Cold Weather Roofing

Nov 04, 2013

As we move into the colder days of fall, we get a lot of questions regarding cold weather roofing. These questions are answered easier when you understand how shingles work.  Each shingle comes from the factory with an adhesive strip. This strip is located in the middle of the shingle and runs across end to end. It is precisely positioned so that when you lay the next shingle down, the bottom edge lays on top of the adhesive strip of the shingle underneath.  As the sun warms up the shingles, it activates the adhesive strip causing one shingle to bond extremely tight to the other. As a result, once the bonding occurs, you have one large sheet of shingles covering your entire roof.

On hot days when the sun is out and the temperature is above eighty degrees, the activation of the adhesive is almost instant. As we get into the colder months, this process sometimes takes longer.  Typically a roof will seal with a sunny day of around 45 degrees. The average high for December in Cincinnati is 43 degrees, so we typically get plenty of days for the shingles to seal.

So to answer the question, yes we do roof through the winter months. However, we don’t like roofing if the high temperature for the day is not above freezing. Also, we always and only, hand nail our shingles. The reason I mention this is because problems typically occur in the colder temperatures when a company uses air guns to install the shingles. The force of the air gun will cause the shingles to crack around the nail heads which can lead to shingle blow offs.

The two main drawbacks for installing shingles in colder weather are, you may have to wait a few days or even a couple weeks for your shingles to lay flat and the adhesive strip to activate. And two, it may take an extra day to finish you roof due to shortened daylight hours and the slower speed at which we install.

The upside is we do offer discounts for winter work to keep our crews busy in the slow season.

If you have any further questions or concerns about installing shingles in colder weather, please feel free to call or email me. 513-953-4356 or