When we are safe inside our home and see a very windy and rainy storm, we tend to look at it with amazement. There is a beauty to the chaos of a storm. What most of us are not thinking about is the roof damage that the storm is causing to our roof.
If you have been in a storm with hail, get your roof inspected. Hail damage is typically covered by homeowners insurance.
The vast majority of roof damage begins with weather-related events. Harsh weather will cause your shingles to deteriorate much sooner than expected, but it isn’t the only cause of roof damage. Below is a list of the most common causes of roof deterioration.
1. Roof Damage From Standing Water
The number one enemy of your roof is water. While rain, hail and harsh sun can have a negative impact on your roof, standing water is the worst. The reasoning for this is that the structure of your roof is specifically designed to repel water. This is why shingles, flashing, and all other roofing materials are installed in a specific order to ensure the water can effectively run off properly. When water is left standing, the likelihood of water seeping in to unwanted areas are high.
2. Roof Damage From Hail Storms
Hail may not fall every day, but when it does, it can be very harmful to your roof. As the hail impacts your roof, it can leave dents in your shingles. They don’t look like much, but those dents can dislodge the small protective granules and increase the likelihood of a roof leak. In more serious cases, hail can cause broken shingles which will require immediate repair.
It’s also important to consider that these granules protect your roof from UV Rays and aid in the shedding of water. Mineral granules make up your shingles and are the bulletproof vest to your roof. If those granules get destroyed or damaged, it leaves your roof vulnerable. Vulnerable to much more serious damage and reduces the life expectancy of your shingles.
3. Roof Damage From Strong Wind
Strong winds can have the ability to lift the edges of your shingles, leaving them vulnerable to water damage and structural deterioration. Typically, asphalt shingles are the most vulnerable to this as they are the lightest in weight and can tear or puncture fairly easy in comparison to metal or synthetic.
These winds also typically carry the debris that can impact your roof which can also damage your shingles. Be sure to check your roof using the I.O.U. method after windy storms for debris and any missing shingles. If you do notice lifted or missing shingles, contact your local roofer as soon as possible to reduce the chance of further damage to your roof.
Roof damage can be hard to see by the untrained eye.
4. Roof Damage From The Sun
It may not seem like the sun should harm your roof, but it is very common, particularly in the blazing hot Florida summers. Exposure to constant and intense UV light and IR radiation can cause thermal expansion in your shingles leading them to break down over time. Some of us get used to the sun living in Florida, but we must always remember that it can have a negative effect on our roofs.
5. Roof Damage From Trees, Lichen, & Leaves
Trees that have grown to the point where they are touching your roof can cause a series of issues for your roof. Its presence can block water drainage and branches could eventually fall onto the roof, causing damage to your shingles.
As leaves fall off the tree, they will eventually get pushed into your gutter, blocking the flow of excess water leaving your roof. That excess water can build up, allowing more moisture to seep into the framework of your roof causing rot and other issues.
Look out for Lichen as well. Lichen can be acidic – penetrating your shingles, breaking them down and exposing your roof. Also, be sure to keep an eye out for moss and algae growing on your roof. That can be an eyesore, but can also aid in the development of rot.
The good news is, removing moss and lichen from your roof is not the most difficult process in the world. Often times, this can be done by the homeowner, but just make sure to take all safety precautions when doing so. If you are worried about doing this yourself, your local contractor will be happy to help!
6. Roof Damage From Snow & Ice
Snow and Ice damage is not something that we normally come up against here in the Southern United States. However, for our Northern friends reading this, snow and ice can pose a serious threat to your roof.
Brief warm periods in the middle of winter can cause snow to melt and refreeze to your roof. Improper insulation can compound this problem and create something called an ice dam. An ice dam is a large chunk of ice that builds up on the edge of your roof.
You’ll want to pull out some tools and hack off the ice dam, but you need to resist that urge. Hacking off the ice dam will only damage your roof further. It’s important to call a professional who can properly melt the ice dam without damaging your roof.
Need A Roof Inspection To Check For Damage?
Shingle roofs should last 20-30 years. However, that time period can be a lot shorter without regular inspections and a vigilant eye to the common causes of roof deterioration.
Roof damage can be hard to see by the untrained eye, so schedule an inspection today and extend the lifetime value of your roof.