The Six Leading Causes of Residential Roof Damage

Your roof protects your house from the elements throughout the year. Over time, roofing systems can develop problems that can affect their performance and lifespan. The sooner you address roof problems, the better. If a roof problem goes untreated, it can snowball into a major concern, and you may end up spending several hundreds of dollars on repairs.

Here are some of the common factors that can damage your roof.


Your roof is your home’s first line of defense against the elements. It protects your home from heavy rains, storms, scorching heat, and strong winds, taking serious punishment along the way. Among these weather conditions, wind damage is particularly troublesome for shingle roofs. A high wind event can cause your shingles to become loose, curl, or even fall off. When this happens, your roof deck is left exposed and vulnerable to water damage. Water can infiltrate your home and damage your attic walls.

Hailstorms can be equally damaging. Hail particles can wear down your roof’s protective coating and create holes that can cause significant damage. As time goes on, these cracks can expand, providing pathways for moisture and water to penetrate the interior of your home.

Extreme heat too can cause serious damage to your roofing system. Temperature fluctuations can cause many roofing materials to expand and contract. Regular contraction and expansion can cause warping and cracks. Some other problems that can be caused by contraction and expansion include fading, crumbling, and detached shingles. Therefore, it is important that you choose the best roofing materials suited to your local climate.


Unfortunately, residential roofing in Marin County isn’t designed to last forever. All roofs, even the well-maintained ones, will inevitably age. Some common signs of an aging roof include cracked tiles, missing shingles, broken flashing, and gutter problems.

While you may try to fix these or other age-related problems plaguing your roofing system, they worsen with time and can lead to costly repairs. If your roof is too old and your warranty is almost up, it may make more sense to replace it than repair the roofing system.

Lack of Maintenance

All types of roofing systems need regular maintenance. Periodic maintenance addresses existing problems in a timely manner and prevents potential issues, improving the performance of your roof and extending its lifespan.

Minor issues such as small leaks, tiny cracks, and other seemingly insignificant concerns might seem easy to fix initially, but if left untreated, they can evolve into large, costly problems over time.

If you ignore roof maintenance, water damage can occur. Moisture can lead to mold growth. Molds do not just look unsightly and damage your roofing system, but they can also affect your health.

Remember, even the best materials can deteriorate without proper care. Therefore, it’s wise to regularly have a roofing contractor inspect your roof and carry out any necessary repairs promptly to prevent more extensive damage.

Improper Installation

Many homeowners, in an attempt to reduce roof installation expenses, hire inexperienced or uncertified contractors. This can prove to be a grave mistake. An amateur is highly likely to make roof installation mistakes that can cause roof problems, affecting roof performance and service life. These problems can be very costly to fix.

Some common roofing installation mistakes include failing to install proper flashing, roofing over old shingles, not using underlayment, failing to fasten shingles correctly, and using substandard roof sealants or not using sealants at all.

Consult an experienced roofer when installing skylights, shingles, or other features on your roof. They will take accurate measurements and ensure roof components fit perfectly to prevent roof leaks and other problems.

Walking Incorrectly on Roofs

Before climbing onto your roof using a ladder, you should consider the risks involved. One wrong step and you could slip and fall off or your weight could cause serious damage to your roof. Walking incorrectly on asphalt shingles can dislodge them or create gaps, which can increase the likelihood of leaks.

Climbing up a roof is an inherently dangerous activity. To avoid safety issues and roof damage, always have a professional inspect your roof rather than trying to climb it to perform a thorough inspection. Residential Roofing in Marin County experts know the right way to use ladders. They know exactly where to step and the places to avoid on roofs. Professionals use high-traction shoes instead of spiked shoes that can knock granules off the top of shingles or displace shingles.


Pests can cause serious damage to roofs. In many cases, the signs of pest infestations are subtle and may go unnoticed for weeks or months. Termites, one of the most notorious pests, are infamous for gnawing at the wooden structure of a roof, undermining the integrity of essential components such as decking, joints, and other supporting elements.

A termite infestation is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. Termites travel to your attic and through your walls via the holes they create, negatively affecting the structural integrity of your roof. The harm they cause may go unnoticed until your roof is on the brink of collapse. Other pests like rodents and birds may build nests on your roof. Critters and birds can enter your home through cracks and spaces around the ventilation.

These pests can also rip apart the soffits to make space for more of their family members and devise a variety of inventive methods to comfortably settle themselves right above you.

Animals invading your rooftop can create serious problems and should be dealt with promptly. They can create holes in your roof, chew through electrical insulation, and damage ventilation systems. If you suspect animals hiding within your roof, contact a roofer without delay and request an inspection.

At ARS Roofing & Gutters, we have a cost-effective solution to every roofing problem. Our roofing technicians use advanced tools and the latest technologies to get to the root causes of roofing problems. To schedule a professional roof inspection, call (415) 459-7200.

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