Shingles are parts of a specific roof system and apart from playing a decorative role, they also (and mainly) protect and insulate the structure. It goes without saying that a missing shingle won’t turn your world ups and down. After all, there’s not a hole under the shingle but an underlayment. All the same, neglecting the replacement of even a single shingle may come with consequences. And they are never good.
Yes, missing shingles create problems. And these problems do not only have to do with the aesthetical side of things – after all, sometimes, it’s impossible to see if a shingle is missing, anyway, but with the building’s condition. Since these problems have to do with the roof over your head, your pocket, and your peace of mind, let’s get down to business.
Let’s answer one simple question: what problems missing shingles may create?
Shingles become the barrier that protects the home from the elements. They flush rainwater down preventing moisture and interior damage. It makes sense to say that when one or more shingles are missing, the components underneath are affected by the rainwater. The more they are left exposed to the rain and all elements, the more the chance they will rot or become damaged. Eventually, you will experience a roof leak. Even if this will only be in the form of a few droplets of rainwater, it will still be enough to cause significant interior damage – let alone roof damage. And when you experience a roof leak, the door opens to all kinds of indoor disasters – mold growth, structural damage, furniture damage, et cetera.
When shingles are missing, it’s not a question of if but when the rest of the components of the roof system will be affected by the climate. And since one thing leads to another, the whole building may show signs of wear or get damaged – indoors, the fascia, the siding, the gutters. It all depends on how many shingles are missing, the location of the missing shingles, the roof’s slope, the roof’s condition, and the building’s condition.
When shingles are broken, blown away, or somehow missing, moisture sets in. It finds its way under the neighboring shingles and affects the underlayment and the components of the roofing system. Eventually, moisture will penetrate the home affecting the attic or other rooms on the upper floor. As you know, moisture is never a good thing. It causes rotting and destruction. It may also cause mildew and mold not only on the roof but also indoors. It may also be the reason for algae growth. These are all serious problems that will require the replacement of all affected areas and drastic measures for handling moisture.
With missing shingles, we are already talking about roof damage. The problem is that the exposed part of the underlayment will be affected by the elements. The neighboring shingles may get weakened due to the absence of the missing shingles and due to the fact that moisture and water may permeate into the roof structure.
Increased Energy Costs
When part of the roof is not well-protected, your home will be affected by the weather conditions. There’ll be higher moisture and less protection from the cold and heat. This will imply using the HVAC system more often than usual and hence, paying more for energy.
Which are the main causes of missing shingles?
The shingles may be blown away during a windy day, break, or get damaged in some other way. These things happen when the roofer has done a lousy job with the installation of the shingles or when the shingles are poor quality or old, or when they are cracked and damaged but still in place and are not replaced.
How to prevent shingles from going missing?
Since all the above problems begin and expand when shingles are missing, the prevention of the problems is to NOT let shingles go missing. Right? How can you do that when you don’t have a habit to walk on your roof? And when it’s often hard to spot or even see when shingles are missing?
The safe way to avoid all problems is to hire roofers once in a while to check the shingles – the whole roof, to be exact. It’s even more important to do that after a big storm or when the winter goes away.