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Roof Deterioration: Damage VS Normal Wear and Tear

Many homeowners prefer asphalt shingle roofing because it’s cost-effective, durable, and available in a wide range of design options. With proper installation and maintenance, you won’t need to worry about getting a roof replacement until up to 20 years or more. Still, roofs go through a lot and get exposed to harsh outdoor elements every day, such as winds, UV rays, and rains. 

Roof Deterioration

Continue reading to learn the difference between roof deterioration due to damage and normal wear and tear. 

How Do You Know Your Roof Is Reaching the End of Its Life?

Excessive Sunlight Exposure

Most roofing systems receive significant amounts of sunlight daily, especially ones that do not get shade from trees. In summer, excessive UV-ray exposure can cause severe damage to your roof. Over time, it can result in shingle warping and discoloration. A couple of warped shingles will not affect the efficiency of your roof, but when the problem progresses, the system will eventually need to be replaced. 

Decaying Shingles

Warped shingles that continuously get excessive sunlight exposure will eventually start to decay. Early signs of this issue include dents, granule loss, and cracks. Decayed shingles can even start falling off from the roof. When not addressed, this problem will only worsen and cause other issues inside your home, such as leaks and water damage. Experience roofers would suggest a complete replacement if several shingles are decaying. 

Roof Discoloration

Aside from warping, UV exposure can also lead to roof discoloration. Shingle fading may not mean that your roof has damage, but it can affect your home’s appeal. It is also one of the early signs that your shingles are starting to warp or approaching the end of their lifespan. 

Dark Stains on Shingles

Manufacturers embed granules to asphalt shingles to improve their protection against the elements. These sediments are also what give your shingles their color. It’s natural for them to fall off during shipping, handling, and installation. After a roof replacement, it’s normal to see some granules in your gutters or on the ground. Moreover, older asphalt shingle roofing systems are more prone to lose granules. As your roof reaches the end of its life, you may notice dark spots developing in areas with significant granule loss. 

High-Wind Related Damage

One of the most damaging outdoor elements your roof can be exposed to is high winds. It can accelerate the deterioration of roofing shingles and cause their shingles to get lifted. Homeowners living in locations prone to high winds would benefit from reinforced shingles or starter strips that prevent wind tear-offs. 

Debris From Surrounding Trees

Trimming trees surrounding your home can help prolong the life of your roof. Branches can scratch the surface of shingles, dislodge granules, and even potentially pierce holes through them. Overgrown trees also increase the likelihood of pests or small animals gaining access to your roof and home. 

What Are the Most Common Signs of Roof Damage?

Vent Damage

Contact a local professional immediately if you notice that the housings on your plastic or metal roof vents are cracked. Expect this issue to recur if you choose to get temporary fixes. Make sure to address damaged vents as soon as possible to avoid costlier repairs. 

Damaged or Missing Flashing

Roofers install flashing on parts of the roofing system vulnerable to leaks, such as chimneys, vents, skylights, rakes, valleys, and other protrusions. Missing or damaged flashing is a typical sign it’s time to get a new roof. 


Roofs can sag for various reasons, such as improper installation, water damage, excessive snow or ice loads, and aging. Proper maintenance can help make your roof stronger against the elements and reduce the likelihood of water-related problems. 

Another way to avoid this issue is to work with experienced professionals for your roof. Reputable roofing companies know the best ways to delay the deterioration of your roof. You can also count on them for high-quality materials. However, if your roof is not installed correctly or low-quality materials are used, it can sag due to its weight. 

Ice Dams

During winter, snow can build up on your roof and start to melt as the temperatures rise. Ice dams form when the melted snow flows to the eaves and refreezes. When not addressed, the constant occurrence of ice dams will cause water to seep underneath the shingles. Repetitive defrosting and refreezing of ice can harm your shingles and eventually cause water to leak into your living space.

Hail Damage

Hail is another ice formation you should watch out for. When large and fast enough, hailstones can severely damage your roof. Dents in the flashing surrounding the edges of your roof are a common sign of hail damage. 

Some of the most typical signs of hail damage on asphalt and composition shingles include granule loss and random damage with no distinct pattern. Even if your roof looks alright after a hailstorm, you should still get a professional inspection. Keep in mind that sometimes signs of damage are not apparent until leaks occur. 

Work With Reliable Professionals for Your New Roof

Choosing a contractor is among the most crucial decisions you’ll make when planning a roofing project. Reading reviews, asking for references, and obtaining quotes are essential. As much as possible, you want to hire a local company for your project. Aside from being easy to contact, they have also likely previously worked with someone you know. It means you can get a personal look at the quality of their work. 

Licensing and insurance are two of the first things to look for when assessing roofing professionals. Ask your potential contractor for their license number and verify its validity online. Insurance is vital because it will keep you protected in case something wrong happens during your project. 

It’s not enough that you choose high-quality materials for your project. Choose a contractor offering superior materials backed with comprehensive warranties. Before hiring anyone, always look into the kinds of guarantees and warranties they are offering. 

For high-quality roofing products and services, turn to Next Level Roofers. We are one of the area’s most trusted roofing companies. Our team specializes in new construction and roof replacements. Call us at (407) 237-7960 or fill out our contact form to get a free estimate.