How Many Nails Per Architectural Shingle & Installing Roofing Shingles

Roofing or re-roofing is a major work that is a lot of investment both in money and in time. In this review, we would like to point out a few things you ought to know, like choosing the right roofing nails and how many nails per architectural shingle you need, amongst others.

As such, mistakes are the one thing you can’t afford to make when roofing. If you want to embark on this task for one reason or the other, it is recommended that you go in fully prepared.

First things first, ensure you have all the right safety equipment. The next thing you need is the correct information to make your work progress quickly.

How Many Nails Per Architectural Shingle For 2020

Most of the shingle manufacturers advise generally four nails per shingle. Below are a couple of things you ought to consider when roofing with a shingle.

Choose Correct Roofing Nails

Bitumen roof shingles are one of the most straightforward roofing materials to install. Nevertheless, there are different kinds of roofing nails for different roofing material. A galvanized roofing nail is the most common type of roofing nail many professionals use when installing a shingle.

The nails can be galvanized with various processes like stainless steel, copper, or aluminum. Galvanized nails are more resistant to the environment and do not rust or corrode all that easily.

Apart from that, the roofing nail you should use should have at least 9.5 mm minimum head diameter and at least 2.67 mm or 12 gauge minimum nominal shank diameter.

Generally, a large nail head is heavier, and the shank gauge has much greater holding power.

Roofing nails for roofing work

BOSTITCH Roofing Nails, Wire Collated Coil, 1-1/4-Inch, Smooth Shank, 15-Degree, 7200-Pack (CR3DGAL)


Special Features:

Item modelItem WeightProduct DimensionsSizeCutting DiameterIncluded ComponentsPrice
Bostitch Cr3Dgl14.63 pounds19 x 11 x 8 inches7,200-Qty1.25 inchesUnit^Instruction GuideSee Price

Nail Length

Also, your roofing nail should be quite long, or at least long enough to penetrate the roofing material and go at least 19 mm into the solid wood, plywood, OSB, or non-veneer wood decking.

To know the length of nail suitable for the type of roofing you’re doing, you should consider the number of shingles you want to install. Also, the thickness of the shingles and underlayment and flashings affect the nail’s length that will be ideal for that installment.

The correct penetration of the wooden roof deck should be such that the nail is long enough to penetrate through the shingles and fully penetrates the sheathings.

For installing thicker shingles, it is recommendable to use long nails like the 30 mm nail. For hip and ridge application or re-roofing (shingle over shingle), it is necessary to use a minimum of 35 mm long roofing nails.

What’s Your Slope

The slope of your roof should be put into consideration. So, before you get started, measure the slope by measuring the vertical rise of your deck in inches over a 12 inches horizontal line. If the rise measures up to 4 inches, then your roof’s slope is 4 in 12.

Roof slope is always expressed with a vertical rise combination mentioned first by the horizontal run mentioned second.  But if you have a steep roof, you have to use an alternative method to measure the slope.

To calculate the roof length, you’d have to measure the exterior wall plus the overhand for the house’s length parallel to the ridge. Have a rope go over the ridge and take the measurement on each eave. This gives you the width dimension you can use to figure your area. It would be best if you did this on each roof section containing a horizontal ridge.

How Many Shingles in a Bundle

Roofing shingles are sold in bundles and by the square. A square of shingle is the amount of shingle you need to cover a 100 square inches roof. Most shingles are lightweight and are packaged in paper-wrapped bundles, making it easier to carry.

But heavier shingles require more bundles per square. The most common heavier shingle is three bundles to a square.

A shingle with three bundles to the square measures up 12 inches by 36 inches, which is a 29 standard-sized shingles.

It is expected to answer of how many nails per architectural shingle as well as a detailed idea in this regard.

Read Also: Best cordless nail gun for framing

How-to: Roofing Shingles Install?

Before you start, you need to have all your tools all set and equipment, so you don’t leave a project half-way finished. Follow the steps below to install a roofing shingle:

Drip Edge

The first thing you want to do is install the drip edge first at the bottom end of the roof. But do not place the drip edge too close to the roof; leave about ½ inch gap between the drip edge and the roofing wood.

The drip edge serves to break the water tension when the water runs down the shingle, preventing the decay of the roofing wood. Do the same thing on the left and right sides of the roof as well.

Felt Paper on the Roof

Next, install the felt paper on the roof, whose function is to form a release between the roof and the underside of the roof shingle to move independently.

But it would also absorb any condensation if it forms under the roof shingles.

Three Bundle Shingle

So, if you are installing a standard 36 inches wide and a 12 inches high, three bundle shingle, it’s best to have a 6 inches overlap and a 5 inches reveal.

So, place a measuring tape on your roof and measure 12 inches but give a ½ inch gap at the bottom end of the roof to help with surface tension. Measure a 5 inches mark interval.

Place First Shingle

Place your first shingle such that the glue is at the bottom end of the roof and nail it in place.

Another Shingle

Place another shingle on the shingle you just nailed in place such that the glue is farther from the bottom end of the roof.

Cut The Shingle

Cut the shingle, so that each row is offset 6 inches from the previous row.

Cap The Roof

To cap the roof, cut the shingle to each tab and overlap them 5 inches. And that is how you shingle a roof to make it straight and watertight.

Find out the mistake to Install Roofing Shingles (Video)


Adding a shingle to your roof doesn’t only add to the looks, but also protects the roofing material making it last longer. Don’t forget to take note of how many nails per architectural shingle you’d need for your particular roof before you get started.

After completing the installation, keep a close eye on it to ensure it’s well done and not leaking. If you have further questions about installing a shingle on your roof, please leave a comment in the comment section below.


James Collins
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