If you have asphalt shingles, you've likely noticed the little specs of color that give your roof its beautiful visual appearance. These are called granules, and along with providing aesthetic appeal, they're primary purpose is to protect the shingles from the elements, particularly damaging UV radiation. Without the granules, your asphalt shingle is exposed to the sun's harmful UV rays and will begin to deteriorate.
A number of factors, from aging, to hail damage, to foot traffic, can cause granules to be lost. Read on to gain a better understanding of some of the causes of granule loss from TAMKO Building Products, a leading manufacturer of roofing and building products.
1. Aging. As your roof ages, you may start to see granule loss. Over time, the bond between the asphalt and the granules weakens, and the granules become looser, making it easy for them to come off. If granule loss is occurring due to aging, it's probably time for a new roof.
2. Blistering. Blister-like protrusions on the surface of the shingles are caused by moisture trapped inside the shingles. Shingles can become blistered due to aging, gradual wear and tear, or a specific weather event. No matter, blistered shingles can contribute to the loss of granules. If your shingles are blistering, you should replace the roof.
3. Normal Weathering. Over the course of its life, your roof endures various weather events, which contributes to the gradual loosening of the granules. Once loosened, the granules can be removed by runoff. You might find the granules in your rain gutters and downspouts.
4. Hail Damage. Granule loss can occur as a result of prolonged hail exposure or a single severe hail storm. If your roof is old, a minor hail event might be enough to loosen and remove the granules. Depending on the severity of the damage, you may need a new roof.
5. Foot Traffic. Granule loss can result from scuffing from foot traffic. Again, the older the roof, the more likely damage will occur from walking on the roof.
These are a few common causes of granule loss. To ensure your roof is in tip-top shape, have it inspected at least twice a year and following a storm or weather event.
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