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Columbus Roofing: Article About Shingles

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Asphalt shingles are the standard for exterior roofing systems in central Ohio. Built to last for 20 to 25 years, these materials are among the lowest cost for roof materials, but they also have the shortest lifespans. One of the leading signs that the roof needs to be replaced is when the shingles have lost their aggregate granules. Property owners can work with a local Columbus roofing service to minimize some of the causes of granule loss and possibly extend the roofing system's lifespan.

Normal weathering is the leading reason why granules fall off the shingles. This process takes place over years, although homeowners may find some granules in their gutters each time they do a clean out. This is normal and is not a cause for concern unless homeowners notice the presence of several handfuls of the granules filling up the gutters. The portions of the roof with the greatest amount of sun exposure will experience the most wear, while those shaded by trees or neighboring houses will show less wear.

Another leading cause of granule loss is foot traffic on the roof. Walking around the rooftop to check the flashing, fix a vent or chimney or clean the gutters causes some granules to dislodge. This can happen in greater amounts if the roof is walked upon in the heat of the day.

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Any roofing projects should be done on a cool, dry and cloudy morning before the roof has a chance to warm up.

Severe weather events may cause a sudden and dramatic loss in shingle granules. Hailstorms are particularly damaging to asphalt granules and may even leave bald spots on the shingles. In many cases, a roof will need to be replaced after experiencing a significant hailstorm.

Surprisingly, the installation process itself can knock a lot of the granules off the roof. Any handling of the shingles, with bare hands or work gloves, is enough to disturb the adhesives keeping the granules attached to the asphalt and composite base. Other movements, such as dragging piles or bundles of shingles around, sliding boards or tarps over the roof or leaning a ladder up against the shingles can all have detrimental effects on the granules.

The easiest way to check on the granule coverage is to do so with a pair of binoculars while cleaning out the gutters each spring and autumn. If a homeowner notices considerable granule loss, a professional inspection can determine whether or not the situation is typical and if the roof needs to be replaced.

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