Home » What Is Roof Shingle Degranulation?

Did your roofer or home inspector tell you that your roof shingles are degranulating? What does roof shingle degranulation or granule loss mean and what are granules anyway?

Let’s talk about what roof shingle granules are, what they do and what happens when they come off your roof.

What are roof shingle granules?

Roof shingle granules are actually crushed rock mixed with ceramic granules. They are then colored and treated with other components and features to give the shingles enhanced functions. For example: copper granules are sometimes added into the mix to help resist blue-green algae.

The main purposes of granules is to help shed water and to protect against UV rays. The granules protect the material underneath from exposure by absorbing heat and moisture.

What causes roof shingle degranulation or granule loss?

We know nothing lasts forever, and shingles will eventually wear out. This is the most common reason for granule loss. Eventually, the adhesion to the asphalt and fiberglass underneath fails and the granules fall off. Other reasons for roof shingle granule loss is heavy rain, hail and high winds.

How can I tell if my roof shingles are degranulating?

Here are some ways to tell if your roof shingles are losing their granules:

  • Check your gutters and downspouts to see if there are excessive loose granules inside. The rain will wash granules into the gutters if they are loose. It is normal for some granules to come off from time to time, but if there are piles inside the gutter or at the bottom of the downspout, that could be an indication that the roof is degranulating.
Roof shingle granules in gutter
  • Walk around the perimeter of your home and stand back far enough from the house so you can see the roof. Look for discoloration or a “shiny” look. Sometimes you can see “bald spots” on your roof even from the ground. This usually means that the roof is missing some granules.
Degranulated roof shingles

When do I need to replace my roof shingles?

Granules help to make sure that your roof is holding up against the weather. Degranulation does not always mean you need a new roof. When the degranulation is from weather damage, it can be sporadic and only the damaged shingles need to be replaced.

Very worn and degranulated roof shingles
Very worn and degranulated roof
New roof shingles
New roof

Should I get my roof shingles inspected?

If you are worried about your roof and you see signs of degranulation, it is great idea to get a roof inspection. Top Inspectors can do an inspection on your roof to let you know what the condition is and help you get the information you need to move forward and ensure your roof is protecting your home the way it should be!

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