5 Surprising Things That Can Damage Your Roof Shingles

Apr 21, 2021Blog, Shingle Roofing

River Run Roofing professionally installs roof shingles that will beautify and protect any home for decades. We’ve seen a lot of roof damage in our years of service and you’d be surprised by some of the reasons behind needed home roof repairs. Here are 5 surprising causes of roof damage:



It’s not uncommon to discover large amounts of bird poop along the ridges, eaves, and rake edges of a roof, especially if your home is located along the shoreline or urban areas where pigeons make their homes.


It’s seemingly harmless, but poop can actually weaken the granules in composite shingles. It’s highly acidic. When hail and debris fall on your roof where those shingles are weakened, it can result in a loss in shingle granules. This may leave numerous round “bald” spots on your roof where granules have washed away.


The granules on roof shingles help your roof shed water and can also provide protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays, as a way to provide fire resistance. Depending on the amount of granule loss, and your preference for a non-spotted roof, you may need to replace those damaged shingles.


Check out “The Great Bird Poo Shingle Damage Experiment.”


Our roofing professionals can determine the extent of damage to your residential roof caused by bird droppings. You may just have to replace a few weak shingles instead of needing an entire roof repair. Our residential roofing services can help extend the life of your roof.


Moss can attach to the edge of your roof shingles and lift them up. That slight curl in a shingle can be just enough to enable wind to lift it off. When curling occurs to a large area of your roof, it can also jeopardize your roof’s ability to shed water, compounding the problem. Moreover, moss can cause other roofing materials, like metal or clay, to degrade.


Moss loves moisture and will continue to worsen if your roof doesn’t get enough sun exposure or it’s covered by tree shade. Tree branches will block the sun and add to the problem by dropping debris, which will provide even more “nutrients” for the moss to grow.


If you see signs of moss on your home’s roof, call River Run Roofing. We may be able to replace damaged areas of your roof caused by moss.


Often, people try to get rid of ice dams on their roofs using ice melt. However, some ice melt products, like calcium chloride-based ice melting products may damage your roof or at least discolor your roof shingles.


Ice melt product can cause metal roofs to rust and degrade flashing, which will lead to leaks. Granted, ice dams are harmful. They can cause melted water from getting backed up, forcing it to push itself under shingles. There are various ways to prevent ice dams, but we suggest consulting with a roofing professional before trying any DIY solutions.


If you discover bird droppings or moss on your roof, you’ll be tempted to power wash it off. Do not use a pressure washer to clean your home’s roof! Cleaning a roof with a pressure washer can damage the protective granules on your shingles. Pressure washers may also damage a metal roof, especially one that’s painted.


If you strip the surface of your shingles, you put the integrity of your roof at risk. Additionally, using a pressure washer to remove debris from your roof typically means you’ll be on the rooftop. This type of roof maintenance requires professionals with proper equipment. If you’re concerned about the condition of your roof, we encourage you to contact a reputable roofing contractor who can assess the condition of your home’s roof and suggest remediation using proper roof repair.


Birds are not the only animals that can damage your roof. Squirrels, mice, and raccoons can damage your shingles, soffits, fascia, and more in their quest to make your attic their new home. Rodents can chew through some surprisingly tough surfaces, including your shingles.


If you suspect animals are trying to access your attic through your roof, call a roofing contractor. He or she can professionally inspect your roof and assess any damage. River Run Roofing is your local roofing contractor serving Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, and New Jersey. You’ll get the roofing experience that you deserve.