Roof raking can damage your shingles and if you’re a roof raker, it’s time to climb the ladder to inspect what damage has been done.
It’s understandable that many people go into panic mode when they hear of widespread water infiltration in the winter caused by ice damming. Home improvement shows scare folks about the weight of snow on their roofs. Some rush to the store to get roof rakes and they end up damaging their roofs.
Many people trust these shows and their hosts only to find that they’re the ones getting stuck with a bill for taking bad advice.
If you look at the shingles along the eves (the gutters edge), look for damage. This could include granule loss from scraping them off of the shingles, cuts, or gouges. Typically you will find these areas of loss to be black or dark since the asphalt is now exposed.
A shingle is made up of 3 layers
- Fiberglass matting: This makes up the base layer and gives a shingle strength.
- Asphalt: This keeps water and moisture from coming into the house.
- Granules: These add color to your roof and protect the asphalt against harmful UV rays.
Granules are often made up of limestone which has a ceramic coating. When there are fewer granules to protect the asphalt, the asphalt dries out. When that happens, there is no stickiness or pliability to hold granules in. Then even more granules come off.
Effectively, scraping your granules off of your roof makes it subject to even more damage. As the asphalt dries, it begins to crack. Once that happens, water infiltration is sure to follow.
So if you insist on roof raking, you’ll need to protect your home by doing a quick spring inspection. It’s the best way to keep your home watertight, your home maintained, and your family protected from the elements.