Ridge Cap Shingles Installation
Architectural shingles can be used to shingle the ridge cap. Cut the shingles lengthways between the middle adhesive strip and where the dimensional portion of the shingles attach. Many installers use the cut off tab strip to narrow the gap between the last course or row and the ridge, fastening it with capped roofing nails in the prescribed pattern. A string or chalk line helps lay the shingles in a straight line.
The ridge itself is already protected by one or two layers of roofing felt or membrane. Use the 6 to 7 cut off non-tab strip of the dimensional shingle as the first ridge layer. The 36 to 40-7/8 strip is a single layer and will bend over the ridge.
Remove the cellophane that covers the adhesive strips on the back of the strips prior to installation. Butt the strips end-to-end without overlap and fasten with capped roofing nails 1 in from the ends and up from the edges, and every 6 to 8. The strip should tightly wrap the ridge and overlap the last row of shingles to cover their nail heads.
Cut other non-tab strips into uniform 10 to 12 lengths for the second layer of ridge shingles. Remove the cellophane strip from the adhesive strip at the edge that wont be nailed. Apply roofing cement in a C pattern along the ends and over the adhesive strip.
Overlap successive shingles so the nail heads are covered and so that the exposed ridge shingle width is consistent along the ridge.
Where Do You Nail Ridge Cap Shingles
Ridge cap shingles have one nail per ridge face except the last, which has 2 per side. Nails are 5 to 6 in from the tab edge or end that will be exposed and an inch up from the widest part or edge of the tab cutout centerline. The distance depends on the amount of shingle left exposed. The nailing area usually has a dab of black asphalt on the back of the shingle. The next shingle overlaps to cover the nail heads.
Installing Ridge Cap Shingles From 3 And 4
The installation of makeshift ridge cap shingles from a standard tab-type shingle is just the same as above, but the tricky part can be cutting the shingle to make a ridge shingle.
To cut a ridge cap shingle from a 3 or 4-tab shingle, youll use your shingle cutter a hook-shaped blade placed in your utility knife to cut apart each tab.
When cutting a tab, you dont want to make square or rectangular pieces. If you do, it will be difficult to hide the top part of the shingle when you begin to overlap them. Instead, when cutting the top not visible part of the shingle for your ridge cap, youll want to cut inward about 30 degrees or so to make tapered ends.
To make the tapered ends for a ridge cap shingle, lay a 3-tab shingle right side up flat on the ground with the tabs facing you. Between each tab, youll cut a letter V, with the point of the V at the beginning of the tab. Your cuts will go out and away from you. Youll also have to cut the ends in the same fashion, but since they are the ends theyll only need one cut.
A tapered end will ensure that the back ends of your DIY ridge cap shingles are hidden. Avoid cutting too great of an angle on your ridge shingles because the hidden portion of your ridge shingle anchors it securely with nails to the roof and the shingle behind it.
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Types Of Ridge Cap Shingles
A ridge cap shingle is a square, or nearly square, piece of shingle that is the same material as the rest of your roofing. If you have asphalt shingles, then youll have asphalt ridge caps, and so on.
Other types of roofing materials beyond asphalt will have their own ridge caps of varying types, but in this article will be looking at asphalt shingles and asphalt ridge shingles.
Lets take a look at the different types of roof peak shingles available and the differences between each.
What Size Are Ridge Cap Shingles
IKO manufactures many types of ridge cap shingles, in a few different sizes, to meet local market preferences.
- IKO Hip & Ridge 12TM has been popular for many years and has just undergone a product enhancement. While each piece is still 12 inches wide, the exposure has been increased from five and one-eights inches to five and five-eighths inches.
IKO also manufacturers different sized cap shingles to allow for pot vents. Many years ago, attic vents typically consisted of a combination of under-eave soffit vents and pot vents installed near the roof ridge cap. Some homeowners felt the pot vents detracted from the overall roof and home aesthetics. In response, the vent industry developed vents that were integrated right into a roofs ridgeline, where they were less noticeable. Some of these ridge vents were disguised even further, by incorporating a ridge cap shingle layer on top of them. Different ridge vent styles and widths are available in different markets, and so ridge cap shingles are made to match the locally available vents.
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What Is A Ridge Cap
A ridge cap is used to cover and close the seam where two roof slopes meet to form a ridge or roof apex. It prevents moisture from leaking in and causing damage and helps prevent wind damage too. It is the last part of the roof covering to be completed and caps a gable or hip roof. Roofs that do not have two or more decks meeting to form a ridge or hip do not require a ridge cap.
Most shingle roofs have a ridge cap made of overlapping shingle tabs cut from roofing shingles. They wrap the ridge and cover nail heads holding the top course or row of shingles on both sides of the ridge. Roof peak shingles are also offered by some manufacturers as an alternative to those crafted onsite. The ridge cap may be made in sections on the ground and installed or formed shingle by shingle on the roof.
A ridge cap made of metal and colored to match roofing material is commonly used with metal roofing. Metal ridge caps frequently are 10-6 long sections that overlap 6 and span the length of the ridge to seal out the weather. They are formed to fit the ridge and roofing profile and are also available in vented formats.
Can You Use Architectural Shingles For Ridge Cap
Architectural or dimensional shingles are highly resistant to weather elements and offer great protection to roof decks and ridge while enhancing the look and style. The ridge is a highly visible component of a buildings construction and should highlight the roof. Using the same type of shingles for the ridge cap as are on the rest of the roof deck blends and provides a uniform finished look to the roof.
Laminated architectural shingles are thicker than regular 3-tab shingles and more difficult to cut and form to the ridge. However, they can be shaped on-site to wrap the ridge, or special ridge shingles offered by most manufacturers can be used. The traditional method used with 3-tab shingles to form ridge shingles works for most dimensional shingles.
Some laminate shingles, such as Cambridge shingles are thicker and the tabs dont bend over hips and ridges easily and may crack or break. Depending on the slope of the roof decks, roofers may prefer to use more expensive pre-formed ridge shingles that match or use the thinner, non-tab part of the shingle to craft a matching ridge shingle.
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Ridge Cap Shingles And Roof Vents
Hip and ridge shingles are designed to work with ridge vents. Roof peak shingles should overhang by ½ to ¾ on either side of the vent.
Keep in mind that some ridge vents have a finished design, meaning you dont put ridge shingles over the top.
If your ridge vent does require ridge cap shingles, then youll first install the vent according to manufacturer instructions, using standard roofing nails. Then install the ridge cap shingles on top of the vent.
When installing the roof peak shingles on a ridge vent, use 2 ½ roofing nails to ensure the fasteners embed into the roof sheathing. There is a nail line on ridge vents that will indicate where you can nail your ridge cap shingles through the vent.
How To End Ridge Cap Shingles
One of the biggest questions for DIY ridge cap installers is how to terminate a row of ridge cap shingles. Know that you will not be able to avoid having a few visible nail heads at the end of your row of roof peak shingles. But the good news is there will only be a few.
To end a row of ridge cap shingles, trim your last shingle to fit the roofline. Then cut a new ridge shingle to fit over the last one. Make sure you use only the part of the shingle that is meant to be visible. Nail and then cover nail heads with roofing cement.
The last shingle that you nail will be a ridge cap shingle without the tar strip. Some prefer to use four nails for the last roof peak shingle, which is a good idea as it is the most exposed shingle since there isnt another covering it.
That last shingle that you cut to fit on end will then be nailed twice. Cover the nail heads with dabs of roofing cement.
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What Size Nails For Ridge Cap Shingles
Ridge cap shingles are installed to overlap the field shingles. This means the nails that hold them onto the roof have to be a bit longer to ensure they fully penetrate the additional roof layers and can anchor themselves firmly into the roof deck. So dont forget those longer nail coils for your equipment. Use at least two inch roofing nails.
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Choose A Ridge Cap Shingle Color
Usually, the hip and ridge shingles match the color blend used in the field of the roof although, in some markets, the hip and ridge shingles might be a contrasting color, which really frames the roof and accentuates the roof outline.
While IKO makes hip and ridge cap shingles to match their other shingle colors, there are more options. IKO Hip & Ridge 12 is now manufactured in innovative mid-tone color blends, to allow matching to a wider range of shingle styles and colors. Selecting the right color ridge cap shingle to match or contrast with your roof shingles can put the ideal finishing touch on a properly installed roof.
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How To Cut Architectural Shingles For Ridge Cap
Architectural shingles look great and are one way to keep moisture out and protect your investment. The shingles are thicker and heavier than regular 3-tab shingles which can pose some difficulties when capping the ridge. However, once you know how to cut architectural shingles for ridge cap use, the job is quickly done and looks perfect.
Some architectural shingles can be cut like 3-tab shingles into 3 or 4 ridge shingles. For thicker dimensional shingles, cut the shingle lengthways between the lamination weld and the middle adhesive strip. The non-laminated strip can then be cut into 3 or 4 ridge shingles.
In this guide, well explain what a ridge cap is and what architectural shingles are. Well discuss how to cut, install, and nail laminated shingles to cap a ridge and explore some other ridge cap shingle options. Our goal is to provide you with the information you need to shingle a ridge cap like a pro.
Can Architectural Shingles Be Used For The Ridge Cap
You should not use architectural shingles for ridge caps unless they are specifically intended to be used on the ridge cap or hips of the roof. Architectural shingles are thicker than 3-tab shingles and are challenging to cut to size for the ridge and hips. You cannot bend architectural shingles into the appropriate curve as the two different layers will not bend in tandem.
If your roofers tried to use architectural shingles for the ridge cap on your roof, the shingles would fail to adhere correctly and would look warped and disorganized. This poor adhesion would impact their performance and could increase your likelihood of leaks.
All of this is not to say that you should use 3-tab shingles for the ridge cap over your architectural shingles. You can buy ridge cap shingles that are thicker and share the advantages of regular architectural shingles. You should also be able to find ridge cap shingles that match the unique look, dimension, and color of your architectural shingles.
IKOs hip and ridge cap shingles are lightweight and perforated so that they can be quickly and cleanly divided by hand into three or four pieces. They are perfect to speed up roof installation without undermining the quality of the final product.
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How To Install Ridge Cap Shingles
When ridge cap shingles are installed properly, they accentuate the roofline when done incorrectly, they detract from the roof. Below is an example of poorly installed capping. Note how the roofer neglected to trim the unexposed part of the shingle.
Combined with the apparent lack of chalk lines, this resulted in a messy-looking job. Using one of IKOs pretrimmed ridge cap products could have greatly improved this installation.
For a full review of hip and ridge shingle installation, visit the IKO Blueprint for Roofing video series, Part 13. If you want to learn more about choosing hip and ridge cap shingles, visit IKOs Design Center or use our Contractor Locator to find a contractor near you.
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How To Install Hip And Ridge Shingles
When installing hip and ridge shingles, the first thing you should be aware of is that these shingles will use longer nails than your regular roof shingles. Why? Ridge shingles often have another layer of shingle to nail through.
Also, most manufacturers of ridge shingles make them double-layered for added protection. In the past, they were nearly all single layers but due to the exposed position of ridge cap shingles, they are prone to leaks and wind damage. Therefore, thicker is deemed to be better.
Plus, ridge shingles have the added stress of being bent, therefore you want a more serious fastener to keep it in place. Opt for 2 or 2 ½ roofing nails, which will be sufficient to hold your ridge cap shingles.
Another important consideration is which end to start your ridge cap shingles? If there is a direction that the wind typically comes from, then youll want to start in the opposite direction. In other words, you dont want the wind blowing your ridge cap shingles up you want the nailed end facing the direction of the wind.
Once youve chosen a starting point, lay your shingles. Each ridge shingle requires only two nails, although you are better served using four two on each side. That way you ensure a strong connection as these shingles can be prone to wind damage.
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Three Tab Shingles Compared To Laminated Shingles
The process to install ridge cap shingles has changed because roofing market trends have favored a new type of shingle. Three-tab shingles are easy to cut into strips to create a ridge cap, but now roofers and homeowners largely prefer laminated shingles.
Rob Davidson, Vice-President of Residential Sales for IKO Canada, explains why: When I started with IKO over 20 years ago, three-tab shingles were the most common shingle installed. Since that time, laminated shingles have steadily grown in popularity and are now the dominant shingle style by far. Homeowners love their dimensional random appearance, and contractors like their ease of installation.
How To Install The Last Shingle On Ridge Cap
Prepare the last shingle by removing the cellophane from both adhesive strips. Apply roofing cement along both adhesive strips and the sides in a D pattern. Place and bend the shingle over the ridge so it overlaps the previous shingle, covering the nail heads, and aligns with the shingles along the roof edge or eaves.
Use one or two roofing nails without caps per side 1 in from the ends and up from the edge. Cover the head of the nails with a dab of roofing cement after they are driven in to hide and protect them. Some roofers sprinkle and press colored granules collected from cutting shingles into the cement, making the dab almost invisible.
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How To Repair Or Replace Ridge Cap Shingles
To replace a ridge cap shingle, gently pry the ridge cap shingle just above the damaged one using a flathead pry bar. Then remove nails from the damaged shingle using the same pry bar while holding the first shingle up and out of the way. Install the new shingle and lower the undamaged shingle.
When replacing the shingle, use roofing cement over all the nail heads you come in contact with as the shingles movement will cause nails to move, resulting in larger nail holes that could allow moisture in.
Repairing a ridge cap shingle requires you to pry the shingle above the damaged shingle up with a flat pry bar or long flathead screwdriver. Once you have space, either install a new nail or roofing cement as needed, then lower the first shingle, secure nails, use roofing cement, and you are done.
A ridge roofing shingle, particularly those that are made from standard 3-tab shingles, are already under stress from being bent in ways they werent meant to be. Therefore, you must handle these shingles carefully when fixing or replacing them, as they can crack very easily.