Finishing Your Basement

5 Common Causes Of Roof Damage

When it comes to your roof, it is important for you to understand the various reasons your roof may sustain damage. Knowing why your roof may sustain damage can help you take steps to prevent damage to your roof and recognize when to get your roof fixed.

Cause #1: Pests

Pests can do some real harm to your roof if you don't take care of the issue right away.

Small pests such as rats and mice only need a very small crack in your roof, as small as the size of a dime, to get inside of your roof. Rats can also chew holes in the eaves and soffits of the roof to get into your attic. Once they get into your attic, they will chew on the beams that support your roof and the insulation that protects your roof, and they can move into your home.

Squirrels cause similar damage to mice and rats. They use their sharp teeth to chew through roof shingles and underlayment. They eat through your roof to get into your attic, where they pull building materials apart to create nests.

Mice, rats, and squirrels can get onto your roof via trees and shrubs that come into contact with your roof. Keeping vegetation away from your roof can help protect your roof from these dangerous pests.

Cause #2: Birds

With birds, it is their droppings that you have to worry about. Bird droppings are very acidic. Bird droppings can literally eat away at your roof material, especially if you have asphalt shingles on your roof.

You can keep birds away by trimming back trees near your roof. You can also keep birds away by installing spike strips on your roof, which will make your roof an uncomfortable place for them to land.

Cause #3: Insects

Another major threat to your roof is insects. Insects, such as ants and termites, can eat through your roofing material, compromising the integrity of your roof, and leading to other roofing issues, such as leaks.

One of the best ways to keep insects away from your roof is by cleaning out your gutters every few months. If you don't clean out your gutters, debris will just pile up, which will attract insects to your roof.

Cause #4: Weather

One of the biggest causes of destruction to roofs is the weather. Weather can seriously damage your roof over time, and certain weather events can be particularly devastating. You can't stop the weather from damaging your roof, but you can be aware of weather events that may damage your roof and take care to inspect your roof after potentially damaging events.

A large hailstorm, for example, can dent your shingles and compromise their integrity. Some hail is strong enough to even puncture your roof. Once your shingles are damaged by hail, moisture can easily penetrate through the damaged shingles and ruin the underlayment.

A strong windstorm can rip the shingles right off your roof. Windstorms can also drag debris across your roof, which can destroy your shingles as well.

Lots of snow can weigh your roof down, and the freezing and thawing cycles can seriously damage the shingles, especially if ice dams develop. As the ice dams melt and refreeze, the water can get inside of your shingles, ripping them up. Ice dams can even rip the gutters off your roof.

Cause #5: Neglect

Finally, if you don't engage in regular maintenance, such as cleaning out your gutters and fixing shingles as soon as they become damaged, your roof can suffer some serious damage over time. Your roof needs attention over time, and if you don't take care of it, your roof will wear down at an accelerated rate.

Pests, insects, birds, weather, and neglect are five major elements that can ruin your roof. Your best defense is to get your roof inspected by a home roofing service at least once a year and take care of any damage they identify immediately. This proactive treatment will help extend the useable life of your roof and help protect your home.