Every year, over the past 12 or so yrs, this subject comes up.
The tape is _NOT_ to be peeled. The tape is there to keep the shingles from
sticking together in the bundle/package. The adhesive is engineered to
stick from the opposite side, hence why you have adhesive on the opposing
side. Although, now some manufacturers have adhesive in two (2) different
areas on the same side. All you have to do is _LOOK_ & _READ_ the tape on
new material. It clearly states: "DO NOT REMOVE"
Lay out a couple of shingles, you'll get the jest of it.
I didn't notice any jesting, but I do now see that I was mistaken in
thinking that the protective film should have been removed.
However, there is no "Do Not Remove" marking on that protective film on
the new shingles -- but the on-line FAQ says that it is not necessary to
The strip keeps the shingles from sticking together while they are in
storage. Some folks reroof in winter, but I would not...need the sun to
melt the stuff so it sticks to other shingles once it is on the roof.
I just roofed our new shed with the same "architectural" shingles used
on our new home (TAMKO Heritage):
1) The instructions recommended cutting the tabs off and turning the
shingle around for the starter strip, just like shingle makers have
recommended for decades. They also recommended using their starter
strips as an option.
2) The shingles and shingle installation instructions specifically say
"do not remove the plastic strip". This is good because I tried to
remove one and it is practically impossible. I am told the plastic on
newer (how old is newer? Dunno!) shingles is degradable. It is there
to keep shingles from sticking during transport and then degrades
during early life to provide adhesion. Years ago the strips were more
like tape, with a loose end, which made them easy to remove.
Maybe your roof wasn't as bad as you thought. If it is still there
after 20 years and doing its job it might have been OK.
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