Installing anchors

Hey there! Nick here, window washer and moss remover. I just started my own business a few months ago and have started doing more roof cleaning (just moss scrubbing and chemical application, no pressure washing) but not a lot of the houses I work on have any anchors.

I was wondering if anyone has installed anchors before and what type they recommend. As well, do you leave them in there or do you take them out and patch up the holes left in by the screws?! Also, do you need special training or insurance to properly install anchors into houses?

This is the current anchor I have with my harness.

Locate a rafter then I screw (not nail just to make removal easier) the bracket to the roof. Don’t leave them or they will leave rust stains down the roof in the future. When removed the shingles with holes will then need to be replaced (please don’t just caulk the nail holes!).

I haven’t done any shingle work! Is there any way to put an anchor down without leaving rust or needing to replace the shingles?

Not sure about the anchor in the photo, but the permanent anchors I use are stainless with a zinc coating. They are double d rings. That d ring in the photo might be stainless, zinc coated also. I see more and more permanent anchors in the subdivisions that are 10yrs or younger.

If you are talking about the same permanent anchors i’m familiar with then yes they are a great option, however they take more still to install and if the person isn’t capable of replacing shingles they will NOT be capable of installing those anchors.

Here is a good video showing how you replace a shingle. As long as you are handy you shouldn’t have any issues most times. There are many different types of shingles but the process to replace a shingle is the same. Imo if you don’t have the ability to replace a shingle when needed you have no business charging people $ to work on their roofs.


If your careful and remove the ridge caps first you don’t need to replace anything.just reattach and tar them down. You’ll get the hang of it pretty quick

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Thank you!

I was trained to do moss removal but I was never shown how to do any kind of roof repair…

Patchap offered good advise also. If there is no ridge vent its also possible to remove and reinstall the ridge caps.

I hadn’t even considered ridge vent, very rare here.

I would also suggest a permanent double d-ring anchor that installs at the ridgeline. The most important part of this process will be to locate a rafter before deciding where exactly to install the anchor. Typically the rafters will be 24" apart, with more experience you will be able to feel the approx location of a rafter while walking around near the ridgeline. Once you find the approx location for your anchor, carefully remove a couple ridgecap shingles to be reused later. Once the shingles are removed, you can look at the peak of the roof to find the exact location for your desired rafter. If there is a ridgevent in place, cut the ridgevent where the rafter/ anchor will be placed and bend the vent back slightly to expose the rafter. Install your permanent safety anchor (using manufacturer supplied fasteners) by nailing into rafter. Then, re-install the cut ridgevent and re-use the ridgecap shingles. If installed properly, you will only see the 2 d-rings exposed, the rest of the anchor will be underneath the ridgecap shingles when finished. Sorry for the long winded response but remember, you will not be the only one using this safety anchor in the future. Don’t open yourself up to any liability by installing the anchor incorrectly.