Don’t Do These Stupid Things to Your Roof

“It seemed like a good idea at the time,” someone always says as they recover from the scratches, bruises, and wounded ego from some disaster.


This is as true for home ownership as it is for tricks on skateboards.


Here are some things actual homeowners have done to their roofs, only to later face expensive repairs.


  1. Attaching your satellite dish to your roof.


Those screws seem tight. They’re holding the dish on, after all. However, water sees them as a shortcut into your roof and right under the expensive barrier you built.


That’s right, you gave them a shortcut right through your expensive shingles.


Instead, opt for the wall mount or yard mount for your satellite dish. If the roof mount is the only option, make sure that the mounting is professional and involves additional waterproofing around the edges.


  1. Cleaning the roof with a powerwasher


Many a homeowner has found themselves frustrated by moss, leaf stains, or other discoloration issues on their roof. Unfortunately, it can be tempting to take the same approach as you would with a concrete stain.


You should never powerwash your roof.


Too many things can go wrong.


First, the powerwasher is heavy and awkward. One wrong tug or move and it could slip from the roof, creating an expensive accident. Worse yet, it could take you with it, perhaps requiring a hospital visit.


Second, the powerwasher is meant to remove debris by forcing water onto the target surface. The problem is, on your roof, the surface is often a tile that includes tiny gravel pellets stuck to a tar sheet. These will come off slowly over time through normal wear. Speeding that process up damages your roof, and will likely invalidate your warranty.


Third, by forcing water into those places you are trying to keep dry, you make yourself your home’s worst enemy. High pressure water will work into cracks and crevices and create paths for future rain to follow.


  1. Check for leaks by pulling up tiles


If you suspect a leak, call an inspector to closely examine the problem. If you climb onto your roof to take off individual shingles, you will create an even bigger problem that is likely to need a costly repair.


Your roof’s shingles are placed in an intricate pattern, with each layer depending on and relating to the ones above and below it. Disturbing that pattern without taking tremendous precautions can compromise the entire roof.


Additionally, pulling up these shingles can cause them to bend, weakening the tar at the point of the bend, allowing for future water leaks. Further, the holes from the nails will no longer be sealed, and may become long gouges as the nails remain in place.


Removing shingles is simply a terrible idea unless you are in the process of replacing them.


Of course, you would never do these things, but if your neighbor is about to make any of these mistakes, quietly pull them aside and offer them these words of caution.


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