Common Causes of Roof Damage and How to Prevent It

January 2, 2022

The roof is arguably the most important part of a house. It protects everything inside from the elements – rain, wind, sun, snow – you name it. But it’s also the part of the house that takes the most beating from the outside. Neglecting it can lead to costly repairs or replacements. Here are the common causes of roof damage and how to prevent it.

1. Poor installation

One of the most common causes of roof damage is poor installation. This usually happens when homeowners try to cut corners or save money and hire unlicensed, unqualified, or inexperienced contractors or try to install the roof themselves. The result can lead to improper flashing, poor ventilation, and low-quality underlayment, which can cause leaks, sagging, and rotting wood.

How to prevent it: Always hire licensed and experienced contractors or roofers to do the job. Ask for references and check their credentials. Also, don’t hesitate to ask them questions about the installation process, materials used, and warranties. You’ll get a good sense of their knowledge and experience that way.

2. Weather

Mother nature can be unrelenting, and your roof can suffer the consequences. Heavy rain, windstorms, hail, and snow can cause shingle damage, puncture holes, and even lift entire sections of roofs off.

How to prevent it: Regularly inspect your roof for signs of damage. After a major weather event, have your roof inspected by professionals as soon as possible. They can identify any damage that you may have missed and repair it before further damage occurs.

3. Lack of maintenance

Another common cause of roof damage is a lack of maintenance. Roofs need regular checks, especially as they age. Over time, shingles can curl, crack or lose their granules, and flashings can deteriorate or detach. If left unaddressed, these problems can lead to leaks and water damage.

How to prevent it: Schedule regular roof inspections, at least once a year. Spring and fall are ideal times. You can do the inspections yourself, but it’s recommended to have them done by professionals. They have the knowledge and experience to spot potential problems and repair them before they become major issues.

4. Trees

Trees can provide shade and aesthetic appeal to a home. However, they can also cause roof damage if not properly taken care of. Overhanging branches can break off and fall onto the roof, puncturing holes or causing other damage. Leaves and moss can also collect on the roof and create moisture retention, resulting in a fertile ground for algae, mold, and mildew growth.

How to prevent it: Regularly check your trees’ health and trim any branches that may overhang the roof. Also, consider planting trees far away from the house to minimize the risk of damage. Lastly, have your roof professionally cleaned to remove any debris or moss build-up.

5. Animals

Animals, such as birds and rodents, can cause significant roof damage if they make their way onto or inside the roof. Birds can Emergency roof repair peck at shingles and create holes, while rodents can chew through roofing materials, wiring, and insulation.

How to prevent it: Install bird spikes or netting to deter birds from landing on your roof. Seal off any entry points around your roof, such as vent openings and gaps between shingles. If you have a pest problem, contact a pest control professional to have it safely and humanely removed.

In conclusion, taking care of your roof is crucial in ensuring a long-lasting and safe home. By understanding the common causes of roof damage and how to prevent them, you can save yourself from costly repairs and replacements. Always remember to have regular inspections and call professionals when needed.