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One of the few basic needs of every human being is to have a roof over their head. Having a place to call home helps many individuals deal with the stresses and trials of everyday life. So, when your ceiling suddenly starts showing signs of water damage, it can feel like your home is literally and figuratively falling down around you. The best way to stop a problem is to prevent it from happening, which means learning about each factor that plays a role. Here are the most common causes of roof damage to watch out for in your home.


Living or inanimate, time catches up to us all in the end, and your roof is no exception. As the shingles and nails on your roof age, they start to become brittle and fraction, eventually sliding off entirely. Depending upon the materials used, the range of when you should replace your roof can vary between 12 and 30 years.


Wind, rain, snow, and everything else Mother Nature throws your way can mean destruction for your roof. Even temperature extremes can impact the lifespan. When starting research into re-shingling, carefully consider what weather conditions your roof must survive through.

Lack of Repairs

There are many instances where it’s alright to ignore a minor repair as not being worth the time and effort, but you should never treat your roof this way. Any time you suspect possible damage or see missing shingles, it is incumbent upon you to have the necessary repairs completed.

Gutter Damage

A surprising inclusion on the list of common causes of roof damage is damage to your gutters. As your gutters start to clog, they cause damage to your roof and the rest of your home. This can break an important seal and expose your roof to moisture damage.

Improper Installation

Having your shingles installed by a certified professional team reduces the risk of damage to the roof. Trying to fix or repair the roof yourself can lead to a job not being completed correctly and puts you at risk of falling off and injuring yourself.

Being Walked On

In some homes, it is possible to step out of a window and onto the roof. While this can provide a relaxing way to spend a summer evening, the added strain of your weight combined with the extra wear on the shingles being walked on can ruin the integrity of your roof.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.