What Happens When My Roof is Missing a Shingle?

A common question that we frequently get asked is, "What happens when my roof is missing a shingle?"

Most homeowners think that you have to replace your entire roof -- but that's not always the case. Below are the steps to take if you are missing shingles on your roof:

1. Avoid Further Damage – Call A Contractor

First things first, you don't want to stress -- this is your perfect time to do your research and contact your local contractor. You want to schedule an inspection right away to get ahead of the curve and avoid further damage to your roof. Missing one shingle means that your roof is very vulnerable to leaks or other types of damage. It might not be noticeable right away, but water can first leak into your roof's decking, causing it to warp, rot, and eventually start leaking into your home. If you notice any missing or damaged shingles, it's important to get an inspection right away and have a temporary patch installed to prevent any problems before we can do the full repair or replacement.

2. Determine if the Roof is Repairable

My Roof is Missing a Shingle

A local, reputable contractor will be able to determine the condition of the roof. Many factors can go into this depending on the age of the roof, what type of shingle, and the initial installation.

  • The older a roof gets, the more brittle the shingles will get. This can cause repairs to become extremely difficult because you can actually cause more harm than good by damaging shingles around the affected area while trying to perform that repair.
  • The initial installation can play a big factor as well. For example, if the roof was initially installed incorrectly, doing a repair on this that is up to code isn’t possible. Building Codes will require materials to be installed per manufacturer specification. If that wasn’t done initially, then that roof would not be up to code. Additionally, if the roof was installed poorly from the beginning, it may require tearing out additional areas around the affected area to correct this. Many times this could possibly lead to a full replacement depending on the situation.
  • Lastly, the type of shingle can play a factor as well. Generally, the better the shingle, the easier the repair. If a cheaper product was initially installed, the chances of damaging areas around it go up when you’re repairing those areas.
  • It’s always best to call a licensed roofing contractor when you are dealing with these issues.

3. Determine if the Roof Material is available.

  • There may be circumstances where the original material that was initially installed on the home is no longer available. In this case, matching a shingle can be tougher than it sounds. A knowledgeable roofing contractor will be able to advise you if there is an available match to your current shingle.
  • In certain cases, if your materials are no longer available, many insurance companies will end up paying for the full replacement even on a small repair. This is because the state of Iowa has a line of sight - reasonable match law. It states when a loss requires a replacement of items and the replaced items do not match in quality, color, or size, the insurer shall replace as much of the item as is necessary to result in a reasonably uniform appearance within the same line of sight.

4. Perform the Repair

The last step is to perform the repair. It is important to hire a licensed, reputable contractor who will include a workmanship/labor warranty with the work. This is important in the case that additional damage occurs and any future leaks. It is also important that all work is installed up to code. If not, this could result many future issues including insurance claims not being covered, the sale of the property being delayed, etc.

Call a local contractor like Heartland Roofing, Siding, and Solar, LLC at 515-219-4847 to eliminate the stress and hassles of the repair work.

Call Heartland Roofing, Siding, and Solar Today:

If you're in need of roofing services in the Des Moines area, Heartland Roofing, Siding, and Solar is your best choice. With our years of experience, commitment to quality craftsmanship, exceptional customer service, and industry credentials, we are confident in our ability to exceed your expectations. Don't wait any longer – call us today at 515-219-4847 to discuss your roofing needs and experience the Heartland Roofing difference.


When it comes to finding the best roofing contractor in the Des Moines area, Heartland Roofing, Siding, and Solar stands out for all the right reasons. With our experience, expertise, commitment to quality craftsmanship, exceptional customer service, and industry credentials, we are the trusted choice for all your roofing needs. Contact us today at 515-219-4847, and let us show you why Heartland Roofing is the premier roofing contractor in the Des Moines area.