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Can Missing Shingles Cause Leaks?

February , 2023 | 7 min. read

By Anthony Marzbanian

Have you ever walked through your yard only to find one of your roof shingles lying on the ground? For many homeowners, this is when to cue the panic. They aren't supposed to come off, are they? What happens to my roof if they do? 

These are a couple of the questions that may pop into your mind as you navigate this issue. A missing shingle itself isn't necessarily a cause for concern just yet, but it can lead the other problems down the line- especially if others follow suit. You may wonder what issues can arise from a shingle gone haywire...

Luckily you landed here, because RoofCrafters has repaired and replaced roofing systems with missing shingles for almost thirty years. Over our nearly three decades of dedicated service, we've seen a lot of fallen shingles- and what becomes of the roofs they descend from. If anyone knows what to expect from misplaced shingles, it's us. 

This article covers all the bases on what to do if you notice a shingle missing from your roof. Even if you only see one that's gone astray, it's essential to check the area and the rest of your roof to ensure there's no further damage. By the time you're finished reading, you'll have confidence in coming up with a plan once you notice missing shingles on your home in the future. 


Does a Missing Shingle Mean a Leak is in My Future?  


Shingles can pop up missing for numerous reasons, and they're usually weather-related. Some of the most common reasons shingles fall off are fly away are due to the following: 

  • High Winds
  • Storm Damage 
  • Old Age
  • Nail Placement 
  • Poor Installation 


A missing shingle doesn't always immediately mean there's an underlying issue, but many homeowners move their concern to one thing when this happens- leaks

Can a missing shingle cause a leak? 

It could, but that isn't always the case. A leak could result from the missing shingle depending on a number of factors. However, this doesn't mean a missing shingle can go on being ignored. Even if you don't have a leak right now, that doesn't mean you won't have one in the future if you don't have the area repaired or replaced. 

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What to Do After Finding a Missing Shingle 


When you find a missing shingle, let it inspire you to take action on what's going on with your roof. Always view a missing part of your roofing system as a potential problem. Remember, every part of the roof has a purpose, and if one of those vital elements goes missing, it could mean trouble down the line for the rest of the system. 

Assess the Area


Have a look at the shingles around the missing one. What do you see? Be on the lookout for the following: 

  • Tears
  • Cracks 
  • Other Missing Shingles 
  • Large Holes
  • Rot 

wind damage shingles

Seeing any of those things could mean a severe underlying issue, but don't worry; it can be fixed as long as you don't wait years down the line to finally do it. Rot is the most serious issue and will require a professional roofer to take a look and let you know what your next steps are. Remember- getting a roofer's opinion is always a great idea. 

Take Advantage of the Moment 


So, you've found a missing shingle. Once you've taken a look over the area, allow this to be an opportunity to take a look at the rest of the roof. You may as well, considering you likely need repairs anyway. Take care of them all at once! Never hesitate to take photos or write down what you find. This is an essential step if you need to file an insurance claim, and it will also help your roofer during an inspection. Walk around your home and look for visual concerns like loose, crooked, or damaged shingles. Sometimes there's an underlying concern when a shingle goes missing, so digging a little deeper is a brilliant idea. 

missing shingles

Call A Professional 


Experts are there for a reason- to help make your life a whole lot easier. If you have no prior roofing knowledge and are noticing issues, a professional can help you take your next steps. During an inspection, a certified roofer will inspect various parts of your roofing system and note any damages. Professional inspections are thorough, so you can have peace of mind that your concerns will be addressed. 

Before having an inspection, however, note that it's vital to do research on your potential roofing contractor. We know you want the best for you and your home, so ensure you do the homework to find a roofing company that stands by its word. 

roof inspection in progress

A professional inspection evaluates the following:

  • Cracks/Tears
  • Ponding Water 
  • Rusted/Loose Nails
  • Edge Detail 
  • Mold Growth 
  • Clogged Gutters 

During each step, your roofer will closely examine that part of the roof to find anything that is currently an issue or will lead to one. Once the inspection concludes, your roofer will discuss their findings and help you determine a course of action. If all you need is a few repairs for your missing shingle(s), that's great! Either way, you're in great hands with a trusted roofing professional. 

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Should I Have My Missing Shingles Assessed? 


When in doubt, contact an expert! If you're on the fence about whether your shingle question is a concern or not, you're better off consulting with a professional roofer who knows the answer. 

When you're ready to pull the plug on shingle repairs, there are professional roofers who're delighted to help you take your next steps! But remember- not all roofers are made for the job. Do your research and find a roofing contractor that'll give you the treatment you absolutely deserve. 

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Okay, so you've learned what comes of stray shingles and how to address the situation. What should you do now? If there's a specific shingle concern or issue you'd like to check up on and read more about, check out our learning center. There's something there for everyone! You just may learn a thing or two. After you've decided you're ready to get in touch with a roofer, check out our comprehensive checklist to determine what you should look for in a contractor. And if you're ready to get in touch with one of our astounding RoofCrafters representatives, head over to our contact page.

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Anthony Marzbanian

My name is Anthony, and I am the lead estimator of RoofCrafters’ Georgia/South Carolina division. The roof is the most important part of a structure, and people count on that to protect themselves and their families. That is one of the many reasons why I love my job and enjoy coming to work every day. The continuous training, honesty, and providing the customer with the Roofcrafters experience is what makes me the best in the business.