tilted-up top shingle and caulk the second shingle layer hole - caulk exiting tube on flat face of bevel cut and going down into hole under pressure to fill the underlayment hole too. Then press down on the shingles in case caulk bulged up a bit underneath to prevent dimple in shingles, then caulk the hole in the top shingle carefully, without making a mess. Will be invisible from ground and just a little black dot even from up on the roof. That way, both the hole in the shingles and the underlayment is sealed. A LOT easier to do this if caulk tube is good and hot - either left in sun for awhile or left in front (safe distance) of space heater, if cold day. Non-fibrous bitumastic caulk or asphaltic roofing cement is the type to use.

Another solution I have seen used once in ice and water shield that I liked is using a new galvanized flange or stovehead screw or larger size headed nail somewhat larger in diameter than the original hole, put glob of bitumastic caulk in hole, drive in screw or nail through the shingles till head is set at sheathing wood surface (so will still have underlayment with hole trapped underneath the screw/nail head with nail or screw filling the caulked hole in the sheathing), then bitumastic caulk the holes in both shingles so they don't leak. Tis method makes slightly larger hole in shingles, but fills and covers the underlying hole more definitively.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD


I might not have explained it properly.

When it said they would slide a piece of step flashing under the shingle and tar it what is generally done is to lift the top shingle slightly and put that on the underlaying shingle then slide the flashing in and I usually recomend a small dab right under the nail hole location on top of the flashing below the finish layer.

It is not that much different than the way nail holes for roofing brackets are repaired if the roofer is any good. The nails should be under the top shingles and not through the top layer and when the bracket is removed some roofers will pull the nail and some will drive it in flush with the shingle, either way a bit of tar should be placed over the nail or nail hole.

Actually the reason I added second answer is the thing that bothers me about your problem is that there is a noticeable leak at all from a nail hole. Generally this is only a problem with a situation where water is being held back by water backing up such as in an ice dam situation. Unless this is an extremly low slope roof usually the capillary action of water will cause the water to run across the small hole, some may work through untill hole is tarred but generally not enough to notice. I wonder if it rained either durring a period when the tarp was off or the tarp had a leak.


Answered 5 years ago by ContractorDon


I thank Don for his followup, though what he was saying is as I visualized it. My point is his method (and mine with just roofing caulk and no flashing) should take care of the holes in the shingles - but his method, as I see it, does not plug the hole in the underlayment or the sheathing, so any OTHER leak from higher up the roof will be able to drip down through the underlayment and sheathing hole, especially if happens to lie in a low dimple or sheathing seam, as Murphy's Law says it will.

Therefore, you need some method to seal the underlayment hole as well - by injecting sealant, or sealant and screw method I described, etc. Even wetting the hole and then dribbling some urethane glue like Gorilla glue in there would probably seal it, but would also tightly glue the shingles to the underlayment, which could cause bunching - that is why asphaltic/bitumastic sealants and caulks are used on roofs, as they will move with the surrounding materials better.

BTW - if you are up to getting on roof, the bitumastic caulk (non-fibered type) or roofing sealant comes in caulk tubes for low-volume usage for probably less than $5 - so just go up with caulk gun and caulk the holes up, being careful in lifting top shingle so as to not crack it while caulking one under it. Get as little excess on bottom shingle as possible, so the top and underlying do not stick together tightly - lets them expand, as top ones moves around a lot on underlying ones as sun hits and leaves it.

Look at it this way - at least he covered the roof instead of just leaving it wide open to the rain like move roofing contractors around here do 1

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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