A sturdy roof on your Tampa, FL, home is necessary to protect your family and belongings from the elements. A responsible homeowner needs to be aware of the numerous problems that can compromise the integrity of a roof. Knowledge is power when it comes to roof maintenance.

Deteriorating Shingles

One of the most common problems homeowners experience with their roofs is damaged shingles. Wear and tear from storms, intense heat from sun exposure, falling debris, and poor installation take their toll on shingles. Age is also a factor. The older your roof is, the more suspectable the shingles are to damage. It doesn’t matter how perfectly installed it is or the quality of the shingles.

If you see curling, torn, or missing shingles, it’s important to contact a professional to fix the problem. The longer you wait, the more extensive and expensive the damage will be.

Faulty Roof Flashing

Made of steel, aluminum, or weatherproof plastic, roof flashing is installed in your roof’s weakest areas to seal and protect it from water damage. It’s installed around your chimney, venting pipes, rooftop heating and cooling systems, and any skylights you may have. If the flashing isn’t installed correctly, or if it breaks or cracks, you’ll experience water and moisture-related damage.

Damaged flashing should be repaired or replaced by a professional as soon as possible to prevent extensive damage.

Poor Ventilation

Adequate ventilation is important for the integrity of your roof. Without it, you’ll experience problems both outside your home and indoors. Moisture will accumulate in the attic and raise the temperature of your indoor air. Over time, this issue can lead to damaged shingles and sheathing. You’ll have insulation problems and higher energy costs. Poor ventilation can also contribute to the formation of ice dams in the winter. Ice dams are caused by melting snow that flows down your roof and freezes, usually near the edge. It creates a blockage and prevents the proper drainage of water from your roof.

If you suspect poor ventilation is a problem for your roof, you should have an inspection performed by a professional.

Roof Leaks

Homeowners should keep an eye out for signs of roof leaks, such as water stains or mildew. Leaks are quite common and can be caused by several things, including ice dams, poor ventilation, unprofessional installations, and broken shingles. Once a leak is spotted, you should call a professional to investigate further. They will look for signs of leaks or water damage around the chimney, flashing, skylights, near gutters, and close to vents.

Left untreated, roof leaks can lead to extensive damage and structural issues.

Pooling Water

Mostly found on flat roofs, pooling or standing water can be a big problem. If water doesn’t drain off properly from a roof, the consistency of moisture will facilitate the growth of mildew, mold, algae, and rot. Eventually, the water will seep in and result in structural damage. Your home’s integrity will be threatened.

Pooling water can lead to ice dams and cause fascia board or soffit rot that can spread to the rest of your roof. For these reasons, all styles of roofs should have proper drainage. Vinyl or aluminum soffit and fascia boards keep moisture off your roof and home. If your fascia is spruce or pine, consider replacing it with redwood, cyprus, or cedar. These woods are more expensive but more resistant to rot, even when left untreated. Fascia may also be replaced with PCV or vinyl.

Tree Damage

It’s nice to have a woody, shaded lot, but trees with overhanging limbs or tall, overgrown shrubbery can threaten your roof. Of course, large branches can cause major damage if they fall on your roof. But smaller branches are even worse because they scrape the roof and deteriorate the top layer slowly. Over time, you’ll experience problems with damaged shingles or flashing.

Additionally, leaves and debris from trees can end up in gutters and block the flow of water.

All these problems can easily be avoided by having your trees professionally trimmed on a regular basis.

Storm Damage

Do you live in an area that experiences storms with strong winds? The condition of your roof will need to be inspected periodically by a professional who can spot damage and correct it promptly. High winds can rip shingles, and pelting rain and sleet may cause dents and holes.

Snow and ice from winter storms can freeze, thaw, and freeze again. The process can damage shingles and flashing, leaving the roof decking underneath exposed. Your home’s structural support will be at risk.


Shrinkage is a roofing phenomenon that can happen to any type of roofing material, but it is most common in those with synthetic rubber membranes. It happens when materials shrink and pull in all directions, resulting in structural pressure. The signs to watch out for include cracks or tears in shingles or flashing. It’s not as common as other problems and is usually caused by poor installation or irregular inspections and maintenance.

Pest Invasions

Pests like squirrels, rodents, and certain insects can get into the structure of your roof and chew wood. This results in structural damage to your roof and your entire home. This is another reason to keep your trees trimmed, since dangling limbs can give pests easy access to your roof. If these critters build a nest in your chimney, it can cause an obstruction that allows smoke and carbon monoxide to back up into your home.

If you suspect pests are a problem, protect your home by calling a professional pest removal service.

Nonprofessional Installations or Repairs

A roof that is poorly installed is an unfortunate yet common cause of roofing problems. If you’re building a new home or having your roof repaired or replaced, only use trusted professionals with proper certifications and a proven record. While using unskilled or inexperienced workers may save you money upfront, you’ll likely pay for it in expensive repairs later.

In addition to leading to extra expenses, the safety of your family can be at risk if your roof is not structurally intact.

Lack of Maintenance

One of the biggest yet most avoidable problems with your roof is a lack of consistent maintenance. Without it, small problems that you may not even notice can turn into big, expensive ones. Your roof may last 20 years or more with regular inspections and maintenance.

For ultimate protection, schedule a minimum of one roof inspection per year. If you live where strong storms are a problem with lots of wind, ice, and snow, consider having an inspection more frequently. Post-storm inspections are always a good idea.

You can trust the integrity and safety of your roof to the professionals at Protek Roofing, Heating, Air & Solar in Tampa. We will inspect your tile, shingle, or metal residential or commercial roof and provide maintenance, repair, and replacement when needed.

In addition to roofs, we have teams that are experts in AC and heating installation, repair, and maintenance, including ductless mini-spits and heat pumps. Are you ready to get a tax break by installing solar panels? We can take care of that as well. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Protek Roofing, Heating & Air

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