How to Remove Roof Flashing Properly

What You'll Need
Roof Cement
Pry Bar
Roofing Nails
Tin Snips
Metal Break

Roof flashing is used to seal your house from the elements. Roofs are designed to be waterproof for a very good reason. If they lose their waterproofing then this can cause serious damage to not only the roof but also your whole home. The water can get inside the roof and run down the walls of your home. If leaks aren't treated swiftly they can cause structural problems for your house.

The flashing is one of the most important parts of your roofs waterproofing system. This is made out of lead and seals all of the joints in your roof. Without the flashing, water would collect in gaps between the tiles and be able to penetrate your roof.

Step 1 - Removing Shingles

Start by removing the shingles or tiles from the area where you want to remove the flashing from. The tiles are laid over the top of the old flashing and so by removing these you will then be able to access the flashing.

Be careful when removing the roofing materials from your roof because you will want to reuse as much as you possibly can. If you break lots then you will have to buy lots of replacements.

Step 2 - Loosening Siding

If you are removing flashing against the side of a wall then you will need to loosen the siding. This is because the flashing will be slid under the siding. Lift the siding up slightly so that you have enough room to remove the flashing and replace it with a new piece.

Step 3 - Removing the Nails

Once the flashing is accessible it can then be removed fairly easily. Start by removing the nails which are securing the flashing by using a claw hammer or pincers.

Step 4 - Removing the Flashing

After the nails are removed you can then pull the flashing off the roof. You might need to do pull quite hard because the flashing will still be fixed down to the roof.

Be careful not to damage the roofing felt underneath the flashing because otherwise this will need to be replaced to retain the integrity of your roof.

Step 5 - Removing Any More Nails

If there are any nails left in the flashing then these can be pulled out, just make sure that all of the nails are removed because these can damage the new flashing.

Step 4 - Cutting New Flashing

A new replacement piece of flashing now needs to be cut to the right shape. If your original piece of flashing is still intact then it's possible to use this as a template.

Try to be as accurate as possible so that you can protect the waterproofing of your home. If there are any gaps then this will allow water through. Always cut bigger than you need if you're ever in doubt, it's much easier to cut extra off than worrying about something being too small.

Step 5 - Bending Flashing

The flashing should be bent into the right shape by using a metal break. If you are flashing down the side of your house then you will need to bend a 90 degree angle into it, however if you're flashing the valley in a roof then you will not need to worry about this.

Step 6 - Fixing Flashing

The flashing should be positioned in the right place and then nailed into position. Try to keep the nails at the edges as much as possible so that the only weaknesses in the flashing are protected by the shingles.

Step 7 - Replacing Shingles

The shingles now need to be replaced, as does the siding if that has also been loosened. Nail the shingles and siding back into place. Put roofing cement down between all of the gaps to fully waterproof it.